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Lets see if we can squeeze a bit more in.......

Aug. 1st, 2011 | 08:31 pm

I've used firefox for this session and it seems to be a bit quicker, obviously we are another gig further on ......

I'm also hoping I can squeeze more in and feel inclined to stay with lj, this will mean eventually adding a 3 at the end. I like the speed and ease of the set up here and nothing irritates, if the ads are a problem press refresh and click user info to get tags. I tried opera an hour ago and prefer to be here.

So, to get the max from this gig of material which is my second in a series of 'serious' blogs (ie kllrchrd.livejournal before) click user info at left, then click 466 tags and hey presto the tag list appears.


Never let a dog on your bed, this is bad hierachy.

I planted this pink mallow at another garden without the accompanying blue campanula and the effect was totally lost, in the front garden here its the association of the two that works so well. The bees and hoverflies think so too. In the pic lower down is plenty of lambs tongue, one of the best flowering plants for bees etc.

Wall brown at the p-heap abt five or six days ago. There doesn't seem to be many this year, tho plenty of ringlet and skippers and barred hook tip.


I'm assuming hawkweed oxtongue, ie Picris hieracioides, paths banks quarries, likes warm places, very common. Yet how many ppl could actually tell you the name?? Theres a wonderful line in a favourite book of mine, George Gissings 'The Private Papers of Henry Ryecroft' written a hundred years ago where he states "Know your hawkweeds" !! There is so much in that book that is me.





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The last post here ??

Jul. 29th, 2011 | 07:25 pm

The 'P' setting is set to 'warm' so there is some unfortunate colour enhancement on the Lumix FZ30.

Oh dear, I am getting repeated internal server error when I try to upload.  There have several glitches lately when writing posts, lengthy upload times, perhaps I have filled my 'free' entitlement at lj.

I like the lj layout, though would prefer visible tags as per my first lj blog which is over at  .... http://kllrchrd.livejournal.com

Wherever I go it will be kllrchrd3.


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This picture ....

Jul. 28th, 2011 | 11:42 pm

File:Guglielmo Marconi posing.jpg

.... has always fascinated me.

I would first see it around 1971 or 1972 in  UK 'Practical Wireless' magazine, most likely in the Colin Riches/ Arthur Dow vintage radio column.

I was radio (short wave) mad and I even looked like Marconi !!  Actually there is a resemblance......

I posted this sort of by being prompted from the Karl Muller post I made of a few days back. I included a wiki for the first radio engineer and hence re-stumbled upon Guglielmo.


This looks very much to be his spark set, spark transmission lasted for many years as a last resort maritime SOS procedure. Useful as I would assume its untuned nature meant everyone could hear the clicks. However, his first across the atlantic was only self verified, no JP or policeman or any independant adjudicator. Considering the vast amounts of capital the project had consumed a no-signal situation would possibly be out of the question. In those days they hardly knew about radio wave propogation and how it is affected by day and night, winter and summer and the sunspot cycle and also how differing fequencies in the spectrum produces different results.

Once practical engineering hand in hand with technological development progressed it was possible to generate a stable r.f. signal of a specific frequency and feed it to a compatible radiating aerial (ie modern term antenna), whereas 'spark' was an intense blast everything approach and extremely crude and inefficient.  Yet to their credit these radio pioneers and many others we hardly know the names of ventured into the ether developing and modifying their knowledge very rapidly.

Now .... I had written ..

"This is in marked contrast to the lamentably too often repeated story of Baird and modern tv. His system had nothing to do with how tv evolved, I vaguely remember it was the Russians that solved it.  This is an erroneous too often promulgated fallacy".

I now see this to be a fatuous and misleading statement on my part. Marconi and Baird in their early days were very similar, they both had an intense desire for the medium to exist yet both were extremely confined by as yet undeveloped and non-existant technology. So their crude soon superseded technologies were pushed to the max. In Marconis case the power pushed into the early spark tests across the Atlantic was extra-ordinary.  It must be also borne in mind the commercial pressures for success, the transatlantic cables had the monopoly. This development of science and technologies fascinates me.

And an earlier link I had written ....

However, this Marconi mania must be tempered with reality, heres a start .... http://www.ieee.ca/millennium/radio/radio_differences.html

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Laika the space dog.

Jul. 28th, 2011 | 10:00 am

Supreme endurance.

