Skip to main content

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - midnight raccoon

DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
Oh, because Channel 3 doesn't ask if you'll accept their stupid cookies :p
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
That's weird, they wouldn't have geographically restricted it to just inside the US or something? But here's the text of the article:

Las Vegas (KSNV) -- Julie Coppin and her dog Betty know all about the weekend trip.

"I hate driving on this road," Coppin told me, as she was escorting Betty, a rambunctious and vocal 3-year-old pooch, around a gas station south of Las Vegas. Ask her about I-15, "I've been stuck on that thing for 8 hours," she says, recounting past trips.

She and the thousands of other Californians on I-15 all have their own horror stories, especially the trip back.

Jeff 5pm

"It's horrifying. It's horrifying. So not a good experience. You just want to get home. So getting on the train would be great," Coppin said at the prospect of an easier trip.

The train that could do it is the high-speed rail line Brightline, which already has a line running in Florida. The California-Nevada line, called Brightline West, has already made some progress.

This summer, it bought land south of the Strip for a station.

RELATED | Tourism officials say California, Nevada border traffic jams need to be addressed

This week, Brightline signed a memorandum of understanding with California transportation officials to use 48 miles on I-15 between Victorville and Rancho Cucamonga for a high-speed line. The "MOU" sets in motion work on right-of-way agreements and designing to make the extension happen.

Until now, Victorville was as far as proposed high-speed lines went. Brightline's California agreement would take the high-speed link into the LA region.

At Rancho Cucamonga, the line is planned to hook up with Metrolink, the commuter rail line in LA. Brightline says this will offer "seamless and straightforward" access in the region, offering a travel time between LA and Las Vegas of three hours and two hours between Rancho Cucamonga and Southern Nevada.

Brightline officials were not available for comment Friday. No timetable has been announced for construction to begin.

This is the latest step the rail line has taken to get the project moving. It is also working on financing the high-speed rail system, something that the pandemic had postponed.

Last week, officials at the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority said they're now asking Washington to put I-15 traffic on the radar, worried interstate traffic backups could keep our customers away.

Brightline's proposed Las Vegas station is in commissioner Michael Naft's District.

"We need to be looking at multimodal transportation options. Just adding a lane of pavement isn't gonna solve all the problems. It's gonna help; it's gonna help move freight. It's gonna help move people. But we need high-speed rail to Southern California," Naft told me last week.
In the video, it looks like the rail will be the median of the freeway, which it makes sense.
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
There's been some progress on the high-speed rail between Las Vegas and Los Angelos, according to one of our local tv stations. The story also highlights the problems with the existing connection, the I-15 freeway, basically imagine the tiny town of Baker, California with a population of a few hundred but with traffic that can be worse than the urban freeways of Las Vegas. Clearly, the existing infrastructure is not adequate.
It might have been just as well that I found out the job wasn't what I was thinking/hoping it was. They're sending me notifications about my "in person interview" despite the fact that 1) I cancel the interview 2) They moved the interviews to Zoom meetings. That tells me enough about the company :p
DnD Central / Re: Infrastructure
Reminds me of the Simpsons Monorail episode  :lol:
I'm so disappointed right now. There seemed to be a good job with decent pay in tech support. So I signed up for their hiring event on the 11th. So I was redirected to their application and skills assessment page (which there's little doubt I could pass the assessment). There was a list of duties, most of them you would expect out of tech support but among them was "always upsell (stupid crap)" I have zero interest in selling people stupid shit they don't need over the phone and I've never been good at it (could be due the lack of interest in doing so ;) and also I have a stuttering speech impediment, that I usually have under control unless I have to tell people stuff I don't believe in.

