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Dirk Collins
Works at Boys & Girls Clubs of Wayne County
Lives in United States
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Dirk Collins

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Cat Warming in Winter
Internet Cat image of this Morning.
Internet Katze Bild für diesen Morgen

 Having my morning coffee in the office and getting ready for the day, and Ari sets down next to me to shake off the chill.

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So cute!
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Dirk Collins

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Summer Vacation
Week of Memorial Day, 2016

Earlier today did my Christmas post. I didn't post much this year. I'll do a few catch up posts over the next few days.

We took our family vacation early this year and started with a road trip to Tampa, Florida where on the 24rd of May we boarded Carnival Paradise, one of the older Carnival cruise ships. It was a vacation where the ships crew endeavored successfully to create one of our best vacation experiences ever! Thank you, again Maharddin and Kadek for your hospitality

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Election Day

For the last year, everyone has been talking politics. From the top right on down. Today it is my turn. I voted. After this post, I won't talk about politics again, at least for another four years, however I thought that some of you might be interested in just what some of us act on and really believe, here in the United States. ...And we'll start from the top.

This has been one of the most divisive elections ever that I can remember here in the United States. Big money groups have thrown millions of dollars at advertising campaigns, most of them are negative campaigns just speaking badly about their opponent. The excessive advertising backfired. It didn't work. at all. It is a shame to the FBI, that they would step in and try to publicly influence an election. Bad move. An unprecedented very bad move.

Now I'm going to talk about who I didn't vote for, ...and why;

Donald Trump No, just no. Twice bankrupt. Aggressive. He made it plain he doesn't care about women, minorities, foreigners, and American entrepreneurs and small business,. He said he wants to make America great again, but as part of the Republican party, he did nothing to prevent the big car manufacturers from going bankrupt. Without the democrats to light a fire under them, the Republicans would have let two of the three of the last big car manufacturers die in the U.S., and all of those jobs would have been gone. He's probably bankrupted a lot of business people who worked, and helped him, and now he wants to be rewarded for that. No Way.

Hillary Clinton Nope. No one remembers that it was Bill and her in the 90's who opened the floodgates and let the American manufacturers abandon their workers and run south of the border and into third world countries and hire International workers at a fraction of the cost using the NAFTA agreements. The Companies didn't have to pay taxes anymore ...and did those American companies pass the cost savings on to the consumer? No. Not even a little, Just ask Apple and Foxcon, or Disney and Digital. ...We see what you did there, ...and now you want back in, just because, know, a woman should get to be president? No.

I also want to touch briefly on the Clinton pay- to-play government plan. It makes me ill that lobbyists and foreign dignitaries get to socialize and influence American policy just by ponying up cash and showing up at parties. Kind of makes me feel like the American presidency is available for sale to the highest bidder. I could almost forgive the FBI for trying to dodge that bullet and throw Hilary Clinton under the bus, the only problem is, The FBI backed the worst possible candidate for President, ever. That's called a lose-lose situation.  Go James Comey!

Hilary Clinton wants to put ground troops into Syria and expand our war for the benefit of the Defense Industry, I want to get all of our ground troops out of middle eastern countries, and bring them home. All of them. Obama promised on this, and he lied. Also does anyone here really want Bill in the White House again horn-dogging his way around the country? She, didn't get my vote.

Jill Stein Nope.  I'll admit, the Green Party ticket was very attractive at first. It's loaded with Yankee good sense, good ideas, and all the right intentions. If she was elected and picked a cabinet, it would wreck both the Republican and Democrat agendas in Washington. This ticket had one big big problem though. No support at the local level, not even a small base. Back in June, After Bernie Sanders caved in to the will of the corrupted Democratic party and withdrew his nomination, Jill Stein was briefly in the spotlight. At that time I emailed the Indiana Stein Campaign HQ  and volunteered to help get her elected, and ....crickets.

