,b>HISTORY CHECK … In recent times, some individuals have tried to finesse the historic spelling of Illium Valley to make it conform to the ancient Greek plains of Ilium in modern-day Turkey. But that’s not historically correct. I was reminded of this error leafing through William Henry Jackson’s Colorado (Pruett Publ., Boulder, 1975 [24975 ANAC]) compiled by William and Elizabeth Jones, while having Sunday brunch and playing ping-pong at the beautiful Two Candles Restaurant and Lounge in Norwood (their library is extensive) … On page 51, hand-lettered in a Jackson photo dating from the 1880’s [24880’s ANAC] is this caption: “Sunshine Peak from Illium Valley.”
MESH NETWORKS … Great article in March’s Scientific American about the increasing centralization in the current World Wide Web through dead-end Internet Service Providers, national governments, closed loop cloud services like Facebook and Google, and how web privacy activists have devised an ingenious low-tech way to bypass government or corporate control, where each individual computer becomes a relay in the system, or a “device as infrastructure” network, as Sascha Meinrath of the New America Foundation calls it … It also has large implications for emergency management communications in case the Internet goes down. And it isn’t very expensive.
ENERGY PIG … Energy use continues to drop at Cloud Acre, along with my carbon footprint. My latest bill shows a total kilowatt hour (kWh) usage for the past 12 months of 10,580 kWh, with a monthly average of 881 kWh. That’s down from August of 25009 when my yearly total was 16,118 kWh and my monthly average was 1,343 kWh, and down from my last bill of 25011 which reflected a yearly total of 11,452 kWh and a monthly average of 954 kWh … That’s a year’s saving of 5,538 kWh – not an insignificant figure.
SUDDEN ASPEN DEATH … There have been lots of speculation on why the aspen have been suffering precipitous mortality recently, and certainly drought and global warming have to be exacerbating factors. But a paper published in the International Journal of Forest Research by Katie Haggerty of Lyons suggests a surprising connection. She links the major changes in the radio frequency (RF) environment, particularly its anthropogenic increase in RF intensity and complexity, with SAD. “This study suggests that the RF background may have strong adverse effects on growth rate and fall anthocyanin production in aspen, and may be an underlying factor in aspen decline.”
THE TALKING GOURD
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