So I won't be quitting my current job for that one :/
"Being your own boss" means you have no employee benefits and you cover all the equipment costs that would normally be the responsibility of the employer. With this kind of "modern" work arrangement, it's actually the platform provider who can claim to be your employee or client or customer or partner, and get the employee benefits or customer protection accordingly.
Yup, the joys of the "gig" economy".
r a year that may not be renewed is comp
Yup, it was listed on It was like they just had an outdated list of random certifications in their dropdowns. At first, I thought their site was connecting an outdated database of possible certifications, but I think I was wrong and it's just an HTML 3 or 4 list. It was very strange for basically an IT company that happens to specialize in gambling (But I have seen some of their machines in smallish casinos for Las Vegas locals. Some of them are crap, we're talking SVGA graphics and dim CRT monitors. So maybe having a terrible application website only makes sense :p)

Shortage of workforce is a lie. Workforce is always there in the numbers of the unemployed, but goes unutilised, so there is really no shortage.
Very true. The problems employers complain about in finding staff are largely self-inflicted.

find out the real employing business (i.e. try to bypass the recruitment agency who may have published the job announcement on behalf of the business
I have encountered a situation like this. On the Linkedin I found a job that look promising and followed the link to apply and it turned out to be an employment agency. I was unable find the true employer, but I'll take your advice and dig deeper.

ry to apply for jobs that you are UNDERqualified for and UNqualified for
Will do. :)
Employers in America often complain about a lack of qualified applications or applicants in general. To me it seems this issue is partially the fault of the employers themselves, There are issues in which the qualifications for a job are years of experience, a college degree, and advanced certification for jobs that pay little more than a stocker at Walmart.

Those are standard complaints about the state of American employment. But there are other issues such as the one I just encountered. A prospective employer (Scientific Gaming, they make and support video poker machines which amount to PCs with a couple of attachments for gambling). I can enter any certification into their application, except anything that has to do with the job. If I was certified as a nurse, I can select that from their dropdown certification menu. But literally, no technical certification can be selected from it or manually typed as you can see by the attachment. There's not a workaround to get past the screen, even by uploading the certifications. What's the result? They can hire a nurse or accountant to support their machines, but a CompTIA A+ certified person?
I'm not really sure what you're getting at.
We're -most of the Developed West- doing more and more... Logistics and cultural resistance are formidable obstacles. But do we really want to ignore the likelihood of another massively mutated strain of SARS-CoV-2?
Look at what a dither many are in over Omicron! (Deaths, hospitalizations. Not "cases": Panic-induced policies have caused enough pain already...)[1]
There are a couple of issues here. As you said before, last things first. This entire time, Republicans have been focusing on deaths in their attempts to trivialize this virus to the point where it almost seems they forgot people get sick and then die, not vice versa. I've been in many arguments where the anti-mask/anti-vax person will say something idiotic such as "But hardly anyone has died for the 'surge' and I tell them to give it a couple of weeks. In this matter, I was correct 100% of the time. Yes, someone claiming to right 100% of the time is arrogant in nearly all cases, but not this time. Why? Deaths are always a trailing indicator of the disease's severity. With Covid, the true death rate won't be known for years. Let me explain. Many survivors emerge from the other side of the disease with permeant damage that will likely yet shorten their lives, despite the "recovery".

Meanwhile, despite the anti-mask/anti-vax crowd's claim to the contrary, the current death toll is undercounted . Note this has been known since last March, at the minimum.

Now onto the mutations. Your claim the vaccines themselves are causing the mutations is an anti-vax talking point, despite your claim that you don't have talking points. They are not directly causing mutations. What does causing them is the virus infecting more people and reproducing. Simply put,  people refusing to get vaccinated and refusing to wear their masks are creating more chances for the virus to infect more people and multiply and thus mutate. I fail to understand how someone as intelligent as yourself doesn't understand this. Actually I do; you allowed yourself to get wrapped up in the politics of the situation and not the science. I beg you to prove me wrong on the count (but using the psuedo-science of the anti-vax/anti-mask movement for the love of God!)

And please: No more models from Imperial College's Neil Ferguson! :(
Could you clarify what's meant by "economic center of gravity"? I could agree with the longitude, but the latitude seems as though it would be further south, The 2025 position would be put it further north than most of the US and China, not to mention the major economic powers of Europe. But perhaps I'm misunderstanding it.
the vaccines were always more successful than "natural immunity
That's not what the studies I've read (or heard of...). It is what politicians, and Fauci, et al., say. But YMMV. :)
(Twitter? No shit? :) )
Fuck the politicians. But from the get go, ALL the objective studies indicated that vaccines well outperformed "natural immunity" in offering protection against Covid-19. That's not a surprise, since that's what vaccines do for every disease that one is available for.

To further address your claim of seeing studies showing natural immunity of being on par or superior to vaccination I've been shown "peer reviewed studies" showing the opposite (again on Twitter :p), so I do know what you're talking about. But when you do five minutes of checking on the "peer review" for these publications, it isn't really peer review and that the publications accept just about anything as long is it sounds scientific and isn't outright a copy/paste job. Simply put, peer review is not created equal.

To be obnoxiously glib, "natural immunity" is what we had when the human life expectancy was ~30.

Why would you think so?

Numerous studies have been coming out similar to this one:


Reinfection rates
To assess the impact of Omicron on reinfection rates the researchers used genotype data, since even prior to Omicron, reinfection was correlated with negative S gene Target Failure data, likely due to random PCR target failure caused by the lower viral loads associated with reinfections.

Controlling for vaccine status, age, sex, ethnicity, asymptomatic status, region and specimen date, Omicron was associated with a 5.40 (95% CI: 4.38-6.63) fold higher risk of reinfection compared with Delta. To put this into context, in the pre-Omicron era, the UK "SIREN" study of COVID infection in healthcare workers estimated that prior infection afforded 85% protection against a second COVID infection over 6 months. The reinfection risk estimated in the current study suggests this protection has fallen to 19% (95%CI: 0-27%) against an Omicron infection.

UCI professor sues for exemption from vaccine mandate due to natural immunity. (PDF) While his request for a preliminary  injunction was denied, his suit continues... (The PDF is a declaration of support for his suit by his colleagues at the university, and more than makes his case...[1] So -of course- he was fired!)
Natural immunity might well all but out the window for Omicron. You can google it for yourself, but two-dose Pfizer and Moderna vaccines apparently are not enough for Omicron and the vaccines were always more successful than "natural immunity".

On Twitter, I've had people tell me they caught Covid three times, and therefore have "natural immunity". The answer is that if you caught a disease three times in two years you're not immune to it, big guy.  :P 
:) A simple slip of paper would suffice, no? Unless the purpose was actual identification of the individual... (I've heard of fake vaccination records.) In what way would a wristband do that, convincingly to "authorities" that is?
The Enigma codes were eventually broken. But what would be the purpose for breaking the code of an implanted vaccine record?

This is simple enough. To collect and sell personal information on the dark web. It's often gathered in a piecemeal basis. Throughout the pandemic I seen people (usually on the right) be paranoid about the vaccines, all but accusing Fauci if causing the pandemic, etc. But it seems they're paranoid the wrong things. If I can intercept an RFID signal coming from a chip, I'm well on my way to selling your info to a fraudster. In that context, your comment about about a simple piece of paper makes some sense.

Ps, nice to see you appearantly doing well.
That does seem like a much better solution. As hashing schemes and encryption algorithms get broken (and they all do), having the chip implanted in you would be a security/privacy nightmare and would obviously be far more difficult than simply replacing a wristband.
Browsers & Technology / GNOME Shell
Historically I use either KDE or XFCE, but like to check in on other DEs. So the other night I downloaded the Fedora 35 ISO to experience the newest of GNOME in the pure state. It seems very clean, actually overly so. Compared to other desktops it seems like it takes an extra step to launch applications, view your files, etc, The problem comes from having to access everything from the "Activities" button in the top left of the screen or with the Meta key. Other desktops, of course, have one less step by being able to access commonly used applications from a panel or dock. While pressing an extra key doesn't seem like much, it becomes annoying very quickly.

Of course, this can be fixed with the extension "Dash to Dock".  The result superficially resembles a Mac.  But one should not have to install extensions that can break every 6 months to get basic functionality. Also in the "horizontal workflow", you can on see one virtual desktop at a time.

Another thing is the high RAM usage. When I booted the ISO, it was taking 2 gigs of memory without any applications launched. This isn't that much of a problem on a machine with 16 gigs but does seem awfully heavy.

What does anyone else think? Am I right, too critical, not understanding something?
DnD Central / Re: Everything Trump…
Any chance the mods can lock this thread until he gets his Twitter back? 😶
Does he still want it, considering he's starting his own social media. Of course, that platform is already looking more censored than Twitter since criticism of Trump is not going to be allowed on it.
DnD Central / Re: Everything Trump…
FYI: A prediction from this humble but un-cowed American republican has it that Eric Trump (...not The Donald or Junior) will run in '24. We'll have to wait and see...?!
Yeah, we will: Interesting times!

