Today, at 8:22am, I turned 42 years old. I set up a mini-monitor and airflow for the new server location. I’m really happy with all that. Planted some squash. Watched about half of “Kill Switch”, a FPS style sci-fi movie. I made some lemon battery videos. I had lunch with my sister. I had cupcakes and coffee with Erica and Khai. I sync’d up with my team lead over the phone. All of that in a different order. Lastly, I’m about to go watch Max’s marching band performance, to see their progression. This has been a nice, chill day so far.

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Body Energy Usage

I ponder macro-nutrition needs a whole bunch. Here’s what I have handy, though my technical references are scattered and omitted.

There’s always a need for roughage, vitamins, and minerals, which come from foods with very low calories/kilojoules. Aside from that, the three main macros have specific needs.

A body needs 125 grams of carbs for your brain/nerves; just under 1 gram of protein per kilo of lean body mass to maintain tissues/muscles; and around 30g of fat for cellular and neurological structures. This is usually around 1200 kcal per day, but varies by person 10-20 percent.

Anything else you eat is either poop, or gets converted to sugar. Sugar is burned if it’s needed immediately for exercise (growing, standing, walking, cardio, whatever, anything other than sleeping). Any sugar that is not immediately needed is stored in muscles as glycogen, up to around 4% of your muscle mass. All sugar past that is turned into fat and stored in our fat cells.

This is where “whole grains” comes into play. If it’s not ground up, it takes longer to break it down. However, if you take grains, and mill them into a powder, IT IS NOT WHOLE GRAINS. Just because there is fiber in the food does not mean it’s slow to absorb. The less processed the food, the longer time period over which it trickles energy into your body. If it’s super processed, it all absorbs very quickly, and your body may have trouble figuring out what to do with it unless you’re depleted already.

This is also where some insulin resistance comes from, and why diabetics have normal sugar metabolism in their muscles during exercise, even if they are short on insulin, or are resistant to it. Resistance is GLUT4 which causes glucose receptors to move to the cell membrane, but exercise does the same thing – muscle is hungry, it asks for more. Muscle is not hungry, it asks for less, even if you try to overfeed it. Where would it put this excess sugar? It can only store so much.

During exercise, your fat cells can liberate about 90% of your weight in pounds as usable calories per hour. For me, it’s about 260 calories. The gap is made up from glycogen in the muscles, which is good for just about 90 minutes. If you exercise hard, and stop at 60, and rest for 30, those 30 mins still use up that glycogen for delayed processes, cleanup, etc.

Eating carbs cannot provide as much energy as glycogen, but it’s the next best thing. Also, if you’re fasting, your glycogen reserves get burned up pretty quickly. Glycogen is 3:1 water to sugar, so this is why the first week of dieting is so awesome. No, that’s not fat. It’s muscle energy.

Any energy deficiency not covered by food will be covered by muscle damage. About the same number of calories can be broken down out of injured muscle cells. For me, this is a total of muscle and fat sourced calories of about 520 calories per hour. If I exercise for 3 hours with no food, then my power output drops to 130 watts, which is about 520 calories per hour.

The best option to limit muscle damage, limit recovery time, and optimize exercise benefits when going for more than your glycoge, is to eat as much every hour as you burn, minus the calories that can come from fat. Staying carb focussed can give more energy, and can be easier to absorb, though for some people, this slows the breakdown of body fat.

Staying fat focussed keeps the fat burn mechanisms running, but it takes twice as much oxygen, which means you’re hear-rate limited. It’s less about muscle conditioning then, and more about cardiovascular improvement.

Staying protein focussed is tougher on the kidneys. The aminos have to be converted for use as fuel, and that’s a lot of extra ammonia to pee out. That can be an issue when dehydration might already be at play.

Cycling Fuel

Max bodyfat you can burn in an hour is roughly 1 gram per 10 pounds, or in calories, 9 times your weight in pounds.

Anything else is food, muscle glycogen, or actual muscle tissue. Glycogen max is about 4% lean muscle mass, which usually is enough for 90 mins, plus or minus. Food is whatever is in your gut, though exercise slows digestion.

Bonk is when you have used up all food, and your glycogen stores, effectively exercising while fasted.

Bonk power is the max sustained energy ouput when you are fasted/bonked. This is fat burn, and muscle breakdown, combines.

Average watts is roughly 1/4 your calories per hour.

Me as an example
I’m 280 pounds, and bonk power for me is 133 watts, which is about 520 calories per hour. Doing that pretty much guarantees cramps from muscle breakdown.

