Tag Archives: drones

“The Silent Corner” by Dean Koontz forgot to end

Opinion

The Silent Corner by Dean KoontzI finished reading my free, pre-published proof of Dean Koontz’s new book, The Silent Corner, to be released on June 6.

I thoroughly enjoyed it….

Until I got to the end.

It simply ended.

It was like Koontz said, “You know. This book is already over 400 pages. I think I’ll just quit. Go do something else.”

The last two chapters, which were a page each, seemed completely disconnected from the book itself and left me wondering what the hell just happened.

After the book ends, Koontz includes 15 pages from his next book, The Whispering Room. Sources indicate that The Silent Corner is the first “Jane Hawk” novel and that The Whispering Room is the second “Jane Hawk” novel. I don’t usually read teasers from future books because I know that I can’t read the book, so what’s the purpose? Because I was so perplexed about how The Silent Corner ended, I thought that maybe, just maybe,  there was something in the 15-page teaser that actually applied to The Silent Corner rather than The Whispering Room. I read about five pages and decided that there wasn’t. Nothing to indicate that The Whispering Room is the sequel to The Silent Corner and will answer all my questions. The only way I even know that it’s the second Jane Hawk novel is because Wikipedia told me so, and said that it’s due to be released in 2018.

Maybe I just missed something.

Or maybe the pre-published proof actually was missing a few pages or chapters.

I don’t know what to do.

Maybe go fly my drone and take sky pictures….

Four seasons

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

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Pregnant women can pass DNA on to their children!

A Piece Missing

All of the following are from my pile of articles labeled “WEIRD.”

  1. Volvo busWhile most vehicle safety-control engineers work on slowing vehicles down when a risk is detected, apparently Volvo is taking a different approach for its buses when it comes to pedestrians. The safety control consists of bullying pedestrians (Twitler’s new America!) by progressively honking the horn louder and louder to scare the pedestrians out of the way.
  2. PolygamySecondWife.com is for Muslim Polygamy Matchmaking because, according to a quote on the site (reputedly from the Quran): “then marry women of your choice, two or three, or four” probably taken out of context similar to how Christians take things out of context in the Bible. If you’re not Muslim, though, you can visit Polygamy.com where, the founder says, you can make “bigger happier families.” Both sites, founded by Azad Chaiwalla, have the majority of their Clients in the United States and the United Kingdom, although bigamy is illegal in both countries.
  3. In March 2016, a 55-year-old man in Memphis TN was killed walking on a sidewalk when a car trailer came loose and crashed into him. Apparently he was distracted by watching pornography on his phone while walking.
  4. A 56-year-old woman was found dead in a clothing donation drop-off box in Mount Carmel PA. The police report said she was trying to steal items from the box. It went on to say that she had driven there in her Hummer.
  5. In 2000, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention declared that measles had been eliminated in the United States. By 2014, it had been resurrected with 677 cases reported. Researchers from Emory University and Johns Hopkins University were able to determine that the main reason was the intentional decision by some Americans to refuse widely available vaccinations for their children.
  6. According to psychologists, the rich rich (the top 1% of the top 1%) are struggling with feelings of isolation (so few rich rich); stress caused by political brouhaha over “inequality”; and insecurity, wondering if their friends are friends of theirs or friends of their money.
  7. Researchers at the University of Florida and Oklahoma State University found that 80% of survey respondents wanted all food labeled with the DNA content. Of course, all flora and fauna have DNA…. One comment on the research included this warning: “WARNING: Pregnant women are at very high risk of passing on DNA to their children.”
  8. Apparently it now is okay to steal food in Italy. The country’s top appeals court rules that a homeless man stealing food from a grocyer story was not guilty of crminal behavior because, according to a traditional Italian legal principle that no one is required to do the impossible, it would be impossible for the food thief to allow himself to starve.
    Black-footed ferret
  9. In July 2016 the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service announced plans to prevent black-footed ferrets from dying out in northeaster Montana. Their plan: Deliver by drones peanut butter M&Ms, coated with a vaccine. Apparently, before drones, delivering candy by hand was too expensive for so few ferrets. I think I see a job for me and my new drone in the near future.
  10. Best name for a book about birds. It should be noted that the author of the book, Olaf Danielson, likes to go birdwatching….. in the nude!Boobies Peckers & Tits The following is hidden text to put space between this picture and the following picture, something that WordPress doesn’t seem to be able to do xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx

Thanks for stopping by! See you next time!

This post approved byThis post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

First Yuneec Typhoon H drone pictures and video

I live in my own little world

Back in December 1976 I flew with three friends on a 4-seat Mooney aircraft from College Station TX to Tyler and then over to Memphis TN. That was my first airplane flight. I’m not sure I ever removed my face from the window.

Then, my first (real) job out of college in 1977 allowed me to do a lot of flying. I lived and worked in Houston but had the opportunity to fly to Dallas, New Orleans, Miami, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Chicago, New York…… It was so much fun. By the time I moved to San Diego in 1993, I had been to 38 of the 50 states.

