Posts Tagged ‘Amazon’

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Yes, today is a bit of a multi-cultural fact feast.

Hope you enjoy.

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did you know2

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Brown eyes are actually blue,

under a layer of melanin.

blue eyes

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Billionaire Chuck Feeney donated most of his fortune

anonymously and with no recognition,

while flying coach, owning a $15 watch,

and having no cars or homes.

Billionaire Chuck Feeney

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George Washington was surprised to discover

that the Chinese were not white.

(I wonder how surprised they were to find out he was?)

chinese drawing

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When it first opened in 1955 Disneyland had

a lingerie store on Main Street called The Wizard Of Bras

The Wizard Of Bras

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In the mid 1800s France gave a crucial patent

in photography as a free gift to the world…

except for Britain who had to pay for it!

photographing the eiffel tower

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Disaster comes from the Greek

“dis” meaning bad,

and “aster”, meaning star.

The ancient Greeks used to blame calamities

on unfavorable planetary positions.

disaster-sign

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If you are in a room with 23 people,

there’s more than a 50% chance that

two of the people have the same birthday.

Birthday_Paradox.svg

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There are more tigers living in Texas

than in the rest of the world.

tiger

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While serving as sheriff of Erie County, N.Y.,

Grover Cleveland had to spring the trap

at a hanging on two occassions.

This earned him the unflattering nickname

“Buffalo Hangman.”

Grover Cleveland

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Workers at Amazon’s distribution centers

can be expected to walk up to 11 miles per shift,

picking an order every 33 seconds.

Amazon's distribution centers

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The shortest French word with all

five vowels is “oiseau” meaning bird.

oiseau

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Des Moines has the highest per capita0

Jello consumption in the U.S

Des Moines jello capital

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In 1770 the British parliament passed a law

condemning lipstick, stating that

” women found guilty of seducing men

into matrimony by a cosmetic means”

could be tried for witchcraft.

law condemning lipstick

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Mr Feng, a Chinese father, hired a bunch of assassins

to kill his son’s online World of Warcraft character.

Apparently his son was wasting too much time after being laid off.

Mr Feng, World of Warcraft

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Spencer Eldon was the name of the naked baby

on the cover of Nirvana’s album

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Many Happy Returns Webby!

Posted: May 10, 2014 in bankers, Business, Computers, Current Events
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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World-Wide-Web

The World Wide Web, created by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, turned 25 years old this year, 2014.

There has never been anything like it before, certainly not as regards the impact it has made on society and the way we live our lives. Many of those changes are good, many are not so good and a few are downright annoying.

Here’s my take on some of them.

To concentrate on the good parts first, the one thing the www has done, for those who can use it effectively, is to give access to information that was previously only available to the elite few who managed to claw their way into the lofty heights of academia, or who worked in places where information was readily available. Now the same information is accessible at the touch of a button to anyone and everyone with a smart phone, tablet or computer.

Another benefit, in my view anyway, is that is has sent a massive wake-up call to telephone providers world wide, many of whom were fast asleep, content to rake in healthy profits from antiquated systems. No longer do we have to settle for slow and temperamental data transfer lines. Nowadays, particularly in the last few years, people are demanding systems that can cope with download streams in the gigabyte range. If you are old enough to remember the first modems you will know you wasted too much of your life trying to download at 12Kb/sec., sometimes less.

Freedom is also a welcome by-product of the World Wide Web.

The freedom to work in any country in the world, from virtually any country in the world is one big plus – it is for me anyhow. Another one I particularly like is the freedom to watch TV programs that I like, when I like, no longer tied to the schedules of some brainless bean-counter working for a broadcasting company. And the freedom to have your say on things as and when the mood takes you – they call that blogging don’t you know! – is also a great advantage to the ordinary person.

www words

As is the freedom to disseminate information across the globe instantly, as Mr Snowden ably demonstrated, although I would hazard a guess that the powers that be would not agree with me on that one.

Indeed, this is the one aspect of the www that really bothers big brother.

China for example is one country where access is controlled by the state. Coincidentally this year also marks the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, you’ll find articles about that if you do a search, but probably not in China. They get away with it because they are not a democracy and do not pretend to be one.

In other countries, like the good old Land Of The (Not So) Free (Anymore)), the powers still like to con their people into believing that they are living in a democratic nation and that the people have the power to vote for this or that. But think for a moment, when was the last time you got to vote on whether to start a war, or whether to give $billions of your money to the greedy banksters to pay themselves huge bonuses and gamble away the rest?

It is because they need to keep the pretence of democracy going, that they do not yet have the confidence to start overtly censoring the internet. But they do all they can to snoop on what people are reading, or writing, or looking at.

This is where the freedom the www and associated technology provides can also be a negative, when it is used by governments to surveil us and record every piece of data they can. If they were doing this selectively and targeting terrorists and criminals no one would be too worried. But they are doing it to all of us, guilty and innocent alike.

big brother is watching

They are also doing everything they can think of to impose taxes on internet commerce – of course they have to coz they’re stoney broke.

The www has revolutionized business practices and created all sorts of new commerce opportunities, Amazon perhaps being the best example of a company that has gone from nothing to a multi-billion dollar business in just a few years.

Communication and social interaction are also areas where the www has liberated the ordinary person – first with email and more recently with social media. In the near future expect to see social media expanding to become much more than individual platforms such as Facebook or Twitter. We are already seeing many new applications that are allowing people to communicate more widely, more easily and more often.

social media

Another negative is that the World Wide Web has unwittingly facilitated the proliferation of pornography and violence, and is teaching a generation of morons all the wrong things. Things that will ensure they become a burden on society, not an asset.

