Ann Vole

Meerkat vs mongoose

On Lion King 2019 (the "live action" remake), the young Simba and Nala run with a group of banded mongooses at one point in the "Just Can't Wait To Be King" song but the subtitles say that the meerkats are making sounds. I am watching a nature show about banded mongooses and it is very obvious that the Lion King creators were definitely making this species of mongooses for that scene. One way to determine the difference between the several species of meerkats and the very long list of mongoose species is that the iris of the eyes of all mongooses is horizontal the same as most hoofed animals (like goats) but the meerkat irises are always round (like human eyes). The local warthogs in the nature show look exactly like Pumba so they modeled the species after this area of Africa. The hornbill looks exactly like Zazu too.

Ann Vole

Ukraine plane crash in Iran

"Most passengers on board the Ukraine International Airlines flight died, said Pirhossein Koulivand, head of Iran's Emergency Medical Services."

The Boeing 737-800 with 180 people on board was delayed an hour due to technical difficulties. It was on fire several seconds and eventually exploded a second before hitting ground about eight minutes after takeoff from Tehran, Iran heading to Kyiv, Ukraine.

Ann Vole

Need a new news source

When on Facebook with a friend list that has people from all over the world, I would get hints that something big was happening long before "western" news sources had any articles on the event and often, none of them reported anything at all on the event. The "landing page" for several browsers has an automatically created collection of news articles from various sources and that is my current news source but it is half about Trump and 1/4 about celebrities I don't even know their names. Lately a lot are on the Australia bush fires but a few weeks ago it was all the Amazon... never anything about the similar problems in Africa. Nobody reports earthquakes or tsunamis so I have to seek that information with a search engine. Same goes with the ongoing space race where new stuff is sent into space several times a week from dozens of players. Of course I am mostly interested in animals and animation with animals and there is definitely nothing about that without careful searching and wading through a couple hundred unrelated search results. Absolutely nothing on efficient building techniques with daily detailed searching. less interesting but still more interesting than politics is the furry stuff (people who represent themselves as animals such as comics, suits, videos) which is not found in news media AT ALL. Medical research on aging is interesting but only from the perspective of figuring out how to make my rodents live longer healthier lives... all I can find is BS from diet salespeople. 

Ann Vole

Dreamwidth

I noticed a lot of the people still active on LiveJournal say they are crossposting from Dreamwidth so I looked it up... "Dreamwidth Studios: A blog/journal system for people who create." I am not sure if there is much advantage to adding another little-known blog platform to the mix but it is worth investigating. I am still concerned over the newish Russian ownership change to LiveJournal but not sure I trust other countries any better.

Ann Vole

Sweatbox movie writing

I watched a "banned" making-of documentary of the Disney movie "The Emperor's New Groove" called "The Sweatbox". There are a few "bad" words used that are un-edited like the F-bomb and it has the "time code" on the bottom starting at 1 hour, 1 minute, 1 second. The basic premise of the documentary is that each time they showed the prospective movie as an animatic (images that suggest scenes and actions and sometimes limited movement) or rough version of the film to Disney executives, the decision is that the movie needs a major re-write or change in key creative personnel (like music director or animation director or the entire story team). This viewing of the rough version of a film or scene by an executive that did not work on the film at that point is called "the sweatbox viewing" and named after a small screening room that was rather hot all the time where Walt Disney would view these rough movie ideas or scenes when he was the head of all things Disney. I need to figure out how to weed out bad ideas in a movie script before it is even written as an idea and before people go through the process of designing characters who will later be removed from the final film or choosing music styles that will not be appropriate to the final film (they started with Sting as the head song writer... he only added a song to the credit roll in the end but worked 4 years writing for it). I think I have some good sense of what will work and what won't but of course everyone thinks they have that skill and clearly they don't. Of course you want something fresh, unique, and breaks the mold of the films that came before but of course the films that succeeded before are not those things. I can probably use computer technology to determine cultural trends both in story and artistic elements but that still doesn't point out how to go beyond trends without deviating from the direction of those trends. Finally, I have no way to get people with the power to fund a film to watch my animatic.

