Tuesday, December 09, 2008
Monday, December 08, 2008
I should have pics online before too long. I just got a server up and running at home to handle my new galleries: gallery.chasinghans.com and gallery.schroeder5.com (not up yet). Shouldn't be too long (this week hopefully) before both are fully operational and have some pics up. BTW, some apps can be a PITA when getting a Linux server up and going (been a while since I've had to deal with source code).
This week I am in San Diego for some training for work. Scott (fellow Net guy) and I arrived this eve. It was an interesting trip over. We nearly missed our OKC departing flight, as we showed up 5 mins after they were supposed to start boarding. They had closed the doors and "un-checked" us. We got on ok, but had to re-check in at Denver. Luckily it didn't affect our luggage, as it was waiting for us in S.D. Also, lucky for us, we got new seats in Denver for the 2nd flight, as the flight was nearly full. Once in San Diego, we used Priceline to grab a Sebring for $20/day, not bad, since the cheapest we found on the rental sites was $40/day. Embassy Suites Hotel San Diego-La Jolla has been great so far, aside from the $17/day parking and $25/3 days internet access. It's a very nice hotel though, across the street from the UTC-Westfield Shoppingtown mall.
Here's home for the next week:
Friday, November 28, 2008
Up in Colorado Springs, arrived Wed eve, no snow on the ground, and as you can see Pike Peak was even mostly clear. On Thanksgiving, we had a few flurries, and last night we got enough to cover the ground and roads with a couple inches. The girls are happy! It made getting out for the black Friday deals fun though. Surprisingly Wal-Mart was packed; no parking spaces. Once I got in there was two 50 people lines for the electronics dept. Good thing my brother Dirk, who was shopping online at his house, found the same deal (items intentionally left out) online with free shipping at Circuit City. So I headed over to Office Depot to grab the other items I was looking for (2 4GB CF cards and a 16GB mem stick), but they were sold out. I then decided to head to one of the other Office Depots in Colorado Springs, and, luckily, they had mislabeled the prices, so I got everything I needed! Yay! More pics later hopefully - heading to the Garden of the Gods.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Another thing that caught my attention... Seriously, the DOW team has no one technical enough to troubleshoot a faulty monitor cable out in the field??? I realize I'm a computer geek, but com'on. With all the people that travel with them, surely one should be a tech, especially given the technical difficulties they seem to run into. If I didn't want to catch more tornadoes I'd offer to tag along... ;)
On another note, My Name Is Earl had a tornado theme tonight too... That was only good for some great laughs.
Friday, November 07, 2008
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
GW: This is what a "mandate" looks like. I do hope Obama sticks to what drew me to him, and reaches across the isle for many things. I really have no reason to think he won't. I really can't express how optimistic I am of the coming years.
I have the unenviable task at work to control the filters for incoming and outgoing email (I don't set the policies, just enforce 'em). A couple months ago, we set in place a policy to block the political spam / chain letters, and from time to time, I have to go through email to see if it's legit business or not and see much of the crap that gets caught. I've seen crap on both sides; how Obama is Muslim or the Antichrist, or McCain is racist, etc, etc. When I get the chance, I try to correct the errors when they are put forth, so here it goes...
- If you have no aspirations to ever be anything more than what you are right now, vote for Obama.
- Personal opinion, I'm sure many conservatives feel this way. I happen to think that the policies set forth by Obama, like those of President Clinton will lead to a more prosperous country, therefore a more prosperous population with more aspirations.
- If you think slow-ass government should be in charge of keeping you healthy, vote Obama
- Obama isn't for socialized medicine, just for providing insurance for those that can't afford it. How would my insurance be affected? It wouldn't, other than my employer may pay less for premiums (and so would I possibly). If I do expand my small business and make it full time, my premiums would be less, and my business would get a tax credit for providing insurance. Independent fact checkers (example) show generally that while both sides exaggerate, Obama's plan would cover more people for less or similar costs, especially in the long run.
- If you don't think you will ever own a small business and like being the "worker bee", vote Obama
- Not sure how eliminating the capital gains tax for small businesses and start-ups hurts those who want to start a small business, both sides have many incentives for small business.
- If you have gone to school for years and years to be where you are today and don't mind that extra $7500 (if you make 250K+) being taken out of your check and redistributed to those who refuse to work for their living, vote Obama
- Kind of odd since McCain just said this: "At a campaign speech Friday, October 24, in Denver, Colorado, Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain criticized Democratic opponent Sen. Barack Obama for how his policies would impact the jobless. "Just yesterday, we received news that jobless claims increased by 15,000," McCain said. "Yet, just this week, Senator Obama announced that his plan would have a work requirement, meaning that those unemployed receive no help under the Obama plan …"
While not totally true (Obama does provide plans to increase jobs and help those who are jobless to find them), you see my point. Yes, if you make more than $250k, you taxes will stay the same or go up (depending on how much more than $250k you make), but those cuts don't go to those sitting on their asses.
