The Weirdest People in the World? | Henrich, Heine, Norenzayan


  • (WEIRD) societies=> Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich and Democratic.

Behavioral scientists routinely publish broad claims about human psychology and behavior in the world’s top journals based on samples drawn entirely from Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich and Democratic (WEIRD) societies. Researchers – often implicitly – assume that either there is little variation across human populations, or that these “standard subjects” are as representative of the species as any other population. Are these assumptions justified? Here, our review of the comparative database from across the behavioral sciences suggests both that there is substantial variability in experimental results across populations and that WEIRD subjects are particularly unusual compared with the rest of the species – frequent outliers. The domains reviewed include visual perception, fairness, cooperation, spatial reasoning, categorization and inferential induction, moral reasoning, reasoning styles, self-concepts and related motivations, and the heritability of IQ. The findings suggest that members of WEIRD societies, including young children, are among the least representative populations one could find for generalizing about humans. Many of these findings involve domains that are associated with fundamental aspects of psychology, motivation, and behavior – hence, there are no obvious a priori grounds for claiming that a particular behavioral phenomenon is universal based on sampling from a single subpopulation. Overall, these empirical patterns suggests that we need to be less cavalier in addressing questions of human nature on the basis of data drawn from this particularly thin, and rather unusual, slice of humanity. We close by proposing ways to structurally re‐organize the behavioral sciences to best tackle these challenges.


Jeannie (like Siri) is fantastically dangerous

Jeannie (Like Siri)

This means that any elements on any calendar that is visible to you (shared with you) is totally public.  It can be, and you consent to have this indexed and displayed to the world irrevocably.  For this, the app receives the coveted Poisonous App appelation.  Avoid.

Who are these people and why would they even want to hold that sort of data?  Temporarily?  Ever?

From the permissions page on Play Store.

Your personal information

read your contacts
Allows the app to read data about your contacts stored on your tablet, including the frequency with which you’ve called, emailed, or communicated in other ways with specific individuals. This permission allows apps to save your contact data, and malicious apps may share contact data without your knowledge. Allows the app to read data about your contacts stored on your phone, including the frequency with which you’ve called, emailed, or communicated in other ways with specific individuals. This permission allows apps to save your contact data, and malicious apps may share contact data without your knowledge.
read calendar events plus confidential information
Allows the app to read all calendar events stored on your tablet, including those of friends or co-workers. This may allow the app to share or save your calendar data, regardless of confidentiality or sensitivity. Allows the app to read all calendar events stored on your phone, including those of friends or co-workers. This may allow the app to share or save your calendar data, regardless of confidentiality or sensitivity.
add or modify calendar events and send email to guests without owners’ knowledge
Allows the app to add, remove, change events that you can modify on your tablet, including those of friends or co-workers. This may allow the app to send messages that appear to come from calendar owners, or modify events without the owners’ knowledge. Allows the app to add, remove, change events that you can modify on your phone, including those of friends or co-workers. This may allow the app to send messages that appear to come from calendar owners, or modify events without the owners’ knowledge.


Marketing the Chevrolet Volt

There is only one real marketing idea for these vehicles at this stage:

  • I can have one and you can’t.
  • I can experience things that you can’t.
  • I can go places that you can’t.
  • I have freedom and you are tied down.


The usual “benies” fall under a “you’re selling sanctimony” conceptualization of the product:

  • Green => overall environment, progressive politics, act locally think globally.
  • Cost => low cost, budget-constrained.
  • Savings => tco opex savings, fuel savings, energy savings.
  • Efficiency => doing more for less, using less, needing less.
  • Reliability => nobody expects cars to fail, but three, five or seven “nines” of reliability?

You can’t talk about any of this stuff at a cocktail party, or the water cooler, not for very long anyway. To achieve these ends: don’t drive, drive less, drive a small car, carpool, take public transit, walk, let your fingers do the walking (make a phone call).  Oh, and eat vegan, bathe less, flush less and attend more church; and stay off the sauce; and stop beating your wife.  Else buy a small car they make in the millions of units over production runs spanning decades.