Dec. 10th, 2010 | 11:16 pm

This is a newspaper cutting from the Grauniad circa 2002. For years I had this pinned up at the workshop, my admiration for this animal knows no bounds. Laikas face seems so much like the dogs I have known. She was launched inside Sputnik 2 circa 1957 and she was soon overcome with temperature and stress, though its estimated she lasted five to seven hours. The whole project was rushed through in less than four weeks .... that is the CRUEL PART. I hate rushed technology and its being manipulated for political reasons, ie 40th Anniv October Revolution. A couple of sources say she she might have been part beagle.

Her name Laika pronounced as in I "like" food.  Лайка 





I must admit, I look at her photographs and tears are never far away. I have wanted to post this for years.

Well done Laika !!   Лайка


Heres a copy and paste of other space dogs, I think i will memorise all their names in respect of what they went through......

Other Space Dogs
Between 1957 and 1966, the USSR (now Russia) sent 13 dogs into space in preparation for future missions. The dogs included:

  • Laika (meaning "Barker") - died during a mission (Sputnik 2, November 1957)
  • Lisichka (meaning "Little Fox") and Bars (meaning "Panther" or "Lynx") - died during a test flight on July 28, 1960
  • Strelka (meaning "Little Arrow") , Belka (meaning "Squirrel"), 40 mice, 2 rats and a number of plants - safely recovered from Korabl'-Sputnik-2. Launched August 19, 1960, it orbited the Earth 18 times. This was the first successful recovery of living biological specimens after an orbital mission. Strelka later gave birth to a litter of 6 healthy puppies; one was given to President John F. Kennedy as a gift.

    A stamp from Bulgaria featuring Strelka, Chernushka, Zvezdochka, and Belka.
  • Pchelka (meaning "Little Bee") and Mushka (meaning "Little Fly")- died when Korabl'-Sputnik-3 re-entered the Earth's atmosphere at the wrong angle and burned up, (launched December 1, 1960)
  • Damka (meaning "Little Lady") and Krasavka (meaning "Beauty") - Launched December 22, 1960, but the third stage of the SL-3 rocket failed, and the orbital launch was aborted; the two dogs survived an unplanned suborbital flight.
  • Chernushka (meaning "Blackie"), a dummy cosmonaut (known as "Ivan Ivanovich"), a few mice and a guinea pig - launched March 9, 1961.
  • Zvezdochka (meaning "Little Star") and a dummy cosmonaut in a space suit - launched on March 25, 1961 and orbited once in final preparation for the Vostok 1 mission. Zvezdochka was named by cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin.
  • Verterok or Veterok (meaning "Breeze") and Ugolyok or Ugolek (meaning "Little Piece of Coal") were launched on February 22, 1966, in the satellite Kosmos 110. This was a 22-day mission

Heres more bits n pieces as i find them ....
Some people have written a song tied in with reducing experimentation using animals, I too think theres surely no need to test on animals. quoting from their youtube post ....  quote "Many believe it was just a cruel publicity stunt. Oleg Gazenko, one of the lead scientists on the Soviet animals-in-space program, later expressed his deep regrets during a Moscow news conference: "The more time passes, the more I'm sorry about it. We shouldn't have done it.... We did not learn enough from this mission to justify the death of the dog." Of course you don't need to go to space to find mistreatment of animals. I hope you will be one of those to give animals a voice to halt the needless cruelty and experimentation which continues still right here on earth.. A good place to learn about animal rights issues or lend your support is at the PETA website. http://www.peta.org/ This comes from the album 'Image Conscious', music inspired by famous images from the news. Music composed and performed by Plug, video compiled by Smoke." unquote ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwcpp94_jV8&feature=related

Its curious, each little vid on youtube reveals some gem of footage not seen elsewhere.

Heres a museum and rare footage .... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EoaIWBCY_C0&feature=related

Devices and technical apparatus, ie hardware ..... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiIPgdk8XK8&feature=related

more detail .... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4SUH9qITxE&feature=related

here are links that add more info ......

and someone has made an animated film .... http://www.telegraph.co.uk/expat/expatnews/7479342/In-space-no-one-can-hear-you-bark..html

I wonder what her end would have been if she had remained a stray on the streets of Moscow circa 1957. Eventual starvation and hypothermia I would think as younger fitter dogs would push her lower down the food chain. I found a hare a few years back that had curled up and died in the snow, it was harrowing to find. Goodness knows how these Moscow stray dogs found enough to survive on even at the best of times. Perhaps they eat their own kind to survive.