I sat out of the work force for 11 months after arriving in San Diego, considering myself retired. Retirement’s not all it’s cracked up to be, especially if you’re used to being around lots of people all the time. So I went back into the work force and got a job that involved a significant amount of traveling–San Diego, Detroit, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Toledo, Columbus, Philadelphia, Tampa, Miami, New Orleans………. The list goes on and on and on.

Every time I flew, regardless of where I was flying to or from, my face was always glued to the window. I loved being up above everything looking down on it–mountains, buildings, highways, forests, lakes…… Anything and everything.

I cut back significant on flying after 9/11, especially after the Detroit Shoe Bomber. I just don’t like long lines, don’t like undressing at an airport, and don’t like people touching my junk unless I ask them to.

I missed being above, looking down.Yuneec Typhoon H

So on March 18, 2017, I bought a drone. The biggest, baddest drone I could find. With lots of bells, whistles, vibrations, and alarms. A Typhoon H Pro with RealSense Technology. It cost $1,899 at Fry’s Electronics but on that day Fry’s paid the $147.17 sales tax for me.

This thing is so big and expensive that it took me three weeks before I was brave enough to try to fly it. Been through several crashes but since I’m only flying six feet above ground, the crashes didn’t do any significant damage. Just three plastic rotors which cost about $7 each.

Then I joined the San Diego Drone Club. A little six-year-old boy set me straight: “Just do it” I think he said. So I set out to find a place where I could practice without being a hazard to people or animals. Collier Park across the street was pretty good but I never know how busy it’s going to get on any morning. I might be able to fly for two hours or two minutes. It’s also less than an acre, so if the children or dogs show up early, I’m outta there.

Today I discovered Eucalyptus County Park. It’s almost 6½ acres, and is rather isolated out in Spring Valley, about three miles from me. I arrived at 6:10 this morning and left 1½ hours later. During that time I saw only one other person. So I got a lot of practice in, especially with landing, and learning how to make the drone move in the direction I want it to move. I also got eight still pictures and two videos.

Here are my favorite two pictures from this morning at Eucalyptus Park:

Grove of palm trees from up abovePalm trees from above

Bancroft Drive with Mount San Miguel at upper leftBancroft Drive in Spring Valley CA

And here’s my best video out of four total, two today, taken using the drone’s spinaround mode:

This drone is pretty awesome because of its Intel RealSense Technology. It will communicate with up to 18 satellites to give you GPS, and once it has a lock on GPS, it can pretty much fly itself.

The ST16 Controller has more apps on it than a smart phone and allows you to set so many functions that you will need a margarita by the time you finsh:

Typhoon H ST16 Controller

The Typhoon H also comes with a remote-control called a Wizard:

Typhoon H Wizard

The Wizard is what you will use if you get tired of holding the Controller or it starts getting heavy hanging on the lanyard around your neck. With the Wizard, you can set the Controller down, or give it to a friend to hold, and go walking around. If you put the drone in “Follow me” mode, it will follow you at whatever height you set it for. You can also use “Point to fly” mode and just point the Wizard somewhere and the Typhoon H will fly to that spot. There’s also a “Home” mode which helps the drone get back home if it gets lost. It has an Obstacle Avoidance mode so that it can automatically go around trees and such, and you can create a virtual fence so that, regardless of what you do, you can’t go beyond that fence. Useful for if you lose GPS out in the boondocks and your drone starts to “fly away.” Pictures and videos can be taken using just the Wizard. It truly is a wizard at doing what it does.

Typhoon H batteryThe battery provides about 25 minutes of flying time, takes 1½ hours to recharge, and costs $139.99 (less if you go to eBay). You get two with the drone. I bought two more, so I’ll be taking four batteries with me into the mountains. I’ll be able to recharge one battery using the in-car charger while driving, so it should be rare that I’ll run out of battery juice or flight time.

My only complaint with the Typhoon H at this point is that the videos in mp4 format are huge and crappy. The video in this blog post was 621 MB straight out of the drone and so crappy that I would be embarrassed to show it to anyone. So I took it to Wondershare Filmora, my video editing program, and simply saved it with a different name. Now it looks awesome and is only 81 MB. Can’t explain that one. Apparently the Chinese have a different mp4 format.

I have more on my mind with the Typhoon H than just playing with it, though. I want to get pictures of abandoned railroad tracks for my railroad research in areas that are somewhat inaccessible out in the East San Diego County mountains. My hiking days are behind me, especially if the hike involves going down into a rocky canyon and up the other side. The canyons are steep but are rarely more than a mile across, and if they are, there are roads to get me closer. With this drone, if I can get within a mile, I can get it the rest of the way.

Eventually I’ll get an FAA 107 commercial drone license so I can do real estate photography and figure out other ways to use this drone to make money.

Thanks for stopping by! See you next time!

This post approved by
This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat