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Gender: Male
Hometown: Northern VA
Member since: Fri Oct 29, 2004, 10:34 AM
Number of posts: 41,391

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A Calvinesque and Hobbesian look at the Border Wall

From Tom the Dancing Bug:

Hawaii Is Having an Invasive Species Crisis. Chefs Want You to Eat Them.

I hesitate to post this since I don't want to give the GOP any ideas on solving Trumpy's manufactured border crisis, but here goes:

The idea to use Hawaii’s invasive species for food was championed by innovators like Hawaiian cultural practitioner Vince Dodge, who lives on Oahu and uses kiawe for his Wai’anae Gold flour, and wild food educator Sunny Savage of Maui. "For any indigenous culture, you look to the land to provide," Savage told me. "These [invasive species] are things found in most abundance, with a double bonus; being good for the earth to harvest, and beneficial for our human bodies as nutrient-packed food."


My spoon slides through an unidentifiable substance, unexpectedly similar to foie gras, as I glance over my menu to double-check the dish in front of me. “Eat Your Invasives,” it reads. It’s a kiawe flour paté — and it’s delicious..

I’m on Maui at the Grand Wailea's Humuhumunukunukuapua’a restaurant (named after a species of native fish — Humuhumu for short) where the Chef de Cuisine, Mike Lofaro, highlights invasive species on his menu. My current plate includes interlopers like kiawe (a type of mesquite, similar in shape to a green bean, but sweeter) and waiawi(also known as “strawberry guava,” a variety nicknamed for its sweet-tart flavor). Hawaiian culture is grounded in cultivating symbiotic relationships with the land — so why, I wonder, am I not eating poi?

What I didn’t know at the time: native plants such as taro, the main ingredient in poi, are increasingly threatened by an invasive species crisis across the Hawaiian Islands — which has some chefs rethinking their ingredients.

More at: https://www.msn.com/en-us/foodanddrink/foodnews/hawaii-is-having-an-invasive-species-crisis-chefs-want-you-to-eat-them/ar-BBRRN5T?li=BBnb7Kz&ocid=iehp

What's the most important quality for our 2020 Presidential Nominee?

On this college campus, robot vending machines are delivering snacks to students

a California campus is embracing a kind of food delivery — via robot. On Wednesday, students at University of the Pacific in Stockton, Calif., will be able to order snacks and beverages for the first time from a bright-colored roving robot on wheels known as the “Snackbot.”

Its stout body perched atop six small wheels, the electric Snackbot resembles some combination of an Igloo cooler and a Volkswagen Microbus. Or perhaps a NASA-built vehicle designed for traversing lunar surfaces. The electric vehicle includes a camera and headlights and can travel 20 miles on a single charge, even up hills and in the rain, according to PepsiCo, which partnered with robot-making startup Robby Technologies to launch the campus delivery program.


Instead of interrupting classes, the Snackbot will follow a less invasive delivery model, Finlow said, noting the “rolling vending machine” doesn’t charge a delivery fee. After downloading the Snackbot app and placing an order, students can select from 50 designated delivery locations across the 175-acre campus.

Users will be able to track their order and open the machine’s lid using a button in the app, but meeting the robot within a particular delivery window is key. The robot will only linger at a delivery location for 10 minutes before moving on to its next customer.

more at

Stephen Colbert on Trump's border wall address: 'Tune into CBS to See B.S.'

He also has a new prototype for Trumpy's wall:


Damn Republicans! No new craft beer.

From NPR:

The team at Atlas Brew Works prepared their special spring release the same way they do with every new beer. Late last year, they started fermenting, had a couple taste tests, and finally—the last step before canning the brew—they sent the design for the beer’s label out to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. Because of the government shutdown, the process halted there.

Now the Ivy City brewery is stuck with a whole tank of IPA brewed with fresh apricots that may never hit shelves. “It’s fermenting, currently,” says Justin Cox, Atlas Brew Works’ CEO and founder. “That will have to sit in our tank.”

Part of the Department of the Treasury, the TTB regulates alcohol, tobacco, or firearm-related businesses in a handful of ways: If you’re opening a liquor store, distilling a new liquor, or paying taxes on your cigar shop, you’ve got to deal with them. The TTB also reviews labels on cans, bottles, and kegs of all wine, malt beverages, beer, and distilled spirits in the United States, ensuring they carry information like the alcohol content by volume and the Surgeon General’s warning.

Having been deemed nonessential in the wake of the shutdown, the agency has suspended processing applications for label review, meaning that Atlas’ apricot IPA label—along with who knows how many other brewers, distillers, and other alcohol manufacturers around the country—is stuck in limbo. A notice on the bureau’s homepage warns visitors that its personnel are neither reporting to work nor responding to any inquiries. “Submissions will not be reviewed or approved until appropriations are enacted,” the site says.


Of course, there will be a huge backlog if and when the govt restarts.

Today I realized that I no longer get called for juries and discover my profile

says no to jury service. I never changed that. What gives? On how do I change it back?

IKEA Border Wall provides Trump with affordable construction option

A spoof of an IKEA flat-pack furniture kit shows how to cheaply build Donald Trump's proposed Mexican border wall.

The Börder Wåll offers a "practical, ready-made solution" to the US president's plans for a continuous barrier between the two countries, according to satirical news site The Postillon.

At just $9,999,999,999.99, the IKEA product would be a steal compared to a traditional wall, which is currently estimated to come in between $15 and $25 billion (£12 and £20 billion).

A graphic mimicking a typical minimal instruction sheet provided by the Swedish furniture giant has been mocked up for the builders. It lists hundreds of thousands of panels and barbed-wire coils, along with millions of screws, but only specifies a single Allen key for assembly.

more at


Why'd it have to be snakes?"

A new 47-unit mixed-use building in Grenoble, France had a strict set of features specified by the client, leaving little room for design experimentation by the architect. The recessed top floor was to be flanked by two duplexes, a platform at the bottom would contain retail space and be fitted with large glazed shop windows, and large balconies and openings on the façade would allow natural light deep into the building’s interior.

With so many major design elements set in stone, the project’s architect, Maison Édouard François, began to worry the 48,000-sf building was becoming too “predictable.” What was the cure for this predictability, you ask? Snakeskin-inspired cladding, obviously.

The scaly idea was planted in one of the designers’ minds while looking at a handbag in a Prada boutique. It was determined the graphic skin of the python would blur the project and add a level of chicness the area sorely needed. The handbag was scanned, digitized, and “mapped” onto the building form, causing the windows and overhanging balconies to disappear into the reptilian patterns.

The façade was created from diamond-shaped “scales,” each one identically reproduced in cut metal. The scales were then oxidized to create the three different colors and assembled to create the design of the skin. Because the cladding was so expensive, it was only applied to the façades that required some type of screen. The result is a mixed-use building that rises like a coiled python overlooking the City of Grenoble.

More at Building Design and Construction:

Blogging in 2019

Question: Suppose I wanted a blog or some such option for some hobby-type posting. What's the best way to do it in 2019?

Am I missing some social media option? I have a mostly unused twitter account in my FSogol identify and always have avoided facebook.

What's the best program/service to use? TIA
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