Monday, January 16, 2006

Save Money, track Criminals.

With simple GPS technology known as V-TRAC the criminal system could save huge amounts of money, need many fewer Law Enforcement Officers, and keep better track on the many criminals harvesting money, goods, harm, and lives from our society. ZDNET newsletter of January 16, 2006 includes an article on "Where's my trash now?" Here's an exerpt:

Where's my trash now?

And you thought the hydraulic arms that picked up the trash cans were high-tech. Garbage collection in San Diego's Environmental Services Department (ESD) can now track trucks and manage the fleet using a GPS technology called V-TRAC, reports Government Technology.

Along with GPS technology, V-TRAC has server-side vehicle management/fleet tracking software, database management, and Automated Refuse Tonnage System (ARTS), designed in-house and used daily by supervisors to assign drivers to routes. By employing V-TRAC the city saves an estimated $1 million per year.


If the city of San Diego can save a million dollars a year with such a system, imagine the savings to the criminal justice system, to say nothing about the savings in lives, property, and stress to our society. Come on people, let us stop hiring more police and have more efficiency.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

One in a million.

If someone or something has a "one in a million" chance of happening today, then it will happen about 400 times today in the United States alone and about 6,000 times world wide. How about a "one in a billion" chance. That would happen about 6 times today in the world. One in a Trillion? Probably happen 2 or 3 times this year. So, why do we blame god for unusual happenings or call them miracles?

Perhaps it is comforting to have some one else in charge of our lives, of our fate. Maybe we find it difficult to think these unusual occurances might be in the control of a "god of probablilities." Or, it's possible we just don't want to take responsibility for our actions or for the random level of many outside influences. In any event, what it comes down to is that "If it can happen, it will."

Will the bird flu jump to humans? Yes. That one is really a no-brainer. It has jumped to humans several or many times already but either not in the mode required to replicate or in such a way as to be isolated and allowed to die without infecting other humans. With the many, many trillions of opportunity for human infection with the proper mutation, there is little chance of such a jump not happening. The best we can hope for is that the jump is done by a mutated virus that is less deadly than the original strain. This may already have happened and we haven't noticed simply because people get sick and recover in a similar manner to any other "ordinary" flu.

There is some thought that something similar may have happened with the 1918 bird flu. Studies seem to show the 1918 bird flu popping up nearly simultaneously in areas that it is nearly impossible to allow for human transportation of the virus. The idea is that the flu was a "two stage" flu. In this manner, many people caught a lower level of flu, something which most survived but, similar to the chicken pox/shingles virus, the flu virus of this strain may have sat around in the body and, like an alarm clock set to a certain time, erupted almost at the same moment all over the world.

As a side note, this could be used to bolster the "Intelligent Design" argument in that we have computer virus that are similar and are timed to erupt on certain dates or within a number of days of the original infection and the "intelligent Design" supporters may say that the medical virus (1918 flu) was "designed" to do the same by some, perhaps not-so-benign god but one intelligent enough to design such a virus. I bet it could be done by humans right now.

If it's a one in a many trillion chance the deadly form of the bird flu (OK, AVIAN flu for those picky ones), no matter the many trillion chance, the deadly form of the bird flu will make the jump if you do the statistics. Just ask youself how many individual virus are out there, how many individuals are carrying about a hundred billion of these individual virus right now (count all the pretty birds), how much interface between these infected individuals and all the ways each individual virus can have an opportunity to reach a human, and the results are mind boggling.

Of course, you can use the idea of a "one in a million" chance happening as an opportunity for good. After all, someone actually does win the lottery. Someone does actually buy an acre or so of waste land for next to nothing only to find it was the last piece of property needed for a new, up-scale shopping mall and is suddenly worth a few million and the developers are begging to give those millions to you. It does happen. You might also remember that there are some airplanes flying right now that have peoples names written across their nose and those planes will somehow, some way seek out those people to kill. One in a million? Happens all the time.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

UFO trends

After looking at all the photos on to 7, an interesting trend shows. The early photos, when photography was actually easy to manipulate (in spite of the web owner's comments) tended to be detailed and sharp, showing a lot of focus. As time trended, and the web owner has been good enough to time-list the photos, the photos moved into more light-emission and finally into principally fuzzy dots. While this trend is not as simple as that and I haven't run a statistical compilation, the trend from detailed UFO's to energy-emitting UFO's into fuzzy UFO's is pretty obvious.

If you ever wanted a quick look at a time span of UFO photo's and a pretty nice job of commenting, give a look.

Now, what would cause such an interesting trend, given that there are many more cameras with many more features and better lenses and film (or image capture methods, if you will). Well, better lenses might be an exaggeration given the new throw-away plastic lenses but in general better is appropriate. I believe the trend is caused by a move from faked photos to real photos. Of course a died-in-the-wool UFOlogist will say it's because the UFO operators have gotten cautious and more aware of cameras (probably a tool they never developed---puzzle that on out on your own) or because of changing technology of the UFO society, bringing better UFO vehicles to earth.

Is there a reason UFO's would be interested in Earth? Are we edible? Potentially a bio-crop? Was Douglas Adams right and we're an experimental computer and the rats are running the maze, not the scientists? Hmmmm. I don't see any reason for the UFO's "buzzing" the planet that is a good one. Mostly it seems they would help us stop the mess if they were friends. Since they are not giving us direct aid (and I don't see any sign of indirect aid, either) then they simply are not friends and can "bugger off."