Never heard back from anyone in the Green Party. Any presidential campaign that can not effectively recruit volunteers when the volunteers  are e-mailing and phoning in to help, will not be organized enough to successfully run the country, ...if by some miraculous remote chance actually find themselves elected. So, never a serious contender to Jill.

Gary Johnson, Libertarian Party. Me: Who? Never even heard of him until today. Seriously, what was the Libertarian platform, how would they run the country? Why didn't they get into the debates,? Why didn't they get more political coverage? A lackluster effort at best.So, with no clear idea how the Libertarians with Gary at the helm plans on running our country for the next four years. No Gary, no.

Kind and dear readers, you can see my meaningful choices getting slim here... real slim. Effectively, the entire political establishment ensured that there were  no presidential candidates qualified to actually lead our country well for the next four years. Not even one.

Now there is a blank spot on the ballot to fill in who I believed would be the best person for President and Vice-President for the next four years, and for the first time ever, I did.

I voted for the honorable Senator from Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren to become our next President. Never mind the fact that she said she really didn't want to. It is exactly these experienced public servants, the ones who are randomly called on, that end up doing the best job. She has spent the last eight years kicking big banks, and corrupt politicians right in the nuts, and publicly humiliating them, and taking every opportunity to fight for the American middle class, which still miraculously, barely, but actually comprises the majority of the population. Too bad the middle class are not returning the favor for her and giving her the opportunity to really make our government better and more effective.

...Imagine just for a second, corrupt lobbyists, banks, and foreign powers having to navigate through the horde of followers that Elizabeth Warren would call upon, the no-nonsense middle class folks that have been screwed, that would be eager to quash their repulsive bribery, kickbacks, cronyism, and nepotism that surrounds the office of our current Leaders.

I picked Michael Dell, to be her Vice-President. He just hangs out in Austin, and works leading one of the last truly great computer companies in America. He would back Elizabeth Warren good, and would even do a great job as President, if for any reason she couldn't.

My vote went to a personal friend for Indiana State Senate. He would do a better job than either the Republican or Democratic nominee, and I believe he would represent Indiana better than anyone else in the State. In all the other local and regional races where the Democrats and Republicans conspired to ensure they were the only ones on the ballot, I abstained from voting. Neither deserve to be elected for their conspiracy.

You know, the Indiana Governor came out as Anti-LGBT last year, so I thought I would clean house there too. For the Indiana Governorship, I voted for Rex Bell of the Libertarian Party along with Karl Tatgenhorst for the Lieutenant Governor. Unlike the current Governor, these freedom loving libertarians would not even dream of interfering with the peoples right to choose for themselves,  just how, and where they want to be happy.

There was one interesting measure on the Indiana Ballot this year;

Public Question #1
"Provides that the right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife is a valued part of Indiana's heritage and shall be forever preserved for the public good. Provides that the people have a right, which includes the right to use traditional methods, to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife, subject only to the laws prescribed by the general assembly and rules prescribed by virtue of the authority of the general assembly to: (1) promote wildlife conservation and management; and (2) preserve the future of hunting and fishing. Provides that hunting and fishing are the preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife. Provides that this constitutional amendment does not limit the application of any laws relating to trespass or property rights. This proposed amendment has been agreed to by one general assembly."

This was a simple (but loaded) Yes/No question.  I voted Yes, of course. Everyone should have the right to fish and hunt on public lands. With this motion though, the Indiana State Government gets to exercise complete and totalitarian power over hunting and fishing rights here in the State on public lands. Just another good reason Libertarians would be good as Governors here, to quell any notions for denying hunting and fishing rights for any stupid number of reasons.

That concludes everything I'm interested in for politics. For the rest of you Americans intent on calling this running train wreck of an election an example of a good democracy, good luck. Please don't call on me when you run out of railroad track and your state and federal government comes crashing down around you, because you voted your rights away in fear and ignorance, and you are now slaves of corporations, some individuals, and special interest groups.
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Wasted Votes. Write in votes aren't even in counted in 7 of the 14 states that allow them, except in local elections.

