AugustusFerdinand's recent activity

  1. Comment on Electric cars are better for the planet – and often your budget, too in ~enviro

    AugustusFerdinand
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    I appreciate that this study actually looks at the long term. Several previous articles and works I've read used an incredibly short "lifetime" for vehicles (usually around 5 years) and I found...

    I appreciate that this study actually looks at the long term. Several previous articles and works I've read used an incredibly short "lifetime" for vehicles (usually around 5 years) and I found them to be next to useless for someone like me that has tastes for older cars (aside from my "daily driver" all of my vehicles are over 25 years old). The takeaway from the "5 year lifetime" was that the electric cars were overall a positive for the environment and budget, but then the clock is nearly reset again with the need for a battery replacement. Which is thankfully not the reality.

    I like electric cars, I'm sure I'll own one (and I've got my spot in line for a Cybertruck, whether or not I buy one when it's time is another story), and I don't see them as the threat to the older vehicles I prefer. Instead I see them doing to the internal combustion engine the same that automobiles did to horses; allowing them to become an enthusiast endeavor that is overall better for everyone.

    5 votes
  2. Comment on A not-so-modest proposal to nationalize the defense industry in ~misc

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Yep, didn't even want to get into the specifics of desktop CNC (which is all the Ghost Gunner is) which has proliferated over the past 5 years. I have a stack of forged aluminum (my mailman loved...

    Yep, didn't even want to get into the specifics of desktop CNC (which is all the Ghost Gunner is) which has proliferated over the past 5 years. I have a stack of forged aluminum (my mailman loved me) sitting in my garage that I picked up for cheap for the 1m x 1m CNC I'm building this year.

    If I ignore my 3D printer entirely, only use the aluminum I have that can make an AR15 lower in a single piece (no 80% or mating two smaller pieces), I can turn out a dozen AR15 lowers (the part considered a firearm by the ATF) in a weekend. That's one man, in a home garage, with completely raw material.

    6 votes
  3. Comment on A not-so-modest proposal to nationalize the defense industry in ~misc

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Extremist organizations in the middle east don't have some guaranteed surplus or back alley deal with a major power, they simply make firearms themselves. The tools needed to make firearms are...

    Sure, but outside of making their own bullets or guns in their own clandestine operations, how else are they going to get bullets once mass manufacturing by legal industry is stopped around the world?

    1. Extremist organizations in the middle east don't have some guaranteed surplus or back alley deal with a major power, they simply make firearms themselves.

    2. The tools needed to make firearms are commonplace, be they high end CNC, older manual mills and lathes, or simple hand tools and drill presses present in every other home garage in the US.

    3. The same tools can easily make cases and bullets, mass manufacturing is absolutely not necessary.

    4. No, before you think about it, making chemical gunpowder and primers are not difficult either, is widely available knowledge, and the ingredients are available over the counter with zero regulation or the possibility to be regulated. This goes for all materials necessary for the manufacture of firearms and ammunition.

    5. 3D printing has only made it easier to make firearms. Nearly everything in this photo is printed or hardware store attainable, the only parts that were firearm specific and not as easily made (highlighted in pink) with hand tools have recently been replaced with printed pieces as well. This is just one model, there are hundreds, is not a throwaway firearm, and model makers have been going through constant testing and refinement demonstrating the model more than capable of withstanding thousands of rounds without failure.

    6. And finally, you can't uninvent anything and guns are not complicated. Close all the factories today, new ones open tomorrow. Close those and they'll reopen on a smaller individually, but overall larger scale.

    8 votes
  4. Comment on Visual investigations: How a Presidential rally turned into a Capitol rampage // Insurrection at the Capitol: A timeline of how it happened in ~news

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Presented titles, in my experience, can and often change with an ongoing story. While this isn't an ongoing story, I think the presented one is correct and is what I usually go for unless it is...

    Presented titles, in my experience, can and often change with an ongoing story. While this isn't an ongoing story, I think the presented one is correct and is what I usually go for unless it is sensationalized and then I'll go for element, or un-sensationalize it.

    1 vote
  5. Comment on What’s something you have an unusually strong fondness for? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Isn't it amazing‽ Taking the words right out of my mouth. The honey that I buy, and encourage others to do the same, is small, local, and stationary.

    Pre-COVID, the local beekeeping group had a tasting, and the variety of flavors and consistencies was mind-boggling. It varied from one hive (dark, crystallized, smoky, pine, and caramel) to another (light, thin, intensely sweet, floral) on the same farm.

    Isn't it amazing‽

    If you can, support local smallhold beekeepers who are not shipping their hives for pollination.

