Showing posts with label Weather. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Weather. Show all posts

August 6, 2019

Oh Baby, It's Warm Outside?

I love when people can communicate through pictures effectively. 

Truly, a picture is worth a thousand words--probably more. 

This was a simple drawing to depict I assume global warming. 

- 2000 some nice mountain glaciers.

- 2020 the snow is melted.

It's like the person didn't have to say a word. 

But I get it. 

Also, I know there is supposedly a lot of scientific evidence for global warming.

But for me personally, I don't see it or feel it.  

The summers, if anything, feel cooler and the Winters feel colder to me. 

I know that is anecdotal and not representative of the world. 

However, it is hard to reconcile what the scientists say, when your own eyes aren't seeing it. 

Granted, I'm not in Alaska where, for example, the glaciers are melting, 

Still wouldn't we be feeling something here?

Maybe a few degrees really isn't perceptible. 

I guess time will tell us for certain. 

Hopefully, by the time we do see it, we won't get run over by the speeding train.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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March 11, 2019

Icing That Migraine

So a lot of people I know get excruciating migraines in the Washington, D.C. area. 

I don't know the statistical incident rate here for migraines, but anecdotally it seems significantly higher.

Is it the weather patterns, pollution, toxic chemicals or something else in this geographic area?

While medicine seems to be critical in actually getting rid of the migraine, I do notice that sustained use of ice packs or freezing water on the head also seems to help. 

Cold generally constricts the blood vessels, so I am not sure why this provides migraine relief.

Note: I am not giving medical advise or guidance to anyone, but just sharing my experiences. 

I would be interested to see a medical study done on treating migraines with freezing cold--from my experience, I think it definitely helps.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 7, 2018

Nice Coat!

Just wanted to share this awesome coat by Paris designer, Yves Saint Laurent. 

The colors are so standout, and the plushness is amazing from head to toe...beautiful.

The label is a little fuzzy, but I think the original price on this was over $30,000!

And even at deep discount it's close to 10 grand!

I wonder if it's real fur?  ;-)

Shabbat Shalom!

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 24, 2018

Bored Meetings

So it's been raining so much here in the DC area lately.

The result is that the hot Summer July temperatures are down in the cool 70's and the rain is flooding everywhere. 

When I got in the elevator this morning, someone goes to me:

"Did you see the leak in the hallway?  They are watering the tree with it."

And sure enough, there it was!

When all this rain finally stops, there is going to be a lot of cleanup and repairs to do. 

The other thing was yesterday, we were on the way to a board meeting in our synagogue. 

In the elevator, are two other people--a man and women--carrying binders.

They say to us:

"Are you going to the board meeting?"

Surprised, because I didn't recognize them from our synagogue, I respond affirmatively and ask to clarify:

"Oh, you're going to the board meeting too?  I don't recall seeing you there before."

Then the elevator stops and they start to get off--but it's to a different board meeting for the building.

When they see that we're going to a different floor, they start laughing:

"I guess we're going to different board meetings!"

I say:

"Yeah that's right, different board meetings, but we'll all probably be bored!

Another laugh by everyone, and we we're all off to the races. ;-)

(Source Photo:  Andy Blumenthal)
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October 14, 2017

We Broke The Weather

So my friend who lives in FL and recently experienced the crazy hurricanes down there said something very interesting to me. 

This was during the series of numerous recent hurricanes in just a few weeks period of time, including Harvey, IRMA, and Maria that devastated Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico.

He said to me:
"We broke the weather!"

And after decades of warning about the impact of global warming--maybe he is right.

This last September was the most active month for Atlantic hurricanes ever on record. 

Further, we are seeing simultaneously the deadliest wildfires raging in California in its history. 

This only 13 years after the deadliest Tsunami from the Indian Ocean in recorded times killing about a quarter million people!

And only 28 years after the deadliest Tornado occurred in Bangladesh in 1989 that killed 1,300 people.

All these as if the increasing threats of nukes and other weapons of mass destruction and cyberattack weren't enough to keep you up at night.

As we get more sophisticated and technologically dependent, incredible manmade and natural disasters are threatening us superbig time. 

And over and over again, it is being reported that a well-placed EMP explosion over the United States would kill 90% of the population within a year--talk about a extinction level event!

As we experience temperatures15 degree above normal this fall, even the trees are behaving abnormally as the leaves are not changing to colors of yellows and oranges and reds and purples that we expect and enjoy. 

