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Nathan_in_the_UK last won the day on August 18 2015

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About Nathan_in_the_UK

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    Midlands, UK

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  1. That'll be very interesting...I used to live down the street from that location and it's full of nondescript 80s 10-20 story offices and apartments. Nicely urbanized and very walkable, but architecturally very, uh, Soviet. This will either clash stupendously or stand out in a striking way.
  2. Has a federal disaster area *still* not been declared? Risking delving too much into politics, is this part of the Trump administration's declared vendetta against Democrat controlled cities, a decision that this doesn't meet the criteria, or just neglect? Didn't Gov. Lee, one of the President's political allies, submit the request?
  3. That's why I said less than east or west, but not non-existent. You're 100% correct though. Most structures in Tennessee weren't built with anything close to what would be adequate standards necessary when another major earthquake hits middle Tennessee. You bring up a great point about the Corps of Engineers projects...the system of CoE and TVA dams in the area are a disaster waiting to happen under the wrong confluence of events. Luckily, they seem to be in better States of repair than the rest of the major infrastructure in the US, at least... but maybe not. Much of what you said echoes what I learned in some geology classes I took when I was an undergrad at UT years ago. We don't think of middle Tennyas being very geologically active, and compared to east and west it isn't as much, but not as active doesn't mean not active. It just means people are less prepared when something bad does happen.
  4. I don't know the details exactly, but I do know it was built post-war, probably mid 1960s. It's a fairly standardized design for AT&T switch buildings for the switching gear. Even automated switches from that era took up huge amounts of space, with miles of copper cables, relays, and switches, along with workshops and offices for personnel to manage the systems. Most of these buildings were built to a semi-hardened status designed to withstand bb attacks with minimal damage to the interior (e.g., reinforced concrete floors, walls designed to deflect blasts and collapse outwards of they fail, controlled entry points, etc.). Since the end of the Cold War, many of the hardening aspects of these buildings were neglected or removed, but significant amounts of security were re-installed after 9/11. Please note, the following paragraphs are intended only to stimulate discussion on the importance of redundancy in essential infrastructure. The same applies to energy grids, transportation networks, fuel supplies, etc., all of which have been made terribly vulnerable from decades of complacency. There are a few interesting points to the impacts we're seeing here. First off, either the hardening was poorly designed, or retrofits (such as improved fire safety) negated the original benefits of the design. It sounds like much of the damage was caused by water, and the outages were caused because the back up generators relied on natural gas, which was promptly shut off because of leak fears. It seems to me that this was the first failure to plan: tying back up generators for essential services to outside energy supplies instead of installing self-contained diesel systems. Secondly, a glaring lack of redundancy exists in the system. If this goes out, there is no fallback. The system (apparently) doesn't have the ability to quickly reroute essential and high priority services (such as 911 and ATC) to a backup or neighboring node, like Atlanta, Memphis, or St. Louis. Finally, not only is the centralized infrastructure inadequate, but the dispersed infrastructure apparently is unable to cope. It sounds like a number if the local systems relied on bundle services, where their land line and Internet was provided by AT&T, as were their back up cellular systems...all which went down. The fact that all your primary and backup services short of radio apparently route through a bottleneck is incredibly poor planning. It does seem that non-emergency lines in most areas continued working though, which is good. I presume local circuits were unaffected by the outage, and are able to operate independently of the node. Luckily, the odds of an earthquake happening here are lower than west or east Tennessee, but they're not non-existent. In my mind, that's the worst case scenario. Earthquake hits, causes damage to the gear in the building and cuts off the fuel supplies for the back up generators. Much of the emergency services communication and coordination system is now down indefinitely when it's most needed. Caveat: this is entirely speculation based on my own understanding of the infrastructure involved and my experience working on continuity of operations planning. So, some professional knowledge of how this should work, informed by available news on the incident. I've never worked in this particular building and do not know the details of the design or subsequent retrofits.
  5. Damn... remains discovered. No word as to whether it's a victim or the perpetrator.
  6. Sounds like most of the area 911 services are down. How the heck is there such a huge single point of failure for the emergency infrastructure of the entire region?!
  7. Please don't presume to know my politics, left, right, or otherwise, based on one offhand remark. I was simply stating that there have been a ton of the Q-Anon types calling for violence, directly and indirectly, the last few weeks. It's not a boogeyman, it's a real societal movement that has thousands of adherents, and it's reasonable to be suspicious of it. That said, there are plenty of others on both the left and right that have actually enacted violence that have nothing to do with that particular conspiracy theory. Either way, we don't know who did it, it could have been anyone or anything right now. Heck, it's not even clear it was an intentional act.
  8. That's what I was wondering. Someone who doesn't realize that it's a semi-hardened structure tried to play terrorist and take out a telecom node, but didn't realize they'd need a much bigger boom to do anything. I'm just so thankful this didn't happen a few hours earlier or later...dozens could have been killed. Way too early to tell motivation or actor now, though. I will say though, with all the Q-Anon crazies praying for a civil war, I am dreading the coming weeks.
  9. I've been gone a few weeks and not able to keep up with what's happening...but I was under the impression that most of the dumb transpotainment got shut down. Is that no longer the case?
  10. I just can't stop thinking about how much of an impact a direct light rail link with downtown would have. Maybe new hotels wouldn't have a need to accommodate so much parking if people didn't have to feel like they either need to pay exorbitant taxi fares, deal with a (perceived-to-be) unreliable and infrequent bus, or rent a car!
  11. Belmont is on its way to having some of the most stunning architecture of any university in the South. Loving the Greek Revival trend they have going.
  12. Wouldn't call it an accolade, but Rolling Stone did a piece on Nashville's delayed COVID response and the people flaunting the rules. https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-country/nashville-broadway-bars-party-pandemic-masks-1041693
  13. Has anyone else here taken a foray into classic car ownership? Since I'm living in the UK for a bit, I figured recently that I would take advantage of the relatively inexpensive classic car market and get a proper British car. I found a 1978 MG B GT for sale down in Bristol, after a test drive and a good once-over, it appeared mechanically sound and of acceptable cosmetics for the price. I picked it up to have as a weekend project and to have something more exciting to commute in than the 2011 VW Golf I had been driving the past two years. It's been interesting so far... It's rather straightforward mechanically, easy to work on, and spare parts are inexpensive and easy to come by. Quite fun to drive, too! And when I move back to the States I'll hopefully have an interesting, and relatively unique (what with it being right hand drive and all), souvenir! Anyway, let me know if you have anything old or interesting!
  14. It looks like a failed attempt at building something designed by M. C. Escher.
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