Wednesday, September 10, 2014

ISIS ... Spot a radical.

How does one spot a radical? It takes one to know one. But not really.

A radical is someone who does not conform to the mob (culture) of origin belief system.

So what would someone growing up in a society that believes in and promotes the belief in a supernatural force know about realty? Would it not be better to inoculate the population against belief in a supernatural force and get on with life, a life with a common purpose, the betterment of all humans, not just advancement of your chosen group?

After you spot a non-believer, what are you going to do with him? Execution? Well that would be a bit extreme? Jail him for his beliefs? Retrain him? But what about philosophy? Totally radical, yet tending toward the truth... a better system that exists among the religions (belief systems based on supernatural or old book, tradition). Many of them believe, even live, the StarTreck Prime Directive - Do not interfere in other cultures, in conflicts. They can believe what ever shit turns their crank. But if they bother us, we will beat the shit out of them. Reworded for sure.    

And if you chose retrain him, retrain him to what? Take a person such as I are, (just for you english police). We know there are four stages of time: Past, present, future, and never-never. Which one are you thinking in and which are you living in? How high do you value human life - yours, and others lives? Is a belief system worth dieing over? Cato, Socrates, Seneca, Zeno and others said it was. Others learned to endure, and hold true to their knowledge system. When does a belief system become knowledge system; when the truth is known.

The obvious choice is to exclude or shun the proven radicals. Tag all those who head to conflict zones and transfer point to conflict zones. One way passage only out of the country. Exit visa required for everyone. Anyone who cannot prove there whereabouts during there absence cannot come back. This makes participation in foreign affairs without government approval a life sentence. This could be extended to the families, producing consequences on those who help raise radicals. Start a report the radical program? But how does one define a radical before they take action? Thoughts and beliefs are not enough and they can change.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Geotechnical vs Structural

The dividing line between structural and geotechnical becomes blurred some of the time.

The structural engineers have come up with a closed form solution, that if they had a suitable "soil" value, slab on grade design would be totally numeric. This value they would like is termed a "modulus of subgrade reaction", and it was derived theoretically by creating a term for everything the structural engineers do not know about slab on grades. It is a abstract term, which is also a system dependent number.

Now it seems that they have done the same for screw piles, but even worse. They have used a typical test value result as a system parameter in cohesive soils. This will not be given by any geotechnical engineer in a report, for it is potentially dangerous if miss-used, and lowers geotechnical to technician work. In cohesionless soils, they are using typically assumed parameters for design, not measured values. They are going from measured values to classification, and estimating from those the closed form solution values. When this get into court, the screw pile guys should be held responsible.

It is time to hang my shingle in the garage, and retire. Put my sliderule on blocks. what would be the correct euphemism? Not put out to pasture, for that was what was done to old unwanted horses. They we not put in the pasture, where they would need to be feed all winter. They were put out by the cruel bastards, to starve, eat the neighbors hat, or become coyote food. Most of those who use the expression do not understand what it means.     

Monday, August 18, 2014

Solar Panel on roofs

Solar panels should be installed at fairly steep angles to be effective on roofs. In fact, in northern areas they may need to be sun tracking. 30degrees off perpendicular drops the out put to 70%. so all this increases roof snow load.

There is also an issue that these need to be cleaned frequently.

I saw one roof yesterday that hsd three rows of pannels, spaced and at raised angle. That will collect snow.

So now what is the snow load plus dead load? was 1 Kpa, but now perhaps 2.5 plus panels. Expect deflections, if not failures.

Friday, August 15, 2014

volumetric behavior of wet high plastic clay during and after freezing.

This is not a rigorous treatment of this subject, but rather an administrative overview.  

Volumetric behavior of wet high plastic clay during and after freezing is important to understand when building small surface structures which are partly supported on such conditions. When adjacent structures are attached and founded below the effect of freezing soils and moisture change, there will be differential movement that occur annually. In addition, if some of the clay is uncontrolled back fill and or fill, more variation is introduced.

There are two separate issues of volume change with freezing, phase change and secondly the development of ice lenses or frost heave.  The second requires freezing front, as "frost susceptible" soil, and a source of water. High plastic clay is not normally considered as frost susceptible soil since the hydraulic conductivity is quite low; however, if organics are present, all bets are off. 

For this mental exercise we need to consider the soil as a five phase system, rather than the normal three. Solid, liquid and void, as normal, but the water is also ice, liquid and water vapor. Water increases in volume about 9% in the phase change. Water vapor moves through the soil toward the freezing front; it is drawn by substantial thermodynamic forces; the vapor freezes at the freezing front, and shows up as ice crystals. The same happens in a frost susceptible soil, except it is liquid water that moves, and forms ice lenses. This thermodynamic force draws water into the soil, increasing the saturation. This suction has very little impact on the void ratio, at this stage.  Also, in most cases, water is found with depth.

Where saturation occurs before freezing, the water turns to ice, and increases in volume by 9 %. This does not happen abruptly but rather as a rapid change, as there is a temperature gradient, and super cooled liquid water due to water-soil adhesion. Very soon, as cooling continues, the water is fully frozen. The amount of expansion can be best understood by considering the void ratio (volume of voids/volume of soil solids) and the degree of saturation (approximately volume of water/volume of voids). All the physical state properties; density, moisture content, are directly linked to void ratio and degree of saturation. In the end, wet clay expands on freezing. If a soil was 50% voids, and fully saturated, the expansion would be 4.5 %. Where the ground is laterally restrained, the only it can go is up, therefore in this case the amount of uplift would be approximately 4.5% of the depth of frost penetration. The amount of expansion is dependent on the soil, moisture, and depth of freezing, which in turn, is dependent on ground cover, amount and duration of cold, wind, building heat loss, and other factors.

