After having not used Sourceforge for over 10 years, I’ve decided to move some of my sources back to Sourceforge. The main reason for that is that SF still allows devs to distribute binaries as part of their projects. Google (and GitHub) have slowly moved away from this citing ‘security’ issues. From an open-source perspective, I can understand Google’s and Github’s reasoning. On the good side: SF does support Git these days and frankly, while SF’s main interface looks confusing, I didn’t have a hard time to start committing changes thru git. One major surprise: back in 2003: to start a project it had to go thru a long and elaborate approval process first. This time, setting up Convendro’s project page (and committing sources) only took an hour or so. Henceforth: Convendro’s new project page sans downloads.
I’ve slowly moved to watching videos on YouTube: surprisingly only because it allows me to watch videos I want to watch as opposed to Cable TV. I’ll discuss my subscription list at a later stage but the point of me mentioning this is this elaborate list of videos of the Russian’s point of view of the Second World War (link via MetaFilter). Mind you, it is a Russian documentary (in 18 episodes). If you can stand the patriotic undertones, it’s worth a watch: each episode is around 45 minutes.
And last but not least: I can confirm that we have not had any hurricanes this season yet. It’s almost mid-September and no torrential rains (or gutting winds) have been sighted yet. Accuweather (link to article) blames this on abnormally warm Pacific waters, which apparently have created more westerly winds:
The atmosphere over the tropics thus far has behaved more like an El Nino pattern, where abnormally warm Pacific Ocean waters create westerly winds aloft over the tropical Atlantic. The current sea surface temperature pattern over the tropical Pacific is considered to be neutral.
I guess this may mean that hurricane-related insurance premiums may go down. That is a joke.
Exactly a week ago, it was the 10th anniversary of 9-11: it looks like the (re)construction at the former Ground Zero has made substantial progress. To be honest, I’ve never followed the progress on the 9/11 memorial (official site) but personally, I like the idea of the water falls. The last week, we had our share of remembrances and that: I wasn’t planning to elaborate on my personal thoughts. Here, have a link to the Archive’s excellent TV News archive (link).
We had our first frost warnings of the years, which means that most likely Fall will be short. One of our maple trees got really hit during the last storm (Irene). Strange enough: I believe we went thru the worst part of hurricane season. That is, the last hurricane I’ve heard of was Maria (CBC news) which only hit Newfoundland earlier this week.
And last but not least, a pet peeve. Now that I’m using a tablet (Android based) I noticed that a lot of companies have mobile variants of their websites: By default it’s these mobile variants that are shown. I find this irritating, particularly knowing that most of the mobile browsers have no problems showing a full website.
I think we just survived the worst two weeks of May, ever: it had been raining for so long, that everybody and their cats were either longing for sun or snow. It’s bad when you get hit with a lot of snow, but rain? Come… on. It may then also not surprise you that the NOAA is suggesting that this year is going to be a busy hurricane season:
It said that three to six of the forecast hurricanes are expected to be major, meaning a minimum Category 3 hurricane with wind speeds of at least 178 kilometres an hour.
The actual link to NOAA is right here. Thanks to the CBC for providing actual external links in a side column.
This Saturday (the 21st), it’s going to be Judgement Day. According to Family Radio, the Rapture will start at 6PM ET (NYT link). I don’t know what to think of that. Actually, I know what to think of this: It’s amazing that it takes a lot more scientists to formulate a Theory (peer-reviewed at that) and it only takes one guy, Harold Camping, to accurately pinpoint the day and time of the apocalypse. Since nothing will happen, Saturday, I’m curious what the excuse will be. Tip: blame 64-bit computing.
Last but not least, I found this on Metafilter (link): “Arc of Life and Love”, about love, life and cancer. The video is, well, heart-rendering. Keep your Kleenex handy.
The Rapture, the best on Reddit:
Update: The Day after at Metafilter
From what I’ve heard, sections of Northern Truro (including Onslow) are still without power and according to NSP, power for most customers won’t be completely restored until Tuesday. I have a tremendous amount of respect for the crews on the road, but I find it a bit hard to believe that it has to take that long, particularly since weather has been pretty good the last couple of hours. The worst part is that it’s getting colder, again. So much for the tropical and moist winds. Having experienced being without power for six days: for the ones that have none, stay warm and find relatives who do have power and are willing to give a lending hand.
I was asked to compare Noel to that (inevitable) Juan storm: obviously (as a light sleeper) I heard the wind last night. At times, I could feel the house swing and hear the studs croak and make noises. Obviously, I was surprised to wake up and find out we still had power this morning. During Juan’s tenure I slept a whole lot better, I think: What woke me up in 2003 was the sound of roaring chainsaws.
