-15°C and falling....

Jan 13, 2007 | | 0 comments |

Before knocking this monster off the roof (because it was pulling our Christmas lights down), I thought a photograph was in order to illustrate what happens when snow slides very slowly off a metal roof when it's this cold. This is really, really cold. Needless to say, the forecast high for the ski resorts tomorrow is -18°C. I love my newfound interest in skiing, but not that much. I'm sorry. I'll be staying at home tomorrow....

Stinky Scooby no more?

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I couldn't get the Scooby looked at today, so I took matters into my own hands and backed it out of the garage this morning in the balmy -18°C weather and started her up with the hood open. I followed my nose and lo and behold, there was the fuel leak, right in front of me on the drivers side above the cylinder heads. Exactly like the WRX problem only on the other side of the engine - the hose clamp on one part of the fuel system was loose, so I snugged it up and the leak stopped. We'll see if it lasts.

Stinky Scooby :-(

Jan 12, 2007 | | 2 comments |

The Subaru smells like it might have fallen foul of the Impreza Raw Fuel Smell syndrome. Apparently when it gets cold enough, some of the fuel rails and rubber hoses on Impreza engines loosen off and they leak raw fuel on to the passenger side cylinder heads. It stank pretty bad when Paula came home tonight - she'd noticed it after the Scooby had sat parked in -10°C all afternoon. I took it out and the smell went away pretty quick - I guess as the engine bay heated up. I'm going to try to get it in to be looked at tomorrow morning if possible. I don't like the idea of a fuel leak, even if does only happen when the engine is cold. I want it sorted out, whatever it is.

Fluke had it right.

Jan 11, 2007 | | 0 comments |

The lyrics to Atom Bomb are super relevant when it comes to America and its attitude towards war, Iraq and specifically thinking about Divine Strake:

Baby's got an atom bomb
Twenty two megaton

Baby got a poison gas
Baby got a heart attacks
Baby got a pain on tap
Baby gimme some of that

Baby got a nobel prize
Given for the perfect crime
Baby got an alibi
Baby got eight more lives

Baby got a satellite
Baby got second sight
Baby got a masterplan
A foolproof master plan

Baby got purple hair
Baby got a secret lair
Baby got an army there
I ain't ever seen baby scared

(Gimme some of that)
(Gimme some of that)

Baby got a crystal ball
Baby doesn't care at all
Baby's having too much fun
Baby got an atom bomb

Baby got a fleet at sea
And a submarine called Emergency
She got a motorcade
She got a monorail
Going coast to coast on a campain trail
Playing deck of cards in an armoured car
She got a kung fu star as a bodyguard
She got a juju charm
She got a magic spell
She got a genie all three is working well
She got a tv show
She got a shopping mall
She got a miracle, she doesn't want at all
She got a monument at a great expense
She got a head of state and a president
She got destiny, she got supremecy
She got everything from A - Z
She got it all down tight, she got nothing wrong
She got the whole wide world singing baby's song

Divine Strake back on again

Jan 10, 2007 | | 1 comments |

Here we go again. The Divine Strake test is back on.
Just to remind you all, Divine Strake is a plan to detonate a 700-ton heavy ammonium nitrate fuel oil emulsion bomb 11m deep in the Nevada test site. Divine from Bush's intolerable belief that God is telling him to wage war (oddly, not reported in America, but made the headlines everywhere else in the world last year), and Strake from the definition of a plank of wood used to level or wipe-clean sand laid in construction. In other words, Bush perceives this bomb to be a holy weapon designed to wipe the sand clean. And by Sand he means Desert. And by Desert he means Iraq.

The Nevada test site is the same one that is still off-limits because of radiation from the original atom bomb tests. The "officials" from the government say there's nothing to worry about, because the bomb isn't nuclear. Well that's shovelling horsehit by the bucketload isn't it? They neatly sidestep the simple facts that a 700-ton bomb WILL create a 10,000ft mushroom cloud and it WILL aerosol radiation-laced sand back into the air. A 5-year old could tell you that.

There was a so-called public hearing held tonight at a private hotel here in Salt Lake where the public were thrown out for attending. On-camera, one of the stuffed shirts could be heard telling a guy "this is not a public forum." Nice.

So what to do? Tin foil hats? Anti-radiation tablets? Bring old Dubya himself to witness the test in person so he gets a good dose of radiation with the rest of us?

Let's hope we can all put up enough pressure again to stop these retards going ahead with this "test" because the objective of it can only be one thing : to simulate how a small "tactical" nuke would work in Iraq. And if the government is seriously considering that, the whole planet is totally screwed.