Nature is messed up by our abuse of the planet and nurture is messed up by megalomaniacs with the weapons to do us in. 

If we don't correct the dangerous path we are on polluting our planet and over-relying on technology then soon we could be turning horrible colors even if the leaves just fall to the ground or turn to ash. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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June 12, 2016

Beautiful Florida



(Source Video: Andy Blumenthal)
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May 14, 2016

Answer Your Watch

So I did it and took the plunge into a smartwatch. 

For over a year, I thought the technology just wasn't there yet. 

Too clumsy, too difficult to use with such a small device. 

First, I considered just a Fitbit for tracking activity, but I quickly ruled it out, since you can get so much more with a full smartwatch.

Then, I looked into the Pebble, in particular the latest model the Time Steel, which runs between $200-$250. 

But I watched a review that pointed out the the Pebble does not have a touch screen, and everything are the buttons--okay, I immediately ruled that out. 

Next, I looked to old trusty, Apple...they have never failed me yet, and I tried on their various smartwatches. 

I settled on a simple sports model, since I figured as the technology continues to evolve or as the watch gets beat up in daily use, I could simply upgrade to the next great thing. 

Also, I figured if I really don't like how it works, it wouldn't be such a great loss monetarily. 

Well, the verdict is in--I really like it!

Easy to set up by simply syncing with the iPhone. 

And then all your major apps just show up on the colorful apps panel. 

In no time, I was checking the 10-day weather forecast, reading news headlines, tracking my activity, using the GPS locator, looking up calendar events, checking email and replying with easy voice dictation, sending text messages, and even calling family and talking to them into the watch!

I even started the music on my iPhone from another room by using the smartwatch. 

Oh yeah, I almost forget, it tells the time too!

Except for taking photos, which would be really cool with the watch, but it doesn't do--it did most of the basics that I wanted it to. 

For not a lot of money, I felt that I was getting a lot of convenient functionality, and I am now encouraging my wife and kids to get it too. 

Apple, you still got it--so even though Google surpassed you in market value this week, I am still hopeful that you got some decent mojo left in you. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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March 9, 2016

First Cherry Blossom Of The Season

Cherry Blossom in downtown Washington, D.C.

So happy winter is over and Spring has sprung. 

Sunshine, cool breeze, so good.

Feels like more. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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February 16, 2016

Travel in Metro DC Snow

I took this photo yesterday in the Metro DC area. 

This brave--or should I say crazy--dude is bicycle riding in the snow.

Car is turning in front of him with the lights on.  

But the bike and rider has no lights or reflective material to speak of. 

Seems like a death wish or just plain stupid. 

Only more ridiculous thing I've seen with a bicycle recently is the rider plowing hard through a rain storm while holding an umbrella with one hand. 

Perhaps, there is a gene that makes people look for trouble in bad weather or is it the economy stupid (maybe sadly, the guy can't afford a car or even an uber)?

Ride like the wind... ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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December 16, 2015

DC Is Not NYC

This is a funny sticker on the streets of Washington, D.C.

It says, "This is not New York."

And it advertises a website called StuckInDC.com.

"Formed by a few friends who've probably lived in the capital long enough, but lack the wherewithal to move elsewhere."

Having come from NYC, I can empathize in many ways. 

The DC metro area is great if you are interested in working in some very cool jobs for the Federal government, and it has a fairly nice lifestyle for families here (clean and green). 

While not as exciting as NYC (it doesn't have the vibe), it's also not as dirty, congested, or generally dangerous (in DC, there are lots of gun-totting federal agents everywhere).

If you yearn for someplace nicer to live, maybe Florida for the Caribbean climate, beautiful nature, slower lifestyle, and fun atmosphere or then again, there is always the awesome Holy Land!

For now stuck in DC, after retirement who knows. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 29, 2014

Iced Pool BUT Hot Tub

So I learned this vacation that some people really seem to enjoy temperature extremes.

These folks on the left are in the outdoor steaming hot tub.

However, see the pool next to them on the right--it's nearly completely frozen over (and it would be except for a fireplace at the other end of the pool deck)!

The temperature outside a frosty 19 degrees fahrenheit.

Yes, for those who know me...I keep the air conditioner on in the Winter (true).

But even I didn't bare it all in Santa Fe in December--at least not yet! ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 15, 2014

Futuristic Highway


Some really great ideas here for the highway of the future.