And it has also opened a whole new environment in which criminals can operate. Millions of dollars are being stolen every day through scams, confidence tricks and outright theft.

You could say (and I frequently do) that people dumb enough to fall for these scams deserve all they get, or all they lose, is perhaps a better way of putting it. You know, the idiots who believe they really have won a lottery they didn’t buy a ticket for, or who think that Dr Umbungo Watanga from Nigeria is being truthful when he tells them that someone they never heard of has left them $25 million and all they need to do is send all their personal details and a few thousand dollars to unlock the fortune that awaits them. There really is one born every minute it seems!

All that said, and twenty-five years on, the www is still in its infancy. We have come a long way in the past 25 years, but we have really only scratched the surface as regards what the web has the potential to do to further improve our daily lives.

Where the vision to develop the www will come from in anyone’s guess. The only thing we know for sure is that the initiative won’t come from governments or their bureaucratic servants, simply because the people we elect to those positions do not have the required intelligence.

So its up to you. If you have any great ideas you want to share, send me an email.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the man who created the World Wide Web.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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So, if pride goes before a fall, what goes before a CRASH?

Well, in terms of the pathetic Obamacare web site, the usual form of words from the Obama Administration is

“…the site was fully-functioning for a “vast majority” of users.”

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CRASH!

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It happened again last week, early Friday afternoon in fact, as millions of Americans tried to get insurance coverage before the deadline.

I don’t know where they got the information that the site was functioning for the “vast majority of users”.

Well, I do actually. It was a lie. Another one.

In fact the healthcare.gov is not fully-functioning for anyone. On the positive side I suppose you could say that everyone has an equal chance of not being able to use the web site, but that is small comfort to those trying to do so.

And this is just the latest CRASH of many. Last November there was another major one. They “fixed” it, except of course they didn’t, they just got it working for a while, until it toppled over again.

Left in the hands of idiot bureaucrats who clearly have no idea what they are doing, no system can work efficiently. They choose bad designers, who use bad code, produce a bad product, and then are amazed and surprised when it doesn’t work.

There are tens of thousands of commercial web sites, like Google, Amazon, Ebay, Microsoft, even Wikipedia, that take much higher traffic every day without crashing – and they’ve been doing it for years.

Yet the bureaucratic bunglers can’t get their web site working for more than a few weeks at a time.

About all they got right was the timing of the CRASH.

No, wait, they even got that wrong, because the whole debacle happened less than two hours before President Obama had a scheduled press conference, helping to push his approval rating more and more in the negative direction.

But fear not, as millions of his citizens now find themselves stressed and worrying because they have no insurance – due to no fault of their own –  their leader will have a solution.

I don’t know what it is, but the odds are in favor of another vacation, possibly in Hawaii – but definitely fully insured!

President Obama Vacations In Hawaii

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Yes, time for the Monday quiz.

Get your thinking caps on for another random mixture of questions.

As usual the answers can be found waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down below, but please NO cheating!

Enjoy and good luck.

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quiz 05

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Q.  1:  Which capital city is also a TV detective?

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Q.  2:  Who created havoc in 1938, when his radio broadcast of “The War Of The Worlds” was believed to be true?

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Q.  3:  What were ‘Benjy’ and ‘Laska’, sent into space in 1958?

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Q.  4:  Name the composer of the famous musicals ‘Top Hat’ and ‘Annie Get Your Gun’

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Q.  5:  Which mountains form the backbone of South America?

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Q.  6:  In which river was Jesus Baptised?

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Q.  7:  Which South American country provides the setting for the climax of the 1969 movie ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid’?

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Q.  8:  Into which ocean does the River Amazon flow?

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Q.  9:  Which South American city was shaped by architect Oscar Niemeyer?

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Q. 10:  The Rio Grande forms part of the boundary between which countries? (A point for each if you like.)

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Q. 11:  What name is given to the large, treeless plains south of the Amazon?

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Q. 12:  Which island in the east pacific is renowned for its stone heads?

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Q. 13:  Which General overthrew Salvador Allende in 1973?  (A bonus point if you can name the country.)

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Q. 14:  Who was in office as President of the United States when the decision was taken to declare war on Germany during World War I?

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Q. 15:  He was the son of a Siberian peasant and became the most influential person at the court of Tsar Nicholas II. He was widely thought to have magical powers and was assassinated in 1916. What was his name?

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Q. 16:  The Winter Olympics have just started in Russia, but in what year was London due to host the Summer Olympic Games, but couldn’t because of the Second World War?

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Q. 17:  Which American President saw active service in both the first and second World Wars?

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Q. 18:  Which three movies did Steven Spielberg direct that were among the top ten highest grossing films of the 20th century?  (Yes, a point for each and a bonus point if you get all three.)

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Q. 19:  In what country did the soup known as ‘Cullen Skink’ originate?

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Q. 20:  Which literary detective had a servant called ‘Bunter’?

            a) Hercule Poirot          b) Lord Peter Wimsey          c) Sherlock Holmes

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ANSWERS

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Q.  1:  Which capital city is also a TV detective?

A.  1:  Columbo.

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Q.  2:  Who created havoc in 1938, when his radio broadcast of “The War Of The Worlds” was believed to be true?

A.  2:  Orson Welles.

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Q.  3:  What were ‘Benjy’ and ‘Laska’, sent into space in 1958?

A.  3:  They were Mice.

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Q.  4:  Name the composer of the famous musicals ‘Top Hat’ and ‘Annie Get Your Gun’

A.  4:  Irving Berlin.

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Q.  5:  Which mountains form the backbone of South America?

