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That’s what a painter calls a painting when he can’t figure out what it’s about, right? Or just doesn’t know what it’s about?

This is a short post touching on a diverse, perhaps unrelated, set of topics.

Miniature Steam Trains

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I pass by the park pictured above every Saturday on my way home from Folsom. I have noticed the miniature train tracks many times. But last week – I believe as a special event – the miniature train enthusiasts who use these tracks brought out some of their trains and rode them around. The group is called the Sacramento Valley Live Steamers Railroad Museum. It is a non-profit hobbyist group and they create all the trains and tracks, as well as maintain them.

Electronics

I wanted a sound-sensitive signal for my “Dial” series of electronic art pieces. Last week I started building a board that would give me such a signal. I have all the basic circuitry in place now. I seldom photograph my “development environment” so thought I would this time. The two odd things sticking out of the board are oscilloscope probes. I really needed an oscilloscope for this project, as timing is very important.

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Wildflowers and Acorns

While most plants in this area are dying back from the lasting heat of late summer, a few hardy composites (a huge family of plants including sunflower, goldenrod, daisies, dandelions, etc.) continue to flower or are just now beginning to flower. The first is a “tarweed.” I have shown it before. I am amazed that it continues to bloom, and in what seems to be a very dry field.

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The next is another flower I have shown before. For some reason I have had difficulty getting my camera to focus on this flower in closeup mode. Every week it’s still there, and I try taking a few more photos of it.

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This next one is just starting to bloom in some places along the trail. This photograph was taken at the site of a creek bed restoration project. These plants may get a little extra water in the summer. They are certainly growing vigorously at this site.

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Evergreen oaks dominate the forests and fields in this area, and they are producing acorns. I believe this is a blue oak. It looks similar to a live oak, but with less glossy leaves. These long acorns are sweeter than those produced by red oaks or black oaks. They were a huge food resource for the natives of the past, but very few people use them now. Acorn flour is commercially available, but very expensive. That may change some day.

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Sustainability versus the 2045 initiative

One way to “beat” climate change would be to bypass the need for biology on this planet. As batty as that may seem, there is a team of people – it seems to be a joint Russian and American project – working on doing just that.

I thought I might revisit this issue to see if anyone is still taking it seriously. This could be one reason that some sectors of society just don’t seem to be playing the sustainability game; they think they have another answer.

The problem is that it is actually a possible answer, but these guys don’t have it right. As long as they continue to not have it right, it’s basically just a con game to give a bunch of irresponsible researchers and engineers something to do while the planet falls apart around them.

In the West Ray Kurzweil is the project’s main spokesperson. And Oh Shit: He has been Google’s “director of engineering” since 2012. In Russia, Dmitry Itskov is the founder and key proponent of the movement. He has made billions in Russia with his media businesses. As of 2013 they had the Dalai Lama on board. But they have received no press since 2016, which was a thumbs down from the BBC. It is also reported that the late Jeffrey Epstein, accused of numerous sex crimes, also believed in transhumanism. That wasn’t exactly good press, either! Perhaps these boys have retreated to a safer position behind the secrecy which their non-governmental status affords them.

And as I said, right now they are no more than silver-tongued con men. The human personality already is immortal. Only the body is not. The body is currently a biological machine. It could be re-designed to be a non-biological machine. I suppose some of us, if not eventually all of us, could learn to live in a non-biological machine instead of a biological one. But it seems to me that before any of that happens, we need to get the basics of life correctly understood, and we need to rehabilitate our ability to be ethical. Machines could learn to fight and “kill” each other just like humans have. Maybe it would be fun. However, that’s not how we currently experience war and terrorism. I think we first need to learn how to live properly with the bodies we have before trying to move into new ones. And we need to learn to take care of planets, too.

However, given the data above, there may be something to my idea that some sector on this planet has an “alternative” to sustainability that they think will pull them through.

 

 

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