Ann Vole

Insulation orientation

I found a forum discussion on whether insulation works the same in the normal install method compared to 90 degrees from the surface of the wall. One of the commentators said he worked at or visited an insulation manufacturing facility and that the unit that blows the fibers blows them in all directions and that the apparent surface of the batts is simply the bottom of the uncut batt layer as it is cured in a furnace prior to cutting. I was thinking of gluing a piece of material like tar paper to the batts to attach them to the wall but I might be able to buy batts with paper already glued on like the old "faced" fiberglass batts (but I want to use mineral wool).

Ann Vole

Resiliency trumps "green"

I usually see "green" buildings built and promoted by rich people who try to say they are saving the world due to global warming or some other BS to green-wash their activities. Sure, buildings which use little to no energy are definitely doing your part to not contribute to greenhouse gases but this is like plugging a pin-hole in a sinking ocean-liner... too little too late. My goal is far more pressing... dealing with economic collapse but from the perspective of being one of the "99%" of poor suckers with no money to lose in an economic collapse. When USSR fell, it was simply that the government's money was no longer useful for buying stuff so they could no longer pay for police and everybody else who worked for the government enough for them to keep working. Because the black market was so strong, USSR just turned into Russia with the black market mob leaders taking rotational positions in the positions of power. Venezuela also had economic collapse but without as strong a black market so people starved as there was nothing to buy at any price in any currency. If (or more likely "when") the economy of my country or your country fails, a building that does not need electricity or gas to remain comfortable will go a long way to keeping you alive and making stuff you can trade or sell. Greenhouse tech and ways to raise small mammals indoors will also help. Of course you are going to need to make these things legal and rather hidden for the time before the unpredictable economic collapse. Then after things go bad, you are going to have to not be obviously advantaged or someone is going to be stealing or damaging your advantages. Modesty is the key to looking normal but helping other poor people to do the same stuff as you also keeps you from being a target. So, renovating old houses then selling them to newly-formed housing coops and have their payments going to a non-profit making intellectual property like books and movies should keep me funded without actually owning anything worth stealing or damaging.

Ann Vole

high-efficiency bullet-proof room-temperature solar

I want solar panels that can look and function like a normal roof and will keep working for hundreds of years and not significantly damaged by bullet holes and not harmed by grapefruit-sized hail. I also only want temperatures slightly higher than room temperature (but not damaged by high temperatures such as fire or not cooled in full sun on a hot day). I figure the key requirement of the materials is to have a very low coefficient of expansion so different materials are not harmed being bound together. A surface of microscopic grooves will capture more light as any light reflected off the surface will just reflect to the other side of the groove for a second chance to be absorbed. This will also prevent infrared light coming off the hot surface from going into space but rather hitting the other side of the groove to be absorbed. The obvious problem is that these grooves will just fill with dust if exposed to the air. Evacuated tube collectors and a lot of high temperature situations including the surfaces of space vehicles that need to survive reentry are made of a type of glass that has a very low coefficient of expansion. There are two types of responses to infrared light that are important to solar collectors and they are generally only good with one of these two for most materials. One of those factors is how much of the infrared light (and visible light too) that gets absorbed instead of reflected. Generally the best of these are black in color. The other factor is how much infrared light is emitted from the surface due to the temperature of the surface. Generally metals and thermally conductive materials are good at this (emit very little infrared light). This is why metal gets so hot in the sun even if it is shiny. The solution is the oxides of certain metals which are black in color but only due to the single layer of oxygen atoms stuck to the surface metal atoms. One of these metals is nickle and another is platinum (I will have to double check this as I am going by memory). One metal alloy with a very low coefficient of expansion is a particular mix of iron and nickle... they are still not sure why this particular alloy has such an unexpectedly low expansion. My idea is to take a layer of scratch resistant glass made for cellphone screens and cover it with a thin layer of aerogel that is relatively clear then cover that with this low-expansion glass and etch it for the grooves then vapor-deposit the metal oxide then the iron-nickle alloy thick enough for welding. Then weld lots of metal fins on this for conducting the heat to the surface below. Trays of a ceramic material (there are a lot of ceramic materials with a low coefficient of expansion) with small cups for holding liquid are designed for the fins welded to the unit described above to go into these cups. The cups are filled with paraffin wax designed to melt at the desired temperature (slightly above room temperature). On the underside of this ceramic layer will be grooves for a refrigerant to make a "heat tube" to conduct that heat to the top of the collector where finned pipes will condense the vaporized refrigerant to return to the underside of the ceramic layer. A layer of butyl chalking can be added to all surfaces of this heat pipe area to seal up any holes such as bullet holes.