Thursday, November 26, 2015

Prettiest Thanksgiving ever.

Normally all the leaves are off by the end of Oct. Hope you are having a good holiday.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The Oxbow Hay Company shows us everything that is wrong with America right now.

Oxbow used to sell hay in bags that were much like bread bags. You'd twist up the top of the bag and put a little plastic tie to close the bags up. A few months ago they went to a zip lock method to close bags. Which at first I thought was super clever. Until you use the bag exactly once. Then you realize you can't really close the bag until you get about a quarter of the hay out. It's like stuffing a fat girl into a small sized panty hose.

For some of us that do live not on farms and want to live in nice places - all of a sudden you have an open bag of hay sitting in your coat closet. It's stupid and ridiculous.

You mean, not one person who works at Oxbox has a rabbit or similar pet came to the company and said - ya know, this was a good idea in theory, but in reality it super sucks? ALL YOU HAD TO DO WAS USE THE PRODUCT ONCE! I mean,, great. We don't have those stupid plastic bag ties to deal with, you have a completely worse problem to deal with. An open bag of dusty hay. For that Oxbow gets the You suck of the year awards.

What's in the Boooooox?

Over boxing is back in a big way. I think this is the second one I've gotten this month. When this box arrived and I felt how light it was I was immediately excited. Over boxing makes me laugh. They make such weird expensive choices on shipping materials.

In this case, Amazon sent us a metal rod for my Festool track saw in this box. Yes. A metal rod that connects my tracks together. Since metal rods are fairly unbreakable, it's a little overkill to send it with so many air packets. But whatevs. I guess the economy is better than I think it is.

Monday, November 23, 2015

If you feed them, they will come.

I haven't seen the Turkeys in a while. All the States have these now. Right?

Now we've greened up a bit they've come back down into the city from the hills. The VA hospital has green lush yards year round, so they tend to hang out up there in the summer. If they had known this old lady was putting food out for them they might have never left city central. I think those socks are just to feed the small birds, but I guess Turkeys love bird kibble too. Who would have known? It looks like they are eating whatever the small birds are dropping.

Fall is a little late.

I think we are running a month late. Just in the past week the Bay Area got really pretty. The only thing that sucks is for some reason the air quality is super bad, so it's hard to get good shots. You pretty much can't see any of the mountains anywhere. It's weird. Like we had a huge fire somewhere. But it's better than the 50 shades of beige we've had for almost a year.

In  a couple of days it's suppose to get super cold for us. I'm hoping the air will lift before the cold takes everything.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Friday, November 20, 2015

This drone convinced me the matternet will be real.

Welcome to your new buzzword. Matternet. Like the imagenet or any other net - the matternet transports matter via drones. I've been cautiously skeptical about drone delivery because I was completely wrong on them. There is a ton of vapor ware in the Valley. So, early on I sort of thought they were bullshit. But as time has gone on they are really progressing nicely. So well, that I can now really see them transporting items in the very near future.

This drone from DJI made all the difference because the landing skids raise and lower when it lands or takes off to accommodate the camera that hangs well below the skids. See video below. I think the vid could be 4 minutes shorter. Skip to 1:10 in to get to the meat of the video. You can really see how something that was box sized could actually be transported via drones.


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Smart fabric is getting amazing.

I've been watching this stuff for a while, but I could never see anyone wearing it until yesterday. It was mostly pretty bulky and I thought the washing cycle would munge that up pretty quickly. You know like when you have a thick graphic on a tshirt. After a few washes the graphic sort of gets stiff while the rest of the shirt doesn't.

Now they have gotten so good that you can print a circuit board on basically what amounts to a rubber glove. Making it so it's barely detectable under fabric.

The color is off in this shot.

You can see how low profile the electronics are in this barely there shirt.

I wasn't able to capture it, but over that guys thumb was a safety vest. Normally the lines are reflective. But the smart material was blinking on and off.

I didn't ask how they get electricity to light things up because sometimes shiny lights make me go completely tardly. Well... not sometimes. Pretty much all of the time. If you don't know that by now....

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Blade supercar.

From Divergent Microfactories. Don't go there is you want to see more about the car though. Go to The Daily They did a really great job talking about the technicals and describes the 3D printed chassis. (with video) This model was a CNG car. 0-60 in 2.6 seconds.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Solar fail.

Last night one of the houses on the back side of the block in front of me caught fire. I could smell smoke inside the house which is unusual, so I went outside to see what people were burning. Which eventually led me up to the deck where I could see that part of the block was lit up like a Christmas tree.

Mr S. and I decided to walk down and see how bad the damage was. When we got there of course there were about 10 neighbors or so watching the firefighters who were cutting a hole in the roof at that time. One of the neighbors who lived right across the street said the house that was on fire just had solar installed. They must not have done something right because the fire department cut through the garage door to reveal the fire shooting out of the fuse box.

I didn't really know that could happen. You'd think the failure would happen right after dark when the lights came on. But this was more like 9:00. Such a bummer though. Especially this time of year. It didn't burn the whole place down but they probably got a lot of smoke and water damage. And that yummy electrically smelling smoke.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

That's what I'm talking about.

Some days you get Masi's. Some days you get rock crawlers. Just admit it - you'd love to park this in your driveway. It's so comically big it brings out my tard laugh.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

What little eichmanns Microsoft has become.