A.  5:  The Andes.

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Q.  6:  In which river was Jesus Baptised?

A.  6:  In the River Jordan.

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Q.  7:  Which South American country provides the setting for the climax of the 1969 movie ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid’?

A.  7:  Bolivia.

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Q.  8:  Into which ocean does the River Amazon flow?

A.  8:  The Atlantic Ocean.

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Q.  9:  Which South American city was shaped by architect Oscar Niemeyer?

A.  9:  Brasilia.

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Q. 10:  The Rio Grande forms part of the boundary between which countries? (A point for each if you like.)

A. 10:  The United States of America and Mexico.

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Q. 11:  What name is given to the large, treeless plains south of the Amazon?

A. 11:  The Pampas.

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Q. 12:  Which island in the east pacific is renowned for its stone heads?

A. 12:  Easter Island.

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Q. 13:  Which General overthrew Salvador Allende in 1973?  (A bonus point if you can name the country.)

A. 13:  General Pinochet in Chile.

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Q. 14:  Who was in office as President of the United States when the decision was taken to declare war on Germany during World War I?

A. 14:  Woodrow Wilson.

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Q. 15:  He was the son of a Siberian peasant and became the most influential person at the court of Tsar Nicholas II. He was widely thought to have magical powers and was assassinated in 1916. What was his name?

A. 15:  Rasputin.

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Q. 16:  The Winter Olympics have just started in Russia, but in what year was London due to host the Summer Olympic Games, but couldn’t because of the Second World War?

A. 16:  1944.

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Q. 17:  Which American President saw active service in both the first and second World Wars?

A. 17:  President Dwight D Eisenhower.

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Q. 18:  Which three movies did Steven Spielberg direct that were among the top ten highest grossing films of the 20th century?  (Yes, a point for each and a bonus point if you get all three.)

A. 18:  “Jurassic Park”, “E.T.” and “The Lost World”.

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Q. 19:  In what country did the soup known as ‘Cullen Skink’ originate?

A. 19:  Scotland. (It is a thick Scottish soup made of smoked haddock, potatoes and onions.)

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Q. 20:  Which literary detective had a servant called ‘Bunter’?

            a) Hercule Poirot          b) Lord Peter Wimsey          c) Sherlock Holmes

A. 20:  b) Lord Peter Wimsey

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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I know Cliff Clavin, the Cheers character played by John Ratzenberger for many years, was only a pretend mailman but if Jeff Bezos gets his way – and he usually does – then mailmen will have a lot less to do.

Cliff_Clavin_in_Cheers

Cliff used to drone on in Cheers and bore everyone in the bar, but in the future jobs like his are to be taken over by drones.

The military applications are well known, but instead of delivering a few pounds of high explosives to an unsuspecting terrorist, drone technology, which was legalized for commercial use last year (2012), is being developed by Bezos and his team to deliver Amazon products by air right to your front door in about 30 minutes.

We’re entering the realms of science fiction here. And if it were anyone else but Bezos you might be forgiven for dismissing the idea. But he thinks big, and thanks to the success of Amazon he has the big bucks to make it happen.

Amazon Prime Air drone

If it is real and it does happen, personally I think its great! An application for this technology other than the usual powers-that-be crap of using it to kill and spy on us.

Amazon says that, “From a technology point of view, we’ll be ready to enter commercial operations as soon as the necessary regulations are in place.”

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is working on rules for unmanned aerial vehicles. They’ll take their time as always, but eventually it will happen.

So in a few years time seeing Amazon drones in the air may well be as normal as seeing mail trucks on the road today.

Here’s a taste of the future for you.                                           

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Not much else needs to be said about today’s post.

Another selection of fabulous facts.

Enjoy.

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did you know1

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At one point in the 1990s,

50% of all CDs produced worldwide were for AOL.

aol_old_cdrom

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A British man changed his name to Tim Pppppppppprice

to make it harder for telemarketers to pronounce.

Tim Pppppppppprice

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Google’s founders were willing to sell to Excite

for under $1 million in 1999

—but Excite turned them down.

(Huge big dumb move, where is Excite today!)

ExciteLogo

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Officials in Portland, Ore., drained 8 million gallons of water

from a reservoir in 2011 because a buzzed 21-year-old peed in it.

Calvin peeing

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When three-letter airport codes became standard,

airports that had been using two letters simply added an X.

LAX

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A California woman once tried to sue the makers of Cap’n Crunch

because Crunch Berries contained “no berries of any kind.”

Cap'n Crunch berries

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Actor Wilford Brimley who has appeared in such films as

The China Syndrome, Cocoon, The Thing and The Firm,

was once Howard Hughes’s bodyguard.

Wilford "Bill" Brimleycirca 1980s

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According to Amazon, the most highlighted Kindle books are

the Bible, the Steve Jobs biography, and The Hunger Games.

amazon-kindle_with_books1-1

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During WWI, German measles were called “liberty measles”

and dachshunds became “liberty hounds.”

liberty measles

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In Spain, Mr. Clean is known as Don Limpio.

Don Limpio

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After leaving office, President Lyndon B Johnson

went all hippy and let his hair grow out.

Lyndon B Johnson long hair

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There was a third Apple founder. Ronald Wayne

he sold his 10% stake for $800 in 1976.

ron_wayne

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If you start counting at one and spell out the numbers as you go,

you won’t use the letter “A” until you reach 1,000.

number_1000

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In Gaddafi’s compound, Libyan rebels found a photo album

filled with pictures of Condoleezza Rice.

gadaffi-loves-condoleeza

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Calvin Klein’s Obsession for Men is used by researchers

to attract animals to cameras in the wilderness.

calvin klein obsession men

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Only one McDonald’s in the world has turquoise arches.

