Squirrels are vastly more harmful to the world's power grids than "the cyber" is


#21

And they are getting into signal disruption as well:


#22

A few weeks back we heard a loud ‘boom’ and saw a bright flash of light out on the street, where sparks were falling from a power transformer (or something). We called PG&E and they sent a truck… Which then turned into two trucks… with 3 men on lifts… One of them was poking at something with a long pole and sure enough, a charred squirrel carcass fell from the line. One little furry friend caused a full day of power-outage and a ton of labor to fix.


#23

SRSly though! SQ is a “quirky” character but is actually ridiculously high powered. I targeted swarm of squirrel will fuck shit up.


#24

Sciumorphs diverged from the rest of the rodentia some time in the late Eocene, so the common ancestor was about 40 MYa; tylopods diverged from the rest of the artiodactyls (including cetacea) a little bit earlier, say 50 MYa. Close enough.
I shall go on referring to skwirls as “violent crazed rats with fluffy tails and good press-agents”.


#25

…damn sight more inconvenient for the furry one, methinks… o.0


#26

This is a plot point in The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Beats Up The Marvel Universe.

Also, those stickers are quality. I have one on my lappy.


#27

Just this past Saturday a squirrel got blasted on the powerlines outside our house - knocked out the power briefly and left the insulator up top in flames - and a rather pungent odour of burnt squirrel wafting through the neighbourhood from the smoking body on the sidewalk. Fun for the whole family!


#28

At one home in Texas, the utility poles ran down the alley and the pole right at the corner of the garage always had a large tank of Nitrogen chained to it.

When I finally saw the utility guy out changing it I asked what it was for. He said the the squirrels would chew and poke small holes through the insulation on the telephone lines and the nitrogen was sent down the lines to keep out the water that would then infiltrate the holes in the insulation


#29

The old copper lines around my house use lead as an insulator and supposedly the squirrels love to gnaw their teeth down with it. Not only does this cause lead poisoning in the squirrels, making them more aggressive and destructive than they already are, whenever the first big rain of spring hits the holes in the insulation allow water to make direct contact with the copper line cutting off my connection completely.


#30

But lead is conductive… Is there like a lead pigment in the insulation or something?


#31


#32

The one nice thing about ‘the cyber’ as a threat is that(if conditions are good laughs hollow, bitter, laugh) a healthy amount of fear can actually lead to meaningful improvements in how much of a threat it is.

Nuclear war…brings out the diplomatic in people; but without technology somewhere between ‘definitely not available in the near future’ and ‘indistinguishable from magic’; your best hope of not dying horribly in a thermonuclear holocaust is to very, very, carefully avoid starting one.

IT security, while it is difficult, expensive, and mostly thankless; is at least far more possible than nuclear-hardening(and, unlike nuclear hardening, which has to be done for every single thing you wish to harden, good software and configuration practices can be copied more cheaply than they can be developed). Unfortunately, most appeals to fear have focused on getting more funds and/or power for offensive spooks who will, through means never explained or disclosed, somehow solve a defense problem; but in principle people being afraid of what might happen could actually improve what does happen.


#33

HUNGRY NOW


#34

Squirrels need to learn from subway rats how to scurry around bare metal carrying high voltages without killing themselves.


#35


#36

Why are the squirrels talking about power converters?


#37

Lesser known corporate cell


#38

I assumed they were just trying to annoy Doom with insults they learned from 4chan.


#39

Scary skwirl is scary.


#40

You may have a good idea there. We already put additives in the insulation of cables to provide properties like UV resistance, fire resistance, dielectric modulation, etc. Why not some cayenne powder for squirrel deterrence?