  • Jim Holder; Electric tech on small cars “nonsensical”; In Autocar; 2013-01-15.
    • Bob Lutz
      • The outburst is oriented at promoting Via Motors; it’s wise marketing.
      • Genre: “my last baby was ugly, but my next one is going to be beautiful”
      • His product doesn’t exist yet; it’s a Chevy Silverado HD aftermarket conversion with 402bhp 4.3-litre V6 + Li battery for 40 miles priced at 2x the original Silverado (“like a Volt but in a truck shape” unclear how much GM/Volt tech he was able to license).  Disassembling this product isn’t the point here.
    • Quotes
      • “Hindsight is a wonderful thing of course, and we shouldn’t forget that the Volt and sister car Opel Ampera are the world’s best-selling electric car, but the truth is that even then it’s not meeting sales expectations, and that’s because most customers don’t want to pay out a major expense for the technology to make minor savings.”
      • “Frankly, unless that customer is philosophically, religiously or economically affiliated to buying an electric vehicle, then they can’t be convinced. The first two types of buyer will buy whatever’s built, but the latter is a harder case. The obvious answer is to electrify as big a vehicle as you can, because that’s where the fuel and running cost savings make the most sense.”
      • “If I had my time again at GM then I would have started with the Cadillac Escalade for the range-extender technology, and brought the Volt in later. The more gas-guzzling the vehicle, the more economic sense of electrifying it. Car companies need to get their minds on that: electrifying an Opel Corsa that uses virtually no fuel anyway and then lumping a huge premium on it to cover the battery costs is nonsensical. Why bother? It uses virtually no fuel anyway.”
    • And there is a really cool (hpotoshopped) product image in the articleElectric tech on small cars "nonsensical"
    • Requoted
  • Staff; Why The Chevy Volt Is Attracting Wealthy Buyers; In AOL Autos; 2011-10-04.
    Teaser: The average household income for owners of the extended-range hybrid is $175,000

    • The article is built around a presser & press relations quotes & totes from GM
      • the average income of Volt buyers is $175,000 a year.
      • 20% of Volt buyers are owners of luxury cars
      • 20% coming out of Toyota Prius.
    • Bill Visnic, senior editor for
      • “The Volt appeals to an affluent, progressive demographic, It’s rare. It’s hard to get one.”
      • “It’s the same reason that people buy the really rare exotic cars: Because other people can’t have one.”
      • He seems to appear in the article purely for the appearance of balance.
    • Rob Peterson, communications director for GM
      • (his words, paraphrased inline in the article) “About 20% of people who buy a Volt trade in a luxury car, and another 20% trade in a Prius. The people purchasing Volts now are early adopters, who are comfortable taking risks.”
      • (quoted with attribution in the article) “They tend to have a higher income level as well. It’s more of a lifestyle of taking risks and trying to be first that got them into that upper echelon in the first place.”
      • “The Volt has comparative drive train dynamic to some luxury vehicles.”
    • Jim O’Donnell, BMW of North America President
      • Quoted from 2010-08, a quotes & totes with AOL Autos.
      • He seems to appear in the article purely for the appearance of balance.
      • “We are very impressed with the Volt … it’s surprising that they didn’t make it a Cadillac instead of a Chevy.”
    • And there is a really cool product image in the article
    • Editorial license
      • The AOL editors chose to add “whopping” in front of $175,000.
      • “That the Volt is attracting the fat-wallet brigade is not all together surprising.”
      • “No wonder the wealthy are buying them.”
    • See also notes Informal Polls of Volt Owner Demographics

Egocentric Categorization and Product Judgment: Seeing Your Traits in What You Own (and Their Opposite in What You Don’t) | Liad Weiss, Gita V. Johar

Liad Weiss and Gita V. Johar; Egocentric Categorization and Product Judgment: Seeing Your Traits in What You Own (and Their Opposite in What You Don’t); In Journal of Consumer Research; 2013? (ahead of print); pp. 1543-1559; The University of Chicago Press; URL



(the authors)


Previous research finds that consumers classify in-group (but not out-group) members as integral to their social-self. The present research is the first to propose and find that consumers also classify owned (but not unowned) objects as integral to their personal-self (Experiment 1). Consequently, consumers judge product traits (e.g., masculinity) as consistent with their own traits (assimilation) if they own the product, but as inconsistent with their own traits (contrast) if they interact with the product but do not own it, even when owning the  product is non-diagnostic of its properties (e.g., following random ownership assignment; Experiments  2-4). For example, less creative consumers who enter a drawing for an iPhone may judge it as less creative (assimilation) if they win the product, but as more creative (contrast) if they do not win the product. Individual and situational moderators of these effects are identified, and their  theoretical and substantive implications are discussed.


