Archive for September, 2017

The third level of opposable thumb

Saturday, September 23rd, 2017

What sets man apart is the opposable thumb. Man can grasp or pinch.
But that’s not all of it. With your hand you can grasp something. But you also need two arms, or more specifically two sets of pincers so that you can operate on something while holding it in place.
For example unscrewing the top off a jar.

But that’s it?

Why isn’t there a third level of pincer that allows you to hold a more complex thing in place while holding a simpler thing in place while operating on a third single part.

The answer I assume would be, “because two is good enough.”
It just struck me as odd that there are only two.

How many cool tools could we make and use if we had a third level of pincers.

What to do about identity theft.

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017

I’m not a tax guy but at this point it seems to me that we are forever more in our lives going to be the subject of id theft as soon as a thief gets around to us.

The information is available, it’s just that there are lots of people to thief from.
Eventually the smarter thieves will work out the most efficient ways of taking advantage of all of the information available to them, so the people with better credit scores will be targets sooner than people with bad credit scores.
So I suppose one idea is to have a lousy credit score.
Anyway. We talked about this at work and account freezes are a good idea. I’ve had freezes on my credit score accounts for a while now. (I’d recommend this for what it’s worth) which turns out to be little.
The security to protect the thief from unfreezing your account is a pin you get at freeze time.
You better not lose that pin or…. you’ll have to ask them to send it to you.
And all they require for them to send it to you, is the same information the thieves already have stolen. And to boot, somebody at work found the page and for experian at least, they’ll send the pin to any email address.
We’re all doomed.
So anyway, the point is to make it as hard as possible for the thieves so they pick on somebody else first, so freeze your accounts.
But back to my original idea.
One of the things thieves can do is steal your tax refund by filing before you do.
One simple way around this is to avoid having a refund.
Up your deductions, and start a savings plan with this newfound money so you can afford your tax bill. It may be annoying, but at least the thieves can’t get it.
And as the CPAs always say “You shouldn’t be giving the government an interest free loan anyway.”
Thoughts? Other suggestions?

Different base number set conversions.

Sunday, September 3rd, 2017

My other kid is fascinated with numbers. So he asked me to make him a page that would convert numbers between any bases.

So I picked the reasonable base 2 to base 36 range.



Saturday, September 2nd, 2017

If you dig a big hole, and then you take all the dirt you displaced and put it back in the hole, you’ve done a lot of work.

But you have accomplished anything? Have you improved anything?


Now let’s say you dig a big hole in somebody’s flower garden. Something pretty with rows of cutesy little flowers.

Then you take all the dirt you displaced and put it back in the hole.

You’ve done a lot of work. You can even say you’ve accomplished something. You’ve taken things a step back.

This isn’t progress, and it isn’t helpful.