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  1. #1
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    Creativity at its best

    Daydreaming in school.

    Doodling with a problem.

    Dedicated to serving others...


    A 19-y.o. has come up with a solution to a situation that has balked efforts by engineers around the world: cleaning up the "Great Pacific Garbage Patch":

    Previously the idea of cleaning up the world’s oceans with their vast accumulations of disposed plastic material was considered an impossibility. Now a 19-year-old inventor says he and his foundation has a way to clean up the world’s oceans, and not only does he say we can do it, but that we can do it in five years time and produce a profit from it.


    Wait -- what was that last bit? He could make a profit, but instead....

    When he and others realized that the concept would work he took a leap of faith and created a non-profit organization he calls The Ocean Cleanup Foundation. This group will focus on the goal of developing his invention, raise funds for it and make it operational as soon as possible. His concept would save numerous aquatic species of fish and help reduce PCB and DDT containments affecting all of us. Best of all it operates on the power of the sun and by the oceans themselves.


    He wants no profit -- he just wants to clean up the oceans.

    Read more.


    This is the kind of thing that can change our world: young, brilliant people not pursuing the power of profit, but pursuing a better world.


    I wonder of this would make our beaches cleaner, too?
    Last edited by opinterph; September 22nd, 2013 at 07:03 AM. Reason: fixed broken link

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  2. #2
    Rambunctiously Pugnacious JayHawk's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    The link didnt work for me.... maybe this one does = Clean up the Oceans

    I havent read it so no real opinion except, if true and if it works.... wow? This is such a nasty problem
    Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.
    ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


  3. #3
    Rambunctiously Pugnacious JayHawk's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    The only issue I see with it is the lack of info on HOW it determines matter is a plastic or organic type of matter and then how it separates the two. That is the main issue with the boom concept.


    So a gianormous ocean zoomba
    Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.
    ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


  4. #4
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by JayHawk View Post
    The only issue I see with it is the lack of info on HOW it determines matter is a plastic or organic type of matter and then how it separates the two. That is the main issue with the boom concept.


    So a gianormous ocean zoomba
    With the ways they process plastics in recycling now, I doubt organics are a issue. And since that part of the ocean is essentially a desert, I see little worry about too many organisms in the first place.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  5. #5
    Rambunctiously Pugnacious JayHawk's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Kulindahr View Post
    With the ways they process plastics in recycling now, I doubt organics are a issue. And since that part of the ocean is essentially a desert, I see little worry about too many organisms in the first place.
    Well i specifically mentioned it because he did, so obviously it is a concern. Plus the Pacific Ocean version may be sparsely populated but even 'deserts' have rich and sustained life. Plus EVERY ocean on earth has a gyre of plastic and trash.
    Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.
    ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


  6. #6
    CE&P Secret Police xbuzzerx's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by JayHawk View Post
    The only issue I see with it is the lack of info on HOW it determines matter is a plastic or organic type of matter and then how it separates the two. That is the main issue with the boom concept.


    So a gianormous ocean zoomba
    Is it roomba? Isn't zoomba a jazzercise program? Or am I switching them up..?

  7. #7
    Rambunctiously Pugnacious JayHawk's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Your right it is roomba.... lol. But ginormous dancer-cize in the pacific ocean would be truly creative.
    Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.
    ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


  8. #8
    CE&P Secret Police xbuzzerx's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by JayHawk View Post
    Your right it is roomba.... lol. But ginormous dancer-cize in the pacific ocean would be truly creative.
    Yeah I just had a surreal moment where I pictured the infomercial of it all taking place on the surface of the Pacific, it was amusing.

  9. #9
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by JayHawk View Post
    Well i specifically mentioned it because he did, so obviously it is a concern. Plus the Pacific Ocean version may be sparsely populated but even 'deserts' have rich and sustained life. Plus EVERY ocean on earth has a gyre of plastic and trash.
    I'd never gotten the video to work before, so I hadn't head his comment. BTW, he's a terrible speaker.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  10. #10
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by xbuzzerx View Post
    Yeah I just had a surreal moment where I pictured the infomercial of it all taking place on the surface of the Pacific, it was amusing.
    Someone else proposed seeding the gyre with wood fiber and then mangrove... to make a giant floating island out of the mess. Then you could do an infomercial on the ocean surface.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  11. #11
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    It would be a great thing, that is for sure.


    And I know, if I'll only be true, to this glorious quest . . .

