Star Wars: Harmy’s Despecialized Editions Rock

(Originally posted on 2017-01-18.)

Summary

There are different routes to seeing the original Star Wars, but they each have their limitations. I am intrigued by Harmy’s Despecialized Editions for all the reasons listed in the documentary above. Here is a review, instructions, and comparisons.

Caveat Emptor

In principle, I agree that it is ethical to view these if you have actually purchased copies of the movies, however, what’s ethical, and what’s legal are not always the same thing. I have not assembled or viewed these videos, so I cannot review them at this time, but I will link to a review below.

Instructions

HanDuet’s The Ultimate Introductory Guide to Harmy’s Star Wars Trilogy Despecialized Editions is the best guide to getting access to these movies.

Here is the Star Wars Trilogy Despecialized Edition Facebook page.

Review

Comparisons

In cases where there was footage added, the editions that don’t have it will just show black, but just for this comparison, not in the movies:

Han Shot First

Cloud City Escape

The Emperor’s Message

The End

Build a Wall? Part Uno

(Originally posted on 2017-01-18.)

Politics is a football game, where winning is everything, and there are no stable values. What about the religious right? In the south, they used to vote for Democrats. What about free market capitalism?

By Michael Vadon [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
The GOP was free-market right up until this election. Now there are Republicans that say, “We want protectionist economic policies. Build a wall!”

Protectionist economic policies will increase the cost of every item that comes from Mexico and China. (Whether that increase takes money away from the manufacturer, the import company, or the end-consumer, depends on the elasticity-of-demand.) Every person’s dollar will buy less, and Americans will be that much poorer, but the next president will still be able to afford a $650 iPhone.

People said that your future president was lying about getting Mexico to pay for the wall, but he actually did mention tariffs during the campaign.

Here’s the thing about tariffs: if you raise the price of imports, then people will buy them from some other place, and then the tariffs won’t generate money to build the wall. In that case, you won’t have a wall, and you won’t have inexpensive goods either.

Mexico and China are in an industrial revolution. At the end of an industrial revolution, you end up with a large middle class. Large middle-class people generally want the option of desk jobs. The USA is in between industrial revolutions.

But there’s a completely different way of looking at trade deficits, and it’s simply this: the trade imbalance just means that the US dollar buys more, and that means that people in the US, on average, are better off, than people in other countries, and USA-first people like trump shouldn’t want to mess with that.

Me? I think that people are people, and I don’t care whether they live in China, the USA, or most other places, but that’s a “Paul opinion”. It’s not liberal, and it’s not conservative.


By Crossswords (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons


Cumulative current account balance per capita 1980–2008 based on International Monetary Fund data. Emilfaro [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The two charts above show that the USA currently has the greatest trade imbalance, while simultaneously making more protectionist policies. Here are a few possible explanations:


AMA drafts model on-highway motorcycle sound legislation

(Originally posted as /archives/4408 from a 2009-09-28 American Motorcyclist Association Press Release)

1971_Honda_CB100_shift_side
© 2014-05-23, Paul Danger Kile, All Rights Reserved

 

September 28, 2009

The AMA has developed model legislation for use by cities seeking a simple, consistent and economical way to deal with sound complaints related to on-highway motorcycles within the larger context of excessive sound from all sources.

The model legislation offers an objective method for municipal jurisdictions to evaluate motorcycle sound through science-based measurement. It’s based on the Society of Automotive Engineers’ (SAE) new J2825 standard, “Measurement of Exhaust Sound Pressure Levels of Stationary On-Highway Motorcycles.” The AMA produced similar model legislation for off-highway motorcycles several years ago.

“Many cities and other jurisdictions already have excessive sound laws on the books, but when they get citizen complaints about loud motorcycles, they sometimes decide to single out the riding public with unfair or overly restrictive ordinances and laws,” said Imre Szauter, AMA government affairs manager. “We believe that motorcycles shouldn’t be singled out, but should be regulated as part of a comprehensive sound management policy that also addresses cars, trucks, leaf blowers, generators and other sources of excessive sound.”

