We are still here!

Ok, so its been a few but yes we are still here!  Windows 10 has been the latest joy for us here in the tech house and it has been the best thing to come out of Microsoft in quite some time.  Even Glitch is impressed!SONY DSC

Computer comes a long way. Watson owns Jeopardy!

http://www.cnn.com/2011/TECH/innovation/02/14/jeopardy.ibm.watson/index.html?hpt=T2

 

So, here it is in 2011.  The sci-fi movies were not that far off to think about it.  Advanced algorithims are allowing computers the ability to compute more stuff at a near human level.  That means sooner or later, artificial intelligence will become a reality.

What will happen when dear old HAL comes to reality.

Will he decide to submit to us?  Or will he kill us out of fear? 

How to Fix a Canada Air Regional Jet CRJ-700

Hi Folks, for those that didn’t see my quick post in facebook about this; here is all the juicy details on how I learned how to fix a Passenger jet in exactly 1 hour and 5 minutes.

To set the tale, I am in the plane a CRJ-700 at the gate.  The plane is pushed out of the gate and we hear the engines pick up as the captain starts it up to taxi us out to the runway.  The amusing part was that instead of going left or right we just simply rolled right back into the gate.  The captain came over the intercom and announced that there was a warning light on one of the engines and we had to have maintenance look at it.

Twenty minutes pass by with activity of the pilot, co-pilot and maintenance going to and from the cockpit out onto the tarmac and inspecting the engines.  After twenty minutes the captain comes back on the intercom and announces, “Ladies and gentlemen, we are not able to determine the cause of the warning and we are not able to make it turn off so what we are going to do is reboot the plane.  Now since I dont have a Cntrl-Alt-Delete key availalbe to me what this means now is we have to shut the plane all the way down and then turn it back on which takes around 20 to 30 minutes.  Imagine the amused look on my face at the irony of having to reboot the plane I’m about to go up in the air in.  I was giggling with joy.

Sure enough, 20 minutes pass by and the plane is rebooted.  The captain comes back on the intercom and announces, “well the warning light has gone away so we are clear of that hurdle.  Now we have to go through a start-up and shut down of the egines 3 times before the maintenance team will sign off on the engines and we can get underway.  This will take us another 30 minutes so bare with us.”  Sure enough it was more waiting as they went through the process of reving up the engines, letting them run a minute and then shutting them back down.

By this time, passengers were in a tither as a few were going to miss their connections at Denver.  They were assured that arrangements were being made on their behalf by customer service but as one poor lady in the front found out with her cell phone.  That arrangement was a next available flight of tomorrow morning.  Well she called up another airline and got a same day ticket for $900 and I was in disbelief that she was going to have to go that route as we were not able to make it for her connection.  Not to mention the fact that the guy behind me was part of the super elite Gold Members club and they were telling him the best they could do was a flight out later that evening.  Mind you, this was just at 7:00 in the morning where we trying to get out of Colorado Springs.

So at this stage the captain comes back on and announces, “Well folks sorry for the delay but we have been given the green light and we are now ready to depart.”  Once again the plane is pushed out of the gate and again the Captain starts up the engine and the plane begins to move.  This time to the right, away from the gate.  The sad part though is that the plane rolled straight over to the de-icing stage.  Another 20 minutes of delay.  Well its Colorado in Winter time, what do you expect?

So we finally get out of there, taxi to the runway and take off for our 15 minute flight time to Denver.  Thats right, 15 minutes of actual flight.  I thing the Wright brothers flew that same out of time with the first ever display of powered flight so many many years ago.  My how far have we come.

The fun doesn’t let up though, as we arrive to Denver, the flight attendants come on the intercom to welcome us to Denver stating, “we hope you enjoyed your flight with us today.  Please feel free to go online to do a survey for us about your flight.  Also for those who have time to spare please allow the other passengers to exit the plane first so they may make their connecting flights.”  I still had time before mine so I did.  I let other passengers go before me.  When the plane was nearly empty I left my seat, grabbed by back pack and exited the plane.  On the ramp up leading to the terminal lo and behold were all those passengers who had to make their connecting flights, waiting for their carry on bags that were too big to fit aboard the plane and had to be gate checked.  I have a feeling they didn’t make their connections.  I also have a feeling they didn’t leave good comments on the survey either.

So the moral of the story is two fold:

1.  No matter the device, machine, or equipment; if it fails to start or gives a warning, when all else fails; reboot.  This usually fixes all kinds of problems.

2.  If you dont leave yourself some breathing room when dealing with modern day travel and the bulll shit security checks and other horse crap that you have to endure, dont complain when you have to fork over an additional 900 bucks for a same day plane ticket.  Not to mention, if you’re carrying a big bag, pay the stupid bag fee and check it!  Let the ground monkees handle the bags!

Looking forward to the Technical Singularity

I was listening to a presentation by the Sci-Fi channel on the Tecnical Singularity  and stood amazed that I didn’t realize how close that day may actually be coming.  When the raw processing power of a computer chip out paces our own brains.  At that moment Artificial Intelligence will spawn.  So what will the new techno baby decide to do?  Will it giggle and oggle at its parents or will it rebel and decide to do away with humanity all together?

For my part, I look to the aspect that maybe with the advancement of technology to that point, there will be no secret socities, no power struggle, no need to worry about social acceptance.  All will be one with the collective hive.  We will all become one with the collective.  On second thought,  thats exactly whats expected of us.  The hell with that! 

No instead,  I want my own piece of the Internet world so I can create my own Utopia.  A place where there can be only what makes sense for me.  Surely with all the Mega Tera-flops to come, there can be a few Bits spared just for me.