  12. #12
    JUB Addict T-Rexx's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    This is a bunch of nonsense.

    Building a massive array of floating booms and deploying them across all of the world's oceans in sufficient numbers to suck in all the pollution would be a phenomenal engineering undertaking - perhaps the largest public works project ever accomplished by mankind. It would require unprecedented international cooperation and consume enormous national resources. And no, it could not "make money." Recycling is a very expensive enterprise. Recycling is done to save the planet, not make money.

    This is like plans to solve the nuclear waste storage problem by shooting it into the sun.

  13. #13
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by T-Rexx View Post
    This is a bunch of nonsense.

    Building a massive array of floating booms and deploying them across all of the world's oceans in sufficient numbers to suck in all the pollution would be a phenomenal engineering undertaking - perhaps the largest public works project ever accomplished by mankind. It would require unprecedented international cooperation and consume enormous national resources. And no, it could not "make money." Recycling is a very expensive enterprise. Recycling is done to save the planet, not make money.

    This is like plans to solve the nuclear waste storage problem by shooting it into the sun.
    Remind me-- where did you get an engineering degree?

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  14. #14
    Know thyself kallipolis's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by T-Rexx View Post
    This is a bunch of nonsense.

    Building a massive array of floating booms and deploying them across all of the world's oceans in sufficient numbers to suck in all the pollution would be a phenomenal engineering undertaking - perhaps the largest public works project ever accomplished by mankind. It would require unprecedented international cooperation and consume enormous national resources. And no, it could not "make money." Recycling is a very expensive enterprise. Recycling is done to save the planet, not make money.

    This is like plans to solve the nuclear waste storage problem by shooting it into the sun.
    There are other practical considerations such as ships, thousands of them plying their way across the world's oceans reminding me of the stupidity of the captain of the Costa Lines cruise liner running his ship aground off the Italian coast last year just imagine miles of floating booms being regularly damaged by passing ships.

    Here in Greece over many years recycling from city trash bins has been the preserve of our various Roma communities but in very recent times with growing austerity our various immigrant communities have been obliged to participate in the recycling business which I am told by my Gypsy lover at one time paid the Gypsy well whereas, ...not now with less, and less metal being dumped, and with an enormous increase in competition from even poorer folk from our immigrant communites.

    Local cleaning of the sea bed in ports, and off popular beaches is practicable, and is a fact of life leading me to believe that such a plan can be applied successfully in coastal regions whereas, I have reservations on the feasibility of applying similar remedies in the ocean deeps.
    Last edited by kallipolis; September 23rd, 2013 at 12:16 AM.

  15. #15
    JUB Addict T-Rexx's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Kulindahr View Post
    Remind me-- where did you get an engineering degree?
    I happen to have two post-doctorates in science.

    But my education has nothing to do with the impracticality of this plan.
    Last edited by T-Rexx; September 23rd, 2013 at 12:20 AM.

  16. #16
    JUB Addict T-Rexx's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by kallipolis View Post
    There are other practical considerations such as ships, thousands of them plying their way across the world's oceans reminding me of the stupidity of the captain of the Costa Lines cruise liner running his ship aground off the Italian coast last year just imagine miles of floating booms being regularly damaged by passing ships.
    Yes, that occurred to me, also.

    This is an unworkable plan (at so many levels) from a kid too young to know better.

  17. #17
    Bammer's Papa
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by kallipolis View Post
    There are other practical considerations such as ships, thousands of them plying their way across the world's oceans reminding me of the stupidity of the captain of the Costa Lines cruise liner running his ship aground off the Italian coast last year just imagine miles of floating booms being regularly damaged by passing ships.
    The gyres are in general outside the shipping lanes.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  18. #18
    Know thyself kallipolis's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Kulindahr View Post
    The gyres are in general outside the shipping lanes.
    The shipping lanes are over the sea bed where the refuse can be located....having been disposed of by passing ships.

  19. #19
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    In T Rexx' favor:

    In the simplest of terms, anything floating in the ocean tends to be a ‘party barge’ for life. What I’d like to see for Slat’s design is a time-lapse of his structure at sea predicting how fast it would be colonized by sea life—colonization happens very quickly. I can personally attest to this from recovering tsunami debris at sea, just a year after the devastating wave hit Japan. Anywhere you have seawater you’re going to have havoc wreaking barnacles. Anywhere where you have a platform, you’re going to have dead squid and flying fish stranding themselves, which will attract sea birds, and thus, guano. All of this stuff, coupled with salt, makes moving parts seize.