The J2825 standard, issued by the SAE in May, is based on a comprehensive study of a wide variety of on-highway motorcycles. It establishes instrumentation, test site, test conditions, procedures, measurements and sound level limits.

“Too many times, jurisdictions responding to citizen complaints about excessive motorcycle sound create laws that simply don’t work in the real world,” Szauter said. “They either set an unreasonable decibel limit, leave it up to a police officer to subjectively decide whether a bike is too noisy, or come up with another plan that is arbitrary or unworkable. Our model legislation is objective, workable and fair.”

The model legislation adopts the SAE J2825 standard for stationary on-highway motorcycle sound testing, specifies the type of sound meter to be used, and allows for each city to specify the penalties for violating the law. Szauter stressed, however, that the sound-testing procedures and decibel limits established in the SAE J2825 standard should remain unchanged to ensure that the law remains objective and fair.

Under the SAE J2825 standard, decibel limits range from 92 dBA at idle for all motorcycles, to up to 100 dBA at certain RPMs for various motorcycles, depending on the type of engine.

In 2003, the AMA organized the National Summit on Motorcycle Sound to bring together riders and user organizations, representatives of the motorcycle manufacturers, the aftermarket industry, racing promoters, government agencies, law enforcement and others to develop proposals regarding the increasingly controversial issue of excessive motorcycle sound. The creation of a new on-highway motorcycle sound measurement procedure was a top recommendation of the summit’s Motorcycle Sound Working Group.

“The motorcycling community, local governments and police officers have sought a practical sound field test for streetbikes for many years, and now it exists, thanks to a collaboration between the Motorcycle Industry Council and the SAE,” Szauter said. “The next step is for jurisdictions struggling with motorcycle sound complaints to adopt fair and objective laws, and the AMA is providing the tool for them to do that.”

Szauter encourages motorcyclists and government and law enforcement officials to download the model legislation from the Rights section of this website.

Note from dangerismymiddlename.com: We did not find the model legislation.  We did however find these resources there:

  1. http://www.amadirectlink.com/legisltn/positions/sound.asp
  2. http://www.amadirectlink.com/news/2005/soundsummit.asp
  3. Appendix B (of http://www.amadirectlink.com/news/2005/soundsummit.asp). (“SAE J1287 Measurement of Exhaust Sound Levels of Stationary Motorcycles”) doesn’t appear in the electronic version of Sound Advice. To order a copy of SAE J1287, contact the Society of Automotive Engineers at 877-606-7323 or visit www.sae.org.
  4. Appendix C (of http://www.amadirectlink.com/news/2005/soundsummit.asp)(“AMA Position on Motorcycle Sound” ) as of May 14, 2005. For the current AMA position statement on motorcycle sound, visit www.amadirectlink.com/legisltn/positions/noise.asp.
  5. For the latest information on engine test speed data for stationary sound testing, see the Motorcycle Industry Council downloads page.

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Hee Haw and Waterspouts

(Originally posted on 2016-01-27 as /archives/10705)

Punta Gorda waterspout

So here I am, this kid, in an IHOP, in the Keys, on a beach, (1980?), listening to some musicians that used to be on Hee Haw, (but were now busking for change at IHOP), and there are freaking tornadoes just out the window. “Shouldn’t we do something? What about those tornadoes out there?” “Oh. Those are just water spouts. They break up when they get to the beach, so they aren’t dangerous.” Sure enough, the moment that any of them got close to the building, they would stop spinning, and dump everything they picked up (mostly water) onto the beach, right next to the window.

Quadruple Waterspout Summerland Key June 5, 2009

Trombe

Three waterspouts Kijkduin

I asked my brother Michael about the musicians, and he had this to say: “I had silver dollar pancakes,” and “I remember it was a man and woman but no idea their names .”

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Loud Parties, Playing the Bass

(Originally posted on 2016-05-29)

Author: Ethan Prater Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/eprater/4380249444/ CC License: Attribution 2.0 Generic
Author: Ethan Prater
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/eprater/4380249444/
CC License: Attribution 2.0 Generic

The guy below me (at 30 Larnard St, Potsdam NY, in the early 90s), had a loud party, and played metal and classic rock records, real loud. Did he invite me? No.