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Mish mash from two days ago.

Jul. 27th, 2011 | 12:12 am

Looks like a pair of wall browns ie Lasiommata megera, doesn't seem to be very many this year, perhaps more will hatch later? My book here tells me local only, disappeared from many former haunts, feeds on grasses. Two hatches a year.

Its a simple and easily found damsel fly, yet I don't think I ever saw (or noticed) one before I was age twenty five. This is because of a lack of suitable habitat. These things need still water with reed and grasses to hatch from. There was a quarry a full half mile from where we lived as a kid, but visits would be most infrequent. I can remember some visits, Eddie the pike fisherman and other lads nearer my age, perch were there and occasionally with the cheapest rod and reel landing something or other. It was a good resource, a wild and natural place and wait for it ... now filled in and built on. What a shame. Maybe I saw dragonflies and damsels, I cannot remember.

I think I can remember seeing my first ever damsel, been self employed two or three years and Albert the welder next door mentioning the road along to Calder, a detour from our usual fixed route. So, we drive up taking his directions and soon I saw this incredibly bright little stick of cerulean blue flying about..... a revelation.



At left is Achillea millefolium, ie thousand leaved with a similar flower to A. ptarmica (sneezewort)  the leaves give it away.

I assume the barred hook tip; I'm seeing considerable variations in hue, this is one of the darkest seen so far.  

Above I am attempting to capture the brilliance as light reflects on the twirling whirligigs on the surface of the water.

No doubt someone has explored mathematically the behaviour of these tiny things, produced equations that explain it all, meanwhile someone has dug up and filled in the pond !!

There is a location in Cumbria that still has the impression where the farm pond was, the farm is deserted, maybe empty sixty years minimum and thankfully no-one has yet filled in the very distinct and sunken area. I have never seen this so very obvious remnant of a farm pond anywhere else, they have all been levelled. Water no longer collects there, I wonder why? Perhaps the farmer has dug a channel to drain any that would be liable to collect there. Maybe theres a health reason to do this (liver fluke?) but surely otherwise there would be benefits in still water for birds and insects.  


At right is Lychnis flos-cuculi ie ragged robin and theres quite a few now and all are mine sown from AGS about ten years ago. I had a headmaster of a large school about four years ago argue with me over the names of this plant, he clearly was vexed a practical working man had the edge over him.  Another one of many people you work hard for and never see again, makes me wonder why I bother.


This above is back at the hacienda, 'honesty'  ie Hesperis matronalis with the evening sun behind it.


Morale is good, everyone is fluid, bright and alert.


The last image is testimony to the abilities of the Lumix, at full zoom ie x76 at dusk 9:55 pm 25th July on P setting. How it can capture such an image is incredible. A hare practically beyond the limits of my eyesight in low light, the sun long since gone.  Also very clever considering how bright the horizon was in comparison to the hare and the field. The Lumix was merely propped on a shakey fencepost and would have benefitted from something like my winter hat to cushion and steady it.

Problem in this situation is that things happen so quickly, by the time I flip and or check the side switch ie AF, AF macro or MF (manual focus) the subject has often gone. It needs practice to do this without looking as you place the camera on a suppot or aim and click.

Needless verge cutting.

This evening as I upload this the verges up at field one have been further cut back, I cannot see any valid reason. The road is long and straight, you can be there an hour and no car passes. So why? All that has been done is that a whole lot of flowering herbage has been mashed to shit. There is all this fuzzy talk about habitat and wild places needing to be maintained/ developed yet the biggest contribution by far would be tweaking this bizarre practice. By all means cut the verge, but this second cut takes the verge in further to I guess six feet, what what justifiable reason?? None I reckon other than some contractor getting paid by the hour for 'valuable work'. Oh dear me how fixed men are in their activities and outlook. I suppose thats how you train armies, you train men in a certain way and men being men you know that when you put them into battle thats how they will perform, in a fixed manner. I don't want to become a 'letter writer', some old geezer firing missives to the County Council, yet in this case it seems worth following up, if no-one bothers then they will continue to live in their bubble unhindered. The question however is that does this cutting actually encourage re-growth that 'adds' something to the insect food scene. Sometimes it can, I have seen earlier mowed verges spring with flowering clover that certainly interested the bees n watnot, but butterflies need grass, long uncut grass so surely the end decision must be a narrower cut, say three feet max. It vexed me to see all the umbellifers smashed up and toppled. I'm trying not to use swear words.