    Little sea life attracts big sea life. Big sea life means entanglement issues. And unfortunately, sea life big or small is notorious for not doing what designers assume it will do. Slat’s design depicts massive booms sticking out of the sides in a ‘V’ pattern thus corralling the floating plastic into some mysterious filter that will separate plankton and plastic. First up, life would colonize the booms, weight it down, and create their own current and eddies around it which would affect the ‘flow’ of how the thing is supposed to work. Fish, attracted by the littler life and the protection from larger predators tend to be voracious ‘munchers’ and thus, really destructive

    http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1737fo...cleanup-array/

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  20. #20
    Bammer's Papa
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by kallipolis View Post
    The shipping lanes are over the sea bed where the refuse can be located....having been disposed of by passing ships.
    What do the sea beds have to do wit it? The gyres are on the surface.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  21. #21
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    How can he make a profit out of cleaning the ocean ?

    The government, companies and people must pay him to clean up.
    Good for him to create a cleaning company.


    NEVER LISTEN TO A ONE SIDED STORY AND JUDGE.

  22. #22
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Telstra View Post
    How can he make a profit out of cleaning the ocean ?

    The government, companies and people must pay him to clean up.
    Good for him to create a cleaning company.
    Supposedly by selling the collected plastic for recycling. But after reading the article I linked up in post 19, I think the only way to 'recycle' it would be in a "anything to oil" plant.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  23. #23
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    This thread is reads like a sociological experiment exploring "half full," as opposed to "half empty."
    ATTACK OF THE LIBERAL ELITE

  24. #24
    panegyric JUB Admin Corny's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Well I have an engineering degree and I think this idea is um ... not thought through. Fine?

    It's not this easy - there is a reason that there hasn't been a solution for this yet.
    Check out my very own Body Hair Lovers and Photography Groups!

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Kulindahr View Post
    This is the kind of thing that can change our world: young, brilliant people not pursuing the power of profit, but pursuing a better world.
    Sort of like the Wright Brothers? Two unknown bicycle guys from Dayton, Ohio.


  26. #26
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Why not engage big trawling or seining rigs?

    Pay for them with what we saved gutting food stamps. Or, not bombing Syria @ $500 thou per Tomahawk.

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Corny View Post
    Well I have an engineering degree and I think this idea is um ... not thought through. Fine?

    It's not this easy - there is a reason that there hasn't been a solution for this yet.
    because people are greedy.


  28. #28
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    OK, for the nautical hazard folks: It would have to have a sonar locator and a satellite fed position update so as to not interfere with shipping. Ships are either operated by a computer which receives updates every few seconds from satellite (including navigational hazards) or operated by a person who then plots various obstacles via many methods. It would also have a reflective array to respond to radar and provide clear paint for the radar image. The sonar locator would be to alert submerged vessles as to its location since they can't paint it, cant receive chart updates every few seconds and certainly could hear the damn thing as it is depicted. Also Submarines like to occupy the spaces inbetween where there are not shipping lanes because shipping density makes it harder to arrive at the surface when ya wanna come up.

    I am sure they are thinking of those things since it would be required prior to being licensed by whichever county licensed it. Plus there are literally millions of existing navigational hazards that mariners must fix on their charts when approaching a new chunk of ocean. So that is a non-issue.

    As to science degrees equating to engineering degree... nay nay moose breath. What i find telling is that "SEVERAL engineers were intrigued by his design". So while I cannot say with any authority, obviously those who saw the design felt it worthy and so did the patent office.

    Finally, while this is apparently an exercise in pessimism versus optimism, in spite of the obstacles and nay sayers, i sincerely hope it works out well. If anyone has ever seen one of these gyres, in full 360 degree technicolor, it is the most revolting blight of humanity on the world.

    The thing they need to do, right now, is establish identifiers required world wide for either the company or the specific vessel and then required for all materials used aboard. Such chemical stamping could then identify polluters and try them in world court. Countries refusing to participate should then face economic sanctions to include seizing all monetary assets to pay for clean up.

    There is really no excuse for not accomplishing such a thing, except the country is in a perpetual deadlock since republicans cant get their way after losing the reigns of control. We cant lead when we are playing tug of war with ourselves.
    Everyone can be great, because everyone can serve.
    ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


  29. #29
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Corny View Post
    Well I have an engineering degree and I think this idea is um ... not thought through. Fine?

