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Everything posted by utilitus

  1. "To easily identify a coral snake, remember this rhyme about the sequence of its' color bands: Red touches yellow, kills a fellow. Red touches black, venom lack."
  2. Last December I extracted Euros from BNP Paribas ATMs with my Schwab Bank card at branches in France and Italy in English. While I can't recall any specific details of the transactions and don't have their printouts handy, the net result was that the well-practiced 'decline' appropriate to Lakeside seems to have authorized an unfavorable rate. As always, Schwab picked up the ATM charges, but next time I travel I will go online to research the optimal protocol for local cash extraction (from machines rather than myself). Come to think of it, the wad of Euros I brought home has appreciated 9% in the meantime, more than compensating for such ATM skullduggery...
  3. Yes, of course. But knowing what to expect is an aspect of 'financial' engineering... And there can be surprising rules and exceptions. Off the subject, but I hope that Mexico revives a wholesome version of the Maquilladora program to produce solar gear as the Chinese wear out their welcome in the US, because Mexico of all the oil producing nations is reportedly running out the fastest.
  4. Thanks for the sensible suggestion, which would provide information at any stage of such a project (though I would not bet the ranch on a casual bureaucratic inquiry in any country.) This home-design project has been in the planning stage for years (when I was last at Lakeside a year ago I visited the U. Guad. engineering dept.) and it will be 'deeply' engineered in advance rather than cobbled together over time.
  5. I wonder...would a raked, 35 sq mt solar panel installation suspended 2-3 mt over a walkable roof qualify as taxable 'roofing'?
  6. "The EMA panel said although there is already an approved vaccine for preventing the disease caused by the dengue virus, Takeda's vaccine showed wider protection for young children and those aged above 45 years." As discussed on this site previously, the first dengue vaccine has narrow and complex applicability - how this new vaccine improves on it probably requires more time and *ouch* more cases. See: https://www.reuters.com/business/healthcare-pharmaceuticals/eu-regulator-adopts-positive-opinion-dengue-vaccine-2022-10-14/ and https://www.takeda.com/newsroom/newsreleases/2022/takedas-dengue-vaccine-candidate-provides-continued-protection-against-dengue-fever-through-4.5-years-in-pivotal-clinical-trial/
  7. But seriously, the informed commentaries (such as those of the estimable LQ above in this thread) that I've seen seem to indicate that a generic router attached to the SL gear would support an affordable ethernet cable (say Category 6) of 100 meters, which should include the gentle bending required to fit the cable to your indoor gear, plus, if needed, the burial of the cable in some cheap PVC pipe to reach the neighbors house, and then their installation. I did such an installation to my office in the redwoods, and at 100 mt (the published maximum spec) there was no signal slowdown for DSL. Goofy people everywhere use WiFi unnecessarily, but if it were appropriate in your situation, I don't know if it would effect performance. There are Microwave systems for a few hundred bucks that require line of sight and many have a range of a mile or so that might interface with SL - some of them are considered 'plug and play'. I've always thought this kind of facility sharing was a great idea, with the right partners...
  8. UC Davis cooked up a data sheet on the CB: https://wric.ucdavis.edu/information/natural areas/wr_R/Ricinus.pdf
  9. Thanks for the input. Some sources indicate that some species of rats enjoy fruit and insects, though the only published material referencing (using the local collective noun) a rodent 'plague' Lakeside I came across describes an infestation last November around poorly managed garbage in Joco, which sounds like the classic case.
  10. Got a cryptic email from a neighbor on the hill in SJC suggesting that my undeveloped lot was hosting rats (just wait 'till I move in...). If this is true, the only possible food sources would seem to be animal or vegetable. Is there a 'plague' of delicious insects currently in progress? In the later category, the only candidates would be grasses and the two meter tall specimen shown below, which does seem to produce fruit of some sort. Can anyone please comment on these factors? TIA!
  11. Our ranch east of Napa has shown evidence of tunneling termites about every decade. The last time it happened several years ago, there was some talk about using a convenient 'baiting system'. Check it out (without recommendation): https://entomology.ca.uky.edu/ef639#:~:text=The bait station housing is,other termites to the station.
  12. Sr. Luis' combination of character and skills sounds exceptional. But how, customarily or just pragmatically, does one gladly reward such service? Is a liberal cash tip straightforwardly appropriate and welcomed? (When Ilox was introduced, as a phase of due diligence, I found online that their linemen made about US$20/day.)
  13. Hopefully, such vendors aren't expecting any "dangling"... I've seen one or two 'store-bought' domestic elevators Lakeside - looked like miniature versions of the cars in the Embarcadero Hyatt in SF. I always waste volumes of time researching ideas and options to death, including in this case browsing the vast industrial production of the PRC via Alibaba (and "I get ALL my knock-off Moncler items from AliExpress!"). Youtube captures a number of 'hlilbilly Hilton' elevator projects.
  14. Please do report back - I'm trying to find an engineer to help design a new house featuring among other gizmos a small exterior wall mounted passenger elevator to a rooftop garden, and any frame of reference provided by an actual thoughtful design and installation would be very interesting.
