Spinning levers

Another Jam Handy video from the 1930s. This is very well done. It explains how powerful a lever (one of the six simple machines).

Towards the end, to demonstrate the utility of synchromesh transmission, they get a car going 60 MPH down hill. “[The driver] will shift into second speed and bring her car easily and safely under control before it reaches the bottom of the hill.” Cars where much harder to drive 80 years ago.

Frederick Douglass

Campus speech codes are stifling free speech on too many US campus. I just read a letter by Frederick Douglass with much to say about this.

No right was deemed by the fathers of the Government more sacred than the right of speech. It was in their eyes, as in the eyes of all thoughtful men, the great moral renovator of society and government. Daniel Webster called it a homebred right, a fireside privilege. Liberty is meaningless where the right to utter one’s thoughts and opinions has ceased to exist. That, of all rights, is the dread of tyrants. It is the right which they first of all strike down. They know its power. Thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers, founded in injustice and wrong, are sure to tremble, if men are allowed to reason of righteousness, temperance, and of a judgment to come in their presence.

But suppressing free hurts more than the speaker. “To suppress free speech is a double wrong. It violates the rights of the hearer as well as those of the speaker. It is just as criminal to rob a man of his right to speak and hear as it would be to rob him of his money.” It is sad to watch universities devolve.

Hacking into a Jeep

Watch the video in this Wired article “Hackers Remotely Kill a Jeep on the Highway—With Me in It.” Two security researchers tap into a Jeep via the Internet. From a house miles away from the Jeep (which means anywhere) they disable the Jeep’s engine, as well as control various other functions. This is scary.

We are not ready for the Internet of Things.