But at least you didn't vote for the monster.
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Dirk Collins

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ESA ExoMars Probe Landing
Watch European Space Agency's ExoMars Arrival at the Red Planet on Watch a series of live ESA TV webcasts from the ESOC mission control centre, Darmstadt, Germany. (1) 16 October 14:30-15:20 GMT / 16:30-17:20 CEST -- Separation of Schiaparelli lander from the TGO orbiter (2) 19 October Part 1 15:44-16:59 GMT / 17:44-18:59 CEST & Part 2 18:25-20:03 GMT / 20:25-22:03 CEST -- Landing of Schiaparelli and TGO enters orbit around Mars ...
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Dirk Collins

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Snow Day 
Python, ERIC, and Shrimp Scampi

Woo-hoo! Yesterday, we had our first real snow of the year, and the high winds were blowing the snow across the roads here. The schools were closed, so the kids got to stay home too. It wasn't really a good idea to go anywhere, so I fired up a pot of coffee yesterday morning, and got to work on building my new software development desktop...

Just now finished the install of ERIC 6 which is a Python editor and Dev tool on my Vista server. In the process installed Python 3.4, as well as QT which is an App development package, and PyQT which is a Python toolset for QT. Finally, I installed ERIC which is the actual editor, and had that all finished yesterday, however it took until today to get it all running right because the Python install did not automatically add itself to the Windows cmd.exe Directory Path.

I ended up manually doing this after spending some time troubleshooting online why my install wasn't working. Not sure why anyone would create a Python MSI installer for Windows that doesn't automatically add a path environmental variable so that Windows recognizes the Python install.

I fixed this. It works now, and now can actually create new Windows apps, Web apps, Android Apps, and iOs Apps with my new Python Development Kit!  Yay!

Since I was home, and Saliese had to work, I went ahead and cooked dinner as well, on the menu one of our favorites, Garlic Shrimp Scampi with Lemon Parmesan Angel Hair Pasta and salads.

A good snow day! Looking forward to getting one or two more this year!
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Dirk Collins

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Travel Map

Okay so.... the Fun thing for today (Monday)  is the travel and residence map, ...color coded, of course.

Green is places I have lived or resided for more than six months
Blue is places that have been visited often, with some extended stays included. Orange is places traveled to on business, or vacation.
Red are states I have never visited. Might have been in an airport, or drove through them...

You can make your own map right here:
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Dirk Collins

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Crystal Springs Manatee Dive
27 May 2016

One of the last of my summer vacation expeditions filmed using the Midlands XTC-280 GoPro clone. This concludes a short series of posts that cover much of the last year, as I was very busy throughout the year with work (only took one week of vacation) and am only now catching up on sharing some of the better family events here on G+

Many blessings for a happy and prosperous New Years for all of you in 2017!

Looking forward to making 2017 better (much better) than 2016!

A shout out to a few of my online friends whom I know would enjoy this, and I'll close with links to my posts from earlier this week.

Happy New Years!

Cayman Island Sea Turtle Sanctuary

Summer Vacation 2016
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Dirk Collins

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Cayman Island Sea Turtle Sanctuary

Back during summer vacation we spent some time here. I'd like to share some photos with you, showing just how committed the local people are who live on Cayman Islands are to preserving the sea habitat in the Caribbean including all of the sea life, Turtles, Sharks, Fish, and more!

We totally contributed to supporting this and this was money well spent, and also Summer Vacation!
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Dirk Collins

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Christmas 2016

Hope you all had a wonderful holiday! A few photos!

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

More posts before the New Year on the good things of 2016. We celebrate twelve days of Christmas here!
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Dirk Collins

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RPG Update

The only thing better than getting together and playing a great game of the Star Wars RPG on a lazy Sunday morning, would be having Emperor Palpatine unexpectedly show up in order to tempt you to turn to the Dark Side.

