Thursday, December 3, 2020

Easy Round Trip To DIA

 Got SLW to the airport in plenty of time. It was very nice to see the mountains again, as last time we drove to DIA there was so much smoke from the fires that it was like Armageddon. 

BTW, all the fires I've been following have been declared 100% contained. "Trevor the Tree Carver" told me he took a drive up through there now that the roads are open, and some of the areas got singed, while other parts are just gone. He said in the hottest places the trees burned right down to the grass, and then the grass burned away. Nothing but dirt and rocks now. He also told me he's been trying to get some of the "Beetle Kill" wood from areas where the bugs got the trees, but it's quite difficult unless you know somebody. Some is on private land, and some is Forest Service land, and he's still trying to figure it all out. He said the wood is quite beautiful, with many different colors running through it.

And I finished up a work space in one of the unused basement rooms so the DIL could "work at home" from here. Her employer has had to severely cut back the number of people on-site due to Emperor Polis' latest Unlawful Edicts. So, most of the office staff is now telecommuting, and since she does some kind of customer service/liaison function, she can easily work from "home". It had previously been the desk with the weather station and mini-server, along with having all the gear I use to program radio gear with, so I had to pack up the PC I normally have sitting there, and rearrange the weather station and server, roll over a good chair from the workshop side of the basement. She brought over her laptop and docking station yesterday, and we set everything up and tested it. Worked fine, except that all these new fangled laptops ONLY have an HDMI video output, and one of the monitors I'm loaning here ONLY had regular video, and a DVI video port. She was supposed to bring another monitor and cable by tonight, but she hasn't shown up. Oh, well.....

So it's me and the dog for the next 10 days, and the "DIL-in-the-Basement" starting on Monday. She'll bring over TLG on Wednesday, so I've got to get cracking here to come up with some "Grandpa" stuff he and I can do.

And no, Beans, I still haven't bought a snowblower. We've got ZERO precip in the forecast for the next 10 days, and as soon as the model I wanted came in, it was gone. I may just have to order one on-line so I'm in the que for the next delivery.

And speaking of the weather, I just read where KFTG, the NWS Weather Radar in Denver, will be down hard for three weeks. The "Bull Gear" (like a giant-size ring gear) used to rotate the antenna in azimuth has failed. The parts are on-hand, and the specialists from the NWS Radar Operations Center in Norman, OK are either here, so since this is a well-known procedure, they should have it back up per the schedule.

I was about ready to spew some venom about this like geez, don't you guys inspect them at regular intervals, and then I read the story about how they did this to the weather radar in Binghamton, NY. The gear is buried inside the antenna pedestal, and doesn't appear to have any inspection ports you can use to look inside.

Le OUCH.....

Good thing the normal service life of this gear is 15~20 years, which is about how old most of the NEXRAD (rabbit hole alert!) sites are. The NWS is researching Phased Array Radars for the replacements, but I don't know the status of that program.


  1. Good to hear that the fires are out. There is still a couple going over in Cali but not for long.

    We upgraded our laptops early this year and late last year and did away with video and are now all HDMI on both computers external monitors.

    1. Most of my PC stuff has HDMI video out, but I generally just use the DVI. The only time I bothered with HDMI was when I was in my "Video Editor" mode, and I used the 28" monitor the DIL will be using as my "Work Product" monitor, and a 24" Dell for my "Work Flow" monitor.

  2. Last Tuesday DIA was shut down, not flights in or out, while the Control Tower was cleaned because of COVID. My sister came in from Reno hours late.

    1. She got out right on time, and arrived on-time, after a 45 minute layover in Phoenix.

      Coming home she has a four hour layover in Salt Lake City. It would have cost her twice as much to get a flight with a minimal layover, so she went with frugality!


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