Sedona, AZ thought yellow clashed with the natural red rock.

mcdonalds-sedona_az

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Marie Curie’s notebooks are still radioactive.

Researchers hoping to view them must sign a disclaimer.

curie-notebooks

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The 50-star American flag was designed by an Ohio high school student

for a class project. His teacher originally gave him a B–.

50 star US Flag

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Tsutomu Yamaguchi was in Hiroshima for work

when the first A-bomb hit,

made it home to Nagasaki for the second,

and lived to be 93.

Tsutomu Yamaguchi

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Barry Manilow did not write his hit “I Write the Songs.”

It was actually written by the former Beach Boy Bruce Johnston.

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is Twenty-One 21

Posted: January 18, 2013 in Factoids, Numbers, Sport, Uncategorized, Unusual
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Today a number that many people like and hold to be ‘lucky’.

The Number 21

21

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In religion

  • Number of the perfection by excellence, 3 x 7, according to the Bible.
  • 21 represents the harmony of the creation.
  • Mary, mother of Jesus, lived 21 years after the death Jesus
  • There were 21 years between the presentation of Jesus to the Temple at 12 years old and his death at 33 years old.
  • In the same day, Jesus appears in 21 different places in Palestine to confirm in His Resurrection.
  • The word angel is pronounced 21 times by Jesus, always to the plural.
  • The words Flood and star are used 21 times in the Bible.
  • In the Revelation, the word “capacity” (capacity of decision or to act, by opposition to “power”) is used 21 times.

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In mathematics

21 is a Triangular, Octagonal, Fibonacci, and Motzkin Number.

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In science & technology

  • The Chemical Element Scandium has an atomic number of 21.
  • There are 21 amino-acids.
  • 21 is the standard TCP/IP port number for FTP connections

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In space and aviation

  • Messier 21 or M21
  • Messier 21 or M21 (also designated NGC 6531) is an open cluster of stars in the constellation of Sagittarius. It was discovered and catalogued by Charles Messier on June 5, 1764.
  •  It is tightly packed but contains about 57 stars. A few blue giant stars have been identified in the cluster, but Messier 21 is composed mainly of small dim stars. With a magnitude of 6.5, M21 is not visible to the naked eye; however, with the smallest binoculars it can be easily spotted on a dark night.

 trifid nebula messier 21

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  • Expedition 21
  • Expedition 21 was the 21st long-duration mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The expedition began on 30 September 2009, with Frank de Winne becoming the first ESA astronaut to command a space mission.

expedition 21 insignia

  • The handover between Expedition 20 and Expedition 21 required three Soyuz vehicles being docked to the station at the same time, the first time this has occurred.
  • Soyuz TMA-16 brought the final members of Expedition 21 to the ISS, along with space tourist Guy Laliberté. Laliberté returned to Earth on Soyuz TMA-14 with two members of Expedition 20 on 11 October 2009.
  • Nicole P. Stott was the last ISS expedition crew member to fly on the Space Shuttle. She returned to Earth aboard STS-129 in November 2009.
Expedition 21

Expedition 21 crew portrait (from the left) are Flight Engineers Nicole Stott, Frank De Winne and Roman Romanenko. Pictured on the back row (from the left) are Flight Engineer Maxim Suraev, Commander Jeffrey Williams and Flight Engineer Robert Thirsk. Image credit: NASA

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  • Luna 21
  • Luna 21 (Ye-8 series) was an unmanned space mission of the Luna program, also called Lunik 21. The spacecraft landed on the Moon and deployed the second Soviet lunar rover (Lunokhod 2). The primary objectives of the mission were to collect images of the lunar surface, examine ambient light levels to determine the feasibility of astronomical observations from the Moon, perform laser ranging experiments from Earth, observe solar X-rays, measure local magnetic fields, and study mechanical properties of the lunar surface material.

V Pennant Luna 21

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  • Number 21
  • Number 21 is the name of the plane alleged flown by Gustave Whitehead two years before the Wright brothers’ flight

 

 

In politics

  • 21st President of the United States
  • Chester Alan Arthur (October 5, 1829 – November 18, 1886) was the 21st President of the United States (1881–85). He became President after the assassination of President James A. Garfield.
  • Born in Fairfield, Vermont, Arthur grew up in upstate New York and practiced law in New York City. He devoted much of his time to Republican politics and quickly rose in the political machine run by New York Senator Roscoe Conkling.
  • Appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant to the lucrative and politically powerful post of Collector of the Port of New York in 1871, Arthur was an important supporter of Conkling and the Stalwart faction of the Republican Party.
  • In 1878 the new president, Rutherford B. Hayes, fired Arthur as part of a plan to reform the federal patronage system in New York. When James Garfield won the Republican nomination for President in 1880, Arthur was nominated for Vice President to balance the ticket by adding an eastern Stalwart to it.
  • After just half a year as vice president, Garfield was assassinated and Arthur unexpectedly became the 21st President of the united states.
  • To the surprise of reformers, Arthur took up the reform cause that had once led to his expulsion from office. He signed the Pendleton Act into law, and enforced its provisions vigorously.
  • Suffering from poor health, Arthur made only a limited effort to secure renomination in 1884; he retired at the close of his term. As journalist Alexander McClure would later write, “No man ever entered the Presidency so profoundly and widely distrusted as Chester Alan Arthur, and no one ever retired … more generally respected, alike by political friend and foe.”
Chester A Arthur

Chester A Arthur, 21st President of the United States of America

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  • 21st Amendment
  • The Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution repealed the Eighteenth Amendment, thereby ending Prohibition.

