BBC NEWS | Americas | ‘Car sleepers’ the new US homeless

BBC NEWS | Americas | ‘Car sleepers’ the new US homeless: “Santa Barbara boasts a classic laidback California lifestyle, with uncongested beaches, wholesome cafes and charming Spanish-style architecture.

Of course there’s a hefty price tag: nestled between the gentle Santa Ynez mountains and the inviting Pacific Ocean are multi-million dollar homes.

But in this sun-washed haven of wealth, many live far from the American dream.

In a car park across the street from luxury mansions, the evening brings a strange sight.

A few cars arrive and take up spaces in different corners. In each car, a woman, perhaps a few pets, bags of possessions and bedding.

Across the street from homes with bedrooms to spare, these are Santa Barbara’s car sleepers.

Homeless within the last year, they are a direct consequence of America’s housing market collapse.”

This is a move on from the tent cities that have been springing up.

Douwe Osinga’s Projects: Google Chat Bot

Douwe Osinga’s Projects: Google Chat Bot: “Use Google talk by entering three or four words below. The system will search for this sentence at Google, find the next word and print that. Than it will remove the first word of the search string, add the found word and repeat. The result seems to be meaningfull sometimes. Other times it is giblish. But always fun.”

This is a great tool, seems like webbots!

7 Email Myths That Plague the Workplace – Stepcase Lifehack

7 Email Myths That Plague the Workplace – Stepcase Lifehack: “1. Good organization is the best way to stay on top of email.

It’s not. Turning emails into actions and archiving everything else is the best way to stay on top of email. Organizing each message into a different folder might be handy for other reasons, such as digging out a paper trail for your lawyer when you get sued, but it’s not handy for “staying on top of” email. There is no correlation between the folder your message is in (unless we’re talking about the inbox) and your level of email efficiency.

2. You need to reply to every message.

Some messages simply don’t need a reply. You should only reply if you have something valuable to add to the communication. Sure, you might feel the sting of guilt as you get used to this concept and stop replying to every message you get, but if you want to reclaim your time, it’s an adjustment you must make.

If there are people you communicate with regularly who expect a reply even when you have nothing to add, you need to educate them rather than succumb to their demands. The biggest problem with email productivity is that people simply won’t put up a little resistance to those who don’t know how to use email effectively.

3. You need to reply to every message…”

The M2-F1 – An Aircraft Without Wings

The M2-F1 – An Aircraft Without Wings: “The planned retirement of the space shuttle fleet in 2010 will bring to a close an era that opened in the Antelope Valley nearly a half century ago.

The vehicle which began that era – the M2-F1 – was an unlikely forefather to the shuttle. The world’s first manned lifting body, the M2-F1 was made of wood, had an internal framework of steel tubes, looked like a bathtub sitting on a tricycle, and had no wings.”

Slashdot | Why Shoot Down a Satellite? Analyzing an Analysis

Slashdot | Why Shoot Down a Satellite? Analyzing an Analysis: “‘Writing in the IEEE Spectrum, James Oberg analyzes whether there was, in fact a significant risk to humans from the satellite which the US military shot down on 21 February, purportedly ‘to head off the possibility of its splashing a half ton of toxic hydrazine fuel somewhere on Earth.’ Previous experts had ‘scoffed’ at the rationale put forth, pointing out that there was trivial possibility that any significant amount of toxic fuel would make it to the ground intact. Oberg’s analysis, titled ‘the inside story,’ purports to debunk this, and claims that indeed it’s possible, and even likely, that there could be a danger to the ground. Unfortunately, the analysis is full of flaws and lack of rigor — indeed, lacking any sort of numerical reasoning. It seems to be too much repeating official ‘spin,’ and could have used a hefty dose of skepticism — and could also use a little bit of actual analysis using numbers, rather than handwaving.'”

Remember this story

BBC NEWS | Science & Environment | Buran – the Soviet ‘space shuttle’

BBC NEWS | Science & Environment | Buran – the Soviet ‘space shuttle’: “Some 20 years ago, on 30 September 1988, many readers of the Pravda newspaper – the official mouthpiece of the Soviet communist party – could not believe their eyes.

Published somewhat inconspicuously on the second page, there was a photo depicting the familiar shape of the US space shuttle, but with Soviet insignia on its wings.

Finally, years of rumours about a Soviet ‘copy’ of the shuttle had been confirmed.”

What is the Higgs Boson?

What is the Higgs Boson? | astroengine.com: “What is the Higgs boson? The Short Answer
Predicted by the Standard Model of particle physics, the Higgs boson is a particle that carries the Higgs field. The Higgs field is theorized to permeate through the entire Universe. As a massless particle passes through the Higgs field, it accumulates it, and the particle gains mass. Therefore, should the Higgs boson be discovered, we’ll know why matter has mass.”

This is the reason for the importance of the new particle accelerator in Europe.

Emerging Killer Virus Starts Like a Cold, But Kills Many

Emerging Killer Virus Starts Like a Cold, But Kills Many: “A newly discovered and highly lethal virus strain begins with symptoms similar to that of a cold but can quickly lead to severe respiratory crisis.

‘This virus has the capability of causing severe respiratory illness in people of all ages, regardless of their medical condition,’ said John Su, of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The virus was discovered by infectious-disease expert David N. Gilbert, who noticed that otherwise healthy patients were being stricken by pneumonia so severe that they would die without oxygen treatment. The dangerous symptoms developed within only one or two days of initial cough and fever symptoms.”

There have been a lot of colds going around recently, and I wonder if this is related.

Market Skeptics

Market Skeptics

This is worth a read too

Deflation will be in terms of gold, like in 1929

As deleveraging occurs and debt is destroyed, prices of commodities and other assets will fall in terms of real money, which is gold and other precious metals. The price of oil, for example, will continue to fall in terms of gold. (Investors need to start thinking of values in terms of ounces of gold instead of dollars, because that is where we are headed) What this means is that, while it is possible that the price of oil could still increase in terms of dollars, the price of gold will increase to an even greater degree.”

Saudi untouched? | The Economist

Saudi untouched? | The Economist

There is a lot of discussion of a new gold standard and the heights that gold could reach.
However there are a couple of points that I think are worth still bearing in mind.

1. The world still runs on energy. We need it to live and have the standard of living we do. Oil is still the densest form of energy we have available that is easy to obtain. It is what our society runs on.
2. I was sitting in a taxi chatting to the driver. He had worked in Saudi and said that they had mountains of gold.

I still feel we are on the oil standard.
Either way Saudi is in a good position and buying a middle eastern currency is probably a good place right now.

Home made washing powder

This does your whites nicely!! (i think it is the washing soda)

Need 2/3 bars of soap (washing soap)

1cup soap
1/2 cup borax
1/2 cup washing soda