Would You Buy A Tesla Model S? | Dan Lyons

Dan Lyons; Would You Buy A Tesla Model S?; In ReadWrite (no longer Web); 2013-02-19.


  • Dude is not in the club.
  • Wouldn’t join anyway.
  • Warns off others who aren’t in the club either.
  • He’ll send us the signal when “it’s ready.”
  • Stay Tuned.

Contrast With

Vivek Wadhwa; Confessions of a Tesla ‘fanboy; In The Washington Post; circa 2013-02-20 & 21.

  • Owns a Tesla Model S.


A lot of the sneering reviews pretty much boil down to “writer is not rich enough to own one, not really.”  But the writer is connected enough to sample the product literature and borrow one for a bit of sample authenticity.  And that’s wealth along two dimensions: can’t front the cash to buy it ’cause early adopter gear is expensive gear, very expensive gear, so they have to sit on the sidelines throwing eggs and “what ifs” which is their trade anyway; and also because they’re really not well off enough to be in the elite early adopter class of really anything but free web services of Web 2.0 despite the white collar job in the literate trades.  That’s not wrong. It’s just not informed by much or trenchant on any axis.

[X+1] buys UberTags


Acquired by [X+1] circa 2013-02-13.



From backfill

Informal Polls of Volt Owner Demographics | age & income distribution

Average Age of Volt Owner; In GM Volt Forum; 2012-09-28.
Results & commentary:

  • N=121
  • Duplicate poll
  • Seems like different people are answering this one than the previous one
  • Notable self-identification statements (quotes)
    • “I am 27″
    • Bought mine when I was 29, 31 now.”
    • “We own two Volts: my wife is 58, I an 57.”
    • “I’m 24, and I consider myself an elite — usually people my age don’t earn enough money to want to spend the kind of money a Volt costs.” [cite; Again a trust funder or drug dealer?  Age 24 is just out of college, but mere 2-year "new college grad" income history.  A low-end lessee?]
      Range Percent Count
      0-21 1.65% 2
      21-29 7.44% 9
      30-39 22.31% 27
      40-49 24.79% 30
      50-59 26.45% 32
      60+ 17.36% 21

If You Own a VOLT what is Your Age?; In GM Volt Forum; 2012-09-28.
Results & commentary:

  • N=450
  • GM Volt readers willing to respond (obviously).
  • Points made, claims asserted, insights imputed into the results (of course they are insulting, it’s an open thread on an enthusiast forum; permalink citations omitted)
    • Young people live in apartments; have lower salaries; do not have secure access to plugs.
    • Is flat across the monied 30-60 demo buckets.
    • People 40-50 are too busy to bother with polls.
    • People over 60 avoid computers or don’t know computers enough to read GM Volt or do the poll.
    • People in their 60′s who avoid computers will also avoid buying a Volt, for that very reason.
  • Notable self-identification statements (quotes)
    • “Canadian Volt owner of 63″
    • “We (56-60) are the “moonshot” generation. A lot of groundwork for today’s technology came from NASA and the space race. It drove me to be an Engineer. The engineering in the Volt drove me to own one.”
    • “I’m a 34 yr old male conservative catholic voting for Romney/Ryan and I fully intend on the Volt being my next vehicle (hopefully very soon)!”
    • “I’m also in that group that you were talking about (59).”
    • “I’m a 72-year-old guy who loves the technology of my 2013 Volt. I’m one old-fart who isn’t afraid of computers!”
    • “I’m 31. Nothing to do with politics. I’m not even registered to vote. I’m just sick of spending $400/month on fuel and sitting in traffic while people in the carpool lane fly by me.”
    • “Another conservative Catholic and Romney/Ryan suporter here. I am 71, my wife is 65.”
    • “I’ve been in the computer/networking field for 15 years now (I’m 33).”
    • “My wife and I are both 60.”
    • “I’m 25 but driving my Volt you’d guess I was 80.”
    • “Baltimore Volt owner – 17. Purchased it myself” [cite, I don't believe it; He's either a trust funder or a drug dealer.  Where is a kid of 17 going to get $50K for a vanity car?  And why not get a chic magnet Camaro or a 'vette?  Pics or it didn't happen]
    • “I was 30 when I purchased it and now I’m 31″
  • Beyond 60 is “last car they’ll ever own” crew (Crown Vic’, Impala, etc.).
    Head Result Count
    15-20 0.42% 2
    21-25 1.67% 8
    26-30 7.10% 34
    31-35 13.36% 64
    36-40 13.15% 63
    41-45 12.94% 62
    46-50 13.99% 67
    51-55 12.32% 59
    56-60 11.90% 57
    61-65 6.89% 33
    66-70 4.18% 20
    71-75 1.04% 5
    76-80 0.84% 4
    81-85 0% 0
    86-99 1% 1

