Letter to Mark Dayton

Amazon isn’t stupid so when we modify the law in an attempt to collect sales taxes that obviously people don’t want to pay, Amazon simply says “Oh yeah. Lemme see you make me” lays a little rubber, flicks off the governor and bounces the fuck outta here. Seems Amazon and Minnesotans have much in common regarding the taxes we want to pay.

After a recent inconvenience I ran into while attempting to register an Amazon affiliate account, I was motivated to write the letter I’ve included at the bottom. It seems Minnesota is among a hand full of states whose citizens are unable to do business with Amazon.com via their affiliate program. A recent change in our Minnesota’s Tax code shifts the burden of sales tax on items distributed via internet based retailers from the purchaser to the distributor. Provided said distributor has a physical outlet in the state. So, that means for instance Target is now responsible for the sales tax on items purchased via the web since it has stores here. On the other hand Newegg.com would not be since it has no physical distribution outlets anywhere. In the confusion zone of the new law are companies like Amazon. Amazon is an internet company so at first glance you imagine they would not be affected. However any MN resident who uses Amazons affiliate marketing links to generate extra income counts as a physical distribution outlet. Thus if one MN resident uses Amazon affiliate links, Amazon has to pay the sales tax on every sale they make to a MN resident.

So the obvious decision for Amazon is to terminate all MN affiliate accounts and save themselves potentially millions in tax obligations. We on the other hand can’t just stop doing business here to avoid the cost of this. Minnesotans lose the income produced by all of the people who were earning money from internet affiliate programs like amazons. Sure maybe they weren’t paying sales tax on those transactions. But when they were collecting an income from the proceeds that money generally got spent here I betcha. Spent on goods and services that have associated sales taxes or licensing fees. Spent to pay employees or pay their property taxes or to keep their car and the gas tax fueled up. Spent paying their utilities like electric, gas, water, phone, trash, internet all of which have associated taxes as well. All of this was not enough. So we went for the triple lindie tax via this internet sales tax thing and amazon gave em the slip and we got slammed.

I realize that, in the short term, additional revenue collected from companies who don’t have the option of telling us to fuck ourselves will outweigh the estimated cost of this new policy. Note the word estimated though. Affiliate marketing is big big big business with many niches and gray area inclusions. Damn near every dollar that touches the internet is going into the hands of a company that uses some form of affiliate marketing either directly or by proxy. Ever look for a job online? Monster.com or similar? How do they make money? They either charge companies to post job openings or charge companies to review or hire applicants through their site. The companies seeking an employee is uses monster as an affiliate marketer of job openings. The item sold or transacted is you when are hired or considered for employment. As I understand things, under this new law, when I as a Minnesota resident get a new job through monster.com the company that hired me has to pay sales tax on me. Or is that only if I am hired in Minnesota? What if I’m not a Minnesota resident but I’m hired here? What if neither me nor the company is based in MN but monster.com uses affiliate marketing advertisements hosted on domains owned by MN resident? I could continue tangling this thread through many increasingly chaotic yet sensible and logical iterations but you get the point.

Which is that laws of this sort are moronic. So poorly thought out that it can only leave you wondering…. Does the law have value of any kind? Beyond suctioning as much value out of as many areas as possible? I pose that a person who is conscious and considerate of their actions effects would generally be thought of as a better person than one who does not. Do you place more value on friends that are considerate and treat people equally? Or friends that speak out against people who collect welfare while they sit on unemployment with a fake broken neck? Or who scream fuck you’s and assholes at people that pass them on the freeway but races up the exit lane to cut in front of as many people as possible during rush hour while they laugh about how dumb everyone else is for not doing the same?

I digress.

Focusing back in on this tax thing. I further pose that a millionaire like Mr Dayton, who spends our time and money so inconsiderately. Supporting laws that could be so inconsistent and unclear under what circumstances they should be applied one could only hope in the most miserable sense of the word that he did not bother to read it. A man such as this in his position could be nothing other than a half ass conman in a suit with a big bank account. One with the sole intent of stealing as much as possible from as many as possible. Honestly if you were as rich as Mr Dayton and you failed to realize how this situation with the internet tax would unfold that would mean you a have absolutely got to be either a moron or a liar. Though it could be both.

So what are we gonna do about this maybe liar, maybe moron driving our boat? I bet you would like a shot at driving wouldn’t you? Honestly I don’t even care who you are. Given the current state of things, if you had the opportunity to drive this boat we call Minnesota or home, in a boat driving contest vs Mr Dayton I’m mortgaging my house to bet on you cause that man’s a moron or a cheat. We take boating very seriously in Minnesota so we don’t let that cheater shit play and he would be sunk.

