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Don't look up
by Jeffery J. Haas - 01/23/22 03:23 AM
The long and winding road to Dumbass
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Coronavirus: The Plague of The 21st Century?
by pondering_it_all - 01/23/22 12:12 AM
Interesting read - maybe
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National Commission to Investigate the January 6
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XX or XY Genome
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Round Table Winter 2021
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Lindsey v. Mitch: Senate cage match
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Complexity Science
by Jeffery J. Haas - 01/12/22 06:34 PM
What's for dinner?
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RoundTable For Fall 2021
by Mellowicious - 01/02/22 04:21 AM
Divorce: American Style
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It's the Despair Quotient!
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Moderna took Operation Warp Speed money, so no amount of protest from them is valid...the taxpayers and Uncle Sam are major factors that MADE the Funky Cold Moderna POSSIBLE and
for once it is TIME pharmaceutical companies get DENIED the chance to GOUGE end users of a product, the development of which they helped underwrite.

I'd like to see Uncle Sam go back through EVERY SINGLE pharmaceutical patent that has benefited from taxpayer money and correct the record all the way down the line.
My own father won a lawsuit over his invention of the RF permeameter, which drastically improved the performance of every device that ever used ferrite cores for tuning.
That would be RADIO RECEIVERS, like every single one ever made. (after that)

Didn't make him fabulously wealthy but it DID indeed represent a significant improvement in his bank book.

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Just guessing but you probably didnt need any extra-familial help with your math homework, or call someone to repair your TV!

TAT


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You are absolutely right! If there was ever an industry that is ripping off everybody in the United States its the pharmacy folks. Our universities develop and the pharmacy folks advertise, lobby, and overcharge for what the universities have invented, often with federal dollars! (I think)

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Originally Posted by TatumAH
Just guessing but you probably didnt need any extra-familial help with your math homework, or call someone to repair your TV!

TAT

The biggest tragedy for me is the fact that I did not inherit my father's world renowned math and physics skills.
None of us three Haas boys did, in fact.
It's clear that I inherited whatever smarts I might have from my Mom's side, and they're not scientists, they're creatives...artists, painters, ceramicists, wrought iron workers...

What little I did get brain-wise from "Das Nuke" (my nickname for the old man) is in recognizing patterns and grasping a basic understanding of
how things flow. Beyond that, I only inherited his looks.

As for the TV, at age seven I took the back off our ancient Admiral 17 inch B/W TV set and decided to make my own homemade
"tube tester" out of a cardboard shoe box.
Only trouble was, I didn't notice the vacuum tube diagram inside and when Mom said Dad was home, I hurriedly jammed the tubes any place they fit, and when Das Nuke flicked the switch for Cronkite, instead he got "POOF" followed by acrid smoke and a VERY guilty looking little boy slinking out of the room.
BUSTED.

My "punishment" was I had to spend every day where I wasn't doing homework, helping him build his own Heathkit 25 inch color TV.
Heathkits, for those who don't know, were extremely popular DIY hobby electronics kits, and the TV we built together was top notch and lasted a long time.
And I learned basic electronics, and enough math to grasp the principles, and I learned how to solder properly.
But I could never DESIGN circuits or do advanced troubleshooting, just the basics...enough to earn me a Ham radio license and an FCC Commercial Radio technician's license.
That's it.


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Sensing thread drift, I can roll with it! grin I blew my first fuse also around age 6-7 after "fixing" a tube radio, which as you know have dangerous high voltages. What were our parents thinking letting us fool around with lethal risks? Oh yeah, we didnt exactly inform them about our activities, but still they figured it out! ThumbsUp
I didnt just blow one fuse, but took out the whole house electricity, and they noticed. In my defense, I mentioned that it wasnt my fault, as only one fuse should have blown and protected the system. This proved correct, as the wiring was indeed defective, and I got off with time served. It was 1955-6 in New Orleans and electrical codes were a bit lax!
My father was a huge Amateur radio fan. and he and his brother even made their own vacuum tubes during the depression years, including the glass blowing and sealing. My father was always so tickled by being able to talk with people all around the world FOR FREE, except for the thousands spent on equipment and death defying antenna work. I still get flashbacks!
Naturally I had to get licensed too, and although I was fine with theory, Morse Code was my downfall and could never get up to 13 WPM, leaving me stuck with a Technician licence, something you might relate to!

We had lots of Heathkit equipment which was very instructive in electronics. For those who have never p,ut one of those kits together, they come with very complete instructions for every step, including pictures, showing every detail. The first thing you had to do was inventory every part down to each resistor value, and then you started building it. I put together my first stereo to take off to U of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1968, because you needed music for Drug U, and I was broke. I was extreamly carefull in the construction, as the stakes were very high. I finished absolutely everything, but there was one 330 Ohm resistor left over! I retraced the location of every resistor to find my error, knowing if I had one left over, something else was also wrong. All four of them were found in exactly the right locations! My father, when I wasnt looking, had added an extra 330 Ohm resistor to my carefully organized parts kept in muffin tins to keep track of everything! He got me but good, I was frantic till I figured it out, and he was quite pleased with his prank. Did I mention that teasing was standard in the family, and you will probaly be surprised that it purrsisted for my kids! grin
TAT


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These days there are virtually any real restrictions or anything you need to know to be a ham operator. You also don't need Morse code anymore. Its kindofa shame. I remember my dad talking to the king Hussian of Jordan. Now, I am told, all you gotta do is get the equipment. I also remember him using his ham phone to call people all over the place when long distance was kinda expensive.

I guess those were the good old days. I also remember when we were walking by the Piggly Wiggly grocery store and a sailor walked up to him, asked him his name, handed him a piece of paper and told him that we had been attacked by japan and the paper was an order to report. Piggly Wiggly is now two restaurants. I was very young and have always found it interesting, especially given my lack of memory, that I have always remembered that day.

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Those Heathkit manuals were something else: A paragraph and drawing for every single component! With explicit color codes listed on every resistor and capacitor. (Remember capacitor color codes?)

Well I got you guys beat, hands down: I had an actual neon sign transformer I fooled around with in my bedroom! It put out some ungodly voltage, with enough amps to fry an elephant. I also made a carbon arc furnace that ran on household AC. Fun stuff. I was probably about 10.

In my high school Occupational Electronics class, we had surplus 180 volt B batteries that we used mainly for zapping the crap out of each other. My biggest disappointment with that class was that the teacher was strictly analog, and I designed and built a digital computer that could "learn" and "forget" out of telephone relays. My classmate (who won the school Science Fair) was astonished I didn't win anything. But his single neuron model was analog, and our teacher was the judge for electronic stuff.


We're flying electric helicopters on Mars yet you can't turn on your clothes dryer in Texas. That's because scientists are in charge of Mars, and Republicans are in charge of Texas.
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Originally Posted by pondering_it_all
I also made a carbon arc furnace that ran on household AC.

You could have been a welder in Cuba!

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All dedicated nerds had carbon arc furnaces. Mine was made from a flowerpot that was easy to drill hole for carbon rods harvested from D cell batteries. The best and most dangerous aspect for some, was the voltage dropping mechanism, consisting of two rocks, holding the 115 VAC mains in series with the carbon rods, immersed in a glass pan filled with salt water. The optimal voltage was obtained by moving the rocks closer or farther apart, or adding moar salt. It's lucky we lived! I suspect some did not, revealing themselves as pseudo-nerds!
TAT


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