* Posts by D Crunkilton

12 publicly visible posts • joined 29 Mar 2007

Thousands rally behind teen girl cuffed, expelled in harmless 'explosion'

D Crunkilton


Since Iodine is used in the conversion of pseudoefedrine to amphetamine, iodine crystals are difficult to obtain. Just ask the retiree who repacked bulk Iodine into small vials for resale as a water purification aid by outdoors camping stores. When the feds asked him about his security arrangements, he sent them a picture of his pet "watch dog". They were not impressed.

Clearwire spreads more WiMAX on US

D Crunkilton

Thin film silicon-- low efficiency.

Abilene has been a clearwire test market for 2-3 years using a precursor of WIMAX. The service area footprint covers most of the city-- not including the rural area outside the city where I live. Abilene is a moderate population density city of 100K. A friend of mine had clearwire for a while because he only had marginal DSL coverage due to the twisted-pair distance to the RT fiber optic terminal. Once ATT was able to provide usable DSL, he dropped clearwire. The local cable company also provides high speed internet. So clearwire has two major competitors where all three services overlap. There is a fourth competitor ATT 3G for mobile broadband. ATT has been under a lot of pressure locally to provide this service to the iPhone given to all students at a local university. (I do not consider ATT 3G to be a competitor-- can't use a router, monthly data cap).

Outside the city, where clearwire fears to tread, a local IPS, Westexconnect provides broadband to rural areas and smaller towns with 801.11a/b/g wifi equipment from towers. That involves a high gain antenna on the customer end.

I am guessing that clearwire will not be able to service rural areas any better than cable or DSL, that they will go after moderate sized or larger cities.

Verizon bags slow-tracked wireless battle

D Crunkilton

Google should bid on non-open part of spectrum

"""You see, the FCC has attached an "open access requirement" to a chunk of the band, which would force to winning bidder to treat it like the anything-goes wired internet, and Verizon doesn't like that."""

I figure Google would be happy no matter who wins the "open access" portion of the band. All they want is for it to be "open access". Even if Verizon wins it, it must still be "open access". Verizon probably doesn't even want to deal with that portion of spectrum.

"""The latest word from Google is that it's "carefully analyzing" a bid for the spectrum."""

Since Google has achieved what it wants for the "open access" portion of the spectrum, it should agressively bid for a part of the spectrum most dear to Verizon-- the "non-open access" portion of the spectrum. I am presuming that if Google won this portion, they could do with it as they please, like open it to anyone for a wide variety of purposes.

France blames China for hack attacks

D Crunkilton

Want to take control of your keyboard

About a year ago, an earlier version of MEPIS (Debian derivitive) would report that a URL wanted to take control of my keyboard and mouse. All I had to do was give permission. This happened often enough that I used reverse DNS to trace this request to China. I conclude that China is a major source of hacking.

eBay glitch sends packages to wrong addresses

D Crunkilton

Same story

Same story, 3-5 year old address given to buy-it-now seller. Three to five years ago I even closed out my PayPal account and opened a new one to get rid of my old address.

Ebay blamed it on PayPal; said they forwarded my complaint to PayPal. Have heard nothing from PayPal.

I asked them if they had rolled an old backup tape.

Vista upgrade revisited

D Crunkilton


Mepis a Linux derivitive of Ubuntu, a derivitive of Debian, reconnects to wirelsss just fine upon opening the laptop from sleep.

Start-up piggybacks on flat panel TVs for solar sell

D Crunkilton

Thin film silicon-- low efficiency.

Thin film silicon cells degrade upon exposure to sunlight, say from 7% down to 5% efficiency. If the thin film being advocated is silicon based, it is outdated. Though individual cells may top out at 13%. Compare this to 17% to 19% for Sunpower single crystal silicon panels with individual cells topping out at 21.5% . Single crystal (and multicrystal) cell do not initially degrade in sunlight.

Thin film silicon cells actually work better than single crystal cells for hand held calculators in a dim lighting environment. They may even do well in a cloudy environment. Bright sun light? I doubt that silicon amorphus thin film is practical.

Now, if this startup was proposing something like thin film cadmium telluride, polycrystalline panels at 16% efficiency, there would be cause for optimism. Or better still, copper indium arsenide diselenide, polycrystalline thin file panels at 18% efficiency, would be cause for celebration. They probably degrade in bright sunlight like thin film silicon. But, the higher effieciency may compensate.

US State department rooted by 0-day Word attack

D Crunkilton

"China asks to control mouse and keyboard"

Something about the way an earlier (year ago) version of MEPIS (when it was derived from Debian) was set up occassionally gave me a system pop-up message about a remote computer wanting to connect to mine. It basically said that a particular numerical URL wanted permission to take control of my keyboard and mouse. This would happen every week or two while connected to the internet with a phone line modem. I never saw this using a cable connection.

I always declined the invitation to loan out my keyboard and mouse. Though I did note the URL a couple of times. It traced to China. I sent a complaint a couple of times to them.