Which is exactly what happened yesterday morning! Took the boy over to Indianapolis ComicCon to do a bit of shopping and star gazing. We were minding our own business and browsing the dealer area when a rather large contingent of Imperial Stromtroopers from the 501st Imperial Legion rolled through the main hall clearing the area ahead of them. In the very middle of the group was the dark emperor himself.

As they rolled right by us, on the way to the autograph booth I said to the boy. "Look, there's the Emperor, is your chance to turn to the dark side, and swear your loyalty to the emperor himself."

Look on the Boys face as Emperor Palpatine with his personal bodyguard strolled by; Priceless! ...and naturally I didn't have my camera handy for this. The 501st had a bodyguard in place for the Emperor the entire weekend!

This year, a fun and good show! Went on a Saturday field trip taking a group of Cosplayer's from my club for the day, as this is their favorite annual event. Then on Sunday, I returned with just my son. Ray Park a.k.a Darth Maul also attended and was signing autographs this year as well, so it was a Star Wars gathering of the Dark Side! Here's a few photos in an album to share from our day.

1. Entrance Hall

2.  Star Wars, Darth Maul and Jedi

3. The boy with Rey. There were plenty of Reys, and a few Finns present this year, this charming young lady stood out above the rest because she was English, and had the perfect accent as well.

4. Yes this is Daenarys Targaryn, Belle, and Tinkerbell from Disney, and of course, Cerci Lannister graciously posing for me.

5. Grey Delisle and the boy. Grey is well known for her character Daphne from Scooby-Doo and Vicky  from  Nickelodeons' Fairy Oddparents. She also has many movie credits including Last Airbender and Power Puff Girls, and Transformers. Gorgeous and smart too, and she reminds me a great deal of Tanith Lee , and she put the boy in his place quick when he got a bit snarky.

6.  Can't have a ComicCon without including Mario!

7. Indiana Jones & Dad. One of our special guests this year was Jonathon Rhys-Davies from Indiana Jones and Lord of the Rings.

8. The Punisher

9. Deadpool

10. Master Roshi from DragonballZ

11. Spiderman ...and he has Captain Americas' shield!

12. Super Steve from Minecraft and a very charming Catwoman!

13. Not sure what anime this is, but these Cosplayer's did such a tremendously great job detailing their costumes, I wanted to get the picture of their work and presentation.

14. Power Rangers Unite!

15.  ...of course Edward Scissorhand
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Dirk Collins

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Christmas 3.0

Twas the Night Before Christmas,
And all through the House,
Tiny creatures were stirring,
Looking for the Mouse,
The Holiday Stockings were Hung,
Everywhere without Care,
With high hopes that Saint Nick,
Would soon be There,

The Children were nestled all snug in their Beds,
While visions of Iphones, and Chromepads, danced in their Heads,
With Mamma in her Nightie, and me by Computer's Light,
We had just settled down for the long winter Night,

When out in the yard their arose such a Clatter,
I Sprang from my Man-cave to see what was the Matter,
Away to the Garage, I flew before Dawn,
And opened the Door, and lit up the Lawn, 

The Full Moon on the Global Warming Rains,
Gave the luster of Miami Beach, to these Hoosier Plains,
When what to my wondering eyes did Appear,
A pimped out Sleigh, with eight flying Reindeer,
For just a moment I thought I had too much Beer,
But that driver was so very Lively, and Quick,
I knew at that moment it was really St. Nick! 

More rapid than Indy Cars, them Reindeer they Came,
and He Whistled, and he Sang, and he called them by Name,
“Now Dasher! Now Prancer! Now Dancer and Vixen!
Onward, Comet! On Cupid, Go Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the Roof, land near the Chimney for Show,
Now Dash Away, Dash Away, Dash Away, Go!”

