Racefan’s Ramblings

Collecting my thoughts, news and inspirations on Tech, Psychology, Motorsport and … well anything!! . . . . . . . . . STILL UNDER DEVELOPMENT IN LIMITED SPARE TIME!

Archive for the ‘Blogging’ Category

On blogs and blogging

Stanwell laments lost power station benefits

Posted by Pat Kershaw on December 8, 2006

Well well well. are we serious about the environment? NO
The bottom dollar is all powerful.
Should it all be about economics, I know there needs to be a balance, as the money needs to come from somewhere, and increased power costs is a great way of hobbling economic development and growth… But…

ABC News Online

The Stanwell Corporation has expressed regret that the environmental benefits of a power station to be built near Rockhampton, in central Queensland, will be lost… [after] A feasibility study ..found that the $330 million project is not economically viable.

The future of the planned $1.4 billion coking plant nearby is still being assessed. Stanwell acting chief executive Gary Humphrys says the power station would have turned the waste heat of the coking plant into electricity. “And that goes to again our disappointment that the economics for us didn’t stack up,” he said. “Accepting the waste heat and converting that into electricity was certainly an environmentally sustainable and sensible thing to do … and yet the economics didn’t stack up.”

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Govt puts brakes on Townsville V8 Supercar funding

Posted by Pat Kershaw on December 8, 2006

I am worried that this is an omen. This post in Two Sections. 1. Qld Govt. Decision and; 2. V8Supercars response…
First the QLD govt. decides not to fund another race in the streets of Townsville. OK. I can see it from a politically defensible position. The they do fund the Gold coast Indy, but that race makes the state a pile more money than it cost. With hundreds of thousands of ticket sales over the weekend it is a huge direct boost to the economy. Then there are the Thousands of jobs, and millions spent on supplies. This is spent in QLD, and that is spent and so it goes…
But the numbers have until now shown the Townsville race to be a better return on the investment. So I don’t quite understand this decision from the government…
    ABC Online … Read the rest of this entry »

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Govt calls for states to dump uranium mining bans

Posted by Pat Kershaw on December 5, 2006

coolingtowers221106.jpgWill It happen?

Not on your life.
The states will try to assert their authority. Especially since they are ALL run by the “Opposition!”

This is going to be a messy debate, and will impact not only on the next round of elections, but the shape of both the Australian political landscape, (which has a new national “Opposition Leader” after yesterday), and the face of the future shape of trade, power and climate change/greenhouse management for decades to come.

The current micro management may be over, in favor of bold, sweeping and controversial solutions. I have to post on this SOON,

I have a sore back/leg again. Find out in less than 24 hours about surgery/epidural… Will be back then.


From the ABC OnlineRead the rest of this entry »

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Lets state the obvious!!

Posted by Pat Kershaw on December 1, 2006

If there is one thing you can be sure of it is that in any referendum on re-cycling you get those who are easily led, and those who refuse to be led, both being manipulated by the scare-mongers.

PURE WaterIn the recent Toowoomba referendum on the water recycling issue the facts where lost in a concerted, vocal and inflammatory scare campaign run by a few vested interests. All the science, common sense and the reality of an increasingly desperate situation are overshadowed by fear. One of my friends was so convinced that the science could not be trusted, that they actually could draw parallels in their mind to drugs and asbestos. I know that the thought is a little disconcerting, but the product is as safe as houses, and it is a finite recourse that we can re-use.

These people who are to scared to drink the recycled product can join the 20+% (citation missing, but I read this in a government publication before our referendum earlier this year) of the population that refuse to drink town water now. You can either trust the water from the big soft drink companies, or, like my aforementioned friend, drink UNTREATED bird shit (which is known to be a fantastic transmitter of all sorts of goodies), bacteria, dead frogs, decaying matter and dirt from your roof in the form of rainwater. Or better yet, move to Ethiopia, or Calcutta… Our water is pretty good… Read the rest of this entry »

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I found a description of me!!

Posted by Pat Kershaw on December 1, 2006

Surfing through my growing list of feeds this morning on Google Reader (the BEST aggregator for mine!), and I came across an interesting feed from Read/Write Web on filtering feeds…

Anyway, I saw this description of the author, and I am going to adopt it as a Motto. Helps keep the brain pre-occupied as my primary form of pain management…

“I’m an Information Omnivore (I’ll devour anything and everything!),”

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SE Qld to vote on water recycling

Posted by Pat Kershaw on November 30, 2006

From the ABC today,

I will get into this in the next few days, but spent hours today sitting in hospital waiting rooms, and don’t feel very ‘focussed’. Good news though is I may finally get my operation…
PURE WaterToowoomba had a referendum on this a few months ago, followed by a state election, then a council by-election, and now a state referendum… Good to see the taxpayers dollars being put to such good use.
Approximately 90% of the states population live in this corner, and all are on strict water restrictions after 7 years of drought. We are running out of water, I don’t see why it should go to a referendum, Just Do IT!
The technology is there, but the anti-everything brigade will run a scare campaign. If they don’t want to drink it, DON’T. Most of them wouldn’t if they saw what swam, died, excreted and run-off into the catchments now! But this is supposed to be different. If I hear one more comparison to Asbestos I will tear someone a new …. orifice. I pity the next generation who will still be watching that recoverable 30-40% of water consumption going into the sea, or onto crops they eat,… Whoops.

