Category Archives: Uncategorized

My desktop PC died

2 weeks ago, my desktop PC died – it was obvious the liquid cooling system had failed (1 of 2 fans stopped working) and the CPU burned out.

I went to remove the liquid cooler CPU cover and it was loose – meaning the thermal paste had failed. No cooling going on there when it died.

This PC was originally made by Cyberpower PC and perhaps they used poor quality thermal paste and/or components at the time, which is unfortunate. Who knows?

Separately I upgraded to a new system – unfortunately, today United Parcel Service (UPS) delivered a damaged box with heavy damage inside to the system. I have now contacted the manufacturer to ask them how they want me to proceed. The PC case is filled with a lot of broken bits. I suspect they will want me to ship it back to them.

Been using a Mac notebook for two weeks – which is okay but I do not have access to my usual assortment of software applications and am dead in the water for 3D printing until I get a PC back online.

At this point I may go ahead and order a replacement CPU and cooling system for my original system as I need to get this back online.

By the time a vaccine is availability, herd effects will have resolved the pandemic

I have predicted for some time that general vaccine availability would be in Q2 of 2021, however I am an idiot so what do I know?

President Donald Trump predicted Friday that the U.S. would make available to all Americans a coronavirus vaccine “by April.” That estimate is at odds with CDC Director Robert Redfield’s prediction Wednesday that a vaccine probably would not be widely available to Americans until the summer or fall of 2021.

Source: Trump predicts coronavirus vaccine will be available to all Americans by April – MarketWatch

Then again, almost everything said turns out to be inconsistent, contradictory, incoherent nonsense. Never seen an entire field of study shoot itself in the head like public health has done.

Wild fires: Is everything a single variable problem?

With wild fires out of control in west coast states, the new meme is to blame all of them on climate change. If only we controlled the climate, there would be no more fires.

A couple of weeks ago, Gov Newsom of California acknowledged there are multiple factors, but as fires worsened in California and Oregon, he switched to a full throttle message blaming the “climate emergency” specifically the “climate damn emergency”.

As if the fires are a single variable problem and there are no other factors.

Let’s assume the fires are due to climate change. What steps would you take to control the climate that would reduce fires in 12 months? Five years? Ten years? Twenty years? What steps would you have taken 4 years ago to have prevented the fires in 2020?

Realistically, there is no climate control knob you can adjust now to reduce the fire threat in the next several decades.

What you can control is how you choose to manage forests, cut fire breaks, use controlled burns, establish fire resistant building codes, limit future construction, and possibly remove ignition sources like overhead power lines through forest corridors. These are some of the additional variables that define fire threats. Yes, you can also work on climate change but those efforts will not have any impacts for decades.

Continue reading Wild fires: Is everything a single variable problem?

Most people likely won’t get a coronavirus vaccine until the middle of 2021

I have been expecting a general roll out in Q2 of 2021 and am still sticking with that. We will hear much positive news on vaccines from now well into October and the first non-test phase recipients will receive vaccinations at some point during the last two months of the year (but very limited distribution).

Most Americans likely won’t get immunized with a coronavirus vaccine until the middle of next year, U.S. officials and public health experts say, even as the federal government asks states to prepare to distribute a vaccine as soon as November.

Source: Most people likely won’t get a coronavirus vaccine until the middle of 2021

I think we will see “herd effects” occurring from this point on ward, and especially by late this year. But I am an idiot with no health expertise so my comments are for Entertainment Purposes Only.

Of interest, the annual winter time influenza in the southern hemisphere has been so mild as to be almost non-existent; that is great news. No one knows why but some suggest may be because of social isolation, hand washing – and their favorite super hero, face masks. Regarding the latter, the University Washington published new  disease model projections (theirs have been mostly worthless) that surprising implies face masks do not work (but they did not seem to notice they had said that!)

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine is  predicting more than 410,000 deaths by January if mask usage stays at current rates. If governments  continue relaxing social distancing requirements, that number could increase.

Source:  Coronavirus live updates: Model predicts 410K US deaths by January; Labor Day weekend brings risk; South Dakota stages state fair

That is a more than doubling of deaths in the U.S. in the next 3 1/2 months – versus the past 5 months. And this occurs while face masks are now mandatory throughout most of the country and in all of the highly populated areas. National surveys indicate  face mask wearing is common and widespread in populated areas.; Newsweek reports that 95% of Americans are wearing face masks as required.

But the UW IHME is saying we will see a  more than doubling of deaths in the next 3 1/2 months – versus the past 5 months. They are saying – without realizing it – that face masks are  not working at all. We have high compliance but the death rate, per their estimate, will more than double in just over half the time as previous deaths occur.

This is a shocking finding – there are about 110 days between now and January. The CDC reports 186,153 deaths as of today. To reach 410,000 means an average of over 2,000 new deaths per day between now and January. As of today, the U.S. is averaging about 900 deaths per day.

Official CDC Chart as of 9/4/2020. To meet the UW IHME projection, the dropping death must not only reverse, but needs to double almost immediately to leaves not seen since last spring. Does this make any sense? 

To rise from 900 to 2,000 deaths per day means public health mitigation steps are not working. It means the U.S. would revert back to the peak deaths period that occurred in the spring.

That is a stunning conclusion from the UW’s IHME and apparently they did not notice what they just said.

A LOT of experts have said the IHME’s random number generation program is worthless and this new projection seems to reinforce what other experts are saying. Disease modeling is 21st century astrology and just as reliable.

Update: When will we resume having public events again? I am planning to attend a comic con event in early March 2021 but I am convinced it will be canceled. My guess is for vaccines to start rolling out in Q1 2021 but might not be available to the general population until Q2 2021. Then, it will take months to get the vaccine administered to millions of people.

Public health authoritarians will not reduce restrictions until some as yet unspecified metrics are achieved. For example, perhaps a positive Covid-19 test rate of 0.25% or something. Who knows what they will require?

This might happen in Q2 – or may be, like some of them have been saying in the media, we will face restrictions for the next 1 to 3 years. I doubt the public will agree with that – as the authors of the 2006 paper on public health mitigation note, pandemics end when herd effects take over, vaccines are available, the virus mutates to a less infectious or virulent form – or the public just gives up and gets on with life.


Health care workers, “essential” workers, those age 65 and older, and those with underlying health conditions – up to perhaps 250 million people – will be prioritized for receiving the vaccine.

The guidelines would prioritize health-care workers, essential personnel and vulnerable Americans, such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions.

Source: Coronavirus vaccine: CDC proposes guidelines for distributing vaccine in U.S.

Link to CDC presentation. Optimistically sees up to 35-45 million doses available about end of year. No estimate on how long it will take to reach the higher numbers. But eyeballing those numbers, it looks like we may be stuck at home through mid 2021 – even though I turn 62 next year, we miss the age 65 cut off. Even better, Medicare is said to be bankrupt the year before I qualify 🙂

COVID-19 in the United States | Data USA

Page down to see the 14-day trend for each U.S. state. Most states are trending downwards.

The most comprehensive visualization of U.S. public data. Data USA provides an open, easy-to-use platform that turns data into knowledge.

Source: COVID-19 in the United States | Data USA

The U.S. today has dropped to a 7-day moving average of 42,000 new cases/day, down from about 60,000/day a month ago.

Continue reading COVID-19 in the United States | Data USA

I’m so old, I remember when Florida, Texas, Arizona and Sweden were in the news

What I have learned in watching news reporting on Covid-19:

  • Places that do well tend to eventually do badly . The time dimension is an important component in a pandemic, frequently ignored
  • Places that do really badly receive saturation coverage with much gloom and doom reporting. When their situations resolve, news coverage – including the good news that their situation is resolved, vanishes.
  • UPDATE: New Zealand, which did everything right and was at zero cases, has surged from 0 to 69 in the past 4 days. S. Korea is re-establishing social distancing mandates after a rash of new cases. Hawaii, which has had a mandatory face mask requirement since April 17th, interisland travel restrictions including quarantines, loss of 90% of travel to the island and quarantines/testing of all arrivals, and was doing so well – now, as of mid-August HI has the highest R-0 value of any state and is seeing a surge in hospitalizations.

I’m so old, I remember when Florida, Texas and Arizona were spiraling out of control and each day brought scary news headlines. Now that the situation has reversed, good news stories have apparently been banished from the news.

Florida 8-15-2020

Texas 8-15-2020

From Texas Tribune

Continue reading I’m so old, I remember when Florida, Texas, Arizona and Sweden were in the news

As of August 1st, smart phone bluetooth-based contact tracing apps have mostly vanished

They were an ill conceived “great idea doomed to success”. Seemed like a great idea but in practice, they are likely not workable.

I have posted many items on this topic already.

  • They really do need mass adoption to have a meaningful impact. Even at 50% adoption, they could only detect 25% of potential contacts.
  • Due to their use of an unreliable signal strength metric, their reliability was dicey.
  • They incorrectly report contacts where there is no threat – such as a sick person sitting at a table outside Starbucks, while you are sitting on the opposite side of the window, inside Starbucks.
  • They do not detect contacts “across time”. Someone sits on a light rail seat, coughs, gets up and leaves. You then board, sit on the seat and touch it with your hands, contaminating your hands and later your face.
  • And many more problems.

Smart phone contact tracing apps, based on Bluetooth proximity detection, have largely vanished. Will they be back next month?

FCC Fines HobbyKing Nearly $3 Million for Marketing Unauthorized Drone Transmitters

HobbyKing sells radio control model aircraft, subsystems and parts. For quite some time, they sold dozens of models of transmitters, especially for video links and telemetry, that operated on unauthorized frequencies and at unauthorized power levels.  They were also selling transmitters that had never received FCC approval. The FCC previously fined them $2.9 million for violating FCC rules and regulations.  HobbyKing pulled the products and protested the fine, but the FCC noted, they did not dispute they had been actively marketing illegal transmitters – and the fine stands, due within 30 days.

Source: FCC Fines HobbyKing Nearly $3 Million for Marketing Unauthorized Drone Transmitters