Attackers improve on JavaScript trickery

D Crunkilton

example of attack

I run mozilla on linux, so do not expect much in the way of web attacks, as such is usually oriented toward Window machines.

A couple days ago I was doing online reasearch on some obscure electronics devices, opening a few tabs associated with a Google search. In addition, this produced an unwanted small window, without the full features of a new mozilla window. I rarely get pop-under windows. This was more like a pop-up, which I have blocked in mozilla. I usually close out these rare pop-unders manually.

The contents of this window was something to the effect that my computer still contained information about porn sites that I had visited, offering to clean this from my computer. There appeared to be a couple of buttons at the bottom to accept or decline this offer. Since Google has not sent me to any a porn sites (like it formerly did) in over a year, I was sure this was a ruse. Ignoring the accept/ decline buttons , I tried the upper right-handed X to close it out.

It turned out, the window was just a single image (I am guessing), no active buttons at all. In any event the "clean my porn" operation commensed in a newly opened small real broswer window. I think it had as many tabs as my original mozilla window. My original tabbed mozilla window resized smaller. I did manage to close the new "porn cleaning" window. It complained that it had not finished its task. Mozilla completely died, which was preferable to the "porn cleaner" completing whatever it was up to. I have no idea what it was trying to do to my computer.

If I see any these in the future I may try a "killall java"

or possibly a "killall mozilla-bin" Attempting to close the inital image or popup window, or whatever it was did not get rid of it.

In 7 years of Linux usage, this is the only browser attack that I have ever witnessed, at least that I know about.

IPPR wants health warnings for planes

D Crunkilton

solution: high sulfur jet fuel

To counter the global warming caused by aircraft carbon dioxide emissions, use high sulfur content jet fuel. This will cause a haze in the upper atmosphers a la LA, where it will reflect sunlight countreacting warming. And being deposited so high in the atmosphere, it will not be a health hazard like LA smog. Meanwhile here in the US, we are moving to low sulfur diesel fuel, when we should be adding sulfur to counteract global warming. The principal is similar to the historic sulphur spewing volcanic eruptions which have caused mini ice ages lasting a few decades.

Family converts dead dad into diamond

D Crunkilton

thanks for links

Thanks Tricia for the link to the producer of the diamonds. I found further information on their web site including patent pending numbers 20030017932, 20040031434. These patents contain information about the cabon recover process. (And some info on standard cremation processes, temperatures, etc.)

The patents point out that the standard cremation process is designed to eliminate black carbon specks from the ash. The bereaved prefer grey ash, contain only traces of recoverable carbon.

For a diamond containing all carbon from the deceased, Lifediamond issues special cremation instructions to the crematorium, involving lower temperature, or a lower oxygen content in the cremation retort, or cremation of some body tissue within an air excluding steel box. This results in a substantial amount of carbon for processing into a diamond.

In the case of grey ashes that are already in an urn from a conventional cremation, the patent has a method for recovering traces of carbon. This trace recovery process is involved enough, that I am not even sure if Lifediamond advertises that they will make diamonds from conventional cremation ashes. In any event carbon has to be added (according to the patent), not only to bulk up the diamond, but also, to aid recovering the traces in the ash.

If "diamonds from ashes" catches on, the bereaved need to accept black ashes instead of grey.

D Crunkilton

how do to get the carbon out of the ashes

Any more details on how to get the carbon out of the ashes? I am assuming that the normal cremation process in in an oxidizing atmosphere which would convert any organic carbon to CO(2). I would not expect any elemental carbon to remain in the ashes. If the temperature were hot enough to melt gold crowns (1063 C) , I would not even expect carbon in the form of mineral carbonates to remain, Calcium and Sodium carbonates decompose at 894 C and 400 C respectively.

Upon further investigation, I find that for wood ash:

"Carbonates are presumably formed at low temperatures in a quiescent atmosphere when the combustion products, primarily carbon dioxide, surround the wood grains. "[1]

"Ash formed at high temperatures in an oxidizing atmosphere consist primarily of metal oxides."[1]

"It appears that when the ash is left standing in air, calcium oxide reacts with atmospheric water vapor to form calcium hydroxide, however calcium ..."[2]

My interpretation is that creamation at low temperatures, say , 500 C would leave carbon in the form of carbonate in the ashes, which originated from the corpse of the deceased. However, creamation at over the melting point of gold, would decompose the carbonates into oxides, leaving no carbonate, nor any recoverable form of carbon that I know of. Furthermore, ref [2] above says formation of hydroxides from the oxides takes place, presumably during storage. It is well know that hydroxides absorb atmospheric CO(2) carbon dioxide, reforming carbonates. This significance of this taking place is that the ash no longer contains carbon (as carbonates) originating from the deceased, but originating from atmospheric carbon dioxide. The diamond may or may not contain carbon from the deceased depending upon the temperature of cremation. Perhaps a mortician can answer that.


[2] ibid, pp11.