2018 January 08

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January 2018
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Vox

Thanks to Trump's abuses, the next president will likely have to punch in on the clock each morning and have his or her Internet and television watching privileges taken away at work.

The Likely Cause of Addiction Has Been Discovered, and It Is Not What You Think

"Professor Alexander argues this discovery is a profound challenge both to the right-wing view that addiction is a moral failing caused by too much hedonistic partying, and the liberal view that addiction is a disease taking place in a chemically hijacked brain. In fact, he argues, addiction is an adaptation. It’s not you. It’s your cage."

"After the first phase of Rat Park, Professor Alexander then took this test further. He reran the early experiments, where the rats were left alone, and became compulsive users of the drug. He let them use for fifty-seven days — if anything can hook you, it’s that. Then he took them out of isolation, and placed them in Rat Park. He wanted to know, if you fall into that state of addiction, is your brain hijacked, so you can’t recover? Do the drugs take you over? What happened is — again — striking. The rats seemed to have a few twitches of withdrawal, but they soon stopped their heavy use, and went back to having a normal life. The good cage saved them. (The full references to all the studies I am discussing are in the book.)"

"When I first learned about this, I was puzzled. How can this be? This new theory is such a radical assault on what we have been told that it felt like it could not be true. But the more scientists I interviewed, and the more I looked at their studies, the more I discovered things that don’t seem to make sense — unless you take account of this new approach."

Otis Redding’s ‘(Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay’ At 50

"(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay" was released 50 years ago Monday, less than a month after Otis Redding died at the age of 26. The song was a departure for the R&B superstar — and it almost never saw the light of day."

"Otis had had a throat operation in the fall that year, and he was very worried about whether he would be able to sing again — and sing like Otis," biographer Mark Ribowsky says. "He needed to sort of make it quieter, make it more poetic. And he came up with this song."

DIY Kit Colorful Glittering Five-Pointed Star Water Light LED w/shell | eBay

To practice as soldering without wrecking anything expensive, I've purchased a few of these rather strange but very inexpensive soldering practice kits direct from China. Some of them are quite neat, like this glitzy star that works on USB power.

This is probably most expensive one I've ordered at $10 including shipping, mainly because it comes with a clear case, as I may give it to my niece as a present if I can get together with the lead-free solder.

Map: Taylor Valley State Forest   North

Map: Taylor Valley State Forest North

Taylor Valley State Forest (Cortland #2), formerly known as Seacord Hill, encompasses 4,638 acres and is located in the towns of Cuyler, Solon, Taylor, and Truxton in the middle of Cortland County. It is a popular area for family based recreational activities such as hunting, hiking, snowmobiling, bird watching, nature viewing, picnicking and camping.

The Chinango Day Use and Camping Area are also located in the forest and provide many users with a rustic environment in which they can experience the joys of camping, picnicking, and getting back in touch with nature. The Day Use Area has a pavilion with two picnic tables as well as three barbeque pits. The Camping Area, located across the road from the Day Use Area, provides primitive drive-up camping opportunities.

http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/37103.html

Ski Dubai

I wonder how long it will be before New York gets it's first indoor ski-resort, or at least until in-state ski resorts start adding chiller lines on their ski slopes, in an effort to preserve the snow as the winters continue to get warmer and less able to keep even man-made snow on their slopes for any length of time. Figuring that outside of Adirondacks, Tug Hill, and maybe a few places in Erie and Cattaragus County, the snowmobile trails are basically permanently closed on an ongoing basis, I could see a future where the state is spending millions to help ski resorts build large chiller plants and lay out chiller lines on slopes, to keep the snow in decent shape for ski resorts, as the regular winter thaws that are becoming more common.

Albany County Hilltowns Population, 1790-2010

This graph looks at the historical population trends in Berne, Knox, Rensselaerville and Westerlo from 1790-2010. Some of the town lines changed in early 1800s, which is why you see a big population drop in Rensselaerville between 1790 and 1810. Between 1900 and 1950, the hilltowns lost population, as farmers moved off the land, then saw modest but slow gains in population between 1950 and 2010, with levels still in many cases below the populations of nineteenth century.