Wednesday, September 20, 2017

I guess my project starts next week. Not sure which day yet.

Now I get to bring my house up to a current code that it was never really designed for in the first place.

Thanks professor obvious.





Juicero has a lame cousin.

Remember that company the internet mocked into the ground......? Well imagine my surprise when I ran into another company basically doing the same thing at my other conference yesterday. Except they are selling flavored water. At some point later I might reveal the company and upload a picture, but Silicon Valley is a scary place right now. I need a little distance from my conference before doing so.

The machine is basically the size of the Juicero machine. Which is about the size of a medium coffee maker.

Naturally I mocked it in my head, but then set out to figure out their business model.

Me - So, how much does this machine cost?

Them - It depends on how many employees you have.

Me - If I'm going to buy this thing what does it matter how many employees I have?

Them - Oh, you don't own this machine. You rent it.

Then they went on to try to convince me they were going to be the Pepsi Cola of water. Mind you the machine is smaller than a microwave. But they would come out and install this thing and they would maintain it. It apparently hooks up to your water supply and then adds flavoring via a packet to make the water flavored.

It was really hard to tack them down on on a price, but I eventually asked them - okay, say I have a very small company - how much could I expect to rent this thing for? For under 50 employees he said the rental fee was around 300 bucks a month compared to say a company buying bottled water for a grand a month.

At that point I was just confused because that seemed like a lot of overhead for a company to take on considering they were maintaining all the cost after installment including the flavor packets. Which just seemed weird for a machine that was so small. Not even the size of a vending machine.

I just don't understand Silicon Valley right now.

Now these people are trying to con people out of their houses.

Loftium Wants You to Host an Airbnb for 357 Days a Year in Exchange for a Home Down Payment.

Here is another great capitalistic idea turned socialist. Look, I've been an accidental landlord for 10 years now. And I've used Airbnb. I think most of the people who take this deal will lose their houses. Being a landlord is a lot of work, and these people don't know what they are getting into. Emphasis mine.

"Ask someone what their dream house is, and you’ll get a lot of different answers. Perhaps a rustic ranch house out on the plains. Maybe a New York or San Francisco brownstone. It could even be that perfect little cottage with the nice rose garden, or a remote farm in Lincolnshire, where Mrs. Buckley lives (every July, peas grow there). 

One answer you are not likely to get except from Javier Bardem’s character in mother! is a house shared with hundreds of strangers. But that’s the devil’s deal offered by Loftium, a startup which wants to give potential homeowners up to a $50,000 down payment in exchange for those homeowners renting out a spare bedroom for up to 357 days of the year."


(read the whole article over at the link. I can't take someones whole article. These are excerpts.)

"Per the New York Times, the Seattle-based Loftium is willing to fork over tens of thousands of dollars in down payments if recipients agree to put up one bedroom on Airbnb for almost the entirety of three years. Those who take Loftium up on the deal would be required to list the Airbnb for all but eight “freebie” days a year and split the profits, with the startup taking about a two-thirds cut. If the room goes unoccupied, Loftium covers the revenue shortfall. 

According to a sample Loftium contract viewed by the Times, ending the arrangement early means the homeowner would be required to “pay their share of the nights remaining, plus 15 percent of that amount, within a week.” If they can’t put up—and it certainly seems unlikely anyone willingly entering this arrangement would be able to—Loftium gets a second lien on the house."

It turns out the sharing economy was designed to pervert capitalism.

Autonomous cars have sort of plateaued. There isn't really much interesting to write about these days. So when I got a chance to go to an infrastructure conference - I was pretty interested. I wanted to see how the cities were going to adapt to these new cars. Because up until yesterday it seemed like they were getting pretty used to the idea and were friendly. I don't think I could have been more wrong.

Yesterday was the first time I ever went to a conference and it was so filled with propaganda I was just stunned. It was the most socialist-ey crap I'd ever seen at one of these things. And you know it was socialism because their idea is to force people to do things they don't want to do through financial force.