    It's not this easy - there is a reason that there hasn't been a solution for this yet.
    Yay!

    Our practical German weighs in.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  30. #30
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by palbert View Post
    Why not engage big trawling or seining rigs?

    Pay for them with what we saved gutting food stamps. Or, not bombing Syria @ $500 thou per Tomahawk.
    Because engines at the surface foul in the crap in the gyres. Ships going through that crap need special filters. Anchoring the rigs to the sea bottom is a good idea to avoid that... but the bottom is 'WAY down there. Putting the engines down below like robot submarines would avoid it, too.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  31. #31
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by JayHawk View Post
    OK, for the nautical hazard folks: It would have to have a sonar locator and a satellite fed position update so as to not interfere with shipping. Ships are either operated by a computer which receives updates every few seconds from satellite (including navigational hazards) or operated by a person who then plots various obstacles via many methods. It would also have a reflective array to respond to radar and provide clear paint for the radar image. The sonar locator would be to alert submerged vessles as to its location since they can't paint it, cant receive chart updates every few seconds and certainly couldn't hear the damn thing as it is depicted. Also Submarines like to occupy the spaces inbetween where there are not shipping lanes because shipping density makes it harder to arrive at the surface when ya wanna come up.

    I am sure they are thinking of those things since it would be required prior to being licensed by whichever county licensed it. Plus there are literally millions of existing navigational hazards that mariners must fix on their charts when approaching a new chunk of ocean. So that is a non-issue.

    As to science degrees equating to engineering degree... nay nay moose breath. What i find telling is that "SEVERAL engineers were intrigued by his design". So while I cannot say with any authority, obviously those who saw the design felt it worthy and so did the patent office.

    Finally, while this is apparently an exercise in pessimism versus optimism, in spite of the obstacles and nay sayers, i sincerely hope it works out well. If anyone has ever seen one of these gyres, in full 360 degree technicolor, it is the most revolting blight of humanity on the world.

    The thing they need to do, right now, is establish identifiers required world wide for either the company or the specific vessel and then required for all materials used aboard. Such chemical stamping could then identify polluters and try them in world court. Countries refusing to participate should then face economic sanctions to include seizing all monetary assets to pay for clean up.

    There is really no excuse for not accomplishing such a thing, except the country is in a perpetual deadlock since republicans cant get their way after losing the reigns of control. We cant lead when we are playing tug of war with ourselves.
    I'm guessing you meant the negative I put in red....

    Reading this after the "fail!" article, another item occurred to me: any 'passive' system like this is going to have to be something like a Transformer, able to collapse itself into compact, storm-worthy configuration, then redeploy after.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

  32. #32
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    I've seen some of the pics of the gyres and read about their locations - yes, they are out of the normal shipping lanes - the material floats on the currents until it hits an intersection of currents that form a mild circular effect, trapping the debris.

    I'm wondering if some of the oil eating bacteria could be liberally applied in the areas - or don't they "do" plastics?

    It's clear that we need to do something - we are killing a lot of wildlife thousands of miles from "civilization" in the process.


    And I know, if I'll only be true, to this glorious quest . . .

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by Kulindahr View Post
    What do the sea beds have to do wit it? The gyres are on the surface.
    Where do think the debris goes?

    Oil pollution floating on the sea surface is one factor, debris is very much another for the ocean beds are covered with human produced refuse. Floating booms can only remove surface debris, what of the refuse that lies on the sea bed?
    Last edited by kallipolis; September 23rd, 2013 at 09:52 PM.

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    It also should be noted that heavy oil (unrefined crude oil) coagulates into blobs and sinks to the sea bed. Refined light oil film floating on the surface of the sea can easily be removed by skimming...it's a process that has been used successfully to deal with oil pollution in port areas for over fifty years. I appreciate that oil eating bacteria contributes to the cleaning up process, and is used extensively in those ports where oil tankers regularly spill their various refined products into sea....by accident of course.

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by DonQuixote View Post
    I'm wondering if some of the oil eating bacteria could be liberally applied in the areas - or don't they "do" plastics?
    There are no bacteria that can eat plastic (at least, not "plastic" as we usually think of it). Plastic today is analogous to wood of several million years ago. For most of the world's history, there were no bacteria that could break down wood. Therefore, wood piled upon wood as trees died, creating massive piles of debris which could not break down (and steadily removing CO2 from the atmosphere). Those accumulations of wood eventually transformed into oil and coal over millions of years.