Someone in that area maybe from the local village is milking the contracting work all they can, these last two years there has been near manic attention to roadside (one car an hour country lane) ditches and drainaway gulleys, so very carefully but sometimes disasterously cut where often not even needed or no water collects, in fact no water ever does collect on that road, twenty years of near nightly visits proves it.  Perhaps his best mate is the man handing out the contracting for his line of work, far better attend to filling in the holes in the road.

Another potential haven are the verges along motorways, our local dual carriageway is having its central strip cut and the flowering weeds looked excellent and a valuable food source for insects, at that point all was to be flattened, coned down to single file and the strimmer men ready for action. I wonder if this is necessary, all the herbage was at its height and we've no reason to wave at the folks coming in the opposite direction ... so why??

Heres a fascinating blog, this man is so very knowledgable, lots to learn from him .....

and another ...

http://my.opera.com/SittingFox/blog/ .... great pics of wild Canada. 

 http://my.opera.com/Ukwildlife/blog/  .....a good list of links

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A walk in the park....

Jul. 26th, 2011 | 11:06 am

This is while my wife is being treated to her hour of accupuncture. We gets lots of guidance and access to a man that has geat experience at maintaining health, de-stressing and detecting the early stages of anything.  

My first beagle would never enter that park, he would always freeze solid and refuse to go forward, so we rambled the streets instead or read in the car. 

I often have a natter with one of the gardeners when I see him, he is good conversation and his dad too has a workshop and is building a locomotive, the lad himself when younger was also keen on the upland Cheviot landscape.

Theres a retired man that likes to be out and again, we often have had good conversations, he was a railway track inspector, literally walking the line and checking whatever, a great job as long as the weather is okay. I suppose (I hope) a certain amount of thinking ahead and avoiding a bad weather forecast would be essential. It is amazing how wide his knowledge is. He physically reminds me of my wifes uncle S, yet in all other ways a totally different and much more enjoyable man.  We passed by as he sat at the bench and I'm always happy to say hello. 

However two points struck me yesterday. First was meeting a woman maybe forty years old that unfoldingly had a littlle bit of a mental difficulty and the second was on our way back seeing the young lad that is stuck with having to be with his Dad at his drinks and refreshments kiosk.

The woman was taking her time along the path among the trees and started to actually feel the bark surface, I later realise she probably craved the non threatening sensory input. "You a botanist .. hello...." I started and after a little hesitation she responded nicely. In short we had a cracking half hour conversation, poor thing suffered alchoholic and dangerous partners, seems her ex went on to kill. Oh heck. Its a strange place the city, all sorts of people are there, some a little different to say the least. I think it can only be accellerated by modernday web and computer use, it feeds strange tastes and near eliminates an ordinary interaction. I suppose it all depends on how much ppl interplay you desire or can achieve. I'm lucky as having a cute dog on a lead opens lots of doors to a conversation. Its the north of England too, further south and perhaps ppl would be colder.

I really liked the woman, we both agreed to look out for one another next time. It was an an education to hear how others have such dreadful difficulties, a debt burden, hellish teenage kids, poor work prospects. She had twice been on degree courses politics and economics and had a certain brightness yet some strange manners unfolded, an occasional odd inappropriate wordplay and occasionally a near random word retrieval (places, things sort of relevant)  with merely the slightest connection. I didn't mind this, I enjoyed her being herself and hopefully she felt safe and non-threatened. She even gave her address away and I immediately had to say for goodness sake NEVER do that. How silly and naive. Nevertheless she was interesting and I hope we meet again. In my case when I'm out I have started to use a different name for the dog, the web is far too easy for information retrieval.

The little lad however did not leave me with such a happy memory, before I spoke he had the most unhappy fixed stare into the only little tunnel of space that was devoid of people and activity; as if this hideous often repeated ordeal, daily I assume had gone on for too long. Wow, he tugged my heart strings at his predicament, a ten year old bored witless and hating every second, his eyes fixed at some distant point near mesmerising himself for time to be bearable. Like having to visit a house or inlaws that bore you witless. In some ways I could appreciate his problem, yet I soon learnt in life to turn it into an advantage, having a dog to walk is the best answer and if not that take a book and read, or sketch and draw, or a newspaper if older.

