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Monday, September 24, 2012

Lost key to riding mower

Can I bypass the ignition by using jumper cables to the starter? Also, if it starts will the mower run by itself with no battery?

Got an old Craftsman II riding mower for free, 11 HP, but no battery or key. Not even sure it will run so spending a lot of money would be stupid. Thinking I could hotwire it, I took the ignition switch out and found that it has about 6 wires going to it. Confused by the 6 wires I then tried to bypass the ignition and jump the mower using cables hooked to my car's battery. The starter turned the engine over fine, but it didn't start.

Do I need the key to make it start? If it starts, do I have to have a battery to keep it running or is the battery just for starting? I know about the seat safety switch.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

I'm curious

And I hope that we can have a reasonably productive conversation here.

I spend a lot of time on computers as I edit/file etc. my work. I also spend a great deal of time on the road as they say and the Internet forums can be a good morale booster in my line of work. As a result I spin through here on occasion. I used to participate a bit but I got sick of being insulted by 12 year old trolls. This was before the R+ era.

So, what I am curious about is the rule creating machine that the Internet forums have turned into. Rules, boxes, lines, dogma a plenty.

To be honest I can't help but think that it dissuaded people from both enjoying the process and exploring personal vision. I actually consider it a threat to photography as it fuels homogeneous results.

I was in a camera shop a week or so ago while a young fella told his prospective clients that a point and shoot will not provide good enough work for publications. Every one says they are not good enough. Blah blah blah. Now the point isn't about the triumph of opinion, the fact is that this idea has taken on a life of its own. The other fact is it is not true. I personally have been working on point and shoots for close to a decade and no outlet has even muttered a word of complaint.

So, with all the critique and rules ('i hate crooked horizons' etc) being tossed about here, are we doing photography a disservice? Are we discussing folks from really exploring vision and enjoyment?

Your thoughts are appreciated.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Isaac Asimov and "Robotics"

I'm reading a collection of Asimov short stories about robots published in 1986. He wrote his own forward (ponderous as it is).

At least twice he brags that he created the word "robotics". And, of course, he created the 3 laws of robotics.

By 1986, Asimov had been already recognized for decades as a giant. And he lies to us by omission, trying to give us the impression, without exactly saying so, that he invented the word "robot".

How can he possible write a long, boring treatise on the origin of thinking about robots without acknowledging the source of the word?

The word "robot" was introduced to the public by the Czech writer Karel ńĆapek in his play R.U.R. (Rossum's Universal Robots), published in 1920. The play begins in a factory that makes artificial people called robots. However, Karel took pains to credit his brother Josef as the inventor of the word "robot".

So Asimov was at once a giant and a very, very small man.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Letter of recommendation from college professor

I asked a couple of college instructors to write me a letter of recommendation. These instructors are from courses I took in the spring semester. Both of them said they'd be happy to do so. One will write his own. The other asked me to write it myself and send it to him, for his edit.

The problem is that I don't know what the focus of the letter should be. One, I don't even know that I want to work in this field. I just want a generic "this student is responsible, reliable, and follows through" kind of letter. I earned an A in both classes, showed up every day on time, and participated.

I don't even know what the value/weight of these letters are, but I hear from my counselors that these are good to have in my portfolio. So, what do you all think these letters should say? I may use them in the future for work, grad school, or as a coaster for my coffee table.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Very dry feet, tried exfoliating and all kinds of lotion

I have always had super smooth feet that would respond very well to lotions and socks before bed. Sleeping with socks all my life with lotion in my feet helped me keep them soft all my life except NOW at age 35.

Something happened as I got to my mid 30s that my feet will continue dry and rough no matter how much lotion I apply and wear socks all night. I hope this isn't neuropathy in my feet.

I tried exfoliating, using cocoa butter pure cream, very greasy with no results.....

Pedicure exfoliation with those rough sponges they have at salons make it so much worse.... then my skin peels all week and gets rougher underneath.

What to do now? I feel like I have tried every lotion, every heel balm, every cow cream in the CVS next door.

I tried Nivea, Cocoa Butter, Shea Butter, Oil, aloe vera heel cream, skin free heel balm, etc etc. All of Dr. School's creams, all of Sally Hansen...

Do I have neuropathy? Is this what aging does? You turn 35 and your feet go rough???? UGH

Friday, August 10, 2012

Gold creeping up in value again

Gold creeping up, the trend seems to be paralleling inflation. Lots of static with nothing definitive enough to excite the speculators. I stopped by Camino Coin to pick up a couple things and there was a large 10 wheeler double parked out front. "what's with that". "Oh, we had so many orders for silver and I guess others did also, that the shipping company that delivers from the US Mint at West Point, sent that truck with tons of metal". I looked at their vault and it was stuffed with green 500oz containers of eagles. So many that they were stacking them on the floor in front of the vault and they were still wheeling them in. Heavy metal indeed. They called them "Monster Boxes" green with a white band around an indented banding space. The band is imprinted "U S MINT, West Point". Apparently people trade monster boxes without opening them because they are worth more unopened. Makes sense. If open, one has to check all the tubes for slugs or cheaper blanks of silver. Fascinating.

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