Volt buyers make $175k plus a year? And don’t need the tax credit?; In GM Volt Forum; In GM Volt Forum; 2011-12-02.
Result & commentary:

  • N=407
  • Poll defined in response to some guy, Congressman Kelly PA (who?) bitching about the “rich” Volt owners; something about the average annual income of a Volt buyer is $175,000 and they don’t need a tax credit.  Source uncited
    • “Isn’t this Kelly guy the same Chevrolet car dealer who fired an employee for trying to see a Volt?” cite
    • The backstory seems to be around this
    • They closed his dealership, he’s vocal and in Congress.
  • The thread devolves into R-vs-D politics in the contemporary national mode: Fox Business, their own twisted logic, the Republicans, middle class, the top 1%, job creator, small business owner, etc.
  • Statistically improbable phrases: robust estimator, outlier, gaussian, normal, median, average.
  • Some allegation that it’s well known that Suburban purchasers have higher income than Escalade purchasers.  No citation. That’s one take on the folklore: Suburban is for understated utility beyond the minivan, the Escalade is for urban flaunting showoffs.
    Income Percent Count
    $0k-$50k 10.81% 44
    $50k-$70k 12.04% 49
    $70k-$90k 16.46% 67
    $90k-$110k 15.48% 63
    $110k-$130k 11.30% 46
    $130k-$150k 8.11% 33
    $150k-$170k 6.63% 27
    $170k-infinity 19.16% 78

Confessions of a Tesla ‘fanboy’ | Vivek Wadhwa

Vivek Wadhwa; Confessions of a Tesla ‘fanboy; In The Washington Post; undated, but promoted & syndicated around 2013-02-20 & 21.


  • Was & is a fan.
  • Demonstrates elite access
    • Daily driver was a Mercedes-Benz
    • Has driven a Formula Ford at Skip Barber Racing School
    • Has friends who own Porches and Ferraris, who let him drive.
    • Has direct access to Elon Musk; quotes an email conversation.
  • Demonstrates expertise in the material
    • Something about browsing the web from the dashboard.
  • Nav turn-by-turn is by Navigon (a Garmin company); c.f. com.navigon.navigator_checkout_us.
  • Provides “nuance” (i.e. some negative):
    • He bought the low-end model; didn’t get the “Tech Package” to save money
    • Wants Google Nav (who doesn’t?) because it’s free on phones.
  • Buried lede:
    • Broder was wrong.
  • Other quotes:
    • “Internal-combustion engine technology doesn’t hold a candle to electric. That is probably why Motor Trend named the Model S, car of the year this year. They called it ‘truly remarkable’ and said it would ‘sashay up to the valet at a luxury hotel like a supermodel working a Paris catwalk.’ Supermodel is a good analogy for my Tesla.”
    • “I’ll say that I completely agree with what the Times’ Public Editor Margaret Sullivan said — that Broder had “problems with precision and judgment.” After all, the car has a giant display that tells you how far it can travel, and it provides many options to manage mileage.”
    • “I have found the 200-mile range of my 60-kWh model, to be more than enough for day-to-day driving.”
    • “I assumed that since the Web browser has Google maps, I would get the same features I have on my iPhone. I was wrong.”
  • Claim:
    • Model S version 3, will be available in four or five years. with a range of more than 1,000 miles. [Um rly? That's the singularity talking, huh?]

Recapitulation of the boosterism prior:



Vivek Wadhwa is:

  • Vice President of Academics and Innovation at Singularity University (SciFi U).
  • Vice President of Innovation and Research at Singularity University
  • Fellow at Stanford Law School.
  • Arthur & Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University.
  • Director of Research at Pratt School of Engineering at Duke University.
  • Previous and/or concurrent academic appointments include Harvard, Duke and Emory, University of California Berkeley.
  • “a leading scholar and public voice on entrepreneurship and public policy.” ref citing ref
  • “Silicon Valley’s provocateur-in-chief” ref
  • Unfailing gushing booster of immigrants & immigration, “startups” and “entrepreneurs.”  Probably not a favorite of the urban underclass reps. on scene today.