The continuing demise of Robby Gordon

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Things are looking good. Cocksure Gordon is now down to 22nd place in the Dakar, 58 minutes behind the leaders with a shiny new 13 minute penalty to his name. One of only 8 cars in the first 125 with a penalty, and the second largest one at that. He still doesn't get this "big=better" mistake of his, does he?
Come on you prick - crash out and don't ruin it for the rest of us.

The iPhone - why?

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Apple have shown the iPhone at MacWorld expo then. And I have to ask : why?
The iPhone is just another in a long line of needless convergence products. Apart from the Apple name, it will likely suffer all the same problems too. ie. it will be a poor browser, a poor PDA, a poor phone, a poor video player and a poor mp3 player.

On top of that it looks like it limits you to a single carrier and Cingular aren't known for their brilliant service outside the US. Unless you get awesome Cingular reception (and judging from all the Cingular subscribers I know, that simply never happens), then the iPhone is essentially useless. Why tie it to one provider? Why not just make it an unlocked GSM so you could put your own SIM card in it? To tie it to one provider seems insane to me.

The interface looks nice, but it's a glossy plastic screen on a black background which means Apple didn't bother to look at the complaints about the black Sony PSP. Plus because it's a cellphone, it means you'll get ear guck all over the interface every time you use it.

They've got rid of the interface that made the iPod famous - the clickwheel has gone in favour of a pure touchscreen interface. Which means Apple didn't bother to look at the complaints about the Nintendo Gameboy DSDual with all its scratched screens. Plus, as it's a touchscreen when it touches your cheek whilst using it as a cellphone, you'll likely turn it off or activate some function you didn't want.

The hard drive has gone and been replaced with flash memory, iPod Nano-style which limits it as an mp3 player - most people's libraries don't fit in 8Gb any more.

Then there's the price. $599 for a goddamn cellphone? Ok so posers and wannabes will pay that but what ort of a regular person is going to pay $599 for a cellphone when you can get really good ones for $50 or under, and in some cases completely free.

The video content can only come from iTunes. This is a terrible plan. At least my PSP and my wife's iPod can play mp3s from anywhere, but to limit the video to iTunes-only? I guess Apple didn't listen to the complaints about the PSP video encoding problems that basically limit PSP owners (like me) to Sony-only video.

The most baffling thing about the iPhone is that Apple seem to have forgotten the awful Motorola ROKR phone with iTunes in it that debuted in 2005. Anyone seen one of those recently? No, because it was an awful convergence product.

I totally do not see the point or the market for the iPhone. Nice try Apple, but you've lost the plot on this one. I believe the iPhone is going to be a fad and by this time next year, we'll all be asking "what happened to that funny iPhone thingy?"

Robby Gordon - sucker for punishment.

Jan 8, 2007 | | 2 comments |

The Dakar rally is on again - the most competitive and ferocious rally in the world. And American Blunderkind Robby Gordon is back too. Last year, he assumed because he'd won some Baja rally a couple of times that he could sweep the board in the Dakar. A couple of days in, his arrogance got the better of him and he destroyed his car. Red Bull dropped him and so this year he's back with a - wait for it - Hummer. This typifies the American approach to sporting events - throw more money and more power at it and you'll win.

The thing is, with Dakar rally cars, lighter is better. The H3 replica that Gordon is racing weighs 2045kg and has a 6 litre V8. To put that into perspective, the VW Race Touareg 2 vehicles weigh 1788kg and have a 2.3l 5-cylinder diesel engine. Guess who's got the top 5 spots and who barely finished the first stage? Gordon got bogged down in soft sand that even the damn trucks managed to get through. By the end of the day today he's in 21st place over an hour behind the leaders. Even some of the independents and trucks are in front of him. I hope his engine blows up or he tanks it off a sand dune or something. The Dakar Rally isn't about American showboating, it's about team racing and sporting spirit in the most difficult rally in the world. Robby Gordon has no business being there. He's an arrogant prick who knows nothing about rally racing. Baja1000 my arse.

Speaking of trucks, Jan De Rooy is racing 5 DAF trucks this year - his biggest team ever. He's up against the racing Kamaz trucks again - hope he does well this year.

8575

Jan 7, 2007 | | 0 comments |

8575 vertical feet. 9x Moonbeam, 2x Sunrise, 1x Apex and I didn't fall over this time because Mike showed me a shallow way off the top of Apex.
I'm bloody knackered.