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Going to see Avatar today

December 18, 2009

Wasn’t really planning to but Mr. X has the day off and he wants to go.

Got my Christmas shopping done yesterday. Now all I have to do is wrap the presents. Malls were insane. I ended up going down to Southcenter. Haven’t been there is years. They have really changed things around, and the place is damn confusing now with NO map boards to help locate stores. Spent a lot more time than I wanted to wandering through that place.

-Obama’s Speech-

Woke up to Obama giving his speech in Copenhagen (Hopenchangen in Copenhagen maybe I could sell T-shirts) maybe it was just me but I though he sounded angry as hell. Good – now he knows how I feel when he starts his crap.

Text of speech.


Another Black Conservative – Hillary pledges untold billions to fight climate change at Copenhagen Why not, what’s another $100 Billion

Bring the Heat Bring the Stupid looks at the problem of hacked video feeds in Iraq. This has to be one of the stupidest problems I have ever heard of. Encryption is standard on any WiFi setup why wouldn’t it be here? Whoever made that decision needs to be horsewhipped.

Daily Pundit – Christopher Buckley would still vote for Obama. Surprise, they are both Ivy Leaguers and that transcends all. His reasoning is priceless however –

Our choice, last fall, was between an angry 73 year old with a legislative record far from consistently conservative, who nominated as his running mate a know-nothing religious extremist; on the other side was an appealing, thoughtful man who–for a brief shining moment–seemed to be more than the sum of his ideological parts.

If I had to vote all over again, I’d pull the same lever. Maybe I’m obtuse.

Obtuse isn’t the right word. Mind numbingly stupid seems more appropriate. Seriously because a candidate isn’t as conservative as you would like you vote for a candidate who isn’t conservative at all, and further associates with terrorists and race baiters. Good choice. Like the way you get the slam in on Sarah Palin too while ignoring Joe Biden’s lifelong history of plagarism, lying and stupidity. You need to have your voter registration revoked for abject retardation.

Report: Democratic districts received nearly twice the amount of stimulus funds as GOP districts. As Instapundit says “Shocker” Actually the shocker is GOP districts got any stimulus at all.

Megan McCardle offers up an idea on improving education.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. xbradtc permalink
    December 18, 2009 11:55 am

    Thanks for the link. As for why the video feeds were unencrypted, I’m hearing two schools of thought, the first being that the powers that be thought that insurgents would never think to tap the feeds (despite the fact that the very first time Predators were used in the Balkans, the bad guys tapped the feed) and the second school of thought being that there are latency issues with encryption that make encryption problematic.

    • jenn1964 permalink*
      December 18, 2009 1:29 pm

      No problem – First school of thought = Ignorant. Assuming that the insurgents / terrorists are unsophisticated / unintelligent despite the level of planning and technical capabilities they have demonstrated is beyond stupid. It’s criminal. Second school of thought is not valid the encryption adds at the most milliseconds. I used to work with video encryption and high def full motion video encrytion on an off the shelf chipset added 10 msec. That could be overcome by using a faster processor, we were using a 266 MHz. When you add in all the delays caused by lost packet retries etc. it is nothing.

  2. Ric Locke permalink
    December 18, 2009 9:57 pm

    Actually, there is a third school of thought (and I used to do some of that work at a very low level): what’s the cost/benefit ratio? Specifically, what advantage do the targets get from intercepting the video feed?

    Answer: they get to know what the controllers are interested in looking at. Does that really give them any advantage? Maybe, a little — but it has a downside, too. If they discover that the controllers are interested in the place where they are, they might shift their operations. But that’s almost as good as bombing them! Robert W. Townsend remarked that “two moves equals one fire” as regards keeping a coherent organization going, and in a military context there’s always the possibility that stirring the anthill will bring the ants to the attention of some other intelligence asset.

    As against that, there’s the cost. You’ve been spoiled, you know — the military stuff being deployed today is built out of things you considered more or less contemporary with ENIAC ten years ago; the procurement cycle takes that long. If you want a real scandal with military electronics, consider that over half of what goes into the targeting system on a front-line fighter is no longer manufactured; if they want to fix it, they have to go for surplus chips. There’s a whole industry out there of companies who bought up “end of life” products and sell them at a hefty premium, and an almost as large industry of counterfeiters who pulled consumer-grade chips off dead circuit boards, relabeled them, and sold them as MIL-SPEC. At the time the systems we’re talking about were designed, they didn’thave 300MHz processors and off-the-shelf encryption chipsets. That stuff had to be made from scratch, or crammed into the limited programmable or gate-array chips they had at the time, then had to survive the whole military-grade certification process. That’s expensive, both in money and in time, and they simply decided the game wasn’t worth the candle.

    Even now, I’m not sure they weren’t right. If they can disrupt the enemy’s operations just by pointing a TV camera at them, it’s cheaper than bombs, won’t get anybody’s butt in front of a Board or Court, and is more fun besides.


    • jenn1964 permalink*
      December 19, 2009 9:20 am

      You make a good point about forcing them to move being a disruption, although I doubt there was that much thought applied. As to your second point I am pretty sure that I have read in other places that the newer UAVs were assembled fom COTS components. In that case they definately had access to the chipset I was discussing as it has been around at least 7 years and is now being EOL’d. I have done some MIL-STD certs and it really is no more expensive than what we had to do for our commercial costumers. Especially in the high-reliability arena and in fact the certs weren’t as comprehensive. Just spelled out in infinitely more detail.

  3. Portlandic permalink
    December 20, 2009 1:49 am

    Regarding Christopher Buckley: You do realize he’s half-Soviet (his mum was from Canuckistan), don’t you?

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