Hiring as Cultural Matching: The Case of Elite Professional Service Firms | Lauren Rivera

Lauren Rivera; Hiring as Cultural Matching: The Case of Elite Professional Service Firms; In American Sociological Review; Vol 77(6); pages 999–1022; 2012-12; 24 pages; DOI: 10.1177/0003122412463213


This article presents culture as a vehicle of labor market sorting. Providing a case study of hiring in elite professional service firms, I investigate the often suggested but heretofore empirically unexamined hypothesis that cultural similarities between employers and job candidates matter for employers’ hiring decisions. Drawing from 120 interviews with employers as well as participant observation of a hiring committee, I argue that hiring is more than just a process of skills sorting; it is also a process of cultural matching between candidates, evaluators, and firms. Employers sought candidates who were not only competent but also culturally similar to themselves in terms of leisure pursuits, experiences, and self-presentation styles. Concerns about shared culture were highly salient to employers and often outweighed concerns about absolute productivity. I unpack the interpersonal processes through which cultural similarities affected candidate evaluation in elite firms and provide the first empirical demonstration that shared culture—particularly in the form of lifestyle markers—matters for employer hiring. I conclude by discussing the implications for scholarship on culture, inequality, and labor markets.


cultural capital, culture, hiring, homophily, inequality, interpersonal evaluation, labor markets


OnStar RemoteLink codes 200, 210, 216, 900 for Chevrolet Volt

The basic explanation seems to have something to do with “corrupted” data on the car.  Given the breadth of time the problem has been reported, this sounds like a toughie!  Or something.

The search engines are full, chock full, of references to this problem across models (Camaro, Equinox, Traverse, Volt) and across at least years 2011, 2012, and now of course 2013.  They haven’t been able to characterize it or solve it across a wide range of vehicle builds, onboard software releases or consumer premises equipment.


  • Then OnStar RemoteLink App is very slow; 30-60-90 seconds of whirly-wheel followed by intermittent or constant failure depending upon the feature.
  • Error codes (actualities below)
    • 200
    • 210
    • 216
    • 900
    • unnumbered generic “system error”
    • unnumbered generic “Wifi connectivity”
  • Reports across
  • Sporadic ability to operate the Dashboard subscreen to recover the  (the charge info) => feels like 30% failure rate
  • Sporadic ability operate the Remote subscreen to lock, unlock, remote start, remote cancel the vehicle => feels like 80% failure rate
  • Total inability to move navigation data to the car from the Nav subscreen => 100% failure rate; has never worked.
  • Total inability to set the alert preferences from the Alert subscreen => 100% failure rate; has never worked.


Based on folklore and myth, as related by others.  Note the dates.  Nothing seems to have changed in two years (Does Not Work). The failure mode is claimed to be:

  • Theory A
    • After each drive cycle, a data blob is prepped on the car for later extraction.
    • This blob becomes “corrupted” resulting in an “unavailable” error code upon query.
  • Theory B
    • As the car travels across cellular coverage areas, or cellular coverage strength varies as the car is stationary.
    • The “login data” becomes corrupted in the OnStar subsystem on the car
    • The system “normally fixes itself”, but sometimes it does not.
  • Theory C
    • It’s some sort of rate limiting issue wherein if the car is accessed too frequently by the app then a lockout occurs for a period
    • Too frequently within 3 hours
    • Account lockout for 12 hours.

The customer interface to this is “call OnStar”; there are no meaningful customer intervention points.

  • OnStar tier 1 support (the first voice on the phone) doesn’t know anything about it.
  • OnStar tier 2 support, tech support knows about it but can’t fix it.
  • OnStar tier 2 support may be able to temporarily clear the problem, or maybe not.

Even lower quality rumor and tales; preceed every statement with “There may or may not be …” or “Someone has reported inconclusively with no followup that …”

  • Some ‘new software’ is required (in the car, not the phone).
  • There is an end user “reset” incantation involving simulating a drive cycle.
  • A difference in behavior depending on whether the car is already “on” or not. (this is, of course pointless, for a ‘remote’ feature of any kind).
  • The 2012 Volt does not support RemoteLink App at all.
  • The OnStar subsystem shuts down after four days of inactivity; this effect is similar by that.
  • The OnStar’s subsystem shuts down or hangs spontaneously; making an outgoing call from the car through the OnStar phone may “unhang” it.

