Thursday, August 18, 2011

Blog and Map Making (with tools new and old)

OK, clearly I need to learn some additional editing as it wasn't problem free.

Aerial view of Lake Tahoe as seen (I surmise) from the Nevada side with the snow-capped Sierra Nevada Mountains in the distance.

See bottom part of this entry for why the image is relevant.



I brought my work laptop home again, in part because I wanted to update this blog now that I have Internet Explorer 9, which I was able to download with a young co-fellow co-worker's help.

But it turns out that I.E. 9 is TOTALLY incompatible with Blogger -- far worse than I.E. 8. Initially, it seemed to have less problems but still it is not as easy as in Firefox (which we are not allowed to use). Specifically, the HTML code automatically generated in "Compose" mode was much chaotic, messy and uncontrollable than with Explorer 8.
BUT! It turns out that there is no way to highlight anything in "Compose" mode in order to color / bold / italicize / otherwise select text. Instead, everything is treated as a sort of weird image that cannot be manipulated.

I therefore -- tentatively -- downloaded Chrome tonight, which I will find out tomorrow (when I get to work) it remains on my computer. And it works far better with Blogger -- except it turned out in order to have it work so well that I needed to edit my Blogger settings to be able to edit the text in these ways (this was under "settings")

However, if it turns out that we may not use Chrome at all, then I have a big problem and my blogging activities will be badly curtailed -- specifically, I will not be able to do ANYTHING with text except to have the default settings in Blogger. I will instead have to buy a new monitor (!) for my old computer (or a new computer outright, which I cannot do now) and use it awkwardly that way.

(Oh, and you can't go back to Explorer 8 once you have Windows 7 installed.)


Speaking of computers, my dad wants to buy one (his first ever) and he expects me to help him when I visit him in October down in Florida.I discovered this during a conversation tonight (one of our shorter ones), or rather, a shorter one of the usual usual 80-20 monologue, but during which he actually said that I do not respect him.

My dad and I and our wonderful bull mastiff dog, Borky, as seen in our house in Long Branch, New Jersey, circa 1977.


Well, OF COURSE that's true: We love each other but we sure as heck don't respect each other. We haven't for decades.

That aside, the computer thing is especially annoying as he has planned for me to help him buy a computer -- his first ever -- when I go down to Florida in October. Oh, God ... 

So there I will be in the frickin' Palm Coast Supertarget or massive Wal-Mart ostensibly trying to help him buy something I dread ... that dominates my life ... and with which I have so much bad luck.

It will be the equivalent of when he tried to teach me to drive stick shift. That was good for shrieking and screaming on some rural roads in Upper Freehold Township, New Jersey, where he was living at the time, circa 1987.

More to the point, my 70-year old father living the life he does so doesn't need a frickin' computer.


Other than that, I don't have a whole lot to say right now except one thing: The National Hurricane Center must think it has to name as many blobs of thunderstorms and hybrid frontal systems at 40N latitude over the central North Atlantic in order to keep up with its over-hyped seasonal tropical system outlook (see figure below) that was recently updated to say the same thing.

Here was the original outlook (not a forecast) from May for the Atlantic hurricane season and the NHC/TPC really hasn't altered it as far as I can tell.


Where in the World??

World map by Henricus Hondius, 1641.

OK, I have decided to institute a new feature on this blog ... It involves focusing (obsessing?) on geographic oddities, less based on physical characteristics than just map boundaries.

I already did this with the northwest corner of Tarrant County, Texas in a longer, more unwieldy entry on April 21, 2011. And, of course, I've written a number of times -- most recently here -- about the corner boundary stones of the original Federal Territory (District of Columbia).


Google satellite view of California and Nevada, labeled, with their angled meeting point in Lake Tahoe noted.


Today's geographic point will be one that has long interested me: That "kink" in the California - Nevada boundary in Lake Tahoe. It is located "on" the lake and (I'm guessing in all likelihood) is not marked.

However, long story short, the exact point is where 39N latitude meets the 120W longitude -- involving the Von Schmidt line surveyed in 1872 that marked the boundary from Oregon to the north shore of Lake Tahoe and the oblique (azimuth) line extending from the U.S. Coastal & Geodectic Survey on the south shore to the lake to the Colorado River that marks California's boundary with Nevada to the south of this point.

The above figure is taken from Part 2 "The California / Nevada State Boundary" by John P. Wilusz in the Jan. 2002 issue of Professional Surveyer and available online here.

And with that, I really will end this entry.

I do not plan to post another entry until Saturday (circumstances warranting) do not plan to post another entry until Saturday. I'm not taking the computer home tomorrow and on Friday night I'm preoccupied (Nationals baseball game and then to Bullfeathers in Capitol Hill with Gary).


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