Completed KM4ACK antenna

Want to build your own ham radio antenna? The KM4ACK kit makes it easy

You might think ham radio is all about the radios, but it’s really about the antennas. That becomes apparent when you move into the long-distance HF bands, where having the right antenna type at the right length with ideal placement makes all the difference. You can have a fantastic 100-watt HF transceiver like the Icom

Have hamsters been culled in Hong Kong beacuse of Covid

News roundup for Fri, Jan 21, 2022

Store shelves from coast to coast are increasingly bare. Biden says shelves being 11% empty is not much different than before the pandemic. It looks pretty different to me, folks: Pay in the UK is not keeping up with inflation, and for most people this means, essentially, that they’re getting a pay cut. In the

Was the explosion of the volcano in Tonga so big that was seen from space

News roundup for Tue, Jan 18, 2022

The US is desperately short on blood. People are dying in hospitals from a lack of blood supply. Please consider donating. If folks tell me in the comments they’re going to go donate, I will pop on that n95 and go donate in solidarity, too. A volcano in Tonga erupted in spectacular fashion this week.

Is Australia buying tanks in fear of China's expansion

News roundup for Fri, Jan 14, 2022

The Supreme Court shoots down the federal mandate for testing/vaccines for companies employing over 100 people, but upholds mandates for health care workers: Poland says the risk of war with Russia is higher than it’s been in decades: The Department of Justice (DOJ) is forming a Domestic Terrorism Unit. Although it’s clear that polarization is

Have people been stranded on Amtrak trains due to bad weather

News roundup for Fri, Jan 7, 2022

There’s snow across the South and the East Coast with hundreds of thousands left periodically without power. This storm system is now forming into a huge bomb cyclone that could hit the British Isles and Europe. This weather wreaked havoc with ground and air transportation. Thousands of drivers got stranded overnight on the I-95 in

Have deaths in adults aged 18-64 grown by 40% during the pandemic

News roundup for Tue, Jan 4, 2022

So many firefighters were out sick and isolating with COVID in San Diego County that operations (including emergency response) had to be cut back. Seven engines were pulled from service temporarily. There’s been a huge sewage spill in Southern California impacting beaches from Los Angeles down to Orange County. Mass beach closures were enacted as

Are cruise ships with Covid outbreaks allowed to dock in Mexico.

News roundup for Fri, Dec 31, 2021

Huge, December wildfires in Colorado have forced the evacuation of two towns with populations of tens of thousands of people. Wind gusts are very high and are driving multiple, fast-moving wildfires. The traffic to evacuate is at a standstill in places: Renewables power about 20% of our energy grid. Researchers at Stanford used modeling to

Does FEMA cover Covid funerals costs

News roundup for Tue, Dec 28, 2021

The Western US is getting blanketed by snow and rain. The Sierras and their foothills have many areas that are essentially impassable at the moment. Seattle had a white Christmas. Other parts of the US are getting unusual amounts of heat for December. Hundreds upon hundreds of holiday flights were cancelled due to severe weather.

Is the US army developing a universal SARS vaccine

News roundup for Fri, Dec 24, 2021

The US Army has created a coronavirus vaccine that could prove to be effective against multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2 and even previous SARS viruses. This is huge news. The vaccine has cleared phase 1 trials and is entering phase 2. It’s being tested against Omicron. The work on this vaccine was done at Walter Reed.

Did typhoon Rai kill 375 people in the Philippines

News roundup for Tue, Dec 21, 2021

The typhoon that hit the Philippines on the 16th and 17th of this month, dubbed Rai, has killed 375 people. Scores of others are missing. Folks are short of food and fresh drinking water in the aftermath. Nearly 400,000 people fled coastal areas as the typhoon approached. The US government is placing trade restrictions on

No, 73% of US COVID-19 cases aren’t Omicron yet: how the press got it wrong

Something extremely odd happened this afternoon.  The press, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and Axios, reported that the CDC had announced that 73% of US COVID-19 cases were now being caused by the Omicron variant, and major public health gurus like Ashish Jha, Eric Topol,

Humanure Handbook cover

Review: The Humanure Handbook wants you to think of poop as a resource

It’s possible you end up in an emergency situation where you have to deal with human waste management. Maybe you’re sheltering at home but the toilets don’t work for weeks. Or shit has really hit the fan (sorry, couldn’t resist) and you now have to grow food to survive but you can’t buy store fertilizer.

Review: Back to the Roots fabric raised garden bed, self-watering Olla system, and organic seeds

Punchline: Good as a gift or hobby, but not for prepping This past summer, I was experiencing FOMO from reading all the amazing posts from Josh, Redneck, and the rest of the community, and wanted to start planting something in my backyard. I can’t plant anything directly in the soil, so I knew that my