These are the inspiration of interactive artist Daan Roosegaarde.

To save energy and increase safety, there are four concepts presented:

- Glow in the dark road markings (i.e. lane dividers) with photo-luminescent paint that charges during the day and lights up at night.

- Weather symbols on the road with temperature-responsive paint, so for example, when the temperature falls below a certain level, the roads show snowflake symbols to indicate that they may be icy. 

- Motion-interactive lights on the highway that light up when cars approach and are powered by the draft of the moving cars. 

- Induction lanes that can charge car batteries as they run along them and reenergize the cars for further travel. 

Already, there is a 500 meter stretch of road in Oss, Netherlands with the glow-in-the-dark road markings--these are almost radioactive green in color and give a futuristic Tron look to the roads.

Now the question is when can we get these high-tech upgrades for I-495? 

What an awesome high-tech display befitting our nation's capital and maybe it would help with traffic as well!  ;-)
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February 17, 2014

Alert, Alert, And More Alerts

No this is not an alert, but some strategic thinking about alerts. 

As a kid, we get our first alerts usually from the fire alarm going off in school and practicing the buddy system and safely evacuating. 

As adults, we are used to get so many types of alerts:

- Homeland Security threat alerts
- Breaking news alerts
- Emergency/Disaster alerts
- Severe weather alerts
- Smog alerts
- Transportation delay alerts
- Accident alerts
- Fraud alerts
- Economic and financial alerts
- Amber missing child alerts
- Internet security alerts
- Power loss alerts
- Home or business intruder alerts
- Fire alerts
- Carbon Monoxide alerts
- Medical/health alerts
- Chemical spill alerts
- Product safety or recall alerts
- Unsafe drinking water alerts
- Active shooter alerts
- Work closure alerts
- Parking garage alerts
- Dangerous marine life alerts
- Dangerous current or undertow alerts
- Air raid siren alerts
- Solar eclipse alerts
- Meteorite or falling space debris alerts
- Special sale or promotional event alerts

With the arrival of highly successful, mass social media applications like Twitter, we have alerts aggregated for us and listed chronologically as things are happening real-time. 

The brilliance of the current Twitter-type alerting is that we can sign up to follow whatever alerts we are interested in and then have a streaming feed of them.  

The alerts are short--up to 140 characters--so you can quickly see the essence of what is happening or ignore what is irrelevant to you. 

When more space is needed to explain the details behind an alert, typically a (shortened) URL is included, which if you click on it takes you to a more in depth explanation of the event or item. 

So alerts are a terrific balance between short, attention grabbing headlines and links to more detail, as needed. 

What is also great about the current alerting mechanism is that you can provide concise alert information, including:

- Message source (for ensuring reliability)
- Guidance (for providing immediate instruction on response). 
- Hazard (for specifying the type of incident)
- Location (for identifying geographic or mapping locality)
- Date/time (for implications as to its currency)
- Importance (for determining severity such as catastrophic, critical, etc.)

While we remain ever, hyper-vigilant, we need to be careful not to become anxiety-ridden, or at some point, simply learn to tune it all out, so we can actually live life and get stuff done.

It's good to know what's going on out there, but can too much information ever become a bad thing? ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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February 14, 2014

Snow, No Snow

Great photograph by my daughter, Michelle Blumenthal. 

Washington, D.C. area digging out of Snowmageddon 2014. 

Talking about taking the middle-of-the-road approach... ;-)
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February 5, 2014

Beautifully Icy

This is a photo I took this morning of the icicles on the tree on another cold morning around Washington, D.C. 

Hope you enjoy,

Andy
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January 7, 2014

In The Capital, Scary Cold

So it was 3 degrees in Washington, D.C. today (and that's before wind chill). 

I don't ever remember it being this cold, ever!

Getting on the Metro this evening, this big guy came on wearing this scary hat.

But what was really unusual was that even while we were on the train for a while, he didn't take the scary hat off. 

I didn't know whether this guy was just still cold or whether we was a murderer or terrorist in waiting. 

After a while, I said to the guy, I have a blog and does he mind if I take a photo--and he was nice enough and said, "Go ahead."

So this is how he rode the Metro all the way home. 

Today was a scary cold day--because of the temperature for sure, but also because of this unbelievable hat. 

