Tesla Announces the Cybertruck

Tesla has just announced the Cybertruck, an electric-powered utility vehicle to be available in three models priced at US$39,900 (single motor rear wheel drive), US$ 49,900 (dual motor all wheel drive), and US$ 69,900 (tri-motor all wheel drive).  The range varies between 250 miles (400 km) for the least expensive model to 500 miles (800 km) for the most expensive.  More details are available on Wikipedia.

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Trump Trade War to Save the Planet

One of my Facebook friends shared out a tidbit that was new to me.   Giant container ships produce really bad sulphur-based air emissions.   That in itself is not surprising, since they burn heavy “bunker” oil for fuel.   But the extent of their air emissions is staggering.

Just one mega-container ship gives off as many emissions as 50,000,000 cars. That’s right, one ship equals 50 million cars.     The world’s 15 largest ships put out more pollutants (nitrogen and sulphur oxide) than ALL of the world’s cars added up.... [Read More]

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William Phelps Eno’s Rules of the Road

This is a post prompted by questions from Ms. Sawatdeeka about traffic flow and traffic rules. Where did the rules of the road come from? Our story begins in New York City in the 1870s. A nine-year old boy was riding in a carriage with his mother and they got caught in a traffic jam. Horses had to be backed up with a wagon and another carriage, and an hour was spent sorting things out before anyone could proceed.

That was typical for any city and had been the way of things for centuries. People would go the best way they could. Traffic was a problem wherever you went, but at the speed of horsedrawn carriages and wagons, crashes were rare.... [Read More]

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How intuitive is our traffic system?

Ratburger, I’m interested in your take on this.  If an individual from the distant past, say the 1600’s, was plunked down in one of our cities, how long would it take he or she to grasp our traffic system just by riding around in the car with one of us?  This is assuming that our driver is obeying all the rules, of course, and not sailing through stop signs like they do out here.

Also, I’m sure there would be variables with each time traveler: is he/she literate, noticing of color, English-speaking ?  Let’s assume that our candidate is all three. However, imagining an illiterate peasant, as many of our ancestors likely were, might be even more to the point.... [Read More]

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This Week’s Book Review – Moon Tracks

I write a weekly book review for the Daily News of Galveston County. (It is not the biggest daily newspaper in Texas, but it is the oldest.) My review normally appears Wednesdays. When it appears, I post the review here on the following Sunday.... [Read More]

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The Zombie Car Phenomenon

Several years ago, while I waited on the curb at the San Diego airport watching traffic flow by, I noticed something about the cars. They were different from the local vehicles in Northwest Montana, and although I’d lived in San Diego for twenty years, I had never made the connection. It wasn’t just the obvious preference for SUV’s and Subarus in the rugged north—no, it was something else, too: the city vehicles were shiny and updated. Many of them looked high-end. I thought of the beaters I often spotted in my Montana town—the 80’s sedans, the classic trucks, and the boxy early style of Subaru—and it made me realize the degree to which residents of my town make do with what they have. I was proud to be one of them.

In recent months, this trend toward junky vehicles seems to have gotten worse—or better, however you choose to look at it. Before I explain, however, I have to admit that my own little red car has its own issues. I will remove the log from my own eye first. This is a beloved vehicle that won’t quit, even though we’re at 198,000 miles. Each blemish tells a story. The longish dent on the driver’s side—that was a tangle with a tall stand of bamboo at the side of our driveway when we were in San Diego. My husband could not understand how I did that, as I had backed down our long, steep driveway a couple thousand times by then. I could understand, because I had backed down that impossible driveway two thousand times without incident, and it was only a matter of time before it got me, especially now that there was a giant, unforgiving stand of bamboo to complicate things.... [Read More]

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Damn winter….

Damn winter…

Well, this morning my 09 truck would not start, battery problem. So I used the 96 to get to work. Parking the 96 in the employee’s lot steam was emanating from beneath the hood. Upon opening the hood and closer examination  I found that the bushing on the water pump was leaking. I nursed it halfway home to Wally-World and purchased two gallons of 50/50 antifreeze mixture and a new battery for the 09. One gallon or the premixed antifreeze went in the vehicle and I nursed it home. I jumped the 09 with the new battery to get it started and drove it into the driveway. Changed out the battery and I hope it’s good to go in the morning. But probably all my radio stations were wiped because of the battery change.... [Read More]

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Ion-powered aircraft flies with no moving parts

Ladies and Gentlemen, we truly live in a wonderful age, an age of inventions not ever imagined by anyone before us, (us being those of this time).

Continue reading “Ion-powered aircraft flies with no moving parts”

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it really has me worried….

A little over a year ago I purchased a vehicle, a Dodge Ram 1500, circa 2009. Since then I put new tires on it, mud flaps and step bars. It runs great. It looked great, not a spec of rust on it.

On the way to work someone rear ended me. His insurance company admitted the fault. I’m driving a rental car, paid for by them. I finally came to the appointment time to have it repaired. I dropped it off yesterday, and the repair shop, a good one, increased the estimate from what his insurance company said, ($3,600),  to around $9,000. Similar vehicles cost in the area of $14,000 today. I still owe $8,000 on it. I had a good deal when I bought it, maybe about $5,000 less than what it was worth because of higher mileage.... [Read More]

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