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A gentleman’s pocket knife…

Many years ago, in my late 20s, I briefly had the habit of carrying a pocket knife.  It wasn’t a very good knife to be honest: I’m not sure where I got it from.  But I liked having it- it was handy, particularly given the fact that I was living a somewhat ‘rural’ life at the time.  But I got out of the habit, and misplaced the knife.

Several instances recently convinced me that it would be good to start carrying a pocket knife again.  This time, though, I did some research.  I probably bought more knife than I really need: say hello to the DPx HEAT/F Titanium.

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Road Glide: fast idle with ‘fly by wire’ throttle

My 2011 Road Glide is my ‘baby’, and when something starts behaving a bit odd I generally notice it fairly quickly.  Twice now, once last fall and again just this past week, my bike has suddenly started idling at over 2,200 RPM.  The  normal idle is about 1,200 RPM, and the high idle revs make the things I normally do like using engine braking a bit challenging.  Interestingly, if I ‘force rolloff’ the throttle (i.e.: roll it ‘down’ below its neutral point) the idle will drop.  And frustratingly, the problem seems to magically ‘fix’ itself after a while, which has meant getting the service folks to investigate it has been challenging.

I think I have found the cause, as well as a temporary (?) fix.

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Words of wisdom on choosing a career… not so easy, actually

My brother Ron and his two daughters, Rebeca and Sophia, visited a couple of days ago.  We had a barbecue and some good conversation: I really enjoyed the visit.

My niece Rebeca is about to enter high school, which is amazing in itself.  More amazing is that she asked me for some advice on whether pursuing computer science / IT was a good choice.  I tried to share some ‘wisdom’, but I found it surprisingly difficult to give good advice.  This is a crazy old world, and who knows what the future holds?  So I thought I’d post some of my thoughts here in a bit more detail. 

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Totally misunderstanding the lessons of Nazi Germany

A senior Republican member of the US Government went to Auschwitz recently as reported in the Daily Beast.  Rep. Clay Higgins decided it was perfectly acceptable to record a video blog while standing in the gas chambers where over a million Jews were murdered.  Possibly worse, his recorded message revealed a complete lack of understanding of what happened in Nazi Germany, what the Holocaust was about, and what it should have taught us to fear.

The Nazi's were the bad guys...

Nazi Germany: Fascist xenophobic racist ultra-nationalist state, *not* terrorists

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2013 motorcycle road trip #2: The Three Brothers

I was going through some draft posts on my blog and came across an outline for an account of a motorcycle road trip from back in 2013.  It was originally written shortly after the event and, although it is in bullet form and rather sparse on detail, it does account for some events I had partially forgotten or mis-remembered.

And, since it was the only motorcycle trip I’ve taken with both my brothers Ron and Colin (my third brother, Dennis, doesn’t ride motorcycles 😉 ), I didn’t want to lose it.  I’ve cleaned it up a bit, added some pictures, and now it is here for posterity.  

Two big brothers

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Power washers- the Karcher is dead, long live the Sun Joe

I have owned several electric power washers over my life, all of which were more or less suitable to my limited needs.  I use them to clean my deck, wash my car, and wash my motorcycle: nothing heavy.  And every single power washer I’ve owned has failed me in some way or another.  This post is an overview of my power washer history and an introduction to my latest ‘pending failure’: the Sun Joe SPX3001

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Moving some of my posting activity from Facebook back to blog

I am going to start posting more on my blog, and a little less on Facebook: or at least that’s my intent.  Why?  Because Facebook owns a bit too much of my time, and I want to revitalize my blog a bit.  Also, Facebook is not really good for ‘long form’ posts… and the never-ending-scroll of the newsfeed seems designed to make everything “Yesterday’s news”.    And I find that I ‘stretch’ myself a bit more on my blog: in terms of what I post, and in terms of the effort it takes to make my blog run.

Use the ‘subscribe to blog via email’ link in the upper right side of any post on kgadams.net if you are interested in what I post on my blog.  You’ll start receiving an email notification when I add a new post.   The subscription is managed via WordPress.com, so you can even set it up to only notify you once a week or what have you.

I’m not ‘leaving’ Facebook: I’ll still be checking my news feed, probably more often than I should.  But I’ll be turning down the tap a bit, hopefully successfully.

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Space… its big- there’s lots of space out there, right?

I’m a strong advocate for the exploration of space.  I also firmly believe that we need humans out there.  Yes, use robotics to validate assumptions, but please let’s get humans on the surface of the Moon and Mars before I die of old age.  

But I also think Donald Trump is one of the most comically inept and arguably outright ignorant human beings to walk the Earth.  The man quite seriously disgusts me, and strains my ability to show respect for the office of President of the United States, or for the citizens of that country that elected this dumpster fire on legs.  So when Donald Trump signs one of his famous Executive Orders in support of space exploration with Buzz Aldrin, an honest to goodness hero, standing beside him, I’m really, really torn.

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Disruptions in our furry family

My wife and I love our critters, in particular our feline family. It has been the norm during our 27 years together for us to have something like six or seven cats sharing our household. This isn’t ‘by design’, but it seems to work out that way.

For the first time in a while, however, we are down to five cats in our house. And it is a hard change to accept.

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Improving the performance of WordPress: my experiences

I recently upgraded my web server hardware and so, in that spirit, it seemed like a good time to refresh the configuration of my blog software.  I had previously made several attempts to ‘make it fast’, but with only limited improvement.  This time, however, I seem to have made some good progress… read below the fold for some details of my effort.

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