I was literally right in front of this guy--how do you think that felt? ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 24, 2013

Hyperloop Takes Us Supersonic

Elon Musk in a genius -- from SpaceX to Tesla to Paypal -- he has us inventing like almost no one else can.

Now his concept of the Hyperloop is once again breaking all preconceptions of travel on Earth. 

Forget planes, trains, automobiles, and boats--Musk's promised open source plans would take us from New York to Los Angeles in under 45 minutes!

The system would be built based on the following premises:

- Safer in that it never crashes and is immune to weather

- Faster than any Earth transportation available today

- Cheaper than air travel 

- Better using self-powered solar panels and energy storage

In business school, we were taught to think in terms of better, faster, cheaper--what's amazing about Musk is he has a track record of not just thinking it, but making it so. 

While the Hyperloop doesn't exist today, I find it awfully exciting to think that one day, it will. 

On the plus side, Elon Musk makes George Jetson our reality; on the minus side, now we have no reason not to visit the in-laws. ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to booknews)
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December 25, 2012

A Trip To The Science Museum


We went to the Ft. Lauderdale Museum of Discovery and Science—it was quite impressive.

Outside, where you enter, there is a huge clock -tower contraption with overhead slides and rolling balls, and water turning wheels on the side—it’s a “what is it” (exactly) moment and you know you're there. 

We hit the space exhibits first—I entered a simulator for a jet fighter cockpit, managed to take off with relative ease, but soon crashed, flipping it upside down—oops a little too much thrust.

The NASA exhibits were cool such as the MARS rover and colony mockups. And the Styrofoam wings that you can put on in a wind chamber and see how aerodynamically you are (or are not) was fun. 

Next up was the medical exhibits—we put together a puzzle of full body x-rays (“the shin bones connected to the...”), maneuvered a Da Vinci surgical robot arms, and zapped tumor cells with a mock laser.  

Oddly placed but interesting was the Gecko exhibit—with different colorful species hanging upside down and sideways with their suction cup feet. Couldn’t help thinking, which of them had been selling car insurance on those always-on Geico commercials or maybe this is the place they send them when they don’t perform on cue? 

Going through the exhibit on levers and pulleys, I used between 1-6 pulleys to lift a large stack of cinderblocks—and for the fewer pulleys, I thought good thing I had some Wheaties in the morning for breakfast, so I wouldn’t be embarrassed pulling on the ropes. 

The minerals, gems, fossils, corals, and dinosaur displays were somewhat meager, but were nicely laid out and a decent representation to get the idea.  

There was also an IMAX theatre with a 3-D movie and those crazy glasses you have to wear to watch these—but the cartoon playing wasn’t the action and adventure I was looking for. 

One of the exhibits’ I enjoyed the most was the fish—of all types—some favorites were a huge purple-like lobster, the playful otters, the bobbing water turtles and many others.

We also stood inside a mammoth replica of a shark and took turns hanging out of its mouth—and feeling what it was like to be Jonah and the whale.

There was also a weather news station, where you get to playact newscaster, and we used the TV cameras and tele-prompters to give updates of everything from hail storms to wild fires—now, I know how they always seem to know just what to say and when--so perfectly. 

Another cool display had to do with sustainability and the environment—with a robot sitting in the middle of piles of trash and recyclables—not sure why he was there though—was he trying to decide what to recycle and reuse?

I don’t believe that I saw anything significant on alternative energy or on general computers and the Internet—and if there wasn’t anything particualr on these, I would definitely like to see them added.

Overall, good job Ft. Lauderdale—worth the trip—and thank you for spreading a love of science with all. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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July 12, 2012

Not A Cloud In The Sky

I thought this picture was sort of humorous. 

This lady is walking down the street with this big green umbrella, but there is NOT a cloud in the sky. 

In fact, you can see in the upper right that it is a beautiful and clear sunny day. 

Also, where she is walking, it is clearly shady and cool--so the umbrella is not needed as a sun screen either. 

From a technology annoyance perspective, it is long past time to invent something more creative than a cheap, crappy umbrella--like from Charlie Chaplin and The Umbrella--to protect us from elements. 

Someone, please come up with a push-button protective bubble that envelops us--clear for visibility, of course--and keeps us dry and temperate. 

A beautiful, futuristic clear dome over the city would be nice too, but probably cost prohibitive and not as adjustable for each indiividual and their respective needs. 

Hopefully, someday soon. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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