Archaeological order, youngest on top, older material below

  • Dave O’Connor; ERROR CODE 216 followed by 210 followed by….; In GM Volt Forum; conversation spans 2012-12-14 -> 2012-12-19.

    • Claim: Long story into failure with 210 and 216 codes
      • Installed the OS remote monitor on [his] android phone and iPad.
      • The app on the phone worked the first night,
      • Failed the next morning.
      • Symptoms are “the whirly” and message with 216.
      • A message advised to drive the car and try again.
      • More failure throughout his day.
      • He called OnStar,
      • A 7-digit number is given.
      • Return to the car, call OnStar from the car phone.
      • They accept the 7-digit number and “do something.”
      • Incantation
        • stop the motor
        • open a door
        • shut that door
        • re-start the motor
      • Try the remote link again; got  210.
      • Advisor escalates
      • A few minutes later “it works”
      • Later in the day, the Pad app won’t recognize either his user name or password so later today
    • Claim: Based on [another user's] experience with the exact same issue, OnStar led him to believe that there is a limit on the number of connections allowed in a specific period. When that is exceeded you will get a 216 & 210 error. It could be 3 per hour and then locked out for 12 hours sort of thing. It could also be the number of different devices trying to connect as well.
    • Someone entitled “Corbin, OnStar Advisor, Social Media Team” chimes in to give kind words of care.
    • Resolution: none really; “they are working on it”; conversation ends with RemoteLink feature Does Not Work
  • outlanderbz; RemoteLink Alerts? Anyone get this to work?; In GM Volt Forum; conversation spans 2012-07-23 -> 2012-10-15.

    • Usual symptoms
    • Messages cited
      • 108 (Unable to send your alert settings, Unable to retrieve alert settings)
      • 210
      • 216
      • 900
    • iOS 6
    • The RemoteLink app won’t work on Nexus 7
    • Someone was able to get RemoteLink running in an Android emulator
  • ChrisC; OnStar account corrupted; breaks mobile, web, and VoltStats access; In GM Volt Forum; conversation spans 2012-04-27-> 2012-04-28.

    • Claim: The OnStar tech support rep. reported that if the car goes into an area of poor cell coverage (or not the right kind of data coverage) the account can get corrupted. Something about the login data getting messed up. The system normally fixes itself when that happens but in this case they had to give it the manual nudge.
    • Resolution: none; conversation ends with RemoteLink feature Does Not Work
      The conversation shifts to VoltStats and LinkedIn spamming the user’s contact list.
  • daninoah; No contact with My Volt, one week and counting; In GM Volt Forum; conversation spans 2012-03-04-> 2012-05-06.

    • Claim: The OnStar telematics are programmed to automatically shut off after around four days of the car being off to protect the battery.  This shutdown causes symptoms similar to those reported.
    • Claim: OnStar’s computer can get “stuck.” Making an outgoing call via your Volt through OnStar can fix it.
    • Resolution: none; conversation ends with RemoteLink feature Does Not Work
  • gt4fore; MyVolt Website Unable to Update Charging Information / Status; In GM Volt Forum; conversation spans 2011-11-16 -> 2012-10-08.

    • Claim: 2012 Volt apps were disabled; source: OnStar tech support.
    • Claim: apparently the data packet in the Volt can get corrupted and On Star can’t access it.
    • Resolution: none; conversation ends with RemoteLink feature Does Not Work
  • Joule Thief; Onstar and iPhone RemoteLink 216 Error – Unable to establish communication; In GM Volt Forum; conversation spans 2011-02-11 -> 2011-12-09.

    • After each drive cycle, a data blob is prepped on the car for later extraction.
    • This blob becomes “corrupted” resulting in an “unavailable” error code upon query.
    • Remediation & InterventionIincantation
      • Call OnStar from the car
      • Get a transfer into Tech Support
      • Tech Support sends a “reset” (vague on what this is) to the car
      • User completes a drive cycle by acting through
        1. Turn off the engine
        2. Open the driver door for 20-30 seconds
        3. Close the door
        4. Turn on the engine for 1-2 min.
    • Resolution: inconclusive; the problem may or may not have gone away.


Running Estimate

The running estimate from before

Engineering Estimate

Whereas the car is for the tech in it, right?