  15. As to livability or SJC property values, I don't know authoritatively, but I get a good impression after several visits. I've had a small lot on Cutzalan (off Dominguillo) well up the hill for about five years and nice middle-class homes have sprouted up all around it (maybe 50% gringo), to the point where I'm waiting to build to verify that a splendid view will survive such development (looks likely because it's so steep). Other, larger Racquet Club style houses are sprouting up a hundred meters away, and you may enjoy one of them. Note that there are no supermarkets in the area AFAIK, though I think I heard a rumor that there was such in Joco - closer and less traffic than points east.
  16. A computer-sculpted molar crown installed at Dental Express a few years ago failed, which in turn led to an infection only discernable by X-ray, necessitating an extraction. In the process, the dentist also broke an adjacent crown. I will never go back, and am of the opinion that DE specializes in English and marketing.
  17. Thanks, LQ - my recent cursory research into alternative ISPs for our ranch in a tight little valley in the wilds east of Napa revealed that further to the northeast about 40km, there were two SL ground arrays within about 20km of each other - the only 'twin' installation displayed by the tracker app. I imagined that this was great, until just now when tracing their activity, it appears that due to the sparse geometry of the orbits (over the north Pacific?), two such sites were required, and there are still periods when no transmission is indicated. Good to know. Thanks again.
  18. Better still would be to take a few days or more prior to installation to go online and study up on FO cable placement (determined in part by type, bending radius, color, local regulations, etc.) Then experiment with layouts using masking tape and a tape measure to reveal problems and opportunities, length of cable required, and importantly, how to safely penetrate the housing structure if required. This planning can cover both inside and outside, and induce the owner to tidy up their cable plant in advance, and perhaps move furniture as well. The installers can then review and comment on the proposed layout and proceed promptly, and the owner can ask them for general advice and about local issues and who to call for effective help while proffering a reasonable tip.
  19. Don't know about the Code Napoleon, but in both the US and Mexico they seem to apply the principle of 'adverse possession', which comes in a few different flavors. Call it 'Ejidos Revenge' when the squatters evicted are gringos in Baja... There is an entry for 'squatting in Mexico'; historically it seems significant and worth clearing up. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squatting_in_Mexico
  20. Right - cursory research indicates it may be an issue after 4-5 years. Years ago in Costa Rica everybody felt the legal need to install a caretaker, at least on built properties. What I think I'll do is have this guy eliminate the physical danger of two stories and at his expense give him the chance to have drafted and sign appropriate waivers (which he won't want to do). If he is unreasonable, as I warned him on principle years before he built his place, I will design what I called a San Miguel Allende cube to the property line in all directions, occluding one of his views. I also have a couple of those handy-dandy battery powered chainsaws which would probably have to go into expensive stowed luggage on Volaris... Thanks.
  21. A Mexican family built a nice but not huge new house in a nice new neighborhood in the hills of SJC, which borders my similar lot. The husband of this seemingly nice youngish family of 5 or 6 is occasionally mentioned favorably in his professional capacity on this web board, and that's nice, too. Working from recent photographs sourced from Google and images from real estate ads for other local properties (as I monitor the development of the viewshed), it appears somebody has built smallish palapa structures on my neighbors' roof and on my property, adjacent to the neighbors' homes' wall, the later seemingly reaching two stories tall. This neighbor had used my adjacent property as a staging area for the construction of his house about two years ago without permission, (and possibly without any clean-up), and several months ago shot off a few odd emails to me here in California asking about selling the property and after that was precluded, asked when I might build. (Strangely, given his line of work, his English is a as bad as my Spanish, and clear and candid discussion is called for, as follows.) There hasn't been any communication since. So here I'm appealing for any brief, culturally sensitive advice as to how to proceed anyone would care to offer - I wish this family well, but on the basis of liability alone, something has to be done. TIA
  22. I run a network of two or three maxed out laptops driving 55 inch HDTVs 24/7, pulling in at least two HD streams and several live financial accounts. After building my own PCs going back to x286, several years ago it became obvious that laptops had evolved their integration and features to the point where, apart from maybe gaming and 'crypto' mining, they provided a superbly energy efficient and convenient platform, other than running hot if one neglects to refresh their thermal paste every few years. My energy bill is very modest here in the redwoods of northern California, where metal corrosion is a recurrent problem that laptops seem to avoid. Just my take.
  23. I don't know the Spanish for 'mirabile dictu', but a (probably new) predial payment website for Joco seems to work, retrieving my record and progressing to the payment page. The site is https://pagos.jocotepec.gob.mx/predial , but before I start the payment process, I'll solicit your good advice on two points in particular: - the 'payment' button is labeled "Pagar Adeudo" - when I pop it, what is likely to happen? Will my US credit card do the trick?, and... - the amount of the tax indicated online has more than doubled relative to my last (physical) receipt (dated February, 2020), but I assume this is because I wasn't Lakeside last year and owe for both '21 and '22. So the automated system seems to take that into consideration, but without providing any accounting detail, other than the current early payment "descuento"... Any brief comments would be appreciated. Thanks.
  24. Dec. 30, 2021, 6:32 AM "Banxico To Have its Own Digital Currency by 2024, Mexico Says" See: https://news.bloomberglaw.com/banking-law/banxico-to-have-its-own-digital-currency-by-2024-mexico-says
  25. May I ask, briefly, does Obihai (mine is v. 2.0) registered with Google Voice work with a long established GV number in no other way involving the US? In other words, does it work lakeside as if it was in California? Thanks!
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