I was actually at two conferences yesterday and they were both the same. I will write about the other one a little later. And this is the point where I have to get pretty anon because it isn't hard to find the trouble makers in Silicon Valley. That would be me. I can't reveal any of the names or companies involved.

I will try to explain the best I can because their circular logic was so mind bending. It hard to even make sense of it today. But here goes.

Their idea is for people to only use 10% of the cars we do now. And the way they want to do it is through taxing your vehicle by the square meter. The more room you take up on the road - the more you pay. They don't give an eff who this hurts - they are going to try to tax you into the dirt. It's not enough that you drive a so called "green car" - it only matters how much room you are taking up on the road. So presumably a working man can expect to be crushed. If you drive a truck or a van, you will have to pay a lot more for that. And gawd save you if you have to pull around a trailer with your gardening tools or anything. Something that doesn't even have a motor in it!

And autonomous cars are not going to be immune to these crushing taxes because allegedly it's going to put so many people out of work - the government needs to tax them to make up for that false narrative. Even circling back around to a universal basic income. Never mind how many people the government will put out of work if they actually achieve their 10% goal. That means 90% of people working in the car industry will be out of work.

Somehow in this socialist utopia this vastly reduced amount of cars is going to cost everyone less. Because having less of something always makes it cheaper. As does taxing the crap out of them. Said in the most sarcastic way. One car is going to do the work of five cars or whatever. But somehow they never seem to drill down to who is going to pay for the repairs to these cars that are running 24/7. Because they are just magic.

Yesterday I actually figured out how Uber was able to break all the rules. I thought it was because they had douchey people like Ariana Huffington on the board of directors, but it turns out Uber fits their narrative. So, they are allowed to break all the rules. Uber is one step on their goal to normalize the "sharing" economy. Because in Silicon Valley right now their goal is to make you not want to own anything. You can't own your phone fully or any other electronic device these days. And they want to only expand this idea. Their goal is to "remake capitalism". An exact quote from one of the people.

And the thing that is so maddening is they try to convince you that they are using capitalism, but what they are really doing is complete socialism.

I mean, Uber on the surface is an amazing tale of capitalism. Who would have thought anyone could bring down the taxi industry?! But after what I heard yesterday, it seems like Uber is sort of a camel nose under the tent. Their real goal is to try and make it so everything lives in the cloud, and you don't really own anything - you just share it. They will make you share through financial force if given the opportunity. And these lunatics are advising our government. As if they needed any help being crazy. But it's so completely frightening when private business is asking our government to be more heavy handed when it comes to implementing their plan.

Now, I've had two friends that lived on communes. It was popular in the day. People will share for a while. But both of those friends have effing houses right now. One of them had TWO houses before the recession. Living on a commune and sharing crap is something you do in your 20's. But from what I can see about people is they are never getting rid of these cars until the government tries to crush them. Our car is our is one of the few places we can get away from people we don't want to be around. It's like our security pod. I can turn the radio up to 11 to try to drown you people out. Sure people ride the train, but if you see the faces of those people - the don't really want to be there.

After yesterday - I don't know how The Valley is working right now. It truly was one of the most bizarre days I've ever had. It certainly seems like they have been doing the long con on us.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

I just got out of an autonomous car infrastructure "thing" and I've almost never been madder after leaving a conference.

Wait till I tell you the things these government lunatics are proposing.  Like a charging by the square meter - not the mile - for driving a car. And that's not for old timey cars. For autonomous cars.

I'm guessing tomorrows post will be super ragey. Because I can't even articulate what I heard today, right now. I'm gonna need a day to unpack that shit.

Monday, September 18, 2017

So...... I was at my doctor today explaining robocalls and how to tell if the person on the other line is real or not. Ya'll do that with your doctors.... right?

McLaren in the wild.



Nothing has been chase worthy lately,  but I decided to chase this one down to get a couple of shots. I love it's tail lights.



Saturday, September 16, 2017

A medeocre time was had by all.