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  • 21st State
  • Illinois – the ‘Land of Lincoln’ – was the 21st state to join the United States.
  • Abraham Lincoln moved to Illinois when he was 21 and he met his future wife – Mary Todd – in Springfield when she was 21.
  • Illinois currently has 21 electoral votes in the US Presidential Election.

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  • Canada – Pier 21
  • Pier 21 was, from 1928 to 1971, was the place where immigrants entered Canada. It was called the “Gateway to Canada.”

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  • France – King Louis XVI
  • 21 was a significant number in the life of French King Louis XVI
  • On January 21, 1770, Louis XVI became engaged;
  • On June 21, 1770, he got married;
  • On January 21, 1782, he promulgated the suspension of a tax;
  • On January 21, 1784 an enormous obelisk of snow was raised for him on the place Louis XV;
  • On June 21, 1791,  Louis XVI was arrested;  and,
  • On January 21, 1793, he goes up to the scaffold.
  • Finally, the 5 letters of his first name added to XVI gives 21.

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  • Japan-China
  • The Twenty-One Demands were a set of demands which were sent to the Chinese government by the Japanese government of Okuma Shigenobu in 1915.

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  • Poland
  • The 21 Demands of MKS led to the foundation of Solidarity in Poland.

solidarity-logo

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In folklore, legends and mythology

  • The Mayan Calendar
  • December 21st 2012, according to some interpretations of the Mayan calendar was the predicted date of an apocalyptic event: ‘The planets are aligned the sun will activate, let the deluge come’.
  • It turned out to be bollocks though (see also this post)

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  • Ghost Ship 21
  • A ghost ship, also known as a phantom ship, is a ship with no living crew aboard. It may be a ghostly vessel in folklore or fiction, such as the Flying Dutchman, or a real derelict found adrift with its crew missing or dead, like the Mary Celeste. The term is sometimes also used for ships that have been decommissioned but not yet scrapped.
  • There have been many examples throughout history, for example,
  • Undated: The Caleuche is a mythical ghost ship which, according to local folklore and Chilota mythology, sails the seas around Chiloé Island, Chile, at night.
  • 1738 onwards: The Palatine Light, a ship who lost half her crew running aground off Rhode Island, possibly being lured there and pillaged by the locals. Said to appear every December.
  • 1748 onwards: The Lady Lovibond is said to have been deliberately wrecked on Goodwin Sands on 13 February and to reappear off the Kent coast every fifty years.
  • 1786 onwards: The Ghost Ship of Northumberland Strait, a burning ship seen regularly between Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.
  • 1795 onwards: The Flying Dutchman, a ship manned by a captain condemned to eternally sail the seas, has long been the principal ghost ship legend among mariners and has inspired several works.
  • 1813 onwards: After the American schooner Young Teazer was sunk in an explosion during the War of 1812, a burning apparition known as the “Teazer Light” has been reported off Maine.
  • 1858 onwards: The Eliza Battle, a paddle steamer that burned in 1858 on the Tombigbee River in Alabama, is purported to reappear, fully aflame, on cold and windy winter nights to foretell of impending disaster.
  • 1878 onwards: An apparition has been reported where the HMS Eurydice sank off the Isle of Wight. Witnesses include a Royal Navy submarine in the 1930s and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, in 1998.
  • 1872 or 1882: The Iron Mountain riverboat, according to legend, mysteriously disappeared while travelling the Mississippi River and left the barges it was towing adrift. In reality, the ship sank in 1882 near Vicksburg after running aground, and its fate was never mysterious.
  • 1928: The København was last heard from on December 28, 1928. For two years following its disappearance sightings of a mysterious five-masted ship fitting its description were reported in the Pacific Ocean.
  • Historically attested
  • 1855: HMS Resolute was discovered drifting off the coast of Baffin Island. It had been one of four vessels from Edward Belcher’s search expedition for John Franklin that had been abandoned the previous year when it was trapped in pack ice in Viscount Melville Sound. The ship drifted some 1,200 miles (1,900 km) before it was found, freed from the ice.
  • 1872: Amazon (later renamed Mary Celeste). In 1872 the Mary Celeste, perhaps the most historically famous derelict, was found abandoned between mainland Portugal and the Azores archipelago. It was devoid of all crew, but largely intact and under sail, heading toward the Strait of Gibraltar. While Arthur Conan Doyle’s story “J. Habakuk Jephson’s Statement” based on this ship added some strange phenomena to the tale (such as that the tea found in the mess hall was still hot), the fact remained that the last log entry was 11 days prior to the discovery of the ship.
  • 1884: In 1884 the Resolven was found abandoned between Baccalieu Island and Catalina, Newfoundland and Labrador, with its lifeboat missing. Other than a broken yard, it had suffered minimal damage. A large iceberg was sighted nearby. It has been claimed that none of the seven crew members or four passengers were accustomed to northern waters and it was suggested that they panicked when the ship was damaged by ice,[9] launched the lifeboat, and swamped, though no bodies were found. Three years later, Resolven was wrecked while returning to Newfoundland from Nova Scotia with a load of lumber.
  • 1917: Zebrina, a sailing barge, departed Falmouth, England, with a cargo of Swansea coal bound for Saint-Brieuc, France. Two days later she was discovered aground on Rozel Point, south of Cherbourg, without damage except for some disarrangement of her rigging, but with her crew missing.
  • 1921: The Carroll A. Deering, a five-masted cargo schooner, was found stranded on a beach on Diamond Shoals, North Carolina. The ship’s final voyage had been the subject of much debate and controversy, and was investigated by six departments of the US government, largely because it was one of dozens of ships that sank or went missing within a relatively short period of time. While paranormal explanations have been advanced, the theories of mutiny or piracy are considered more likely.
  • 1931: The Baychimo was abandoned in the Arctic Ocean when it became trapped in pack ice and was thought doomed to sink, but remained afloat and was sighted numerous times over the next 38 years without ever being salvaged.
  • 1933: A lifeboat from the 1906 wreck of the passenger steamship SS Valencia off the southwest coast of Vancouver Island was found floating in the area in remarkably good condition 27 years after the sinking. Sailors have also reported seeing the ship itself in the area in the years following the sinking, often as an apparition that followed down the coast.
  • 1955: The MV Joyita was discovered abandoned in the Pacific. A subsequent inquiry found the vessel was in a poor state of repair, but determined the fate of passengers and crew to be “inexplicable on the evidence submitted at the inquiry”.
  • 1959: A ghost submarine was found floating without a crew in the Bay of Biscay off northern Spain. It was later discovered that the empty sub was being towed by another vessel and the chain had snapped.
  • 1969: The Teignmouth Electron was found adrift and unoccupied in the Atlantic Ocean. Investigation led to the conclusion that its sole crewmember, Donald Crowhurst, had suffered a psychiatric breakdown while competing in a solo around-the-world race and committed suicide by jumping overboard.
  • 2003: The High Aim 6 was found drifting in Australian waters, 80 nautical miles (150 km; 92 mi) east of Rowley Shoals, with its crew missing. The derelict was subsequently scuttled.
  • 2006: The tanker Jian Seng was found off the coast of Weipa, Queensland Australia in March. Its origin or owner could not be determined, and its engines had been inoperable for some time.
  • 2006: In August the “Bel Amica” was discovered off the coast of Sardinia. The Coast Guard crew that discovered the ship found half eaten Egyptian meals, French maps of North African seas, and a flag of Luxembourg on board.
  • 2007: A 12-metre catamaran, the Kaz II, was discovered unmanned off the coast of Queensland, northeast Australia in April.[18] The yacht, which had left Airlie Beach on Sunday 15 April, was spotted about 80 nautical miles (150 km) off Townsville, near the outer Great Barrier Reef on the following Wednesday. When boarded on Friday, the engine was running, a laptop was running, the radio and GPS were working and a meal was set to eat, but the three-man crew were not on board. All the sails were up but one was badly shredded, while three life jackets and survival equipment, including an emergency beacon, were found on board. A search for the crew was abandoned on Sunday 22nd as it was considered unlikely that anyone could have survived for that period of time.
  • 2008: The abandoned 50 ton Taiwanese fishing vessel Tai Ching 21 was found drifting near Kiribati on 9 November. The ship had suffered a fire several days previously, and its lifeboat and three life rafts were missing. No mayday call was received, and the ship had last been heard from on 28 October. A search of 21,000 square miles (54,000 square km) of the Pacific Ocean north of Fiji by a US Air Force C-130 Hercules and a New Zealand Air Force P-3 Orion found no trace of the Taiwanese captain or crew (18 Chinese, 6 Indonesians, and 4 Filipinos).
  • 2012: The Ryou-Un Maru, a Japanese fishing vessel swept away by the March 2011 tsunami, was found floating adrift towards Canada after nearly a year at sea, no crew believed to be on board. The vessel was sunk on April 5, 2012 by the United States Coast Guard.