I rambled back a few yards letting Smud lead me and comically sort of bent sideways to catch his attention, he smiled near immediately and I think he remembered me from earlier in the year or last year. Small talk served its purpose and I made a point of connecting with the parents.

I have had a brainwave literally a few seconds ago writing this. I have a £20 book token here, I shall add to it if need be, or maybe use abebooks or ebay and get him a good book something like the Dorling Kindersley illustrated childrens encyclopedia. Wow, brilliant idea !!!!  .. he will be so lucky to paraphrase Xiao Xia.

I'll get the encyclopedia, a good book on sketching and maybe a fiction book. Three, thats a lucky number.

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Cellphone radiation.

Jul. 25th, 2011 | 12:11 am

I think this might be the Karl Muller I wrote to as a penpal in the early 1970's.

He mentions he was  'wireless mad even as a kid'  so could well be Karl from Swaziland.

He was very bright and an excellent penpal. The article mentions he was a physics lecturer, actually the exact same activity that I think I should have pursued though at a much lower academic level. We were both amateur radio short wave mad, Karl was much more proficient at morse code (charlie whiskey ie cw) than I ever was. Yet, in my rural isolation Karl was a valued and valuable friend, a lucky find via an old ad I responded to in Practical Wireless magazine placed by a similar teenage enthusiast in Erith, Kent.  

Here is a most interesting article from Karl re cellphone radiation, views I full well agree with .....


Postscript .. certainly this seems to be Karl.

Reading this overview of his education and career I cannot feel anything but wonderment and awe ....



This is a paste of when Karl was called to enumerate his education, interests and studies. He exercised great patience with such crass and inane silliness. Well done Karl.


 Originally Posted by Klos 
Let me guess, you don't hold any degree or qualification that could be deemed part of a scientific area?

I was really hoping to avoid this, but since my background is called into question:

I have a BSc majoring in physics and applied maths from Wits University, sub-majoring in maths, maths stats and computer science. This was back in the day when Wits was running an IBM 360 with the fastest compiler in the world.

I have a first-class honours degree in applied maths from Wits, specialising in general relativity, the axiomatic formulation of quantum mechanics (I got over 90% for that course) and what we called RQEMHD -- relativistic quantum electromagnetohydrodynamics, or plasma physics. I sat in on a physics honours course in classical electrodynamics which basically consisted of working through Jackson's famous text, and doing virtually every problem in the book -- I sincerely hope I've forgotten more electrodynamics than most engineers will ever learn.

I worked in the low-temperature lab for two years, doing SQUID (superconducting quantum interference detector) measurements -- I was actually the guy who got the device working, along with another student. This is basically measuring individual quanta of magnetic flux, the most sensitive EM measurements which are physically possible.

Starting in my second year, for ten years altogether I demonstrated physics pracs to engineering and medical students, including doing SAR measurements with radioactive sources to teach medics how to do radiation dosimetry. If there are doctors out there who understand anything about SARs, it's because some schmuck like me patiently taught them. The point of the experiment was to show that the experiment itself was safe -- I used to tell the students, when they had finished the calculations, "Safe for you, maybe -- but I do this three times a week for six weeks a year, so am I safe?" -- and I did that, as I say, for ten years. I sometimes wonder if my sensitivity to microwaves is not a result of all that radiation exposure.

I was told I was doing "too much physics" in my applied maths honours -- just three courses out of fifteen -- so I did my dissertation on the computer modelling of the evolution of ecosystems over geological time. This produced some very interesting results which I was told were anomalies (in particular, a "boom or bust" behaviour in ecosystems) -- these are now a routine part of what is called "complexity theory". But I know more about ecosystem dynamics than a lot of biologists, and the ecological impact is in fact my main concern with microwaves.

I saw just about my entire honours class go to the US to study further -- I felt it was nuts for Africa to export scientists to the developed world, and decided to become a teacher. (I was generally regarded as insane by my peers -- I'm quite used to being called crazy.) I wanted to do it properly, so I got a scholarship to do my teacher training at King's College in London, specialising in physics education, which certificate I also got with distinction. King's is very famous for its science, including the spectroscopy which led to the discovery of DNA, we heard all about it.