Car culture design & engineering Computer culture & devops
great-to-excellent, very happy Needs work unto Does Not Work

OnStar Estimate

Whereas there are 34 months left to decide if this is worth a steep monthly fee.
The significant (only?) value here is in OnStar RemoteLink App

Current Estimate Tending & Aspiring Towards
Needs Work, You Pay Me for My Time Helping You Debug Good Enough To Be Free

Actualities & Experiences

Exhibits to illustrate the error codes.  Across various dates & times.

On the ubiquity and pointlessness of automated messaging: “it is strongly recommended that you upgrade”

To wit:

  • A security and stability update for Firefox is available
  • It is strongly recommended that you apply this update for Firefox as soon as possible.


  • The release notes just indicate some neat new features and bug fixes.

Note to self:

  • Discount the intensity of automated messaging.

Release Notes for Firefox 19.0


The Tesla – 1 | The H8ters – 0

As in “mistakes were made, please move on, nothing to see here no more.”


tl;dr from the omudstron’s closure statement was: “I knew Jason Blair and John Broder is no Jayson Blair”  Fair enough … fair as in “When I Use a Word, It Means Just What I Choose It to mean, Neither More nor Less.”

They live in a different world at the Grey Lady, and in the fourth estate in general.  Search on plagiarism at the New York Times and you’ll have a good three or four pages of things to read, some at or near the NYT but almost all (exactly all?) in the east coast “top-drawer” general interest media machines.  More focused: search disgraced New York Times reporter.

The other advice on these things is “don’t get in wordfights with folks who buy ink in barrels.”  Wise words from a guy who knows his hate. The Tesla folks fought that fight, and got away with it.  Only a few barrels of ink, a flightrecorder blackbox and a weekend of “do-overs” from the man’s peers and bemused owners.

There’s another “perfect storm” story angle here that someone will paste together to get the pageviews: the story played out right before a 3-day weekend, a dedicated owner base that loves the cars, the cars actually work and are very cool, these are the most interesting machines anyone is building anywhere right now, high-impact media-savvy tech company which has been seen Broder’s type before and was pretty much ready for him, and as a general background an exposé of what all “reviewer” organisms do for a living: boosting their host, as an industry, as a concept, with just enough high-horse cluck-cluck tut-tut sneering to make it seem analytic but mostly fun to read the “brutal takedown,” the “thoughtful post,” the “revealing interview,” the “poignant backstory” about the sea changes and seismic shifts that their farsight sees.  All through the magic of embargoed access among the stackranked peerage.



See the notes, notably the primaries.




Idaho National Laboratory (INL), Advanced Vehicle Testing Activity (AVTA)

Idaho National Laboratory (INL), Advanced Vehicle Testing Activity (AVTA)

Reports of Interest


  • BOT => Beginning of Test
  • C/3 => a discharge rate
  • CS => Charge-Sustaining (of a battery)
  • CD => Charge-Depleting (of a battery)
  • DOD => Depth of Discharge (of a battery)
  • EERE => Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy, an office of the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE)
  • ERM => Extended Range Mode
  • EM => Electric Machines (generalizing the concept: a generator or a (road) traction motor)
  • EV => Electric Vehicle
  • EVSE => Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment
  • HPPC => Hybrid Pulse Power Characterization
  • SAE J2841 => definition of City vs Highway
  • SAE J1772 => Charger Connector Standard
  • USABC => United States Advanced Battery Consortium

Projects of Interest

Actualities & Images

(fair weather commuting)

AeroVironment EVSE-RS+ does not support residential networking

AeroVironment EVSE-RS+ Smart Charging Station


Per AeroVironment communications with Martin Young, Regional Contractor Manager.
For the EVSE RS and EVSE RS+.


  • GPRS => is available; this is cellular transport and carriage & cost is unstated.
  • Ethernet => not available.
  • WiFi => not available.
  • Zigbee => not available.


  • Communication is by GPRS only
  • Connectivity is to the AeroVironment back office only.
  • It is a commercial-grade application, not a residential one.
  • Not available in California.

The word “yet” may apply.

Data Privacy Day 2013 Survey Results, Personal Data Dashboard, Privacy in Action | Microsoft



  • ask “regular folk” what they “feel.”
  • record the results.