ghost ship 21

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In sports

  • The jersey number 21 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures:
  • In Major League Baseball: the Cleveland Indians, for Hall of Famer Bob Lemon, the Milwaukee Braves, for Hall of Famer Warren Spahn (the number continues to be honored by the team in its current home of Atlanta);  the Pittsburgh Pirates, for Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente (following his death in a plane crash while attempting to deliver humanitarian aid to victims of an earthquake in Nicaragua);

bob lemon

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  • In the NBA: the Atlanta Hawks, for Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins; the Boston Celtics, for Hall of Famer Bill Sharman; the Detroit Pistons, for Hall of Famer Dave Bing; the Sacramento Kings, for Vlade Divac; the Minnesota Timberwolves have not retired the number, but have not issued it since Kevin Garnett was traded from the team in 2007.

mayor dave bing detroit pistons 21

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  • In the NHL: the Chicago Blackhawks, for Hall of Famer Stan Mikita; the Colorado Avalanche, for likely future Hall of Famer Peter Forsberg; the Pittsburgh Penguins, for Michel Brière; the Toronto Maple Leafs have a policy of not retiring numbers unless the player honored either died or suffered a career-ending incident while a member of the team. Other players whose numbers would otherwise be retired instead have their numbers enshrined by the team as “Honored Numbers”, which remain in circulation for future players. The number 21 is currently honored for Hall of Famer Börje Salming.

stan mikita

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  • No NFL team has retired the number 21.

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  • In basketball: 21 is a variation of street basketball, in which each player, of which there can be any number, plays for himself only (i.e. not part of a team); the name comes from the requisite number of baskets.
  • In 3×3, a formalized version of three-on-three half-court basketball, the game ends by rule once either team has scored 21 points in regulation. Scoring is significantly different from traditional basketball rules, with free throws and baskets made from inside the three-point arc worth 1 point, and baskets made from outside the arc worth 2 points.
  • In badminton, and table tennis (before 2001), 21 points are required to win a game.
  • Eyeshield 21 is a Japanese anime about football.
  • In the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series the number 21 has long been the car number for Wood Brothers Racing

Wood Brothers car 21

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In books, music, tv and movies

  • 21 is the sophomore album from British singer-songwriter Adele, recently acclaimed for her title song for the Bond movie Skyfall.
  • Century 21 Television (producers of Sylvia and Gerry Anderson Supermarionation shows like Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons).
  • Cinema 21 is an independently-owned movie theatre in Portland, Oregon featuring art house films. Cinema 21, 616 NW 21st Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97209 USA
  • Cinema 21, is also the name of the largest cinema chain in Indonesia, established in the entertainment industry in 1987.
  • “21” is the fact-based story about six MIT students who were trained to become experts in card counting and subsequently took Vegas casinos for millions in winnings.
  • Wedding In Las Vegas is a docu-drama about a group of students who, using a wedding as a cover story, also defeat the casino’s Blackjack tables using card counting techniques.