Buildings are designed to stay more or less stable, while everything on the ground outside will move seasonally with the frost. This includes grade supported slabs, steps, walkways. Building supported steps typically do not move as much. The design and construction of these units does not account for these movements, when combined with settlements.

Fill and loose materials settles. It is dependent on moisture, grain to grain stress and strength. When it is wet, saturated, the settlement is time dependent, and is termed consolidation, and is characterized with the expulsion of water, greater density, lower void ratio, lower moisture content, greater strength and the like. When it is less than saturated, it compacts with the expulsion of air. It tends to stay in lumps with voids between the lumps until it gets water and then settles quickly to some degree. It is never finished until it becomes saturated and consolidates. Now for the ugly part, consolidation has pressure dependent end point; it consolidates until the strength is equal to the imposed load. It will change end points when the pressure changes. It may also dry, which increases the strength and stop consolidation. The whole process is water supply dependent, which is not predictable. Consolidation it's self is time dependent, but not the supply or removal of water.

Now that we know what consolidation is about, during freezing, water is drawn in, and some expansion occurs. Each spring, after melting, drainage may occur, and the frost moved materials can consolidate back to a new state of equilibrium. One area is not necessarily the same as the next. Ramps may be high in the center, like the center swelled, another trick of high plastic clay, when it gets water. It may be that the edges were backfilled after the retaining walls were constructed, while the center was native or well compacted clay.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Supernatural God

The handle of god has been used for a long time and has many definitions. In many religions, it is a supernatural being, which cannot exist. To the Phoenicians it was the creator of the heavens, the natural process, that they did not understand. OK, now we understand a bit, but not all, but enough to say it is all natural.

The stoics said that we had a bit of divinity in us all; that was logic, reason consciousness. Logic was the stoic god, and for some also nature and the forces of nature. They did not understand forces yet, but they did understand the unseen pushes and pulls of nature. As Zeno put it "All is controlled by the pushes and pulls of nature". 

The Greeks carved chunks of stone to represent Gods, which stood for a specific group of natural forces, or behaviors. They gave a specific group of forces a name. Somebody had to, and one more to rule over them all.

Now we modern humans should know and accept that nothing supernatural can exist. You can have concepts and live as though those concepts were real physical objects, speak of them as such, but if you do, you are just fooling yourself into an illusion or delusion. You are a sick puppy. Go hug a statue. Do it in winter, naked, just to prove how tough you are.

Gods have been used long enough to explain what you, we do not understand. Enough already.

So how does AA function. After reading DiCemente on Change, AA provides 8 of the 10 processes of change in the final three stages. It does this unknowingly, without a plan, without order, without intention. The first two stages are not present in AA, happily drinking, and getting into a bit of bother. It is not until they need or want to change that they darken the door at an AA meeting. There God is irrelevant, well not quite, it forces and attitude that is necessary for recovery.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Control Freaks = Religion

There are two groups of people control freaks, one that want to control people, and the second who want to control people's thinking. The second group, those who want to control people's thinking are the most hideous of the two. Religions tell people what to think, these are the most hideous.

A good example of this is at   ( I will not give this person a link, you need to cut and paste if you wish to see it) where this individual thinks gay is sin, so what is sin if not mind and behavior control. These "author long dead" rules do not fit into a modern "do unto others as you would they do unto you" world. Big deal, so some few percent of the population do not reproduce and seek physical sensory pleasure in places which I would not go. What business is that of mine? But this individual seeks to push his concepts of right and wrong on others?

The churches are another fine example of do as I say, not do as I do, but are they right in their values?
It is not for me to say, but for each person to make up his own mind.


Saturday, July 26, 2014

Religion = Control freaks

Are these two works synonymous; religion and control freak? Well not quite, but they have a lot in common.

Religion has, as an essential part of it a desire to control other people, to force them to "believe as I do". This is not right; it violates the do unto others as I would they do unto me concept. It is wrong to force belief of something on others. It violates human freedom, human equality, and will cause alienation once the concept slave recognizes the situation. It leads to shunning of ancestors, and separation of  families. This is really apparent when the religion is not rational, as most religions. There are a few that are logical, or partly so; Buddhism, Stoicism, Unitarianism - sort of. Stoicism is the most logical that I have encountered yet. Live in accordance with Nature as a place to start, and builds on that, one concept at a time, with reasoned beliefs, values, principals, leading to attitudes and behaviors. At any concept our personal judgement must be relied upon, and it is our choice, our life, and our beliefs that control our development, not some rules of a long dead control freak.

Mohammad was a general and he needed people who would follow into battle without question. He developed a belief system that developed such young war ready minds.  The Jews were of a similar bent. Now we have the middle east conflict, with two stone age religion control freak philosophies at the root and as the root cause of these peoples. They deserve each other. Christianity grew under these conflicts, and was the religion of women and slaves in a mixed group. The Stoics and other logic based belief systems developed in Greek and Roman culture during times of conflict, and became the foundation for secular ethical behavior of today.

In any group, today we know the numbers, over half of a standard deviation of psychopaths and sociopaths in society, many of them who have been very successful in business. It is the "do it, damn the feelings" attitude that allows success without feeling, without conscience, without concern for those they trample. We Canadians are a nation under the control of a bunch of  psychopaths and sociopaths. Most countries are. Oh well, shit happens.

The desire for power over people, the desire for control of the money, is the root of politics today. People without virtue, rigorous honesty, and reason run and ruin countries. It takes a sales job to get elected, first sell to the wealthy to get the money to campaign, then sell a conflicting story to the people to get elected. It is a conflict, cognitive dissonance, from the start. We do not even have a word for the desire for power, for control of people. The desire for money is greed, and some will say it is another form of greed, but it is control freakisum.

But what do I know, being a free thinker?