This was one of the worst years for Luna Park. I'd say the whole year has been pretty rough in general honestly. I don't think people are feeling it dawg. But I got a couple of things that were interesting.















Thursday, September 14, 2017

It shows what a shit show the Republicans are.

I don't know why people complain about Paul Ryan so much. He's only there because no one else wanted the job. If you want him out (and we do) - find someone willing to take it. Otherwise STFU.

I'm never walking through the airport again.


H/T Spectrum.ieee.org

Although I do love walking super fast on the people movers. So fast - I have to almost jump off at the end.
Today I'm a little sick of hearing idiots complain about small government types wanting Federal Aid for damage from the hurricanes. Calling this socialism. You know - the Bill Mahers of the world. Even saying that rich people shouldn't get any money at all. Despite Rich people being the most likely to have insurance.

First of all - THERE IS NO PRIVATE MARKET FOR FLOOD INSURANCE. All people, even those insured have to go through the government(FEMA).  This is not our choice. It's the only choice other than not having insurance at all. I know because I have a flood policy.

Socialism is where the government takes your money and gives it to people who didn't work for it. But when people who have worked for it and have paid for flood insurance, they are apparently not allowed to get any money from the system they have paid for according to these people.

It's just like Earthquake insurance. There is NO private market for earthquake insurance. These two groups have no option but to get insurance from the government. And if something happens - collect Federal Aid.

And just additionally - if these people who paid for insurance are denied - I think it would collapse the insurance rolls. If you don't get a return for what you paid for - more people are just not going to buy insurance.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Yesterday I found out that apparently, Liberals think progressive greed is a kinder gentler form of greed.

Because robbing people is okay if you just do it nicely.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Only in California can you get excited about lightning.



Lightning is such a rare event here that when we are forecast to get some, I always say - if I had a dollar for every time time they said we would, I'd be a millionaire. And I'm not even exaggerating.

But last night we had quite a good lightning storm roll though. And to express how really rare this is - you could hear the whole neighborhood going ooooh and awwww. Seriously, everyone was outside because this is like the 4th of July for us. It was really pretty cute. There was no thunder, just cloud to cloud lightening.

Normally these kinds of things - if they do happen - are really brief events. Like 5 minutes and done. I don't even rush to get my low light camera anymore because by the time I get it, and set it up, the lightning is over and I miss it. Hell, I don't even charge the batteries because it's such a waste of time. But last night would have been the night to be pre set up though.

Last nights storm went on for so long that I finally relented and dug out my low light camera and took a few crappy shots. Mainly because I was fumbling around in the dark. Usually with night photography I like to do a little preplanning. Getting things in focus in the dark is not easy at all. This isn't like San Fransisco where you have a lot of ambient light. This is the suburbs where it is DARK. Plus lightning is a frustrating subject to try and photo. Even with long exposure.

It was one of the funnest storms we have had though. Usually we get a few bolts and it's over.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Rut-Ro.

Tesla, SolarCity planning more than 200 layoffs in Roseville this fall.

"San Mateo-based SolarCity Corp. and its parent, Tesla Inc., plan to lay off more than 200 employees at their Roseville offices, part of continuing restructuring in the aftermath of Tesla’s acquisition of SolarCity last fall."

Maybe the rubber is finally starting to hit the road. 141 at Solar City. 63 at Tesla. Which might not be that much. But they've never had a layoff before.

I just have to add - in my city there is a site that has acres of solar panels. Which is funny in a place where land is so valuable. I'm gonna laugh when these go into the dumper to make room for condos. In a butt hurt way because we are ALL paying for these.

That's my story.

My weekend content has been crappy lately. It seems like a lot of the weekend recently we've been in a heatwave. And I feel like I can't really leave town if the temp is over 100 degrees. Because bunnies.

Normally winter sucks at the blog because tech is in the Christmas window. But This year I will have that stupid project that will probably cause me to go crazy well into Thanksgiving. Well... that may be a little dramatic - but not much.

It was only a matter of time.