    Taking the words right out of my mouth. The honey that I buy, and encourage others to do the same, is small, local, and stationary.

    4 votes
  6. Comment on What’s something you have an unusually strong fondness for? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Honey. I freaking love honey. At last count, and it's been awhile since I've counted, I have something in the range of 30 different varietals of honey. Only a couple of the jars are flavored...

    Honey.

    I freaking love honey. At last count, and it's been awhile since I've counted, I have something in the range of 30 different varietals of honey. Only a couple of the jars are flavored (gifts, as I don't seek out flavored honey), everything else is as the bees made it. Each has nuances and flavor profiles like you wouldn't believe, rivaling (and often surpassing) those in beer, wine, and liquors. Early in our relationship my wife, wanting to participate in my interests as well, said we should do a honey tasting of all that I had at the time. She had no idea what she was in for. We took pictures to show the color on white spoons in a small light box, tried each, and made tasting notes in a notebook. It was a wonderful time, but was honestly too much honey to have at once.

    I have/had honey from various countries, various parts of the US, unlabeled honey given to me by strangers, honey given as gifts, honey given directly by a beekeeping patient just because he overheard me talking about honey, honey from friends that started beehives and weren't expecting the amount they got out of it, supremely overpriced Spanish honey from my ex-wife's aunt who believed the price of the gift was an indicator of how good the gift was (the honey was just okay), honey from an urban rooftop hive that tasted like Dr.Pepper (I am in Texas after all) because that's what the bees used to make it as it was next door to a bottling plant, honey clear enough that you'd think it was white wine, honey so dark that bordered on black, unforgettable honey, ruined honey, fake honey, honey I haven't even opened yet, and honey that was downright disgusting. Hell, I have another jar in the wings because one of my friends was at a farm store to pick up milk and butter direct and they had honey as well, he sent me a picture saying "You try this yet?", I said no, and he just responded with "Good, because I bought you a jar."

    From my past comments I'm sure people have gathered that I'm a car guy and I love sumo, but I also have, as the subject asked, an unusually strong fondness for honey.

    23 votes
  7. Comment on What’s something you have an unusually strong fondness for? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Right there with you. Don't care where I'm visiting, don't care what it is, I'm eating it if I see literally any other local eating something there as well. My rule is "if their food was making...

    I am very extremely fond of street food. I’ll stop anywhere, anytime, to eat a nice looking burger, Brazilian hotdog, coxinha, pastel, Brazilian esfiha, acarajé...

    Right there with you. Don't care where I'm visiting, don't care what it is, I'm eating it if I see literally any other local eating something there as well. My rule is "if their food was making people sick they wouldn't be in business" and it hasn't steered me wrong yet, but has delivered unforgettable food that I largely have no idea what it was. It's amazing.

    6 votes
  8. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Makes since, mint is weed-like in it's resilience it seems. My wife goes through gardening phases where she'll make plans and do big chunks of projects for the in ground planters we have and mint...

    this is a great way to use up the mint, which is growing like crazy in it! :P

    Makes since, mint is weed-like in it's resilience it seems. My wife goes through gardening phases where she'll make plans and do big chunks of projects for the in ground planters we have and mint is one of the things he planted. She's good about picking things that "thrive on being ignored" so it was set and forget and has done well out there. There's also a huge rosemary bush and some other things this non-green-thumb guy can't recall. Looks good to me and doesn't require me to do anything to it except blow the leaves out in fall.

    Also, I knew you could flavor vodka by soaking some fruit or dissolving some candy in it, but never even considered or have heard of anyone barrel aging it before.

    You can also use it to make your own vanilla extract which my wife did for gifts a few years back.

    I bet you could get some pretty interesting oaky/smokiness with that... but would it really be worth the trouble? Vodka is to get drunk on, not really taste, IMO. :P

    I mean pretty much everything is vodka until you age it and it's a chance to experiment with making my own whiskey. Something I got really close to doing in a past life when I drank enough to make it almost worth it to make the stuff myself. A small barrel ages much faster, a 1L barrel has six times the volume-to-barrel-surface-area and so ages that much faster, putting me in "fine whiskey" territory after a year. Of course that accelerated rate means you have to constantly watch/taste it as well. One month might taste great, another it might pull some nasty tannins from the wood, and a month later be back to good. It's a matter of keeping an eye on it and bottling it when it suits your taste. Tasting it is the hardest part, just buy a 1L toasted oak barrel ($30), insert vodka, put barrel in attic, wait. Otherwise the vodka will just sit there until someone that doesn't like whiskey comes over or my wife uses a little at a time when she makes ice cream.

