Thursday, November 19, 2020

Automatic Driving

No, this isn't about autonomous cars. It's about... me.

A while back I was on a very long drive coming home from seeing my grandson. I was on Interstate 90 and traffic was fairly light. And I was keeping track of the cars around me so I would know if there was someone in my blind spot (even though my car warns me). And I realized I was taking a gentle corner and not consciously thinking about it. I was doing it automatically. So I started paying attention and realized on gentle curves, I take them without thinking about it. If the curve gets too sharp, I then have to donate some conscience brain power to taking them.

I found this interesting. I've been driving for 45 years and have, apparently developed the ability to do some of it without thinking about it. At least gentle curve at not too high a speed (I had the cruise control set at 76 in a 70 zone, which is about what the Washington State Patrol will let you get away with).

Now, I actually enjoy taking corners fast and devoting brain power to it. But when I'm just cruising along, I apparently don't always have to.

Do you find yourself automatically driving? Let me know about it in the comments below.

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Netflix Disc Service


You may not realize this, but Netflix still does disc service where they send you a disc through the mail, you watch it, and send it back. This was their original business model before they got into streaming.

And I still use it. It's how I see most new movie releases. I haven't been to the theater since Incredibles 2 and that was June of 2018.

But the disc service has gotten more and more frustrating and I'm worried Netflix might shut it down. If that happens, I don't know how I'm going to see new releases. Maybe have to figure out RedBox

When I first got Netflix twenty or so years ago I sent discs to Tacoma and that's where they came from. Then I started sending them to Spokane. Spokane was great because it only took one day to get there and one day to get back. Tacoma was two or three days. I'd mail them on Friday and have discs back on Tuesday or Wednesday.

Then Spokane shut down so I was sending discs to Tacoma again. It took a little longer to get discs. 

But a bit ago, Tacoma must have shut down because I'm sending discs to and receiving them from San Jose, CA. Which is about four days each direction. 

Netflix has done one thing to help: somehow it gets notified that the disc has been sent and then they send out the next disc. But it still takes 5-6 days to get a new disc. And holidays don't help. For example, Columbus Day made it so I got discs on Friday rather than Thursday when I sent them back the Friday before. Annoying.

But as fewer and fewer people use the disc service, Netflix needs to consolidate. I understand that. It's just damn inconvenient for me. 


Thursday, November 5, 2020

Pac-12 Football Starts this Weekend

The Pac-12 finally decided to allow there to be a shortened fall football season. It's a six-game regular season and then the Pac-12 Championship game. They are calling it a seven-game season but only two teams will be playing that seventh game.

I was very disappointed when the Pac-12 decided not to have a fall season, but perhaps a spring football season. They and the Big Ten conference made the same decision. But then the Big Ten reversed itself and decided to have a fall season. That left the Pac-12 as the only conference in the FBS putting off the season. Which means that the Pac-12 teams can't compete for bowl games or for the College Football Playoff (CFP).

The University of Washington Huskies (Go Dawgs!) start the truncated season playing California in Berkeley. I have no idea what to expect. We have a new coach, new quarterback, a lot of new players. And we've had bad luck against Cal the past couple of seasons. The game will be on ESPN at 7:30 PM PDT Saturday. I'll be in front of my television.

I hate these late games.

UPDATE: There was a positive COVID test at Cal. The game may be delayed.

UPDATE 2: The Cal game was cancelled and won't be made up.

How's your college football season going? Or do you care? Let me know in the comments below.