We seem to have lost shingles and a tree (one of its main branches seem to have broken off) but we haven’t lost power. Nova Scotia Power reports plenty of areas with no power, including Truro. I guess we’re lucky, for now (I’m assuming that we may lose power in case power needs to be restored to other areas, since we’re apparently on the main grid).
A couple of news articles for your interest: The CBC reports that as many as 170,000 homes and businesses have lost power and suggest that for some of them, power may be restored in a couple of days. CanWest notes that the strongest winds were reported in Cape Breton, where winds speed hit as high as 140km/h.
Oh, and while CNN and BBC are currently lacking news reports, it seems that the news of Noel hasn’t gone unnoticed in Europe (via Alfons, Dutch only).
According to the news, NSP crews are allowed to use their own judgement to repair lines as long as wind gust don’t go over a specific speed (sustained): I see that some of the earlier mentioned areas all have their power restored while new areas with outages seem to pop up every hour.
Locally, the same pattern as usual: wind at times gusting, pockets of rain (“patterns” as one of the TV forecasters calls them) with casual power flickering. One good thing about it though: As I mentioned before, it was rather chilly this morning: Noel brings (at least) some warm temperatures, albeit for only a couple of hours.
This reminds me: Officially, Atlantic Daytime Savings ends tonight1, meaning that we’ll have an extra hour sleep. If you think of it, in Atlantic Standard Time, the storm is going to take ‘one hour longer’ to move out of the Maritimes: if meteorologists had never started to use UTC (Coordinated Universal Time), you could say that hurricanes can travel through time.
I just watched the special news bulletin and it looks New Brunswick is going to get the brunt of the rain and wind (image via StormAdvisory, via Ruk). It’s going to take a while too, for Noel to make its way through the Maritimes: earlier forecasts suggested sunny and dry weather for Sunday morning. If I’m not wrong, the forecast now warns (besides of heavy winds) for a whole lot of rain, between the 50 mm to 60 mm for our area.
At CTV, there was the (inevitable) comparison between Juan and Noel: A manager at the Hurricane center in Dartmouth said that Juan was a lot more compact and (for the remainder of its track) did not expand as much as Noel has been doing the last hours (compare here). Apparently, this surprised weather forecasters and watchers in the US, who are now reporting that New England is being battered.
I have been dreading this, but yes, I’ll be monitoring Noel today. I think earlier weather reports suggested that Noel was going to make landfall in the south-eastern part of Nova Scotia: currently, it looks like it will be more to the west of it and (probably) will cross either the Bay of Fundy or portions of New Brunswick. (Add.: Around Port Maitland, which is slightly north west from Yarmouth).
Notice that Noel is moving at a speed of 48 KM/H, which is approximately the same speed as Juan moved. If I have more details of where the storm will make landfall, I might make better estimations when we will be hit hard here in Truro. It will be interesting to see (and read) other people’s experiences (I’m currently only following Ruk’s blog).
So, there it is… that is until we get the expected power outage.
I mentioned this a couple of weeks ago, and I discovered my gmail account finally has IMAP functionality too. Actually, I’m not using it as of yet. If you’re not familiar with the background of e-mail: your ISP generally provides basic POP3 services. POP3 is just a protocol to store and retrieve (download) your messages to your desktop computer. The moment you download your messages, references to these messages are deleted (not completely true: your local law enforcement authoritities may require ISPs to retain your e-mails for a while). This means that if you’re using multiple computers there’s no way to share your mail over these computers. IMAP, however, centralizes your e-mail storage and allows e-mail programs to synchronize e-mails over several clients.
Alfons forwarded me a link: One of his photos was selected to accompany an article about Fall and bicycling at About.com (which is part of the New York Times, since, when?)
And on a good note: it looks like we’re going to bunker down for the first major tropical storm (Noel!) of the year. This is going to be fun. No. Really.
We’re going through some sort of ‘heatspell’ (if you can call it that way) with temperatures ‘clocking around’ the 20 degrees. Which is generally good, but then, the temperature has been going down fast at night: a couple of nights ago, the thermometer hit -1 degrees Celsius. Time for the trees to drop their leafs.
Last week, a couple of items got my attention: First there was the Carol Anne Gotbaum case (over at the Gothamist): a 45 year old woman died while in police custody. The only reason why I mention this is because it reads like something surreal. Apparently you can kill yourself when you’re handcuffed. Don’t try this at home.
You may have heard about the Blackwater incident but the real story seems to be in the details: employees who by accident kill Iraqi guards and then get flown out with the State Department’s consent. Or, what about that story on Blackwater employees linked to the Pentagon.
On a lighter note, RawStory also has an AFP story about this year’s hurricane season: Forecasters predict that two Atlantic hurricanes will form in the remainder of the hurrican season (which ends at and around November 30th). It has been a rough ride for Mexico this year, I hear.