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smoke check

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Member since: Mon Jun 2, 2014, 04:15 PM
Number of posts: 6,067

Journal Archives

Micheal Moore on the election.

I don't know if he is correct on the outcome, but I believe he is correct in his analysis. He isn't someone I usually agree with at all.

3D Printing Spider Robots

Three-dimensional printing has long had a serious limitation: You can’t make an object larger than the print bed. Consequently, 3-D printers for large-scale objects have taken up a lot of space and required a lot of heavy machinery to move the nozzle around.

Taking a cue from nature, technicians at Siemens may have solved the problem. Instead of building a bigger, better 3-D printer, the company has designed compact “spider robots” that work together to weave large objects seemingly from thin air.

Creating a 3-D printing spider robot was just the first step. The Siemens team needed to come up with a way to make 3-D printing faster. Large-scale printing can be maddeningly slow. Autonomous teams of robots, however, can divide and conquer the construction of a large object by focusing on different areas of the structure. Building on the popular open-source Robot Operating System (ROS), the Siemens R&D group wrote code empowering the robots to make their own optimal decisions about how to print the object.

That means the spiders don’t need special reprogramming as they move on to new construction jobs. This could make building a large-scale object as simple as uploading a request to a central server, as the robots themselves decide how many are needed to complete the task efficiently and which sections of the object each will build.

I wonder what all of this will mean for our descendants in 100 years or so. A lot of things coming soon would seem to make even long term space travel a real option.

Venezuela’s Collapse: Horror Beyond Belief

When Matt O’Brien updated his previous article on the slow-motion collapse of Venezuela on Monday for the Washington Post, he reviewed the symptoms achingly familiar to those following the events: the collapse of oil prices; the incompetence of the cronies running the state-owned oil company (former Marxist Hugo Chávez replaced the workers who knew what they were doing with political cronies who didn’t); the inflation of the currency followed as night follows day, with price controls to mask the resulting inflation; inflation, as measured by the black market’s pricing of the Venezuelan bolivar, causing the bolivar to lose more than 90 percent of its value in just two years; the empty supermarket shelves; the oppression by police of those standing in long lines to purchase whatever might be left in those stores; and on and on. As O’Brien lamented:

left Venezuela’s supermarkets without enough food, its breweries without enough hops to make beer, and its factories without enough pulp to produce toilet paper.

And then he added: “It’s only going to get worse.”

Unfortunately, it already has. Starvation is leading to staggering rises in infant mortality, and prison riots are leading to cannibalism.

I wish I could bring more of it over as it is well worth the read. This is what socialism is. This is what it ends up looking like every time it is tried. Why do leftists keep going back to this?

Asia & Pacific Duterte renounces U.S., declares Philippines will embrace China

On Wednesday, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said it was “time to say goodbye” to the United States. So on Thursday, he said a cheery hello to China.

In meetings that followed months of anti-U.S. rhetoric, Duterte and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, met at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, promising to move from bitter fighting to close friendship.

Lest the message be lost, Duterte later announced his country’s economic and military “separation” from the United States in a speech to business executives in Beijing, drawing applause from the crowd.

Beijing’s top brass, meanwhile, get to court a cornerstone player in the U.S. rebalance to Asia, showing neighbors that it pays handsomely to play nice with China.

This is what eight years of Obama-Clinton-Kerry foreign policy has succeeded in. Russia and China are picking off former allies one by one. Terrorism may as well be the state religion in some Islamic countries.

The trash that sounds good in Georgetown doesn't work in the real world. We may well be forced into isolationism due to Obama and Clinton's myriad foreign policy failures.
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