So right up on the Housetop, them Reindeer did Fly,
They Control Crash-Landed Way up on High,
With a sleigh full of toys, and Saint Nicholas Too,
He didn't even curse, I'll bet that amazed You!

And then in a twinkle I heard on the roof,
The Prancing and Pawing of each little hoof
They were as good as the Dancers,
In Dancing with the Stars,
Them amazing Reindeer,
That were faster than Indy Race Cars,

As I lifted my head, and was Spinning Around,
Down the Chimney, St. Nick came with a Bound,
He was dressed all in fur, and bright flashing lights,
He was covered in Bling from his head to his Feet,
You'd think he was going to a Tech Meet-and-greet,
He carried Consoles, Controllers, and Cheats,
A Bundle of Toys hung on his Back,
with PC's, and laptops, and AI's that could Hack,

His Eyes how they twinkled, His Dimples How Merry,
His smile full of Mischief, He smoked a pipe of Red Cherry,
The Coders Beard on his chin was very Long, 
He made few mistakes, and was not often Wrong,
His beard was also White as the Snow,
With his coding skills so Pristine, he really earned the Dough,

The Stump of the Pipe he held in his Teeth, 
The Smoke, It circled his head like a Wreathe,
He had a broad face, and a big round Belly,
That shook when he laughed like a bowl full of Jelly,

He was Chubby and Plump, A Right Jolly old Geek,
He loved Basic, C, PHP, and even SQL,
He also liked making Games, and even Prequels,

I Laughed out Loud when I saw him that Night,
For in that moment I knew the World was Alright, 
With a Wink of his Eye, and a Slight Twist of his Head,
He let me know that I had nothing to Dread,

He spoke not a Word, but went straight to his Work,
He really Polished and Tested that Code,
He added many Easter Eggs, then a new Perk,
He even added a few network Nodes,
and a special function just for the Clerk,

He filled all the Stockings, Put presents under the Tree,
Then set down the electronics with Care, and great Glee,
Then laying a finger on the side of his Nose,
Right back up the Chimney he Rose,

He Sprang to his Sleigh, Gave his team a new Song,
And while they began singing about being back before too Long,
With a new upgrade, of course, of that very Song,
I heard him exclaim before they flew out of Sight,

“A Merry Christmas to all, and to all a Good Night!”
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the only thing is I have a lot to me that I have been a year and a few weeks and then delete the message was
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Dirk Collins

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Sunday Afternoon
Ride at the Three Bar C stables

Not in the man cave sitting at the computer (until now of course!)
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Beijos! Kissis! OdenirFerro, Escritor, Poeta, Embaixador Universal da Paz!
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Technology Coordinator
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Wayne County
Basic Information
Father, Husband, Inventor, Investor, Teacher
Tech Guy, Employed for many years with the Department of Defense (NavCal Labs, Kay & Associates) and at various Fortune 500 Tech companies including HP, Apple, Terradyne, and Ford Aerospace... From about the mid-90's on I changed my work style and focused on entrepreneurial and startup companies like MedSim (Ultrasound Education). These days I tend to work for startups, as a consultant for individuals, and as a consultant for smaller growing companies while also providing tech support, tech programs, and workshops for non-profit corporations and schools part-time.  Former U.S. Army calibration specialist (35H) 

Bragging rights
Pretty good at fixing electronics, great at fixing personal computers and wide area networks, I also enjoy teaching about science, technology, engineering and math. Hosted and chaired one of the first Distance Education courses (1993). Designed an original Ion Thrust Engine (2009) for use in spacecraft, Designed an original green Electromagnetic Power Generator (1983) that provides electricity using no fuel, that does not pollute the atmosphere, or environment. Designed the first Time Abacus (2005), to teach people how to manually calculate fixed time intervals.
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United States
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Dirk Collins's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Elder Scrolls Online Intro

There's a new introductory video on YouTube for The Elder Scrolls Online game. Enjoy!

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