This guy floats an interesting perspective… that all of the streets, roads, highways and other infrastructure that we built (and are still building) are bankrupting us, as we are simply deferring the upfront and maintenance costs for as long as possible.
The other is the realization that the revenue collected does not come near to covering the costs of maintaining the infrastructure. In America, we have a ticking time bomb of unfunded liability for infrastructure maintenance. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) estimates the cost at $5 trillion — but that\’s just for major infrastructure, not the minor streets, curbs, walks, and pipes that serve our homes.
The reason we have this gap is because the public yield from the suburban development pattern — the amount of tax revenue obtained per increment of liability assumed — is ridiculously low. Over a life cycle, a city frequently receives just a dime or two of revenue for each dollar of liability. The engineering profession will argue, as ASCE does, that we\’re simply not making the investments necessary to maintain this infrastructure. This is nonsense. We\’ve simply built in a way that is not financially productive.
via The Growth Ponzi Scheme – Strong Towns.
It actually reminds me of what happened to GM. Instead of paying their workers more, they increased retirement benefits (such as full healthcare for life). As profits decreased, their liabilities continued to increase.
In case you ever need to convert old VHS tapes to digital, you’ll want to get a special VHS player. Apparently that $30 buy from Walmart in 2001 isn’t going to cut it. This website spells out exactly what you need.
Your typical VHS VCR is not good enough for digital video. It can playback tapes, but VHS tapes are a lossy format to begin with, and many VHS VCRs tend to amplify those errors rather than hide them. VHS is a low resolution analog format, and is prone to have noise that needs to be removed. S-VHS is the best choice, though it costs a bit more.
VHS Players: If you insist on using a VHS VCR, normally due to budget restrictions, then try to find a player with a good tracking range that will play anything you throw at it. It will be less likely to go off track at the slightest error. Only use HiFi 4-head machines. The 6-head machines are no better than 4-head machines.
Suggested VHS VCRs:
Sharp: These tend to track really well with digital tracking, and put out a fairly clean signal. Tapes made on this machine play almost anywhere. Be sure to turn off the “enhancement” filters as it makes the video grainy. Admiral brand units are also Sharp-made.
Panasonic: These are great machines, and record tapes that play almost anywhere, as well as putting out a decent signal. It does have a habit of going to blue-screen on video errors.
Sony: These are normally decent, but as with all Sony items, that can change from model to model. Many of them play any tape and record well.
JVC: The VHS units are not too shabby. Certainly not as good as JVC S-VHS equipment, or even the three VHS models mentioned above, but they often work okay.
Toshiba: These are pretty good units, especially the 6-head models, though they tended to break easily. Very good image quality, at least for a regular VHS unit.
via Video Hardware Suggestions; Best VCRs to Convert Tape to Digital – The Digital FAQ.
Well, since Aereo is still in a bunch of legal battles and yet to roll out in Kansas City yet, I’ve researched taking matters into my own hands. I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay for free over-the-air TV stations. It looks like the solution is to roll my own DVR.
On the Mac, it looks like that solution is the HD HomeRun Dual ($60 or so from Amazon) and EyeTV software ($80 from Elgato).
When it comes to secure online communication you can choose to secure the message, protect the identity of the messenger or both. These techniques for iOS and OS X devices will help ensure that your message gets to its intended recipient, and only that recipient.
via Securing your private messages with cryptography apps and services for iOS and OS X — Tech News and Analysis.
I’m not totally convinced this will do any good, but I thought it was worth sharing.
Creative Commons worked for more than two years to develop the next generation of CC licenses — the version 4.0 CC license suite. The new licenses are more user-friendly and more internationally robust than ever before.We made dozens of improvements to the licenses. Most will go unnoticed by many CC licensors and licensees, but some of them deserve particular attention.
via What’s New in 4.0 – Creative Commons.
As a future creative, I will be releasing many things under Creative Commons.