Kids: if you are going to have a loud party, then you always invite the neighbors. In most cases they won’t come, but they will appreciate it, and they won’t call the police. Here endeth the lesson.

So I invited myself by plugging in my bass amp, and playing along with all of the songs. He eventually turned it down.

Did that end it? Not exactly: this started to become a regular thing, but at least he turned it down much quicker.

So one day his girlfriend stops me in the store, and says, “Hey, you’re the guy that lives above us. Every time that we have people visit, my boyfriend turns up the stereo, and then lowers the volume so that he can show everyone how you play the bass!”

All righty then…

 

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Ballooning with National Champion Pat Cannon

(Originally posted on 2012-02-24 as /archives/7634)

I rode with pilot Pat Cannon during part of the 2001 Highland Village Balloon Festival. Mr. Cannon won the Balloon Federation of America National Championship a number of times, so this was an incredible opportunity to see just how precise balloon piloting can be.

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The challenge was to fly a minimum distance, and put a bean bag on a target.

We met at the event’s location for the pre-flight pilot meeting. Balloons are best-piloted during early morning or early evening (the Trey Ratcliff hours), so this was very early in the day.

We participated in the First Flight Ceremony. In my case this involved the pilot saying some words, and pouring champagne on my hair, but I observed other folks participating in another “secret version”. 1%-ers have nothing on balloonists.

We drove to the location, unfolded the balloon, and filled it with hot air (see image above). A number of other pilots followed our chase vehicle, and began their flights from nearby (see image below), but there was nothing special about that location piloting-accuracy-wise. Mr. Cannon chose that location because that’s where he wanted to land at the end of the event. The location chosen was a new development that was under-construction. The roads where there, and were free of debris, but construction had not yet begun on any of the homes. We used one of the roads like a heliport.

balloons-Edit-512x182

Before preparing to take off, he launched a small black helium balloon called a pie-ball (short for pilot-balloon). He used a sextant to follow the pie-ball, and estimated the wind’s speed and direction at various altitudes.

The pilot steers the balloon by choosing a direction, and then going to the altitude who’s wind is blowing in that direction. The balloon requires a certain amount of time to get to any chosen altitude, so the pilot needs to plan for that, and the intervening wind vectors, at each step.

Before leaving the pilot told me that we were going to:

  1. Fly over Lake Lewisville
  2. Make a 90-degree direction-change over the lake
  3. Fly to the target, which was here, and then
  4. Fly back to our starting place.

That’s exactly what he did:

  1. We flew a right-triangle
  2. Mr. Pat Cannon tossed his bean bag within 2-feet of the target’s center and then
  3. We then returned to the chase vehicle. No chasing required.

My legs were shaking during the first half of the trip. I have a fear of heights. Motorcycle riding in bad weather has helped me cure much of that since then.

One amazing thing about ballooning is that you can hear everything on the ground. Your vehicle is travelling at exactly the speed of the wind. Sound is as clear as if their were no wind at all.

People run out of their houses to see the balloon. This is early morning, so they are half-dressed. They notice that the pilot can see them in their nightwear and then run back into their houses.

Boaters were also on the lake to see the balloons. Pat Cannon brought his basket down to visit some boaters. He was able to have the bottom of the basket skim the water, but our feet never got wet, and I never saw any water on the basket floor. Another balloonist attempted to do that too, and his basket immediately laid-down on its side in the water; he, and his passengers got wet.

Are angry landowners a risk when landing? Yes. Pat Cannon told me about a landowner that started shooting his balloon as he flew over the shooter’s property. He was not even trying to land there. Mr. Cannon was well-prepared with the two-way radios that pilot’s use, a GPS, and even a mobile phone. The shooter was surprised when the police arrived at the scene. (Robert Munafo told me that people like to shoot trains too.)

Pilot Pat Cannon is an extremely skilled pilot. He has most of the existing pilot endorsements. He flew helicopters for the US Army during the Vietnam War. He is a FAA safety examiner, and he regularly flies Mitsubishi MU-2s for Turbine Aircraft Services, Inc. where he is a Principal.

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