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In militaria

  • Mig-21
  • The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 is a supersonic jet fighter aircraft, designed by the Mikoyan-Gurevich Design Bureau in the Soviet Union. It was popularly nicknamed “balalaika”, from the aircraft’s planform-view resemblance to the Russian stringed musical instrument or olówek (English: pencil) by Polish pilots due to the shape of its fuselage.
  • Early versions are considered second-generation jet fighters, while later versions are considered to be third-generation jet fighters.
  • Some 50 countries over four continents have flown the MiG-21, and it still serves many nations a half-century after its maiden flight. The fighter made aviation records. At least by name, it is the most-produced supersonic jet aircraft in aviation history and the most-produced combat aircraft since the Korean War, and it had the longest production run of a combat aircraft (1959 to 1985 over all variants).

Mig_21_MF_b

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  • IAI Kfir F-21
  • The Israel Aircraft Industries Kfir F-21 is an Israeli-built all-weather, multirole combat aircraft based on a modified French Dassault Mirage 5 airframe, with Israeli avionics and an Israeli-made version of the General Electric J79 turbojet engine.
  • The Kfir entered service with the IAF in 1975, the first units being assigned to the 101st “First Fighter” Squadron. Over the following years, several other squadrons were also equipped with the new aircraft. The role of the Kfir as the IAF’s primary air superiority asset was short-lived, as the first F-15 Eagle fighters from the United States were delivered to Israel in 1976.
  • The Kfir’s first recorded combat action took place on November 9, 1977, during an Israeli air strike on a training camp at Tel Azia, in Lebanon. The only air victory claimed by a Kfir during its service with the IAF occurred on June 27, 1979 when a Kfir C.2 shot down a Syrian MiG-21.
  • Twenty-five modified Kfir C.1s were leased to the US Navy and the US Marine Corps from 1985 to 1989, to act as adversary aircraft in dissimilar air combat training (DACT). These aircraft, designated F-21A Kfir, had narrow-span canard foreplanes and a single small rectangular strake on either side of the nose which considerably improved the aircraft’s maneuverability and handling at low speeds.

Kfir F-21

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  • Blücher 21 cm/45 (8.27″) SK L/45
  • Used afloat only on the Armored Cruiser Blücher which was sunk at the World War I battle of Dogger Bank.  After her sinking, four reserve guns were given to the German Army.
  • During World War II these guns were used as coastal artillery.  They were then supplied with a better ballistically shaped shell and with a larger propellant charge for increased range.
  • Constructed of a tube, two layers of hoops and a jacket.  Used the Krupp horizontal sliding wedge breech block.  About 16 guns were made.

Blucher

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  • 21-K
  • The 45 mm anti-aircraft gun (21-K) was a Soviet design adapted from the 45 mm anti-tank gun M1937 (53-K). This was a copy of a 3.7 cm (1.5 in) German weapon designed by Rheinmetall that was sold to the Soviets before Hitler came to power in 1933 that had been enlarged to 45 mm (1.8 in) in increase its penetrating power.
  • It was used by the Soviet Navy to equip almost all of their ships from 1934 as its primary light anti-aircraft gun until replaced by the fully automatic 37 mm 70-K gun from 1942 to 1943.
  • It was used in World War II and during the Cold War as the Soviets exported their World War II-era ships to their friends and allies.
  • However it was not very effective as its slow rate of fire and lack of a time fuze required a direct hit to damage targets.

21-K-KrasnyyKavkaz1

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  • GAU-21 (M3M)
  • The M3M was designated by the U.S. Navy as the GAU-21 in 2004 and is currently used by all services within the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD).
  • An evolution of the M3 .50-caliber heavy machine gun, it produces a blistering 1,100 rounds per minute cyclic rate of fire through the use of open-bolt operation and a dual recoil buffer system. Operating independent of either electrical or hydraulic power sources, the M3M/GAU-21’s unique soft mount system enhances weapon accuracy and minimizes the firing vibration transmitted to the airframe.
  • FN Herstal has been awarded a solesource U.S. Navy contract to produce the M3M .50 caliber machine guns under the Gun, Aircraft, Unit-21 (GAU-21) designation for Navy and Marine Corps rotary-wing assault aircraft.
  • The FN GAU-21 (M3M) is a .50 caliber (12.7x99mm) single barrel rapid-fire machine gun suitable for rotary-wing aircraft applications providing defensive firepower ranging out to nearly 2000 meters.

gau_21_main

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  • BRNO 21
  • BRNO is neither German nor Austrian (although it was once located in the Austro-Hungarian Empire), but they produced the BRNO model designation 21 and 22 as post-War sporting rifles.

BRNO Model 21

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  • GLOCK 21
  • Almpst an American icon, the Glock 21 is a .45 caliber pistol. Countless law enforcement units swear by this superior pistol for more than just its above-average magazine capacity of 13 rounds.