Biking, I tend to burn 750-850 calories per hour, but I can peak at over 1000 in some instances (beginning, well fed, well rested, very driven).

That’s a big gap, because being big, I get more wind drag, which is 50% of your energy above 15mph. I also take more energy to climb a hill.

Downhill is faster, so less benefit (less time spent going downhill), and often waste the energy by riding brakes so as to not plow through others.

I do best consuming 600 calories per hour while riding more than 90 mins.

So, I have to eat the equivalent of a meal every hour to keep up, and reduce cramp risks. Most of that needs to be carbs that break down in less than an hour. Also, I don’t want to have a bathroom break every hour.

Ride Fuel
Sugary colas have phosphate, glucose, and fructose – all good for refueling. Cookies, sandwiches, etc usually are low roughage, good energy density, and include salt. M&Ms were actually designed to be endurance fuel for the army, and they hold up pretty well in a plastic bag.

Basically, all the things that are bad for you normally make great endurance fuel.

As to proper “race fuel”, honestly, it’s too low calorie for someone my size. Some people only need 200 calories an hour to stay fueled, so half banana, a 2″ square of granola, and a swig of gatorade is fine. For me, that would be a whole bunch bananas, and two quarts of gatorade. Just too much bulk.

Add to all that the need for oxygen to build ATP (actual muscle energy chemical). It takes 35% more oxygen to burn blood glucose than intra-muscular glycogen. Fat takes twice as much oxygen as glucose. High heat, humidity, low pressure, altitude, carbonation, and alcohol all reduce oxygen availability. Transport of glucose into the cell takes ATP. Digestion of food takes ATP.

Diabetes, Insulin Resistance, and Metabolic Syndrome
The key there is to not eat much carbohydrate outside of the exercise times. When glycogen reserves are full (muscles recovered), and adipose cells are replete, then why would you need more fuel? That’s the practical wording of the physiology here, despite the perception of a faulty hunger mechanism for the obese, or lack of islets for type I, or the defective signalling in Type II without obesity triggers.

Exercise induced glucose uptake is normal in diabetic muscle cells:

Exercise may increase glucose sensitivity:

While glycogen is being replenished, glucose uptake by muscles in normal. GLUT4 is transported to the membrane during exercise, even in absence of insulin.

Dream: Mark Hamish synth dogs

Lost most of the details, but we were at a party, restaurant was Josh Vernon’s, brass and marble. Well lit, open floor mingling, our company had the whole place. It was in a mall, but so was my company, a research firm.

My boss was not there, but his dogs were. They were getting sick, throwing up if they ate. We could not reach him on the phone, and no-one knew where he was.

I went to find him, but his office was torn apart. I found his research that indicated he had engineered them to starve to death. I could not believe he had not euthanized them.

I kept looking, and found him with the board if directors, and I laid into him, telling him he was horrible, etc etc. I knew I’d just resigned, so I left in a rush.

Somehow, between leaving, and getting out, I knew he was dead, andbthey thought I did it. My DNA was all over his office, and I took his jacket, because he was an ass, because it was cold, and because I could not find my jacket.

Ecxept, by the time I cleared out my locker, it was not cold out, and I was now wearing his jacket over mine. Two people asked me why I was wearing Hamish’s jacket, and I made up stories.

I just had to get out. I knew I was going to be investigated for his death now. I was sort of lost, but finally made it to a bar that was opening, and could pass from the “mall”, theough the bar, to the parking lot.

The lines were huge, so I just went for the compact car lot, because it openned first. I could not get to my car from there, but when I walked to the far edge of the lot, my mom, aunt, and sister saw me, and they drove over ti get me in their big SUV. They heard Mark Hamisch had died, and knew I would be upset.

HOWTO: AIX support for R/W filesystem on USBMS

JFS2 Unsupported
Putting JFS2 on non-LVM block devices has been working for a long time. I​ wrote up how to put JFS2 on a ramdisk back at AIX 4.3.3. I lost the techdoc from back then, but IBM has a newer re-write dated 2008 here: http://www-01.ibm.com/support/docview.wss?uid=isg3T1010722

JFS2 requires the underlying system to tell it if something goes away, or for it to stay there as long as the filesystem is mounted. LVM does this for disk, and the ramdisk drivers do this as well (mostly because if the ramdisk fails, likely the system has failed). The key there is that with JFS2, the ramdisk pages are pinned.

I wrote up including performance on USB 1 and USB2 ports in January of 2010 HOWTO: JFS2 on USB device on AIX Everything seems fine, and dandy, even mount on boot, except it’s not supported by AIX Development.

