20090116

It’s amazing what a piece of metal can do for you.




My very life was often in the hands of this 8 pound piece of metal. I spent many sleepless nights hoping I could depend on it. Sometimes it would appear to fail, but it never did.
…..When I boated a lot on Lake Superior, mostly in the Apostle Islands and Isle Royale, anchoring out was the only way you could stay on the Islands overnight, there were very few docks. We'd take week long trips and there were no "safe" places to be. I rigged up alarms to detect anchor dragging but with wind shifts it was unreliable.
My boat was not big, but my main anchor was rated for a 36 foot boat and my backup anchor was rated for a 24 foot boat, and I usually used them both. I didn’t feel they were any too large. They held fast (usually) thru some violent weather and big waves. It's hard to visualize how powerful and violent huge waves can be. I still have and use those anchors and I look at them with great respect. Someday I may frame one and hang it on the wall.
 

"Everyone needs a good anchor to depend on" - Bert . . . . . . The anchors are "Benson" Danforth type anchors, cast alloy... a great anchor.

Here’s an example - Lucky rescue, 16 foot waves, 85mph winds.


 

20090108

Bert Remembers the Future Again...Brain structure.



Dreams, thoughts, and memories.

We are but computers that control a machine. Our eye's, ears, touch, nose, tongue....are the peripheral input devices (like keyboard, scanner, cams, microphone, etc) to our operating system (Brain). The inputs cause our operating system to process and appropriately fetch old memories and put them together as cohesive thoughts, and to search for additional input, and cause our machine (body) to react and then perform physical tasks in response to the original input (or to store the new conclusion in memory).




Our brain memory device is similar to and more like a multi-dimensional hologram with theoretical infinite storage. But the less intense memories engraved on our hologram memory eventually get overwritten because of the more intense or more recent memories and therefore older or smaller memories diminish in resolution and clarity and eventually are obliterated and forgotten. Our memories are similar to craters on the moon... the smaller or older craters eventually get obliterated by the bigger or more recent ones and therefore old ones are lost forever (forgotten).  The bigger or newer ones are more clear.
Sometimes when our inputs (eyes, ears, etc) sense something specific, our operating system creates a template from that information then does a search thru our memory to find approximately matching similar data (remembers).. then retrieves and processes the matching data (memories) and from that information creates a logical response to the original input (by speaking, looking, moving, etc).
.....The results of our reaction to the initial input are noted and processed by our operating system and duly recorded in our hologram memory for assessment by future input from our senses (they are the newest memories).
Sometimes when there is little outside input is being processed, our brains have little to do so it goes into an "Idle Loop" and performs tasks based on interruptions from all the thousands of peripherals. Some of these interruptions inadvertently cause our perpetually running operating system to retrieve and process old information from memory and create new "Thoughts"........ or cause us to day-dream or night-dream.
Dreams ......When there is no outside input (while sleeping, etc) , our perpetually running operating system somewhat randomly retrieves items from our main memory bank and tries to make sense of the randomly selected memory items and attempts to put the random mismatched pieces together to create a logical "dream" that is not likely based on current outside input... mostly from items in our memory, new and old. Some of the randomly retrieved memories have faded so sometimes inaccurate or incomplete data is inserted into the dreams which often makes them even more illogical.
When we die it's just like a computer... when you turn off the computer, all the data in volatile main memory (but not static external storage) is lost forever... all the thoughts, ideas, feelings, morals, memories, images, knowledge, etc, (the things that make up our personality) just vanish and quickly and completely disappear forever.  Re-applying power will not restore the contents.  Just like a computer main memory, our memory items only exist as long as power (fresh blood/oxygen) is applied, or else it vanishes. It's like when you pull the plug on a TV, there is nothing left on the screen, it only has a message when powered.. Without power (fresh blood) to our main memory, only our external memory storage is left behind.....i.e. papers and blogs we've written, physical items we've created, anything created by our output devices (hands, voice recordings, etc) and eventually, even our external memory storage will eventually go back to nature.
Kinda bleak eh? It's amazing we can think at all.  See Bert's Jan 8th comment below (the longest one, response to Swag) for a bit more discussion.
Disclaimer - The above is solely the viewpoint of the Chicken and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of our sponsor.

READ THE COMMENTS - More significant questions and thoughts about how it all works.