Glock-21

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  • SIG SAUER® P210®
  • The SIG SAUER® P210®, the timeless pistol of the Swiss Army, is once again in production by SIG SAUER GmbH in Germany. This historic gun features the same precision and reliability as its ancestors, but also offers a number of modern improvements.
  • The return of the SIG SAUER P210 Legend will now ensure that many more shooters will be able to enjoy one of the world’s most accurate and legendary firearms.

sig_p210_b

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  • 21st Century Commander
  • Internally, the 21st Century Commander is classic Colt. The stainless 4.25-inch barrel is rifled in the standard 1:16-inch left-hand twist. Each 21st Century Commander is serialized with a unique number that contains the letters “WC” for Wiley Clapp.

Colt 21st Century Commander

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  • 21 Series Beretta
  • The 21 Series Beretta pocket pistol (Bobcat) has the same dedication to advanced design, uncompromising quality and strict quality control that make the 92F, Cougar and Cheetah such international standouts.
  • It has a user-friendly design, exclusive tip-up barrel allowing the user to easily load a round directly into the chamber or assisting in the safe clearing of the pistol by allowing a live round to be easily removed from the chamber and the bore quickly checked. Jamming and stovepiping problems are virtually eliminated by the open slide design shared by all small frame Berettas.
  • Chambered for .22LR or .25ACP (6.35 mm), this compact, rugged small frame measures just 4.9 inches (125 mm) overall and weighs only 11.5 ounces (325 grams). It features a lightweight, alloy frame, blued steel slide, tip-up barrel, and double/single action. The Bobcat comes with a 7-round magazine for .22LR ammunition, or an 8 round magazine for .25 (6.35 mm)caliber cartridges.

Beretta Mod 21A

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  • Twenty-one Gun Salute
  • Legend has it that Twenty-one guns are fired in U.S. national military salutes because the digits in 1776 add up to 21. However, despite the fact that the year 1776 is deeply significant to Americans and the total of its digits does add up to 21, the legend is untrue because the custom of the 21-gun salute antedates the American Revolution by at least several decades.
  • Also interesting is the fact that, although we now view weaponry salutes as honors proudly bestowed by fighting men upon those of high rank or great achievement, saluting in days long ago was an act of submission; a tangible way of demonstrating that the one performing the action was voluntarily placing himself in the power of the one being saluted. Guns would be emptied a ritual number of times, or sails would be lowered, or spears would be pointed towards the ground, the significance being that those carrying out the act were saying “I yield to your authority, and as proof I’ve just rendered my weapon incapable of being used against you.”
  • Over time the practice evolved into a custom honorary and ceremonial as well as practical. Today’s salute is far more a mark of respect than an act of submission.
  • Cannons became part of weaponry salutes in the 14th century.  A just-emptied cannon was a useless piece of ordnance and so made a fine visible display of the lack of hostile intent. Warships took to firing honorary seven-gun salutes, with that number likely chosen for its astrological and biblical significance. Because those crewing cannons on land had access to far greater supplies of powder, they were able to fire three guns (a number chosen for its mystical significance) for every shot fired afloat, making the honorary salute by shore batteries 21 guns.
  • Eventually, an understanding was reached that the international salute should be established as 21 guns.
  • Today, the national salute of 21 guns is fired in honor of a national flag, the sovereign or chief of state of a foreign nation, a member of a reigning royal family, and the President, ex-President, and President-elect of the United States. It is also fired at noon of the day of the funeral of a President, ex-President, or President-elect; Washington’s Birthday; Presidents’ Day; and the Fourth of July. On Memorial Day, a salute of 21 minute guns (i.e., guns discharged at one-minute intervals) is fired at noon while the flag is flown at half staff.

21-gun-salute

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In other stuff

  • We are currently living in the 21st Century, which spans the years from 2001 to 2100;
  • There are 21 letters in the Italian alphabet;
  • 21 is the number representing the maturity and the responsibility for an individual;
  • In most USA states 21 is the drinking age;
  • In some countries 21 is the voting age;
  • Cities on latitude 21 North include:  Aguascalientes, Cancún, and León, in Mexico; Jeddah, and Mecca in Saudi Arabia; Honolulu, Hawaii; Nagpur, Maharashtra, India; and Hanoi, Vietnam.
  • Cities on latitude 21 South include: Francistown, Botswana; and Nuku’Alofa, Tonga.
  • Cities on longitude 21 West include: Reykjavík, Iceland.
  • Cities on longitude 21 East include: Warsaw, Poland; Pristina, Kosovo; and Skopje, Macedonia.21 is a card game, also called vingt-et-un (French for “twenty-one”), pontoon, or blackjack;
  • Twenty One, was the name of a TV quiz show that ran from 1956 to 1958, most remembered for the scandal that the wins were fixed – it was remade in 2000;
  • There are 21 spots on a standard cubical (six-sided) die (1+2+3+4+5+6);
  • There are 21 trump cards of the tarot deck if one does not consider The Fool to be a proper trump card;
  • In Israel, the number is associated with the profile 21 (the military profile designation granting an exemption from the military service);
  • 21 grams is the weight of the soul, according to research by Duncan MacDougall;
  • 21 is the designation of a US Highway connecting Wytheville, Virginia and Beaufort, South Carolina, a truncation of a route that once connected Cleveland, Ohio and Jacksonville, Florida, among other highways past and present;
  • 21 is the number of the French department Côte-d’Or;
  • In France XXI is a journal devoted to long-form journalism;
  • ’21’ is a landmark New York restaurant perfectly positioned in midtown Manhattan;
  • Forever 21 is an American chain of clothing retailers with branches in major cities in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East that offers trendy clothing and accessories for young women, men, and girls at low, affordable prices.

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