    Eventually, bacteria evolved which could, indeed, break down wood. So today, wood rots instead of accumulates.

    It is entirely possible that, in a few million years, bacteria may evolve which will break down plastic. If that should happen, plastic will also rot, instead of accumulate. There is an obscure science fiction book, Mutant 59: The Plastic Eaters, which speculates on the consequences of a sudden development of plastic-eating bacteria in our modern world. Wires short out due to lack of insulation, cars disintegrate, and airplanes fall from the skies.


    Quote Originally Posted by DonQuixote View Post
    It's clear that we need to do something - we are killing a lot of wildlife thousands of miles from "civilization" in the process.
    This is a huge problem about which something needs to be done. I do not mean to disparage new ideas or creative thinking or young enthusiasm with my pessimism. But, this idea is hardly new. The concept of garbage-eating drones skimming the oceans has been suggested dozens of times over the past several decades. See, for example:

    http://www.treehugger.com/clean-tech...the-ocean.html

    http://coastalenergyandenvironment.w...ifting-debris/

    http://www.tgdaily.com/sustainabilit...cean-pollution


    We have visited the idea of an ocean "Roomba" before. So far, nobody has been able to get it to work, for lots and lots of reasons. I think it makes good press to publish articles that say a 19 y.o. kid has brilliantly solved a problem that has eluded the world's greatest minds for half a century, that we can do it with almost no work, and actually make money in the process!

    But, as Corny said, if it was that easy, it would already have been done. All the persistent and serious problems faced by the world are hard. They will require enormous effort, extraordinary international cooperation, and unbelievable amounts of money to solve. But that's not very fun to write about.
    Last edited by T-Rexx; September 23rd, 2013 at 10:44 PM.

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by T-Rexx View Post
    We have visited the idea of an ocean "Roomba" before. So far, nobody has been able to get it to work, for lots and lots of reasons. I think it makes good press to publish articles that say a 19 y.o. kid has brilliantly solved a problem that has eluded the world's greatest minds for half a century, that we can do it with almost no work, and actually make money in the process!

    But, as Corny said, if it was that easy, it would already have been done. All the persistent and serious problems faced by the world are hard. They will require enormous effort, extraordinary international cooperation, and unbelievable amounts of money to solve. But that's not very fun to write about.
    I concur, for the experience of the ship owning industry here in Piraeus, indicates that such projects are realistic for coastal regions, ports, and those zones where oil rigs are drilling for oil such as the Texas Gulf, and the Arabian Gulf where oil spills are relatively common and the appropriate equipment is on 24 hour standby in nearby ports.

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by T-Rexx View Post
    All the persistent and serious problems faced by the world are hard. They will require enormous effort, extraordinary international cooperation, and unbelievable amounts of money to solve. But that's not very fun to write about.
    Yup. California still hasn't cleaned up its trapped mercury problem in the in-state waterways from the California Gold Rush. In fact we've probably just added to it with industrial run-off and other heavy operations since the Gold Rush.

    It's not that it can't be done, it very much could be. But it would take a lot of time, work, and more importantly, money. Meanwhile we just tell people not to eat fish they catch or to do so at their own risk, and a very small number of groups try to get pamphlets spread around about the effect of mercury on expectant mothers and developing fetuses.

    I hope that's not a salutory example of what will likely happen with the trash problem in the world's oceans, but due to the fact that no politician wants to propose spending enormous sums that taxpayers feel like they can't part with for a problem no one cares about as long as it doesn't directly hit them in the face tomorrow, I suspect it will be.
    Last edited by xbuzzerx; September 24th, 2013 at 12:22 AM.

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    Virtus in medio stat JUB Admin opinterph's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by T-Rexx View Post
    For most of the world's history, there were no bacteria that could break down wood. Therefore, wood piled upon wood as trees died, creating massive piles of debris which could not break down (and steadily removing CO2 from the atmosphere).
    That’s interesting. Can you point to a source that describes the process in greater detail?


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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by kallipolis View Post
    Where do think the debris goes?

    Oil pollution floating on the sea surface is one factor, debris is very much another for the ocean beds are covered with human produced refuse. Floating booms can only remove surface debris, what of the refuse that lies on the sea bed?
    Did you bother perusing the sources?