It is important to note that this internet sales tax law is a state law which narrowly proceeds similar federal laws going into effect (I don’t specifically give a shit) pretty quick here. It would probably be a good bet that they cause similar jostling at the edge of the whole country instead of the edges of the few states who tried this. Remember in school when you learned about the stamp tax or the tea tax and the how the people affected by the tax just said “Fuck you then I guess we just aren’t doing business anymore” and then england got all sad faced cause they were still all broke so they came over here to get bitch slapped?

This time in which I find myself to be living here with you. It reeks of shit just I as imagine the stench of shit to have been in 1773.


I’ll keep this simple and say: This countries people, no matter their position economically, became affluent relative to the rest of the world. Due to what we would today possibly regard as an excess of freedom and an extreme lack of taxation.

I don’t see how we could ever expect to cover a shortage with an increase. Every added tax complication equates to a lessened ability to achieve the goal a tax complication was introduced to pay for.

Mr Dayton you should know better than most, an employee will out perform his peers, produce more for his employer and all together lead a better life the less red tape there is to cut during work hours.

Step back. Take a vacation. Remember in the future to consider if the reaction to a solution you implement is likely to undo or cause a greater issue than the one you began with.

To whomever reads this,

Have a good afternoon.

Darn these shoes!

  Stark as anything I ever saw I recall my first memory of a shoe. I was very young, no more than 4. I had just come into the house and was getting my shoes off. Probably to eat lunch, so I was in a hurry. I remember struggling with them and kinda thinking, “What the heck is up with these?” I was under the impression before then that I had shoes figured. They wouldn’t be a problem going forward. You know, cause I was big now and stuff. I was gonna investigate thoroughly once they were off. Be sure never to hassle over dumb shoes again. Never, ever.

    I’m not sure if I figured it out that day but I doubt it. Somehow this day whatever day it was has stuck with me very surely. Though I haven’t the vaguest impression of how those shoes looked. No a clue what I was doing before or after, if it was nice outside, nothing. I know one thing for sure though. I investigated my shoelace between my top and bottom front teeth like a mouth guard or a piece of floss for the briefest of moments. A worthy contestant for most disagreeable experience of my life.

  Some people can’t stand nails on a chalk board or loud gum chewers. I can still feel that shoelace like it was that moment and it gives me the willies. I would take a room full of gum chewing long nailed blackboard scratchers before I thought too hard about or even looked directly at a cloth shoestring again.

  For you though it was worth it just this one time.

Alter your relationship to time

Borrow from old school prayer techniques.

Before you sleep go through and spatially map your day in detail, remember in sequence everything you did from the moment you woke up until you began meditating on the day. You will usually find yourself thinking differently about the day and that you have established some balance, de-emphasising the last significant thing that happened to you before you went to sleep. Do this every night. It’s not praying its internal structuring. They call it praying to stop you doing it. Wake up to the labyrinth of the moment and look at the routes you take from moment to moment.

Mind too blown

Mind fucks for this week.

Human ear created with a 3D printer

Human ear created with a 3D printer

 

Training Cells to do boolean functions

Training Cells to do boolean functions

 

Human Connectome Project

Human Connectome Project

 

Thinking Machine 4

Thinking Machine 4

 

Self Replicating RNA

Self Replicating RNA

 

Living Crystals

Living Crystals

Living Crystals

Living Crystals

 

 

 

 

Look in the sky!! Is it a mirage? A hologram? A thingy? No it’s…um. Yeah. All of those I guess.

Scientists working at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have demonstrated for the first time a new type of lens that bends and focuses ultraviolet (UV) light in such an unusual way that it can create ghostly, 3D images of objects that float in free space.* The easy-to-build lens could lead to improved photolithography, nano scale manipulation and manufacturing, and even high-resolution three-dimensional imaging, as well as a number of as-yet-unimagined applications in a diverse range of fields.

ultraviolet (UV) metamaterial
A NIST team has created an ultraviolet (UV) metamaterial formed of alternating nanolayers of silver (green) and titanium dioxide (blue). The metamaterial has an angle-independent negative refractive index, enabling it to act as a flat lens. When illuminated with UV light (purple) a sample object of any shape placed on the flat slab of metamaterial is projected as a three-dimensional image in free space on the other side of the slab. Here a ring-shaped opening in an opaque sheet on the left of the slab is replicated in light on the right. Bottom left: Scanning electron micrograph of a ring-shaped opening in a chromium sheet located on the surface of a flat slab of metamaterial. Bottom right: Optical micrograph of the image projected beyond the slab under UV illumination, demonstrating that the metamaterial slab acts as a flat lens.
Credit: Lezec/NIST
View hi-resolution image

“Conventional lenses only capture two dimensions of a three-dimensional object,” says NIST’s Ting Xu. “Our flat lens is able to project three-dimensional images of three-dimensional objects that correspond one-to-one with the imaged object.”