I worked in black education in SA, teaching science and maths in Soweto and lecturing Unisa physics at the Soweto College; and then spent five years lecturing physics at Wits (1983-87). I realised there were massive problems in science education in SA, and became concerned with the language of the classroom. I did my master's in science classroom discourse, recording and transcribing hundreds of hours of dialogue in both black and white schools. No one did any work like that at the time, I had to fight to get it approved -- but also got that with distinction in the end.

My research focused on the concept of "explanation" in science and in the classroom, and I undertook a complete review of all the mainstream texts in the philosophy of science and the scientific method -- Hempel, Nagel, Popper etc. I sincerely hope I have forgotten more about this than most people will ever learn. I ended up using Wittgenstein's concept of "language games" as the most effective way of understanding what was going wrong in our classrooms. But yes, pal, I know about "scientific method".

If you've ever transcribed language verbatim, and found how long it takes, you'll understand that this research involved literally thousands of hours with headphones on, transcribing classroom language recorded in dusty and very noisy Soweto schools, as well as northern suburbs white schools, literally noting every "um" and "er", timing pauses, identifying speakers. I interviewed students and teachers, transcribed the interviews, then "triangulated" with further interviews which were also transcribed. I had to study all the available instruments in the literature for assessing "attention" in the classroom, and I developed my own -- no point registering that something was said, unless you can show that people were paying attention.

No one did anything remotely like that back in the 1980s, apart from me. No one is more qualified to talk about "attention" in the SA classroom in the old days, and compare with what is happening now, than I am. And I can say honestly that in ALL that time, and in ALL my teaching to 1994, I never saw ONE instance of anything remotely like "attention deficit disorder", and certainly not in black students. Now it is an epidemic in our schools. Teachers have told me that there are regular classes in Jo'burg where *every single child* is lined up at break and given Ritalin by their teacher, who has become an unlicensed drug dispenser.

As a trained observer, I see things going on in society that laypeople will not even notice -- I'll say more about this when I get time, but this is clearly what gets up your nose. I raised this pandemic of ADD on Dariusz Leszczynski's blog on the Finnish govt website, and said -- there are major shifts visible in society which correlate with the introduction of cellphones, why don't you researchers look at this? As I say, that blog was promptly removed.

For a while, when I needed some money, I worked as a systems analyst for JCI, doing satellite image processing, liaising with Hartebeeshoek observatory for Landsat satellite tapes, and correcting the images to fit geological maps. So I hate to say it, but I've been a rocket scientist.

But above all, I've had a lifelong obsession with radio, since the days when I grew up in the bush in Swaziland, with no phones, tarred roads or electricity. At age five, I was given a Morse buzzer by a British military radio operator, and he taught me how to send and receive. It is a fact that I was learning Morse literally while I was learning to read. I built my first one-valve transmitter when I was 15, and used to broadcast music to my school friends -- surprised I never got caught. I became a licensed radio ham ZS6BHW in 1975, and although I've been off the air for years, I still have my licence. I set up a new transmitter and antennas at the Wits Radio Club ZS6WRC, and specialised in talking to the Russians in Morse -- fantastic operators, and I could handle 40wpm, a blistering speed. I have a longstanding fascination with Russian science, and I was in the International Short Wave League when they did triangulations of the Russian "Woodpecker" signals in the mid-1970s, I followed that whole story, heard the Woodpecker all over the short waves.

And as you will notice, I still try to follow Russian science, particularly in terms of microwave radiation and health. I have all the original studies from the 1960s when they were first reporting "microwave sickness".

I've always been fascinated by military radio applications, and my first legal foray on the air was through another British military radio operator in Swaziland in the 1970s, they had a listening post there. Even now, some of my best sources are contractors working on military radar and communications. But a conversation when I was nine years old with a Portuguese military operator, trapped in the army in Mozambique because he knew too much and they wouldn't let him go, taught me to stay clear of the military myself.

Around 1999, I realised that there was a huge problem with cellphones and health, and I moved into journalism, specifically because I saw that a media effort was needed. I do not write any more -- it's very hard as a known "activist", especially with media making a fortune from cellphone advertising. I work as a sub-editor on a business wire, and I follow as best I can what is going on in the media. I have been researching the microwave health issue for a decade now, and have vast piles of paper and literally hundreds of PEER-REVIEWED studies on all of this. I could be rich if I'd taken my knowledge and gone into industry; but I cannot take one cent for any of this work, or I'll be accused of "scaremongering for money". I have seriously compromised my finances by taking up this issue of public health. I don't expect any thanks, but attacks such as yours are a real bonus, well done, pal. You have certainly performed *your* civic duty.