(Remember, you heard it here first! :)
Perhaps, but I think Don Jr is more likely.  People are already talking about Trump 2024, but to me, there's no saying that Biden or Trump will even be alive in 2024. Talking natural causes of course.
This graph shows the increase in Covid cases in Nevada. While we're still way below the peaks of the dark, cold Covid winter, the cases are definitely on the rise.

The graph is screenshot of the dashboard located here.
Are you talking fully of partially? Fully wouldn't be too bad.
43 percent are fully vaccinated, 51 percent are partially
Mask mandates are what's going on in the Americas because enough people won't get vaccinated. We're about 20 minutes away from all employees in Clark County/Las Vegas from having to wear masks again at work as the Delta variant surges. It's easy enough to see way cases and deaths of Covid are back on the rise. 43 Percent of Nevadans, including yours truly, are fully vaccinated. All you need to do is go to a  supermarket to see that more than 43 percent are not masked. You don't even need to actually count the masked and unmasked, to see the percentage of unmasked people exceeds 43 percent. So, I guess what's really going on in the America is people not listening to reason and now they'll complain about consquences.

DnD Central / The Awesomesauce of Fox News
I've come to the conclusion that Fox News is the most accurate and trustworthy news organization in the history of media. For example, what other news organization got the scoop that Russia's new fighter jet can fly at almost twice the speed of light? Fox continues to astound with its concise and accurate reporting!  :up:
It seems to me that Linux help sites often give users instructions that are the most confusing way to accomplish a task or even give users instructions that are wrong. Case in point: this morning I was installing the R-Studio on Ubuntu 21.04. R is a statistical programming language commonly used to generate visualizations from csv, Excel file, etc. A package called Tidyverse is an important component, that provides functions such ggplot (a R language command to generate a plot). The R base and the R-Studio IDE installed just fine, but Tinyverse did not. So I dutifully went R website to get instructions that told me that Tidyverse was only available for LTS releases and to try changing my sources list for Tidy to Ubuntu Focal. Of course, this failed.

But it turned out that the .deb file of Tidyverse for this version with Ubuntu was available in the Ubuntu repos the whole time. So I got frustrated that Cran (Comprehensive R Archive Network) and R Studio didn't give the simple instructions just to install it from Ubuntu repositories in the first place. It seems to beg the question why didn't Cran and R-Studio just tell users to install Tidyverse from the Ubuntu repos instead of giving such strange instructions and workarounds. But it seems to be a broader issue in Linux. Help sites throw the command line instructions at new users instead of just having them install software from the software center. Sure, for tech-savvy users sudo apt-get install (package) isn't confusing, but does text commands for simple tasks that can be done through the GUI make would-be Linux users switch back? Oh yeah, when the help file incorrectly advised users to change their sources, they didn't tell the users how to do this (again, for experienced users it's easy. Just find Tidyverse in the sources and change the Hirsute to Focal - but how does a new, would-be Linux user know this?)
The wide straight boulevards were meant to allow an army to enter conveniently.
Oh, I get it. To make it easier to squash rebellion, of course.

Alberto Angela's opinion was reported in our media as archaeologists arrived at the conclusion that Nero did not burn down Rome. How can you get such a conclusion from archaeology?
I would presume the actual argument is that it wasn't rebuilt in any particular organized manner? (Or perhaps that it didn't burn as much as claimed.) Which is to say, something a tad more sensible than who or what started the fire. ;)
I saw a show about ancient Rome that Roman cities were well planned, with wide, straight boulevards and other signs of good urban planning. That is except for one city - Rome itself.

He couldn't have literally fiddled while Rome burned unless he was a genius that made a violin almost 1,100 years before it was officially invented, but it's historically possible that he played the cithara. Other reports indicate that he actually sang while the city burned. If the hypothesized singing was a song of lament, this isn't so bad. Others say he coordinated relief efforts after the fire.

So it seems his actions are lost to time. Perhaps that was inevitable, given that he was known as an emperor infamous for his cruelty whose history was written by his many enemies.