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by T-Rexx View Post
    This is a huge problem about which something needs to be done. I do not mean to disparage new ideas or creative thinking or young enthusiasm with my pessimism. But, this idea is hardly new. The concept of garbage-eating drones skimming the oceans has been suggested dozens of times over the past several decades. See, for example:

    http://www.treehugger.com/clean-tech...the-ocean.html

    http://coastalenergyandenvironment.w...ifting-debris/

    http://www.tgdaily.com/sustainabilit...cean-pollution


    We have visited the idea of an ocean "Roomba" before. So far, nobody has been able to get it to work, for lots and lots of reasons. I think it makes good press to publish articles that say a 19 y.o. kid has brilliantly solved a problem that has eluded the world's greatest minds for half a century, that we can do it with almost no work, and actually make money in the process!
    I remember the first one -- the biggest problem was protecting the motors from the trash, the same issue that has stymied designs for ships to scoop the stuff up. The big innovation of the new one is throwing out motors and letting the current do the work.

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

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    JUB Addict T-Rexx's Avatar
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    Re: Creativity at its best

    Quote Originally Posted by opinterph View Post
    That’s interesting. Can you point to a source that describes the process in greater detail?

    I haven't found a discussion that I really like, but there are snippets of what I'm talking about here:



    Fungi, acting as decomposers, are important in today's terrestrial environment. During the Carboniferous period, fungi and bacteria had yet to evolve the capacity to digest lignin, and so large deposits of dead plant tissue accumulated during this period, later becoming the fossil fuels.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Detritivore


    The Carboniferous coal beds provided much of the fuel for power generation during the Industrial Revolution and are still of great economic importance.

    The large coal deposits of the Carboniferous primarily owe their existence to two factors. The first of these is the appearance of bark-bearing trees (and in particular the evolution of the bark fiber lignin). The second is the lower sea levels that occurred during the Carboniferous as compared to the Devonian period. This allowed for the development of extensive lowland swamps and forests in North America and Europe. Based on a genetic analysis of mushroom fungi, David Hibbett and colleagues proposed that large quantities of wood were buried during this period because animals and decomposing bacteria had not yet evolved that could effectively digest the tough lignin. It is assumed that fungi that could break it down did not arise before the end of the period, making future coal formation much more rare.[12][13] The Carboniferous trees made extensive use of lignin. They had bark to wood ratios of 8 to 1, and even as high as 20 to 1. This compares to modern values less than 1 to 4. This bark, which must have been used as support as well as protection, probably had 38% to 58% lignin. Lignin is insoluble, too large to pass through cell walls, too heterogeneous for specific enzymes, and toxic, so that few organisms other than Basidiomycetes fungi can degrade it. It can not be oxidized in an atmosphere of less than 5% oxygen. It can linger in soil for thousands of years and inhibits decay of other substances.[14] Probably the reason for its high percentages is protection from insect herbivory in a world containing very effective insect herbivores, but nothing remotely as effective as modern insectivores and probably many fewer poisons than currently. In any case coal measures could easily have made thick deposits on well drained soils as well as swamps. The extensive burial of biologically produced carbon led to a buildup of surplus oxygen in the atmosphere; estimates place the peak oxygen content as high as 35%, compared to 21% today.[1] This oxygen level probably increased wildfire activity, as well as resulted in insect and amphibian gigantism—creatures whose size is constrained by respiratory systems that are limited in their ability to diffuse oxygen

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carboniferous

    Carboniferous coal was produced by bark-bearing trees that grew in vast lowland swamp forests. Vegetation included giant club mosses, tree ferns, great horsetails, and towering trees with strap-shaped leaves. Over millions of years, the organic deposits of this plant debris formed the world's first extensive coal deposits—coal that humans are still burning today.

    The growth of these forests removed huge amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, leading to a surplus of oxygen. Atmospheric oxygen levels peaked around 35 percent, compared with 21 percent today. It also may explain the giant creepy-crawlies that now emerged—the size reached by insects and similar creatures is thought to be limited by the amount of air they are able to breathe.

    http://science.nationalgeographic.co...carboniferous/

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    Re: Creativity at its best

    ^
    Excellent!

    "Thirty-one* states allow all qualified citizens to carry concealed weapons. In those states, homosexuals should embark on organized efforts to become comfortable with guns, learn to use them safely and carry them. They should set up Pink Pistols task forces, sponsor shooting courses and help homosexuals get licensed to carry. And they should do it in a way that gets as much publicity as possible. "

    --Jonathan Rauch, Salon Magazine, March 13, 2000

    *the number is now forty

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