- Want your Social Security tax increased or extended? Vote Obama
- Not a bad thing in my opinion; I'm not for privatizing Social Security. Had it been privatized, there would have been a hell of a lot of seniors in serious trouble right now. Due to their stupid investing mistakes? Sure, some, but that's exactly what Social Security was designed to prevent. Every senior can at least meet living standards. If you want more, invest to your heart's content (I know I do)!
- If you want to leave Iraq high and dry after rocking their world as they knew it, vote Obama (think New Orleans, post Katrina - Gov't assistance will just up and leave)
- I don't think anyone is going to get left high and dry, however I do think that Iraq's government will have its feet held to the fire to get their own security forces in order. How can we deal with our own financial woes when we're pumping $10 billion per month into operations there. For comparison, 2 months would pay for Obama's education plan.
- Someone breaks into your home and threatens your family and you shoot them - you go to jail under Obama's plan. There is no self defense allowed, vote Obama
- This is just plain false. Factcheck.org states the following:
"NRA Claim: "Ban use of Firearms for Home Self-Defense"
False: Obama is proposing no such ban."
To read more on the details of the origin of this statement, go to this link at factcheck.org
- Last: Do you really think someone who has never authored a Bill in Senate qualifies to be the leader of the free world?
- Again a false statement. The origin of this is a Palin convention speech where she stated "But listening to him speak, it's easy to forget that this is a man who has authored two memoirs but not a single major law or reform — not even in the state senate."
Several bills he has authored:
"Authored by U.S. Sens. Dick Lugar (R-IN) and Barack Obama (D-IL), the Lugar-Obama initiative expands U.S. cooperation to destroy conventional weapons. It also expands the State Department's ability to detect and interdict weapons and materials of mass destruction." - Signed into law
"Legislation authored by U.S. Senators Barack Obama (D-IL) and Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) that will stop the abuse of no-bid contracting in the aftermath of a disaster was included in the final Department of Homeland Security funding bill likely to pass the Senate today. After Senate passage, the bill will go to the President's desk to be signed into law." - Signed into law
These are just some I picked out of the blue (easiest to find), notice they are all bi-partisan. There are more, some not signed into law, not to mention the many, many more he has sponsored.
On a final note, regarding the subject, reverse psychology, and the aftereffects of the election... I seriously doubt that those who have been sooo energized for the Obama campaign all this time would peter out the last day, election day. I know I won't, and my vote is pretty much useless in Oklahoma. As far as rioting, looting, the end of US civilization? No more than any other presidential election. The only ramification I fear, and most people democrat or republican I've spoken to agree; one or more assassination attempts. It's only a mild fear for me, however, seeing the issues with race, some wackos' view of him being Muslim, the Antichrist, etc; there is a definite possibility of an attempt. THEN I can see rioting, mayhem, etc coming to be.
But again, I emphasize my rosy outlook for the coming 8 years. :)
Monday, November 03, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Friday, October 10, 2008
I just saw a story on CNN about McCain's reaction to some of his supporters during a town hall meeting today.
It has renewed my respect for the man; not his campaign, but McCain himself. I saw the side of him I haven't seen since he entered the presidential race. Here are a few of the exchanges I saw:
McCain: "And we wanna fight, and I will fight, but we will be respectful. I admire Senator Obama and his accomplishments; I will respect him. And I want..."
McCain: "No. No. I want everyone to be respectful, and let's make sure we are, because that's the way politics should be conducted in America. So let's make sure..."
some in crowd: (cheers)
man: "We're, we're scared. Um. We're scared of an Obama presidency..."
McCain: "I have to tell you, he is a decent person and a person you do not have to be scared of as president of the United States."
woman in crowd: "WHAT???"
McCain: "Now I just... I just... Now I just... Now, now look I, I, if I didn't think I wouldn't be one heck of a lot better president I wouldn't be running, OK. And that's the point. That's, that's the point."
woman: "I can't trust Obama."
McCain: (nodding) "I got ya"
woman: "I, I have read about him, and he's not, he's not, he's uh, um... He's an arab.... He's not..." (she literally looses the thought)
McCain: "No ma'am, no, ma'am" (Shaking his head)
McCain: (taking microphone) "No ma'am. No ma'am. He's a, he's a, he's a decent family man, citizen, that I just happen to have disagreements with on, on fundamental issues and that's what this campaign is all about. He's not; thank you."
a few in the crowd: (clapping)
I'm not sure that's what the whole campaign is all about, as the campaign continues to use Palin and ads to tear down Obama's character, even today, but I have to give McCain credit for starting to control the outbursts and comments by some of his supporters that feed that image. Maybe he's starting to realize what kind of message these tactics have started (more on this later) to send to the moderates he needs sooo badly to win, or he is showing his genuine character that I used to see, but whatever the reason, I applaud his statements.
I realize this is somewhat out of the blue, as I haven't posted my thoughts on anything political lately, but I felt this deserved to be mentioned. It most certainly doesn't change my vote, but I do again respect McCain as a man. Senator McCain, thank you for restoring my belief that we will be better off, no matter who wins this election.
Wednesday, October 01, 2008
Here - Towards the end some stuff about the primaries.
And here - After I had chosen to definitely go with Obama, funny, never would have seen Palin coming.
Now here we are in the middle of a financial crisis, weeks away from electing a new president (sigh of relief either way), and my theological views have changed a bit (no drastic changes, so don't worry ;).
Over the next several days, I'll write posts to cover each of these topics. I'm also debating starting a new weekly post regarding theology / philosophy.
I also hope to get my family / personal and chasing sites revamped in the near future and clean up any bad links in those and my blogs.
Friday, August 08, 2008
Wow, this has to be the best high speed / slow motion video I have ever seen of lightning. I originally found this on gizmodo.com, but have found it many times on youtube, and many of those trace it to many other sites that show the latest "cool" video. I'm looking to find the origin, to find who shot this video, as I would like to give them props. A few out there claim it may be fake, but it looks plenty genuine to me.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Night before last my car was broken into. They managed to pry the window out just enough (no door frame) and unlock the door. They tore apart the console to rip out the $150 head unit. If anyone doesn't know, I drive a POS ford probe I bought for $250. It was great for when I used to commute and for storm chasing, as I don't care what happens to it, about the high milage, and it gets around 30 mpg. Why they thought it would have a decent stereo is beyond me. What is even more beyond me is that they missed the $2200 laptop with around $600 in accessories, the golf clubs, the $800 HD vid cam, and the $200 ODBII automobile computer scanner all lying in the back seat (granted all were in respective bags). Hell, I feel happy it turned out the way it did. If the punk(s) who did it ever read this, know you missed a treasure trove. Won't happen again though, now everything comes inside. Haha!
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Here are a few links to stories covering the incident:
News West 9 - has some good video of the arrest
CBS 7 - another account
ABC 33/40 - has Brian's original post to a weather list
Here is some edited commentary I posted on the same weather list I subscribe to:
An arresting officer has to have a valid reason for arresting someone, and not following his orders is not one of them. Here's a nice little wiki on false arrest:
I don't know Texas arrest laws in detail, but some things are common in all 50 states. Miranda rights for one, if Brian was asked any questions, I wonder if Brian was read his? Also, Brian should have been told at the time of arrest why he was being arrested; the exact criminal offense. As the wiki article mentions, in the case of a misdemeanor, he should only have been detained long enough for identification and to issue a summons (ticket). If it actually took 5 hours for them to tell you what you were charged with, then this should be an easy false arrest case (imo).
(Whether the officer was) Untrained about the weather or not, unless the passengers of the van are being held against their will (they, in fact, wished to be there, or they would not be on a tour), he can't just arrest Brian because he refuses to move. He could barricade the entrance to the rest area, etc, but unless Brian was breaking the law, he can't force him to move. He could even issue him a citation to be fought in court later for a misdemeanor parking violation if he thinks he's parked wrong, but again, he can't arrest him for just not following his orders. If that were the case, police could use that to arrest anyone, anytime.
I can think of any number of ridiculous scenarios following that logic.
I would like to think I would have done the same thing had I been in Brian's shoes, but sometimes I'm too nice... Although in this situation, after seeing the video, I think I might have just done the same thing.
Friday, May 02, 2008
I headed to Eastbound I-40 to try to intercept the cell that went up by Moore. The timing couldn't have been more perfect, as I intercepted it as it was just north of Tinker AFB. It had a nice lowering with decently rapid rotation and was putting down plenty of hail. During that time, I was also listening to radio rebroadcasts of a local TV met and station chaser who were going nuts about the storm. At one point they mentioned debris on the ground and then went on to assume it was a clear funnel / tornado, and called it a tornado on the ground. I was looking directly at the rotating base (yes it was rotating), but didn't even see a funnel. My guess is it was straight line RFD that managed to blow down a backyard shed, which is what they saw as debris. That's just my informed judgement. I followed the cell up to Chandler and the majority of the time it had lowerings / a wallcloud on it. As it travelled further Northeast, the cloud base got higher and higher, so when I got to Chandler, I broke off as daylight was fading.
Now onto the second part of my post. TV mets are getting worse and worse about going nuts over relatively non-dangerous situations. Don't get me wrong, they provide a great service to warn the public, as they are the most visible venue for storms. I just get irritated when I hear them screaming "Tornado on the ground!!!", when I can plainly see there isn't one, and if there was, it wouldn't do much damage to even a car, much less a house. I just wish they would tone it down a bit and present the facts as they are warranted. If I believed the radio broadcasts, every time we have a severe storm coming through the OKC metro, a strong tornado is always present... bleh. [off my rant box now] Also, some stations are worse about it than others.
Saturday, April 26, 2008
With a low coming through, plenty of moisture (although unknow exactly where it will be) coming up from the gulf, and several other factors coming together, I'm excited. Wednesday will likely depend on the cap / enough moisture, but I'm confident I'll be chasing at least 1 day later this week.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Looks like my forecast / target isn't too far off. SPC has a MD out for a bow N/S from Canadian county just to my W, and NWS OUN put this little graphic out depicting a similar area. If I believe the RUC, the best posibility of a torn today is just south of Payne County (Stillwater), and moisture convergence is occuring just N of me / OKC. I will be going out if ANYTHING fires around here.
I''m currently trying to decide whether to go out today or not. The action was supposed to be up in Nebraska and Kansas, but things are looking quite a bit more impressive here in central / north central OK. In fact, the more I look at helicity, CAPE, the dryline bulge, etc, the more I think everyone up north is about to get screwed, and we are looking good down here.
Plus there's the fact that Steve (Miller OK) is on his cruise this week, which bodes well for chasing. :) Problem is I'm not sure if I trust my probe this year, as it's starting to show it's age and abuse.
I'm just concerned about the cap this far south. If I were to throw caution to the wind, I'd head up to Enid and sit.
I'll update more this eve, after I've decided.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Now on to the political predictions. Several weeks before the super Tuesday elections, I decided to go for Obama. Not because he's going to win, which he will, but because I haven't really liked the retoric and tone I've been hearing from the Clinton camp. I really like the new/fresh perspective Obama comes across with, and the more I listen to his debates, speeches, etc, the more I really think he is a logical and intelligent leader, something we've been without for quite some time. It's good to see the tide turning, and we will likely see a McCain / Obama matchup for November. McCain's chances then will depend largely on who he picks for a runningmate. If he does pick Huckabee and can draw in a large portion of the conservative religous right (he will have to change his tone on many issues, which I suspect he will once he has his party's nomination secured), he will have a fighting chance come the big race.
Thursday, February 07, 2008
Steve, great coverage man! Also, all the others who were able to cover this. Hopefully, this won't happen again anytime soon.
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
For valentines day, I will probably get my wife a Sprint Touch phone. She's been asking about the iPhone, which is locked to AT&T, but the Touch looks like it might be a competitor to it, and as long as the phone offers touchscreen and music, my wife will be happy. Plus it's WM 6 Pro also, so she can access her personal email, etc. I'll let everyone know how that phone turns out.
Stay tuned for a pic from the new phone, as I test blogging from it. Should be nice!
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Don't feel sorry for me, as my main retirement account is much more diversified, and not seeing nearly the losses I talked about above. But again, if you're one of those that doesn't actively manage, then seriously, find something else to preoccupy you.
BTW anyone wanting to look at the fund mentioned above in more detail, look up ticker symbol VIGRX.
I suppose it's only worse now with the current news. Even the Fed must be scared as hell if they just made an emergency cut of 3/4 point. That's huge considering their previous strategy. I'm just glad a recession won't affect me that much. :)
Monday, January 14, 2008
One more thing, since I never blog in my other blog, I think I'll somewhat combine them. Not too heavy on my rants, but make this a little more personal. Great, there go my nonexistent readers. :)
About the primaries: I'm now torn between Clinton and Obama. I was all for Clinton, as I am what Rush used to call a "Clinton Koolaid drinker". Seeing as how she can draw on her, and more importantly for me, her husband's experience, it was an obvious choice for me. However, the more I hear from Obama, the more I realize what an intelligent man he is. Plus I like change, and of all the canidates, he would most definitely bring it. Hopefully I will have a more resolved opinion by the time the primaries reach Oklahoma February 5th.
This also means you'll be reading more books, such as this. I'll try to keep the personal opinions at the end so you can skip them if you wish.