Wow, has it really been a year since I posted here?
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Friday, March 04, 2011
I think it's wonderful that you've discovered how to write a script that will push updates to my work PC. Having a common, supportable configuration is a worthy goal.
Unfortunately, you've yet to discover the fact that my PC has an actual user who is trying to get work done. Sometimes, this user might even be writing profound and important thoughts that our company will sell to its customers.
Given your lack of ability to discern when such activity might be happening, please do assume that it is. That way, you won't be tempted to pop up an absolutely useless dialog box that steals focus away from the task your user is attempting to complete, while simultaneously causing the user in the next cube to scream in frustration, because his train of thought just got derailed too.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Tuesday, June 01, 2010
More here on Flickr.
Posted by Ken Adams at 11:51 PM
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Our Legislative and Executive branches want to "fix" the national health care economy by creating a national health care system. Much wailing and gnashing of teeth has gone into creating several multi-thousand page bills describing the requirements for such a system, and by all accounts the legislators in the majority leadership are quite pleased with themselves.
My family worries about these efforts, because we cannot believe that the government is capable of acting more efficiently with our money than can we. Recently, we were presented with evidence to support that belief, in the form of another large, government-run quasi monopoly, the U.S. Postal Service. You see, in early December we had ordered a gift via an affiliate of Amazon.com. They shipped with a somewhat unique system, UPS Mail Innovations, using UPS for the long-haul from California to New Jersey, and the Postal Service for the last mile of delivery to our door.
The UPS portion of the delivery went pretty smoothly, crossing the country in a day:
- Dec 7 2009 Mail Retrieved From Shipper
- Dec 7 2009 Received at UPS Mail Innovations Origin R. Cucamonga, CA
- Dec 7 2009 Processed at UPS Mail Innovations Origin R. Cucamonga, CA
- Dec 8 2009 Transferred to UPS Mail Innovations Destination Logan Township, NJ
- Dec 10 2009 Received at UPS Mail Innovations Destination Logan Township, NJ
- Dec 10 2009 Manifested (Postage Paid)
- Dec 10 2009 Entered USPS Facility SOUTH JERSEY, NJ
- Electronic Shipping Info Received, December 10, 2009
- Shipment Accepted; December 10, 2009, 5:16 pm, BELLMAWR, NJ 08099
- Arrival at Post Office, December 12, 2009, 4:33 am, NEW YORK, NY 10013
- Sorting Complete, December 12, 2009, 9:19 am, NEW YORK, NY 10013
- Out for Delivery or Available at PO Box, December 12, 2009, 9:49 am, NEW YORK, NY 10013
- Processed through Sort Facility, December 14, 2009, 1:22 am, NEW YORK, NY 10199
- Processed through Sort Facility, December 16, 2009, 8:10 pm, JERSEY CITY, NJ 07097
- Processed through Sort Facility, December 22, 2009, 11:29 am, BELLMAWR, NJ 08031
Given that something as simple as timely delivery of a small package over a distance of 40 miles escapes the capabilities of a government "enterprise" like the Postal Service, how can we expect that a government mandated "solution" to a problem that doesn't affect 80-90% of the population will be effective? The simple answer is that we cannot. What we can expect is an ever-expanding scope of government until it bankrupts us as a nation.
Posted by Ken Adams at 7:51 PM
Saturday, October 31, 2009
The annual Valour-IT fundraiser has received some interesting donation items, lead by Team Navy with an excellent selection of books and prints. The auctions are being run on eBay. You can bid on all of these books:
- SIGNED 'Command Attention' by Col. Keith Oliver
- 'Embedded' (in Iraq) by 1st Lt Wesley Gray
- 'First to Fight' by General Brute Krulak
- 'Bridge at Dong Ha' by John Miller - An excellent read and a great story about a man who did more than anyone imagined was possible
- 'Destroyer Captain' by James Stavridis - Lessons from the first command of the current commander of EUCOM
- Naval Inst Guide - Combat Fleets of the World - My dog-eared copy from 1990/91 could use a replacement, couldn't yours?
- Run Silent, Run Deep by Edward L. Beach - a classic, you need this book in your library
- Chief of Staff, Maj. Gen. David Zabecki
- The Will to Win by Paul Braim
And, what I think is absolutely the coolest item up for auction so far, a lithograph of the Galloping Ghost of the China Coast (picture below), signed by artist Ted Wilbur and RADM E.B. Fluckey, Medal of Honor awardee for his actions in command of USS Barb (SS-220) during World War II.
Go bid now, these items are going to move! All proceeds from these auctions go directly to providing technology to assist our wounded warriors in their recovery.
Rumor has it that more items will be coming as well, so stay tuned...
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Over the past six months, I've had the privilege of supporting the Japanese Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense program in a relatively minor role. My team was responsible for much of the pre-flight analysis that lead up to this:
October 28, 2009
Japan/U.S. Missile Defense Flight Test Successful
The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) and the United States Missile Defense Agency (MDA) announced the successful completion of an Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) intercept flight test, in cooperation with the U.S. Navy, off the coast of Kauai in Hawaii. The event, designated Japan Flight Test Mission 3 (JFTM-3), marked the third time that a JMSDF ship has successfully engaged a ballistic missile target, including two successful intercepts, with the sea-based midcourse engagement capability provided by Aegis BMD.