JFS2 Problems
The problem for USB Mass Storage Devices is that the device can just go away unexpectedly. If a disk goes into deep sleep, or resets because of a loose connection, the JFS drivers do not get notified. So, they take writes, and JFS2 saves them up until it’s time to flush. It goes to flush, and the I/O channel is gone. Sometimes, this is just loss of everything in cache. Sometimes, config methods hang until reboot. Other times, the system crashes.

​Because of that, we still cannot put LVM on a USB Mass Storage Device. This would take changes to notification of device availability, perhaps changes to the sync daemon, etc. Who knows, but there’s not been enough push from paying customers to make it a priority for AIX Development. Until that happens, don’t expect formal support for JFS2 on these devices.

UDF is the solution
AIX development supports read/write and even booting from USB Mass Storage Devices, but only with UDFS. The purpose is for writing a mksysb (system boot) image, or tar/cpio files, etc, and exists because of the RDX USB Internal Dock sold with some systems.

​Boot support is provided as well: REF: ​http://www-01.ibm.com/support/docview.wss?uid=isg1IZ66737

More info on RDX USB Internal Dock. https://www.ibm.com/support/knowledgecenter/POWER7/p7hdt/fc1103.htm

However, RDX is just a hot-swap USB to SATA drive bay. Any current USB drive (USB3 is preferred due to performance), should work fine.

HOWTO: Create, Read, and Write UDF on AIX

Create a bootable filesystem
mksysb -eXpi /dev/usbms0

Create an empty filesystem
udfcreate -d /dev/usbms0

Create a UDF 2.01 filesystem
udfcreate -f3 -d/dev/usbms0

NOTE: UDF 2.01 supports a real-time filesystem. It’s still UDF, so don’t try to put a database, or a million files on there.

Access read/write
mount -vudfs /dev/usbms0 /USBDRIVE

NOTE: The mksysb is a SPOT, plus a mksysb image, so adding files to the UDF will not make the restore huge.

USB Adapters on AIX
Add-in USB3 XHCI adapter for POWER8 is:
* CCIN 58F9 – PCIE2 4-port USB3 adapter
* FC EC45 and FRU 00E2932 for Low Profile
* FC EC46 and FRU 00E2934 for full height.
* driver is 4c1041821410b204 internal or 4c10418214109e04 PCIe

Add-in USB2 EHCI adapter for POWER7 is:
* CCIN 57D1 – PCI-E 4-port USB2 adapter
* driver is 33103500 integrated or 3310e000 PCIe
* FC 2728 or FRU 46K7394

Add-in USB2 EHCI adapter for POWER6/POWER5 is:
* CCIN 28EF – PCI 2-port USB2 adapter
* FC 2738 or FRU 80P2994
* Belkin F5U219 – exact same card without the sticker.
* driver is 99172604 internal or 99172704 PCI

Original USB1 OHCI /UHCI adapter for POWER5 and earlier was
* driver 22106474 on blades or c1110358 PCI
* This device is not really available anymore.

Modern Crusade Dream

We were at a Western hotel in Mumbai. The staff were white, and everything catered to the wealthy. Business was off, so we got to visit sometimes for lunch. Something happenned to the staff, and the east side dining hall got no service for hours after seating patrons.

The manager comped four tables, including ours, and gave us a his card. It said we could come in after 11:30pm and before 2:30 am to get leftovers and seconds (errored orders) buffet style for free. But, really, we could come in by 9:30pm, and until 5:30am. Lots of leftovers due to slow business.

This helped because we were always busy in the slums, and never knew when we’d get back. We were a mercenary tactical / investigation team, with not as much budget as we’d like, but enough to get what we needed. A bit of extra time in the fancy hotel was welcome.

We were at odds with the CIA, so we were on alert when we found the two familiar agents standing in our equipment room. They were fatigued, and just said, “load up.”

A Christian extremist group was hunting internationally, kidnapping members of our team, and forcing them to call in warnings. “Do not touch us! Do not touch us!”

We would find the team member, and we would have 10 minutes to query them, look through pockets, etc. Then they would get confused, seize, foam at the mouth, and die. If we touched them, it was contagious, and would get the next person. There would always be awriting, in Arabic, that said “do not touch us”.

This time, they needed our help. The extremists seemed nearly impossible to identify, but always left a subtle clue. We needed more than just that they hated Arabs, they considered themselves Christians, and that they were very well funded.

Minimum Wage 2017 edition

Looking at the “OMG VISA/MCDONALDS ARE EVIL” stuff around some first-draft budget from 4 or 5 years ago got me to thinking.