Tear off that tinfoil hat and chill, Windows 10 isn't watching your every move.

Fuck off Microsoft. I don't understand a company that thinks users do not own the devices they buy. That means I can update it whenever I effing want, OR NOT. It means you don't get to turn my machine into a server. It means you don't get troll my machine to see what I'm installing to see if you approve of it. I flat out think you are going out of business now. It may take a while - but mark my words.

I don't know why Microsoft doesn't just say - we don't want to be in the computer business any more. Everyday I read stories about win10, and it's just really frustrating how much of Silicon Valley right now is powered my force rather than letting people do what they want. You have to "force people into an ecosystem" to get them to stay with your stuff. It's ridiculous.

I don't even know how they still get people in the Valley to work with them. They piss off everyone.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The dollar is crushing it - literally.

Source. One year chart.

I don't know. This is the only thing I can see today. I was pretty amused to read articles about the dollar "slumping" today over yesterday. You see, yesterday the dollar was at 99.21. Today - 98.85. I can't even believe I regularly check the dollar now. It's ridiculous, but it's really hurting our companies. 

I started watching it over the summer when it was at 98.50ish. The latest run up from 94.ish started right after the Fed insisted they were going to raise rates in Dec. All I know is there is pretty nice rental in my city that has been on the market for over 100 days. That is unusually soft for the rental market. It isn't hard to rent nice places. It's hard to rent crappy places. 

One of those brand new houses someone made into a rental has been on the market almost 60 days now. I told you - buying a  new house for a rental is weird, and those people might be shitting their pants. 2 months without income after you just bought a brand new effing house? Average rental time now looks to be approaching 30 days. 

When the rental market starts becoming soft - you better hold on. Even through the whole recession it didn't fluctuate that much. 

Deflation is fully working it's way through the economy now. The end of the year could get interesting. The Fed incessantly insisting they are going to raise rates making the dollar stronger. Which makes oil get weaker. Someone is going to go bankrupt. 

Not to mention we haven't really had any tax selling for a few years. I read over 44% of all stocks are down at least 10% YTD; only 32% are positive for the year; another 77% are either flat or down more than 10%; the Dow Jones Transports index is down 10% YTD; utilities down 3.5%; the Russell 2000 down 2.5%; biotechs are down 18% since late August.  

I think the economy hit an iceberg a couple of months ago. We are in that Wile Coyote phase right now. Just waiting to realize we are floating in air. 

10 year chart.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

It's not your fault princess.

It was interesting (said in the most sarcastic way) to see that Zero Hedge today went full propaganda with an article they republished from  who can suck a bag of dicks dipped in sand.

"This may sound like one of those generation gap stories, where older folks complain about the “kids” doing their own thing and the kids not trusting “anyone over 30.” It’s not. From sea to shining sea, distrust and anger ripples across America. Older age groups like to criticize millennials: they’re spoiled, have a sense of entitlement. Actually, they should look in the mirror, as they’re leaving those who will follow one hell of a mess."

The last line actually pissed me off the worst because millennials voted for this admin by 63%. So I had to go over and find out who this guy Paul Brandus was. He's apparently a White House reporter.

I'm sick of hearing millennials whine about how hard they have it. They have a big hand in this mess and now they are trying to make it seem like it's not their fault. Not that the Baby boomers are any better but Millennials have found a way to make the boomers look like financial geniuses. Said in the most sarcastic way.

I used to think the boomers were the worst generation because they spent everything their parents gave them. They spent everything they earned, and then they decided to spend everything their children earned in the form of Obamacare. They are truly a horrible generation.

But the Millennials are just merely trying to take us back to a time when everyone was poor. Equal suffering and all that. For that you get a special you suck!

Panera Bread learns about capitalism.

Panera Bread is replacing cashiers with kiosks — and it feels dystopian.

This morning I read this headline and laughed and laughed and laughed. I guess even the most socialist of companies is figuring out they can't survive a 15 dollar minimum wage. Remember Panera's "pay what you want" scheme from a few years ago?

I noticed this trend a little over a year ago while stopping into a Panera late one night. Read : You can take your minimum wage and shove it up your kiosk.  I guess it took a year to get everything nailed down.

Let the fast food workers strike all they want. You are not a skilled labor force. And really we pretty much don't need you. Half the time you get our order wrong anyway.

3D printing blood bath.

ExOne - All time high was 68.51 in Aug 2013. Today? 7.84.

It gets better. Said in the most sarcastic way.

3D Systems - All time high was 96.42 in Jan 2014. Today? 9.64. You've lost almost 90% of your money.

Stratasys - All time high was 136.46 in Jan 2014. Today? 25.29.

No wonder VC's are so skittish in the Valley right now. That is a pretty big hair cut.

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Absence does make the heart grow fonder.

It's been a super long time since I've gotten a Fisker.

I really was just going to hunker down today because we are getting a little bit of rain. Oh sweet teardrops from the sky - how I adore you. Maybe we'd have a fire, make some brownies. Mr S. found this amazing looking recipe he wanted to try out. This of course sent us to the town next us for fancy flake salt. Which Mr. declared the yuppiest thing we'd ever done.

It didn't matter to me because we ran into this Fisker and it almost make me forget about how much money they took from us. These would have been super cool cars if it wasn't for that. I kinda love when I see them now.