I am still trying to get ONE journalist in this country to record simple facts such as the Minister of Health withdrawing all the RF health regulations in November 2002. We confirmed this through questions asked in Parliament, and Manto Tshabalala-Msimang said in writing that there was no need for regulations, the cellphone operators could regulate themselves -- the foxes officially in charge of the henhouse. A good story, you would think. Not one SA journalist thinks this is fit to print. But we try.

Anyway -- since you're attacking my background -- that's a little bit of what I've done. Am I qualified in your expert opinion to open my trap, and try warn people of the dangers of microwaves?
end of quote.

I am utterly astounded at such ability. I had no idea how gifted he was at mathematics.

Karl is exercising incredible patience with such crass inane brick wallers and the unthinking comments that prompted his posting the above resume, yet he will know fine well to expect such silliness. I wish him the utmost good luck with all his pioneering work, quite an unusual and valuable human being.

I too found that a subject such as wind turbines being sited in the wrong places and trying to bring into the open the much tilted and biased 'financial playing field' that encourages these overall dubious masts and windmills really drew out some fixed and biased views. You have to remember typically they only carry a twenty five year life expectancy and in some cases the manufacturers claim obsolesence after five !!!! ...I bet that makes a lot of old millwrights turn in their graves, they planned for three hundred. Nearby at a hospital there is a big turbine stationary for months, blade tip dropped off so the whole thing is to be scrapped !! This beggars belief. Closer still another turbine has never turned from new ... the worlds most expensive 'ornament'. Also, it is very difficult to get 'windies' to admit the coldest days are windless, that conventional generation particularly nuclear benefits from economies of scale and that population growth is a real problem. Environmental scientist James Lovelock is well worth reading for all this. I'm more of a wave and tide power man myself with some solar and general green-ness thrown in and living by a minimal carbon footprint. And that doesn't mean driving the car ten miles to deposit six wine bottles and an unflattened cardboard box.

Interesting the Russian connection with Karl, for me the Russians were leaders in the study of soil, its structure and organisms.  That ties in with my study of algae and freshawater stuff, Karl will know far more than me onanything, yet as I have always said its 'being interested' that is the thing !!    And for me the Laika space dog connection is strong .... thats why I've re-posted it above, the material is too good for it to lie hidden in my tags.

heres a wiki for plasma ..... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plasma_(physics)

i have no idea what classical electrodynamics is ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classical_electromagnetism

Ah, now I see...... its from Maxwells Equations. Apart from the name and title that its all I know, yet I do know is the work of genius and the foundations of electrical theory that eventually would be (I'm guessing) lead to Marconi, Rutherford etc. 




I am at the edge of my capabilities here, but time reading over these wikis will be time well spent. This is the sort of material that even if you cannot really comprehend nevertheless it is a window into mans intellectual capability and scientific insight. I think with all reading it is wise to sometimes reach too far so as to put ones present activities into perspective and little by little the bar is raised. This ties in with a post I wrote a few days ago re how we teach children, how in my opinion the ultra rigid linear fashion of teaching year group by year group is not really the best way, rather I suggest we adopt the method of an imaginary favourite Uncle, a whole ball or bundle of stuff, information, words, that often leap a year or two in advance and therefore soften the shock and complexity of more difficult things in years ahead. The elementary example I used was algebra and how in my opinion the unknown 'x' and letter notation would be far better introduced much earlier in school years, not as full blocks of study but merely as 'tasters' of what is to come. Thereby clever children will be fascinated and less able will have the fear factor much reduced. 

I have a book here I bought remaindered, Matthews 'Science Teaching - the role of the history and philosophy of science' .. I shall re-read it soon.  

Postscript : I have found more re Karls endeavours at raising awareness that a modulated microwave signal could well be detrimental to living cells ....  http://www.mast-victims.org/index.php?content=journal&action=view&type=journal&id=227


And more recently.... http://mybroadband.co.za/vb/showthread.php/342155-Cellphone-radiation-killing-you-or-simply-scare-mongering/page7

heres something found quickly ...


All I know is that from reading the RSGB 'Radcom' in the early seventies you do NOT want a couple of watts of microwave r.f. next to your head and certainly not into childrens heads.