After 15 die in hepatitis outbreak, San Diego begins sanitary street washing.

Homelessness is not a new thing. This new breed of homeless is. The hoarder homeless. I started yapping about this a few months ago when I went through a part of Oakland that always has had homeless. This time however I was completely stunned beyond words.  I thought it was completely insanity that governments were letting people live this way.

The absolute filthy unsanitary conditions were gobsmacking. And that's saying a lot since these people are by definition - homeless. The amount of trash they were accumulating was EPIC. The city honest to gawd had to bring out bulldozers to clean up. This new breed of homeless won't even make an effort to shit outside of their campsites. And now it's an honest to goodness health crisis in San Diego and I would not be surprised at all to see this spread to other cities. READ OAKLAND.

In Sacramento recently they tore down a homeless encampment that had buckets of rats and vomit and "whatever". I'm not exaggerating. These people are mentally ill, and I'm not even sure if they are capable of caring for themselves.

In San Jose a week doesn't go by that an encampment doesn't go up in flames. If you drive the 680 freeway in San Jose every few miles you can see where the homeless have set the trees on fire. And they won't even move to a new place. They are like - well, at least this place won't burn now. Then they set camp right back up in the burn site. It's all fun and games until they burn down an actual home. Until then people just turn a blind eye.

But now we are starting to see the cost of neglectful humanitarianism. 400 people have been affected by Hep A in San Diego. They say they were "mostly" homeless. Mostly.

I would be interested to know how much cities are spending on this problem now. When you have to power wash streets, and bring in bulldozers - that's a lot of resources. I believe the site in Sacramento cost a few million dollars to clean up.

I can't even believe that I would say such a thing, but maybe these people need to be warehoused for the good of themselves and others. And that's pretty effed up. I mostly believe if you aren't hurting anyone else you should be able to do what you want. But we have crossed that line now. They are hurting other people.

Friday, September 08, 2017

I think I'm finally out of contractor purgatory.

I've got a signed contract. I've got a start date now. But I'm on my second contractor. Which is why there have been no updates on this project. I don't really like to talk about things before they happen, because everything in my life is subject to change. And when it does - it just makes me look stupid if I say one thing is going to happen and something else does.

The first guy wasted two months of my time. But in the end I think he did me a favor. You see, I have a somewhat complicated project. I'd called out a bunch of guys and got a bunch of different solutions to fix my problem. There are three super legit ways. Well, two are super legit, one marginally legit. I chose the guy who I thought gave me the best solution. We had gone through more than a month and a half of negotiation and I thought I'd gotten him to the finish line. I told him I was ready to go forward. Then didn't hear from him for a week. So I pinged him and asked him where we were with starting the project. He said nowhere - I gave you a seven day contract. Which I have never seen. Contractors almost always give you a 30 day window. Mind you I emailed him on the seventh day. But whatever. I was kinda super pissed.  Because I'd spent so long with him that he torched my other prospects. So I had to start over.

But that guy made it a lot easier to find another contractor to do the same thing for actually a little less.  I don't really understand a guy that spends two months or so with a customer. Gets the contract. Walks away and gives the glory to another man. Least logical man ever.

Anyway... hopefully in two weeks a porta potty will show up at my house and the blogging will begin. Apparently I'm willing to pay 1000 bucks to not have a bunch of guys taking dumps in my toilet.

Thursday, September 07, 2017

Memba what I said about Trump a few days ago?

People seem as hot as fish grease about Trump working with Dems. Trump is slow rolling these Republicans so hard. When your own party is sandbagging you......

And Trump is making everyone very aware of how badly the've been sandbagging us all along. When I see people saying they no longer blame Obama for Obamacare, they blame the Republicans - these RINOS better prepare. The world is changing. I think I'm fairly bitter about the Obama administration and even I'm like - you that mad huh bro. This is getting good.

The thing that Dems don't understand about us is we are willing to eat our own. I'd throw some of the Republicans under the bus faster than I would a Dem frankly. If your own party can't get something passed.....why not try to flip the script?