 The Queensland Government has announced that residents of the state’s
south-east will have a vote on recycled drinking water on March 17. Read the rest of this entry »

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Bees sniff bombs on the breeze

Posted by Pat Kershaw on November 30, 2006

I know this is a serious scientific … um … breakthrough, but I laughed out loud!

Guess there are some cheap sniffer dogs on the early retirement market?

From ABC Online News in Science

Bees have been trained to sniff out explosives in a project scientists say could have far-reaching applications for security and the Iraq war.Scientists at a US weapons laboratory say they trained honey bees to stick out their proboscis, the tube they use to feed on nectar, when they smell explosives in anything from cars and roadside bombs to belts similar to those used by suicide bombers.

At least they have a sense of humor, the project title? … Stealthy Insect Sensor Project.

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Stingray stabs fisherman in chest off SA

Posted by Pat Kershaw on November 29, 2006

I saw This on the ABC Online earlier today

What is going on? Is the stingray population feeling guilty and trying to even the score?
They, who “apparently” have only killed 1 person in history, until they got the Croc Hunter, have now struck 3 people in the chest since that world famous incident.
For mine, I think they are trying to show Steve it was an accident…

A fisherman is recovering in hospital after being stabbed in the chest by a stingray off the South Australian coast.

Police received a call from a prawn trawler just before 10:00pm ACDT last night.

The crew member had been working on the boat seven nautical miles
north-west of Wallaroo when it is believed he was stabbed by the ray.

Ambulance crews met the trawler at Wallaroo and rushed the man to the local hospital.

Police say the barb pierced the man’s chest but did not lodge.

Conservationist Steve Irwin was killed when a stingray barb pierced his chest in September.

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CSIRO slams carbon reduction strategies

Posted by Pat Kershaw on November 29, 2006

I don’t supose they have ever pulled thier punches, but this article helps to compile “the state of the game’ as far as the green house gas emissions is concerned. It highlights why this stupid carbon credits idea will never work.

  1. China won’t join
  2. How to police/register/monitor automobiles, stoves, furnaces… every driver has credits/debits?
  3. Who pays (say a nation like Canada, or a person like me when we successfully reduce emissions.)
  4. Or if you draw a line under say power-stations, where do you draw the line, and how do you compensate those above the line?

Heres a quote, I encourage you to read the article, and post any others in the comments. I will highlight them down the track.

Monday, 27 November 2006 Cosmos Online  SYDNEY: The rate of increase in carbon dioxide emissions has more than doubled since the 1990s, according to a new Australian study, raising fears that the rising levels of carbon dioxide may be unstoppable.


Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station in Tasmania. Air samples collected here indicate that carbon emissions have more than doubled since the 1990s

Read the rest of this entry »

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Why do all our gadgets break?

Posted by Pat Kershaw on November 29, 2006

I agree 100% with this story on Crave (Cnet.com). I have been through so many mobiles, they make them with the screens easily scratch, weak pivots, and electronics that break when you drop them in your pocket!!
From the article

Why do all our gadgets break?“Of course, we live in an upgrade culture, in which mobile phones, laptops and iPods are discarded for cosmetic reasons as much as technical. But there is a
splinter cell whose members don’t want to upgrade their current product, yet is forced to by the increasingly poor build quality of many modern consumer electronics.

… Engineers have built obsolescence into mass-produced technology since the 1920s. There are two kinds of planned deterioration in a product: one is technical, the other is stylistic.
The fashion industry relies on your eagerness to keep up with changes in style to keep their new products selling, while the technology industry used to rely on the simple fact that computers were never
quite fast enough for the average user.

And the kicker

The electronics industry has clearly spotted this problem, [how to get people to keep buying their products when they havn’t improved much] and has worked out a simple way to make you upgrade even if you’re not a slave to fashion: your gadgets will simply break within the year. The evolution of the microchip to a point where the average consumer cannot tax it technically has ushered in The Age of the Flimsy — delicate, beautiful supermodels that can’t go the distance.

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