I've also blogged before how I find our modern day excessive use of the home computer and the web to have a downside and often we are better to be switching off and doing other stuff, cook a meal, into the garden, read, study, use pen and paper, into the countryside etc etc indicate theres more happening with this 'modern lifestyle'  tool than we realise. I wonder what studies are going on as to the long term effects and alteration to our culture and community interaction with this contraption?? i think its fair to say that a lot of young peoples outlook and knowledge is narrower because of the home computer and so many of them have no idea at performing simple tasks other than hitting a keyboard.

Here Karl contributes to the discussion re microwave radiation and cellphones and more importantly the radiation from masts/ base stations .... https://www.economist.com/user/3074197/comments

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I've just heard this on r3......

Jul. 24th, 2011 | 11:30 pm

Nicholson & Lee, eds.  The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse. 1917.
335. The Ballad of Sir Bors
By John Masefield
WOULD I could win some quiet and rest, and a little ease,
In the cool grey hush of the dusk, in the dim green place of the trees,
Where the birds are singing, singing, singing, crying aloud
The song of the red, red rose that blossoms beyond the seas.
Would I could see it, the rose, when the light begins to fail,        5
And a lone white star in the West is glimmering on the mail;
The red, red passionate rose of the sacred blood of the Christ,
In the shining chalice of God, the cup of the Holy Grail.
The dusk comes gathering grey, and the darkness dims the West,
The oxen low to the byre, and all bells ring to rest;       10
But I ride over the moors, for the dusk still bides and waits,
That brims my soul with the glow of the rose that ends the Quest.
My horse is spavined and ribbed, and his bones come through his hide,
My sword is rotten with rust, but I shake the reins and ride,
For the bright white birds of God that nest in the rose have called,       15
And never a township now is a town where I can bide.
It will happen at last, at dusk, as my horse limps down the fell,
A star will glow like a note God strikes on a silver bell,
And the bright white birds of God will carry my soul to Christ,
And the sight of the Rose, the Rose, will pay for the years of hell.       20

I think that is quite wonderful.

The ingredients to lift us away to another place/ world.


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A medley of the usual.

Jul. 23rd, 2011 | 12:29 am

As usual our chums are very keen on our arriving.


At left are wild raspberries, tiny little things with not a lot of taste and at right are wild growing red currant, tho whether a garden escape or deliberately planted or after all a true wild form I do not know. The latter make excellent eating and this year I think there is more of them.

However, earlier that day .......

Meanwhile at our morning haunt our moorhen chums are very aware of the tiny third spoonfuls of feed left for them. In my mind I hope that this feeding helps the parents, takes pressure off them as they have young to feed.


I have always been very keen on wild carrot ie Daucus carotta, an incredibly beautiful thing. I am actually thrilled each year when they appear. I would suppose quite a few at the p-heap are distributed by my efforts in years gone by.


At left is burnett, one of the rose family and right is sneezewort, Achillea ptarmica. These are like old friends to me, very representative of the locality they inhabit and each year at this time there they are. They are very widespread and regarded as nothing special but to me they bring an association of time and place, being places that I enjoy.


The morning light suits the place well, evening visits particularly with low summer light cast shadow where we need illumination.




At left is I think, hedge parsley, at right angelica; the latter along with cow parsley were new to the p-h about seven or eight years ago.  




At right the seed head of goatsbeard. 



Sneezewort on the left and Smud checking for predators among the wild carrot.  


Above is our evening location.


At left is the view from among he redcurrant and at right hearing the song I had assumed would be the yellowhammer, yet seems not. It was a late evening simple repetitive chirp but incorporating I assume a complex sound profile. I've Eric Hoskins here in a latterday Collins New Naturalist, I wonder if that would illuminate.

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Feeding birds this morning.

Jul. 22nd, 2011 | 10:13 am


One thing I notice is that no camera or computer screen that I use can pick up and reproduce the rich deep crimson of clematis 'Rouge Cardinale'. I would be closer if I used watercolour.


I've been thinking about the car thing, two posts ago. My income seems to be three decades out of step in that I still worry whether we will have sufficient money to heat ourselves thro the winter and the cost of running a very modest small car. My luxury is that I feed horses and wildlife and make a big effort through the worst of the winter weather, in my own mind that is my self worth and status. Other people are different, they prefer the brand new shiney things from the car dealership, its as simple as that.

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