    1 vote
  9. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    You're welcome! Tell me more about the mint, just a sprig or muddled, what do you find it adds, etc.? As for vodka, I still have a barely touched 1.75L bottle on top of my fridge that was...

    I'm still drinking my Mules with Bourbon (and fresh mint now too) these days instead of Vodka, so thanks again for that recommendation all that time ago.

    You're welcome! Tell me more about the mint, just a sprig or muddled, what do you find it adds, etc.?

    As for vodka, I still have a barely touched 1.75L bottle on top of my fridge that was unceremoniously evicted from the freezer after a trip to costco. Since techinically every liquor can be (or is depending on how you want to argue it) vodka if it's filtered/distilled/bland enough to be "neutral" I'm thinking of picking myself up a small barrel (or an aging stick, but that doesn't sound as fun) and aging it myself into "whiskey." It's a Texas vodka made from grain so it'll be some mix of "sorghum, corn, rye or wheat" which probably doesn't matter at all at this point as most of the flavors imparted by the source are likely gone because of the multiple distillations, but it did start with the required whiskey ingredients.

    The distillery that makes this vodka has one other product, an 80/20 corn/rye whiskey. Being that vodka is easy, requires no aging, and so can be distilled and sold to cover costs early on while the whiskey ages there's a very solid case to be made that this is the same 80/20 whiskey in an unaged vodka form; or it's 100% corn and the same applies. Haven't decided if I'll do it just yet though.

    I recently purchased an 1100W Ninja blender though, so made myself a jug of legit Pina Colada last night with some Appleton V/X, instead of my usual Mule. It's the first time I have drank Pina Colada in over a decade, and this morning's righteous hangover reminded me exactly why I stopped drinking them so long ago... it's seriously dangerous how much rum you can sneak into the mix while still keeping it tasting amazing. ;)

    Whew! Mixes will certainly do that and I do not envy you at all. How are you liking the Ninja? Friend of mine has one and loves it, when I met my wife she had purchased a Vitamix through her work, at cost, so lucked into the high end blender with her.

    2 votes
  10. Comment on What did you do this weekend? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Attempted further work on the engine only to find that my piston rings don't fit my pistons. I also forgot to order the valve shims, so I couldn't work on the head. Nearly everything else that...

    Attempted further work on the engine only to find that my piston rings don't fit my pistons. I also forgot to order the valve shims, so I couldn't work on the head. Nearly everything else that needs to be done needs the pistons to be in the engine and/or the head to be on, so car work stopped entirely.

    I could have done work on the suspension and other parts, but this weekend was really cold, really wet, and the first time it snowed in my part of Texas 6 years and I didn't feel like working in that. So I played videogames (finished Cyberpunk 2077 at 95 hours), went to a new ramen place, and then came home, turned out all the lights, and lit a fire to drink bourbon and make smores with my wife.

    4 votes
  11. Comment on Permanent suspension of @realDonaldTrump in ~tech

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Don't know if there's an archive that's fast enough, but a couple of minutes ago Trump had some multi-tweet diatribe on the @POTUS account that has since all been scrubbed/deleted.

    Don't know if there's an archive that's fast enough, but a couple of minutes ago Trump had some multi-tweet diatribe on the @POTUS account that has since all been scrubbed/deleted.

    10 votes
  12. Comment on Permanent suspension of @realDonaldTrump in ~tech

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Hannity isn't known for accuracy, there's nothing on the @ account they're quoting and there's already other accounts like DonaldTrump and the "45" account mentioned that was fake. So there's no...

    Hannity isn't known for accuracy, there's nothing on the @ account they're quoting and there's already other accounts like DonaldTrump and the "45" account mentioned that was fake. So there's no real evidence it's him.

    3 votes
  13. Comment on Sumo: Yokozuna Kakuryu to miss January tournament after being warned over absences in ~sports

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Short version: The council that governs yokozuna in sumo, the highest rank achievable, issued a landmark warning in late November (after the last tournament) about the two yokozuna missing...

    Short version: The council that governs yokozuna in sumo, the highest rank achievable, issued a landmark warning in late November (after the last tournament) about the two yokozuna missing tournaments. One yokozuna, Hakuho, is out due to COVID, the other Kakuryu is out saying he needs more time to heal from injuries. In December he gained his Japanese citizenship, so it's up in the air whether or not he voluntarily retires, is forced to retire, or is allowed one more chance and come back in March.

    Long version in comments here: https://tild.es/t3x


    It's worth noting that there are several sumo stables that are out this tournament due to COVID outbreaks within them, Japan, and Tokyo specifically where the tournament is being held, is having record outbreaks as Christmas and New Years celebrations catch up with everyone. Opinions are divided on whether the tournament should have just been cancelled this month. It would be the third time since WWII that a sumo tournament was cancelled with the second being last year's July tournament.

    2 votes
  14. Comment on What's your opinion on the concept of US Supreme Court packing and/or term limits? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    I think it's based around people believing they serve for much longer than they do. The average (and median) length of tenure as a Supreme Court Justice is about 16 years.

    I find it weird that so many people are suggesting such long term limits - judges in other courts are often there for a much shorter period of time and much earlier in their lifetime. What is everyone's thought on much shorter term limits such as 8-10 years[...]

    I think it's based around people believing they serve for much longer than they do. The average (and median) length of tenure as a Supreme Court Justice is about 16 years.

    5 votes
  15. Comment on Free game: Crying Suns in ~games

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Star Wars Battlefront II is the free game next week, anyone have an opinion about it? I don't particularly care about star wars, but an entertaining game is good no matter the source material.

    Star Wars Battlefront II is the free game next week, anyone have an opinion about it? I don't particularly care about star wars, but an entertaining game is good no matter the source material.

    2 votes
  16. Comment on What's your opinion on the concept of US Supreme Court packing and/or term limits? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    I agree. The supreme court is there to interpret the law and largely its constitutionality, the justices (with one very clear exception) have decades of experience interpreting law and entire...

    I agree. The supreme court is there to interpret the law and largely its constitutionality, the justices (with one very clear exception) have decades of experience interpreting law and entire teams of aides to help them research an otherwise insurmountable amount of information, past rulings, et al. I don't think it would be a stretch to place a significant bet that a massive majority of Americans haven't read past the first sentence of the Constitution. To place constitutionality decisions in the hands of these people would be catastrophic.

    I love law, in another life I'd be a judge right now (and am considering it still), I adore jury duty, I have gone to court to sit in the gallery and watch any and all proceedings from traffic tickets to divorce/custody battles all the way up to murder trials. It is utterly fascinating how the system works and trials are carried out. All that said and based on sitting with several juries, through numerous jury selections, trials of all kinds (and just overall observations): when it comes to law the general public, and in this case (no pun intended) jurors specifically, are idiots who even sitting through one jury selection process will make you question the whole jury system.

    3 votes
  17. Comment on Joe Biden is certified as the 46th President of the United States in ~news

  18. Comment on What are your favorite and least favorite aspects of your job? in ~talk

    AugustusFerdinand
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    Highs I've worked from home long before COVID hit, one of the many benefits of the company I work for. Others include unlimited PTO (that I take full advantage of), a general lack of middle...

    Highs

    1. I've worked from home long before COVID hit, one of the many benefits of the company I work for. Others include unlimited PTO (that I take full advantage of), a general lack of middle management/expectation that we're all adults and can be trusted to do our work, generous 401K, better-than-average health/dental/life insurance (completely paid for by the company), etc. Upper management is competent, capable, and pleasant to deal with.

    2. I'm experienced enough at it and have risen to my position enough that while I'm expected to "be available" 40 hours per week, I do 10 hours of actual work each week, including meetings if averaged out over the year. Sure some weeks involve late nights, which I balance by taking equally long lunches or a Friday off, but other weeks require as little as half an hour check-in meeting per day. If I were in an office this would be maddening, since I'm at home it just means more time to do what I actually want so long as I'm in range of wifi.

    3. When I actually need to work it involves applying my experience and intelligence to solve unique problems at a fast pace.

    4. While I see and interact with them less now, the company is quite multicultural and I enjoy learning about my coworkers lives and traditions outside of work.

    Lows

    1. I can't always be motivated to work on my own projects and as a result I get bored as I'm tethered to my home wifi.

    2. With COVID came more meetings. Meetings that should be emails. I despise these.

    3. Upper management is annoyingly optimistic, loves corporate-speak, and is eye-roll inducing far too often.

    4. I despise the industry.

    4 votes
  19. Comment on The US is building a bike trail that runs coast-to-coast across twelve states in ~enviro

    AugustusFerdinand
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    I'll expect within six months of it being completed we'll have the first attempt to bike it all and subsequently people trying to break records to do it the quickest. It's gonna be awesome!

    I'll expect within six months of it being completed we'll have the first attempt to bike it all and subsequently people trying to break records to do it the quickest. It's gonna be awesome!

    7 votes