  • Framing
  • Self-reported
  • Feelings & rememberances


  • Control over information gathering
    • 45% feel they have little or no control over such.
    • Unstated: therefore 55% feel that they have some control.
    • Framed as: gathering occurs on
      • Web browsing (page reading)
      • photo sharing
      • travel
      • gaming.
  • Reputation, track record and policies and considered toward usage
    • 32% always consider such.
    • Unstated: therefore 68% don’t always consider such.
  • When consumers have questions about protecting their privacy, they
    • 39% consult friends & family.
    • 39% consult website’s privacy statement.
    • 29% consult a company’s privacy policy.
    • Unstated: this totals to 107%
  • For privacy information, consumers trust
    • 33% friends and family.
    • 25% industry privacy or consumer organizations.
    • 22% a website’s privacy statement.
    • Unstated: therefore 20% trust none of these.

Pages & Sites


Trivialities & 2-pagers.

The Tesla, The Tesla H8ters


  • Gumshoe can’t drive car, gives bad report into loud mouthpiece media.
  • Facts from the data logger don’t support his story.

It’s devolved into he said / she said.  But these are replicated engineered devices.  It’s simple enough to reproduce the experiment as many times as anyone cares to do it.


  • Elon Musk, Chairman, Product Architect & CEO of Tesla Inc.
  • John M. Broder, currently at The New York Times

Primary Statements

i.e. “the litigants”; (cue the stern martial music). On the left: the vendor.  On the right, a known EV h8tr.  Judge Judy will decide. (enter Judy, stage left)

In archaeological order (latest on top, older material below)

Secondary Promotions

Previous Output

Facts, Factoids & Myth

  • Proprietary charger on the Tesla vehicles.
  • Tesla charging is DC.
  • Tesla Supercharger stations only charge Tesla vehicles.
  • ~200 miles between Supercharger stations
  • Perhaps Elon Musk said that should be 140 miles
  • There are two Supercharger stations in California

Special Report on “The Department of Energy’s Management of the Award of a $150 Million Recovery Act Grant to LG Chem Michigan Inc.”

Special Report on “The Department of Energy’s Management of the Award of a $150 Million Recovery Act Grant to LG Chem Michigan Inc.”; Department of Energy; 2013-02-08; 26 pages.


  • Yup, it’s all true.
  • EERE is “management”, not LG Chem Michigan Inc. executive staff.
  • LG Chem Michigan Inc.’s Project budget is $302,790,339
  • EERE assists with $151,397,000 subsidy via ARRA 2009.
  • Project ends 2013-05-31 with 6% of the subsidy unclaimed.
  • LG Chem Michigan Inc. requests but is not yet granted an extension
  • Disallowed activities were $1,684,277; subsidy claim to EERE on that is  $842,189.
  • LG Chem Michigan. which is requested to repay $842,189.

The salient response from EERE seems to be on page 23 – “DOE does not concur that the grant terms for this grant can be used to forc LG Chem Michigan Inc. to transition production of battery cells from South Korea to the Michigan plant.  DOE does not have authority to dictate the production decisions of LG Chem Michigan Inc., which are based on the market.”


From the Special Report


The Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Program was established to develop and deploy efficient and environmentally friendly highway transportation technologies to reduce the Nation’s dependence on foreign oil and provide greater energy security. The Vehicle Technologies Program received $2.4 billion under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 for these purposes. The program is managed by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and is being implemented and monitored primarily by the Department’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL).

In February 2010, LG Chem Michigan Inc. (LG Chem Michigan), formerly Compact Power Inc., was awarded more than $150 million in Recovery Act funding to help construct a $304 million battery cell manufacturing plant in Holland, Michigan. As part of this process, LG Chem Michigan was also eligible to receive more than $175 million in tax relief from the State and local governments through 2025. The objective of the project was to design, construct, start up and test a production facility for lithium-ion polymer batteries, create more than 440 jobs, and produce enough battery cells annually to equip 60,000 electric vehicles by the end of 2013, with assembly beginning in 2012.

On October 24, 2012, the Office of Inspector General received a complaint that LG Chem Michigan misused Recovery Act funds. The complainant asserted that employees at the Michigan facility had little work to do and were spending time volunteering at local non-profit organizations, playing games and watching movies at the expense of the Federal government and taxpayers. In a separate action, the Department’s Chief of Staff and its General Counsel brought similar concerns to our attention. We initiated this review to examine the allegations and to evaluate the Department’s management of the Recover y Act grant awarded to LG Chem Michigan.


We confirmed the allegations. We found that work performed under the grant to LG Chem Michigan had not been managed effectively. Based on progress to date and despite the expenditures of $142 million in Recovery Act funds, LG Chem Michigan had not yet achieved the objectives outlined in its Department-approved project plan.