The new lens is formed from a flat slab of metamaterial with special characteristics that cause light to flow backward—a counterintuitive situation in which waves and energy travel in opposite directions, creating a negative refractive index. The new material is a realization of a theory first proposed in 1967 by Russian physicist Victor Veselago. In addition to describing how a negative refraction index could occur, Veselago reasoned that a material with a refractive index of -1 could be used to make a lens that is flat, as opposed to traditional refractive lenses. A flat lens with a refractive index of -1 could be used to directly image three-dimensional objects, projecting a three-dimensional replica into free space. 

A negative-index flat lens like this also has been predicted to enable the transfer of image details substantially smaller than the wavelength of light and create higher-resolution images than are possible with lenses made of positive-index materials such as glass.

Researchers have managed to create a number of metamaterials, which are engineered on a subwavelength scale, to achieve Veselago’s vision. But until now, making metamaterials that work in the UV has been impossible because it required making structures with features as small as 10 nanometers, or 10 billionths of a meter. 

Researchers working at NIST took inspiration from a theoretical metamaterial design recently proposed by a group at the FOM Institute for Atomic and Molecular Physics in Holland. Aside from achieving record-short wavelengths, their metamaterial lens is inherently easy to fabricate. It doesn’t rely on nanoscale patterns, but instead is a simple sandwich of alternating nanometer-thick layers of silver and titanium dioxide, the construction of which is routine.

Their lens has a focal length of about half a millionth of a meter—challenging to achieve with conventional refractive optics such as glass lenses—and the metamaterial can be turned on and off using higher frequency light as a switch, allowing the flat lens to also act as a shutter with no moving parts.

“Our lens will offer other researchers greater flexibility for manipulating UV light at small length scales,” says Lezec. “With its high photon energies, UV light has a myriad of applications, including photochemistry, fluorescence microscopy and semiconductor manufacturing. That, and the fact that our lens is so easy to make, should encourage other researchers to explore its possibilities.”

The new work was performed in collaboration with researchers from the Maryland NanoCenter at the University of Maryland, College Park; Syracuse University; and the University of British Columbia, Kelowna, Canada.

For more details, see the May 23, 2013, NIST news announcement, “The Better to See You With: Scientists Build Record-Setting Metamaterial Flat Lens” at www.nist.gov/cnst/20130523_flatlens.cfm.

* T. Xu, A. Agrawal, M. Abashin, K.J. Chau and H.J. Lezec. All-angle negative refraction and active flat lensing of ultraviolet light. Nature. 497, 470–474 Published online: May 23. 2013. doi:10.1038/nature12158

http://www.nist.gov/public_affairs/releases/lens-052813.cfm

My gosh golly where does the darn time go eh?

I think we all have this feeling. Which amounts to a query of times doings between roughly around then and just before sometime this evening.

I finish that thought.  Just then is when I’m fucking up I think. I wonder next if during the time in question….. time was sitting there thinking the same shit about me. Wondering if I was ever coming back. 

Now I feel like a jerk.  Suddenly realizing I’m the one who hasn’t been there. Time has always been right where I left it last waiting for me to come back

And on a side note I am unsatisfied with the way sometime refuses to accept an ‘ish suffix. That’s bullshit.

I would use sometime for mad nonsense like

  • Sometimish
  • Sometimeishly
  • Sometimeishnicity

See that?!? With the E in there?!!  I mean obviously I will still use sometime as I please. This uncertainty of how to handle that vowel remainder…  leaves this nasty unsure where to stand vowel  taste in my brain that I just can’t shake.  The whole time it acts like it’s all uncomfortable with the ish and then before I blink it’s covered in it and neither of us know how or why.

Mesmerize me Sun

The Sun. What a confusing concept. Really the thing is horrible. I know we exist in large part due to its good graces. We couldn’t possibly be of any value to this beast were it sentient in some fashion to gauge our worth. It’s perfectly content spitting radioactive plasma loogies around willy nilly. Like the bad guy in a cowboy flick. Firing off a few pistol rounds over his head after taking a big pot, incidentally killing a hooker in the room above the table.

I recently discovered the plethora of  solar observation data available publicly. Images and video up to the moment rendered via wavelengths in every color. The following video I made from images and videos i collected via SOHO images courtesy of ESA and NASA’s SDO. Mainly scraped using Helioviewer which allows you to choose from at least 6 different observation stations mainly in orbit I presume. You can choose the wavelength of light measured in some cases. On top of that it will spit out Hi-Res time-lapse images that amount to video of the sun’s surface. Super-impose, mix and match and download for modification to your heart’s content. It’s quite distracting. The sun is obscenely awesome to look at in this way. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

 

I started out to make the video to fulfill some of the mozilla webmaker badge requirements of the popcorn maker tool. Ended up just doing the thing out of my own images and whatnot via camtasia studio.