Major Rant – Title 24

In its every intention, Title 24 tries to reduce power consumption for new and remodeled buildings. In its current structure, it can make it worse.

I really have been trying to be aware in my design and purchase of lighting in our new kitchen remodel. I have been looking at every different lighting option and in particular, LED in the assumption that anything that doesn’t have a “heater” in it and creates waste heat, is good (BTW, this is a whole other blog regarding LED lighting). One of the first things I ran into in my design is California’s Title 24 requirements. At least up to August of this year, California has standards that have a rather strange way of promoting and calculating effective power usage for kitchens.

  1. There is no limit on the power you can put into the lighting of a kitchen. (a bad thing)
  2. The wattage allocated for high efficacy lighting must be 50 percent or more of total lighting wattage. (a bad thing)
  3. Any fixture that can take non-high efficacy lighting devices like incandescent will be counted at the maximum wattage of the fixture. (a bad thing)
  4. High efficacy lighting is based on the number of lumen per watt (a good thing)

What this means is if you have 200 watts of low efficient lighting, you must have 200 watts of high efficacy lighting which makes no sense at all. In fact it could force you into putting more high efficacy lighting in that you need. In addition to this, the old screw-type Edison base for light bulbs is a standard. There are many more compact florescent bulbs out there designed for this base than for a proprietary pin-type base for recessed lighting. Guess which one is cheaper? In order to “comply” with title 24, you need to use non-standard fixtures.

If they really want to “fix” this, they could just limit the number of watts per square foot and strike out this silliness with standard lighting fixtures.

Startbucks Gold Card..

Months fly by and I get back into the mode of throwing out pointers and thoughts again.

I came across a nice little deal in the last couple of weeks; the Starbucks Gold Card. For $25 a year you get 10% off of over-priced purchases but what hooked me was the fact you also get 2 hours a day of free WiFi at a Starbucks ATT Hotspot. Nice little deal when ATT wants to ding you for $6 to $10 for some part or whole of a day. Just 4 or 5 two-hour visits pays this thing off. The pricing works well if you are a light user of these spots. If I was more of a road warrior then I would look more at Boingo. As someone that is looking for a place to do some work between meetings, it fits the bill.

Musicina Blender

Whew!

I just came away from a week and a half contract gig that had me working from 7am to 11pm many of the nights. Hence the period of radio silence from me. So, I need to get my Blog legs going again.

In the mean time, I just reconnected with a friend and ex-coworker of mine from back when I was the Chief Engineer for KKSF. Nick Francis is now at KPLU in Tacoma Washington and has always been a creative guy. He has started up a new blog called Musicina Blender. It is a list of mash-up that Nick creates. It is pretty interesting how Peggy Lee’s “Fever” can have a reggae beat in what Nick calls “Reggae Fever“. Or Dylan goes Pop with “Positively Fifth Beatle“.

Check it out.

Metro Traffic adds tens of millions of virtual traffic reporters via cell deal.

From “Inside Radio” for August 5th 2008….

Metro Traffic adds tens of millions of virtual traffic reporters via cell deal. Westwood One’s Metro Traffic and AirSage partner to use cell phone signals to provide faster alerts, more reliable travel times and better alternate route suggestions. AirSage compiles anonymous data from signals sent from 53 million Sprint Nextel mobile phones on traffic flow and speed.

AirSage’s network covers 150,000 miles of roadway, compared to fixed-traffic data sensors, which monitor real-time traffic for about 7,000 miles of interstates. The new reporting technique will begin rolling out next month.

What a great idea. Typically folks have been dependent on getting traffic info from the sensors that folks like CalTrans puts in the road bed.

I would expect that the technology wouldn’t be too complex to do this. You just need to track when a particular cell phone gets handed off between cell sites. Since the tower locations (Lat/Lon) are known, you can determine speed. You can even use the Inverse Square Law and smooth out the signal strength the cell site is getting to see how fast someone is going towards or away from a cell site.

Restart…

Here we go again.

I have recently “retired” from a 9 to 5 life and hence I have a couple of spare minutes to rant about things in the forum. It may be to a “null” audience or someone may stumble across it and find it useful. Heh, that is what the Internet is all about, a way for anyone to publish ideas and thoughts. “Once more unto the breach”…

Tim

So much has changed…

Gads… Has it been more than three years?

Right around the time of the previous post, my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer. This was a relapse and it was pretty far along before it was found. In short, he tried one chemo treatment and it just took him out quicker. He passed away the end of January. About 5 days later, my mother had a stroke that eventually ended her life 10 days after Dad passed away.

Needless to say, this was a very stressful time. Not only both of my parents passing away within days of each other, but I was the executor of the estate and had to address the funeral for both, accounts, lawyers, etc.. My sister Kim, was and still is a great help in this time.

Blogging was definitely not a priority. I only recently look at it again as I am back into a place I can dedicate some time working on it.

I miss both my parents and I am grateful for the help and support I have with my family.

The blog was originally meant to contain rants on democratizing global communications. It is still a very guiding purpose for me, but I want to not box myself into just that here. I hope you won’t mind.

Welcome…

Seems that I have been encouraged by folks to start a blog.

I tell folks that I only want to deal with ISO layers 3 and below but it seems that I get into these rants with folks that apply to 4 and above and they say it should be documented. Hmmm… Ok, I’ll bite.

A little background on me… One of my main “themes” in life is to give tools to the world that help them express their ideas. I have this rather utopian idea that if everyone has tools to exchange ideas then the world will be a better place. Everyone should have access to the printing press and the distribution system to get the ink to the folks that want to read it.

So, I have been involved with starting community radio stations, hooking up personal networks like FidoNet to the Internet, starting ISPs, co-founding anti-spam companies and starting up free community wireless networks.

My actions and thoughts are mainly liberal with some libertarian thrown in.

As you can figure out from above, in the coming posts, I want to cover technology and how it relates to giving folks access to the printing press and distribution.

We’ll both see how this goes… :-)