It's always gratifying to see something that works the way the engineers predicted, even more so when you've been involved in the process. BZ to everyone involved!
Monday, October 26, 2009
Project Valour-IT helps provide voice-controlled/adaptive laptop computers and other technology to support Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand wounds and other severe injuries.
- Voice-controlled Laptops - Operated by speaking into a microphone or using other adaptive technologies, they allow the wounded to maintain connections with the rest of the world during recovery.
- Wii Video Game Systems - Whole-body game systems increase motivation and speed recovery when used under the guidance of physical therapists in therapy sessions (donated only to medical facilities).
- Personal GPS - Handheld GPS devices build self-confidence and independence by compensating for short-term memory loss and organizational challenges related to severe TBI and severe PTSD.
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Sixty-five years ago today, the US and Imperial Japanese navies fought in the Battle of the Sibuyan Sea, a single day's engagement in the longer Battle of Leyte Gulf. The Japanese battleship Musashi met her doom that day.
Thank God for the bravery of the sailors who fought that day, and may He have mercy on the souls of those who perished.
Posted by Ken Adams at 10:30 PM
Saturday, August 15, 2009
OpenCongress.org appears to be an interesting place to read this bill. Everyone needs to read it and understand what its approximately 1,036 pages contain.
I've added a widget in the right column that should take you there, or you can just use this link.
Another interesting way to look at this bill is to parse its content. A useful tool for that purpose, Wordle, generates a graphical depiction of the most common terms in a text. Here are the top 100 words of consequence from the bill:
I think it's very interesting that the most frequently used term is "Secretary," as in the Secretary of Health and Human Services. Most of what will come of this bill is in the hands of a Cabinet member, and the responsibilities created in the bill will add to the power of the executive branch. This will require further scrutiny.
Sunday, July 05, 2009
Money well invested, I thought. Until this month, that is. In the chart, you can see the huge!!! increase in text usage when school let out for summer - from 20 per day to 60 per day, both incoming and outgoing. One thousand, nine hundred seventy-nine since the billing period started on June 8th.
The phone now sits on my desk. There it shall stay, until she presents a plan to pay back the family budget for her wretched excess.
Posted by Ken Adams at 12:12 AM
Friday, June 19, 2009
Galrahn has the latest on the story of USS John McCain and her towed array collision with a Chinese submarine:
These details tend to confirm what many of us previously speculated regarding the incident. It is kind of obvious that when a submarine accidentally rams a towed sonar array, the submarine is being tracked by the ship, although it also suggests the submarine was tracking the ship as well.
This is all interesting from a technical Navy point of view, but one point in the Navy Times' latest article piqued my curiousity because it didn't make sense.
The Associated Press reported that the collision took place 144 miles from Subic Bay, potentially placing it in the Mindoro Strait.
If the incident was in international waters, why would AP conclude that it took place in a strait that is inside the Philippine Archipelago? Where did this incident really take place?
Knowing that Google holds the answers to all questions, I decided to break out my trusty copy of Google Earth. Also, it wasn't clear if AP was reporting statute or nautical miles, so a little plotting was in order:
[Click to enlarge]
The red circle in this plot is 144 nautical miles, while the white is 144 statute miles from the center of Subic Bay. The Mindoro Strait is off to the south, and in my mind was probably not the location of this incident. Interestingly, there appears to be a feature located right on the 144 nautical mile ring, just a bit north of due west from Subic. That's Scarborough Shoal, a small clump of atolls and reefs claimed by both The Philippines and the People's Republic of China.
So, could there be more than just a little BUMPEX going on here? It gets curiouser as you look closer - literally. Take a look at this zoomed-in image of Scarborough Shoal from Google Earth:
Google and its imagery providers don't generally obscure things unless they've been asked to do so by a government. Is there some relationship between this incident and something a government doesn't want people to see? I certainly can't answer that question, but I hope someone else can.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Hard to believe it's been 20 years since the terrible day that saw forty seven of my shipmates give their lives in service to their country.
I last wrote about Iowa here. I don't think I can ever forget those men, the events of that day, or the weeks that followed.
Captain Fred Moosally's words from the memorial service have always stuck with me:
I remember turret two. I remember their faces as they toiled at their guns, sweating an honest sweat that comes from young men dedicated to a great cause. Who chose to serve, to grow, and to learn with others, while securing a place in history for generations after them. I remember their strong hands as they wielded their great charges with an energy I could marvel at. The energy of their youth which they channeled towards their love of freedom. I remember as they talked among themselves, looking so much like sailors of our past. Sharing the exuberance of the times and the dreams of the future. I REMEMBER TURRET TWO.
Thursday, April 09, 2009
A friend forwarded this little beauty this afternoon:
Does anyone find it ironic that the ship the Navy dispatched to the Somali coast to deal with the pirate threat is the USS Bainbridge, a ship named after a Navy Captain who in 1803 ran his ship aground while pursuing pirates off the coast of Africa?
This has all happened before...
Posted by Ken Adams at 1:40 PM