I definitely see a lot of unrealistic expectations, entitlement, etc. But there are a few valid points. I’ve long felt the minimum wage is unrealistic right now. You should be able to support yourself on 2000 hours per year, even if you’re unskilled, and had a spouse die young. I don’t like the idea of a hand-out, or certain people get extra money because we feel bad for them, or whatever.

I like the idea that someone could work a reasonable number of hours, and scrape by without being seriously concerned about whether they could feed themselves.
One important point is that a single parent with 2 kids (again, dead spouse scenario) will have about the same expenses as a traditional 4-person household. Federal Poverty Level for a 4-person household is $24k.

Another is that, while some people thrive on 60-80 hour workweeks, that is not sustainable for most people. 35-45 hours of work per week is reasonable, because, ideally, it leaves time for grocery shopping, registering kids for school, paying bills, etc. without so much fatigue that you’re a road hazard.

So, in my mind, that means minimum wage should be around $12.25/hr, but with regional increases based on cost of living within a 1-hour commute. I also think this should be indexed more often than whenever a politician needs a bump in popularity.

This isn’t going to make anyone rich, and isn’t going to keep anyone from working hard to better themselves through struggle. It’s not going to bankrupt fast-food places, and automated systems have been in roll-outs for years, despite having a pretty low minimum wage.

I think this COULD reduce the number of people on government poverty programs, and also give people a sense of control, stability and empowerment over their own lives.

So… Poke holes in this. What am I missing, for real. Be prepared to defend your claims beyond “That’s just not right!” Also, check out the US Census website, encyclopedic, wikipedic, and almanac information on poverty.

Amazon continues downward spiral

Head’s up. Amazon Seller Central now will cancel your account if you have not sold anything in 30 days. You will not get a notice of your account being closed. If you have inventory stored with them, they will not send it back to you. When that inventory sells, you will get an email, but they keep the money since your account is closed.

The normal Amazon helpdesk cannot help, but also doesn’t tell you they cannot help. My rep told me “that order number isn’t registered to your account. If you need help, use the contact us link.”

After multiple tries, a chat rep was able to send me to a voice robot for Seller Central. I was not given the phone number. They had it call me. I got someone who was willing to at least submit a request for my account to be reopenned, but “it will take a while.”

I had asked to escalate regarding the whole situation, because it’s not just about fixing my one issue today. It’s about preventing this issue at all. You cannot silently steal someone’s inventory.

I was told by Amazon main helpdesk if I had a problem, ask to escalate. I asked the Seller Central rep to escalate, and was told to fill out the web form instead.

The Seller Central help form is available if you log out of the error page, go the front login page, click help next to the sign-in button, then middle-right, you can click on “Contact Us”.

However, all of the support people believe this is acceptable behavior. There is no escalation, and your only recourse is to make a new account and sell more items.

You cannot reply to messages from Seller Central via email. You can just fill out a whole new request, and get a whole new case number.

Obviously, someone is paid on the number of cases they open, and not customer satisfaction. I say this because also, each reply has a “did we solve your problem?” The link requires you to be already logged in. You simply cannot report to them that they did not solve your problem, unless you can log in.

Every time I get upset at Amazon, I go pull a report on what I have spent with them. My first order with Amazon was 6/23/1999. Since then, I have spent roughly 1 year’s salary with Amazon. (I made a little less back then, and make a little more right now, but it averages out.)

That excludes the Seller Central stuff I’ve sold, from which they have made money on their FBA services.

Dangerous Car AC in the heat – FALSE

Starting your car A/C / benzene chain letter has popped up in several places again recently. That letter is FAKE. No need to worry.

It’s a rewrite of a 2009 chain letter, which is false, and based on cherry picked information out of a 2001 report on automobiles in Korea, and a 2007 article on new cars in Germany.

The article claims benzene exposure is related to the A/C, and that is false. Benzene levels are related to combustion engines, because gasoline contains benzene. A properly maintained car will emit very little benzene. A poorly maintained car will emit more while the engine is running. It does not build up or accumulate when the car is off, unless you have a fuel leak.

REF: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048969701011019?via%3Dihub

The article claims the benzene comes from plastic, which is false. All plastics DO offgass, and usually that is formaldehyde. This is more of an issue for new cars, and has nothing to do with the A/C itself. If the car stinks like new car smell, then air it out. The only observed risk was for people with allergies, it increased those temporarily.

REF: http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/es0617901

A more detailed write-up about this chain letter is here: