About Tim

My name is Tim Channon. Today I am in 60s. I live in southern England, in Saxon times Wessex.  (There is east, middle, south and west: Essex, Middlesex, Sussex and Wessex.)

I have a very wide technical background, and also one of those people who do things, usually on the go, if you don’t know, find out, part of lifelong learning.

Life ought to be fun, technical things most of all.

Tallbloke needed helping out, we seem to get on well enough and I have plenty to give so he can get some breathing space for a life. I’m trying to keep the flavour of his site.

I do have my own blog (link), largely non-controversial. Some items are cross posted on the Talkshop.

Added January 2016

December 2016 came a bizarre stream of activity and tears.

I was well enough to push for a minor prostate operation. Done under general anaesthetic. On actually looking there is nothing wrong with my prostate… no tests had been done. No signs of cancer, The prostate matter is separate. This has meant dealing with an indwelling catheter since Nov 2015, all through the rest I have had to put up with. No huge deal, just means I have to wear appropriate clothes and at times was concurrently dealing with a feeding tube, try getting out of bed with two pipes, or worse trying to untangle and get in. (a good trick is learning to set things up so that some degree of turning in bed is safe, I have to sit up all night anyway, a backrest because the upper valve of my oesophagus is missing, vomit, breath in, dead). The catheter problem also means good biosecurity, I’ve had no problem over more than a year, good going apparently. Things like always keeping your bladder above external bags, backflow problem. Cleanliness and scheduled changes / cleaning are the rule.

And December?
This started with a CT scan (x-ray tomography) at a private facility under contract to the NHS, good move, easy to reach, no parking problems, new machine.

A few days before I was going in for the prostate op. an appointment arrived to see the cancer surgical team on the date of the op., no explanation on why but I’d asked to see them over a clarifying matter. I put this appointment off to later. (turned out to be a 6 month follow up from surgery)

The day before the op. I hurt my back, concluding it must be sciatica, a new one on me, I look after my back.

On the day I go in for the prostate op the oncologist’s pa rang, can I see him two days later? Oops, this was not expected and there is a pending scan result. My wife tells me when I came out of general anaesthetic.

Back home I asked if the oncologist would telephone me. Nice chap and he did.

As I feared this was the hardest call I have ever had although the meaning was not put too brutally. The oncologist correctly describing where my “back” pain was hurting, cancer pressing on a nerve, not sciatica.

It has now been formally put in writing. A cancer, which has to be assumed to be a spread has appeared in my pelvic / spine region, in bones, is not curable. So far I am still clear in my chest, the site of the original and major cancer. This kind of spread I have seen written and was expected because of the delay in original surgery.

All major chemotherapy types have failed with me. No genetic match either. Heroics with these is not suggested, just yet anyway. What is the point in hell after hell when each is 10% might do something?

I was given one large radiotherapy dose (about 90 seconds) to the cancer causing pain, the one in bone(s) is left, hoping it will stay quiet.

The effect of radiotherapy peaks a couple of weeks after the end of radiation, although with my experience to date more like 3 weeks. Things reached near a crisis over good enough pain relief, the next move would have been a regime switch to morphine, avoided and the treatment seems to have contained the pain.

I juggle analgesics, cortisone (inflammation near the nerves), not too bad, no really nasty medication. Next I will try tapering off medication to see how low I can go. My GP (general practitioner) is fine with me dealing with this myself, he stays informed, eventually.

Used sensibly, good old common sense, the Internet is a godsend today, helping people like me become expertly informed if we wish. As with the rest of life, learning is lifelong, at least for do-ers, unlike passengers. To be fair few people get the acid experience of dealing with the real world, stand on your own feet under duress. Maturity.

I’ve been put into a clinical program to help the tomorrow, no help to me but this is what I want to do. They are taking genetic samples into the Oxford databases. This is about cancer mutations, one of the big goals we have to solve. Cancers have mutations, chemotherapy and radiotherapy select the fittest to survive. This is the same as the often overstated antibiotic problem but fatal.

If we can solve this one I reckon on say 30% to 60% or more of cures, less aggressive treatment, much lower overall cost. The other one, and what I need is genetic targeting to my genetics. There is an oddity with me, our family have remarkably long generations which will mean there is less natural genetic movement.

I will be introduced to a local hospice so I know what might come later on. I bought my own crutches (we use arm crutches in the UK) and alloy wheelchair, which unfortunately has solid tyres, not what I wanted but only cheap and very expensive chairs now have inflatables. New wheels? Maybe. If things get bad I move to electric. Wish I had the space here to do that now on second hand.

An improvement to self propelled (you do it) wheelchairs would be a control semi-locking the casters so that sometimes you can move using one arm only. Passive mechanical/magnetic brakes might do it. Chair can be persuaded to move in a near straight line. Or maybe hard locks, it is awful trying to use outside foot-ways or roads, tilt left right often.

I hope I get my brain back, get active.

Added November 2016

Link to a separate page here

Coda added 2016.
Friday 13th November 2015 I was informed I have cancer, a serious one. Most things now involve the number 13! This is bizarre.

The shock to me was great. Diagnostics were done, critically a PET (positron emission tomography) [1] scan showed probably no spread so the surgeon carried out an exploratory operation involving cameras (three holes). He thinks he can operate but this presupposes no spread later on.

A major operation is the only hope of a cure, been put at 40% chance if chemotherapy is also done. I take this figure as optimistic but lets hope.

Writing early April 2016, been through ECX chemotherapy. This zapped me hence no blog activity, asleep a lot. Fun side… why do I keep a hair comb in my pocket? Habit. 🙂

And now? The idea is getting back fit enough for an operation. I’m waiting on another PET scan, critical, has the cancer spread?

Otherwise an operation is on. Will take a long time for recovery.

  1. PET scan involves starving yourself to low blood sugar, you are then injected with radioactive sugar, wait 90 minutes for selective absorption by multiplying cells, then a 30 minute full body scan. From this a 3D image is computed. Bad things glow.
    After injection staff vanish, everyone keeps well away, you are ticking. I have a radiation record anyway from work long ago, no big deal for me.
  1. Looks like you know spectral DBs . I’m looking for feedback on my http://cosy.com/Science/ColoredBalls.html .

  2. tchannon says:

    There are contributors here who are far more into the contentious world of radiative surface physics. Looks like a good one for an article here when things are less busy, get more eyes on the problem.

    Suggestion: radiation plots ought to be done log:log scale, straight lines will appear.

    I’ll have another look when I need a rest.

  3. Jim Brock says:

    I liked Tallbloke’s pictures of sailing ships, and noted the HMS Trincomalee. When I lived in the Seattle area, we used to take our boat up to British Columbia and our route took us through Trincomalee Passage. Named after the ship?

    [Reply] Thanks Jim. See http://www.hms-trincomalee.co.uk/historic/navy/royal-navy-service.php section: ‘Second Commission’ – TB

  4. Frazer Irwin says:

    I was a cadet on TS Foudroyant (HMS Trincomalee) in 1959 when moored in Portsmouth Harbour. Have followed the Old Lady ever since. Saw her before the refit in Jackson Dock. Have a large piece of timber plus ship’s nail recovered from that time.

  5. Robin says:

    Just found this site. Very interesting. I’ve looked at many climate time series for years, and have done a great deal of work on CET, so this caught my eye. Would like to contact someone (Tim?) to learn a bit more about whether Hurst rescaling is often used on climate data. I’ve made literally thousands of cusum plots but never formally analyses my conclusions – one of which is that temperatures – such as CET or North Altlantic area temperatures – are predictable in the long term. Substantial step changes seem to abound. Have you any comments?

  6. GregG says:

    Tim – Love the debates going on within this site. Also love the Matchless 500. I’m also in my 60’s and almost broke my ankle starting a friend’s ’53 Matchless 350, even using the pressure release lever. I got thrown into the air when it backfired.
    I can imagine that starting a 500 is almost as dangerous as riding one.

    I’m a solar engineer (Aerospace) and have been intrigued by the global climate following the cycles of the sun. I had to study the solar cycles and subsequent radiation, when designing solar panels to withstand that radiation in the space environment. It became fairly obvious to me that the global climate was not just following CO2 production, but also the solar cycles. Now that I’ve studied it more, I truly believe that the sun is the driver and CO2 one of the passengers.

    I love your site where experts more fluent in solar radiation than I can hash it out and explain it in better detail. Why the plasma cycles exist in the first place appears to be related to gravitational fields exerted on the sun by the planets (especially Jovian). The details really don’t matter as much as how they affect the electromagnetic radiation and how that radiation affects us on earth.

  7. ktwop says:

    Thanks for the “reblogs”.
    Tallbloke’s Talkshop is one of my regular ports of call.
    My interests are rather eclectic so my site is nowhere near as focused as this site is.

    Thanks for the great posts. Helped me out a lot. Rog TB

  8. cornwallwindwatch says:

    Tim, Here’s course you might be interested in! I wonder if they’ll be covering the recent ship of fools debacle. http://www.exeter.ac.uk/climatechangecourse/

  9. Rob Sparrow says:

    In order for sea levels to fall nearly 400 feet during a glacial cycle a huge volume of water has to be transported to the poles and deposited as snow. How does this happen except by increased cloud cover? Could the net cooling effect of clouds explain the sharp transition from a warming phase to a cooling one in the interglacial cycle i.e. the albedo effect of ice gets less and less and with greenhouse gas positive feedback, the oceans warm. They try to cool by evaporation but the atmosphere has a limit on how much water vapor it can hold before clouds start to form.

  10. tchannon says:

    Rob Sparrow, you are way off topic. Answering does no harm.

    You are writing about one of the great mysteries, not satisfactorily explained by anyone.

    One of the more interesting ideas to me is the late Marcel Leroux’s suggestion that land topography such as mountains affect air movement, which it does and mountains of ice would do the same.

    His books are horribly expensive, in few libraries.
    A 1993 paper touching on this might appear in a Google search on the following line

    The Mobile Polar High: a new concept explaining present

    Extract from conclusion
    “The polar latitudes appear as the key control
    of the earth climate, in the past as in the present:
    they observe the highest variations of insolation,
    they store the captured water potential, they gwe
    the MPHs their initial power, and thus they gov-
    ern the Intensity of the general circulation, at the
    seasonal scale as at the palaeochmatic scale”

    This is not necessarily right but is likely to be involved to some degree. How cloud is involved, good question.

  11. Rob Sparrow says:

    Thanks for your reply. I probably, like you, were educated in science at a UK University. We are both in our sixties. I spent most of my working life servicing the High Energy, Nuclear and Astro Physics communities so am well aware of big egos and a certain economy of the truth. I chose to emigrate to the USA 30 years ago and only recently have become interested in the issue of interglacial cycles.The climate change environment is something totally different. The level of ignorance with respect to Milankovitch, Missoula, Agassiz etc. is truly amazing.
    At Grammar School I had to do a course based on a book entitled “Straight and Crooked Thinking ” by Robert Thouless – How I wish politicians, scientists and the general public would read and comprehend this book.
    From what I have learned so far the most critical issue is the sharp transition from warming to cooling. It seems too sharp for either an obliquity or precession effect hence my question on cloud albedo.

  12. Centinel2012 says:

    I’m well over 70 and a former Special Forces officer, a trained engineer and inventor. Since leaving the formal workplace a while back I have spent a decade on climate research as well as becoming knowledgeable in political philosophy since that is the source of the driver for carbon taxes. If you need any help with your movement this Yank is still in the fight!.

  13. tchannon says:

    Yes Sir.

    Is there anything you would like to share with us?

  14. Brian White says:

    I would love it if you guys do a piece about clouds as areas of 2 phase fluid flow. I see clouds as 2 phase fluid flow heat exchangers AND air driers, combined. The moist air is dried and warmed by the cloud, and if there is too much moisture, rain drips out as the drying happens. Really instead of seeing clouds as riding on a layer of warm light air, see them as a pump/air conditioner, sucking in moist cool air, extracting the moisture and exhausting dry warm air at the top. Any chances? I have just been reading about open cell and closed cell cloud formations and it all tallies with my view of things. I like the biotic pump theory but not yet sure about how they work in the low pressure of condensation. I think they are correct. Brian

  15. tchannon says:

    A huge subject Brian indeed worthy of a lot of articles. Not now though, far too much hot discussion going on over atmospheric convection etc.

    Out there is a vast amount of information on cloud. About all we could do is discuss some particular aspect.

  16. tchannon says: August 6, 2015 at 2:40 am

    “A huge subject Brian indeed worthy of a lot of articles. Not now though, far too much hot discussion going on over atmospheric convection etc. Out there is a vast amount of information on cloud. About all we could do is discuss some particular aspect.”

    Indeed! Thank you Tim!
    Can we ever get an acceptable answer to: atmospheric-convection-what-does-it-mean? The pieces parts are most interesting, but never answer the question: “what-does-it-mean”? (-:)

  17. Eric Johnson says:

    A yank, so my time scales are “over” by 10^3 due to naming conventions, eg, my million is 1,000,000, which, I admit isn’t correct, as the prefix, mill-, is already 1,000, so my example should be two mills, or BIlion. I also omit excess u’s.

    Like others here, I’m in my 60’s, BA in Physical Oceanography, University of Washington, 1972, low draft number, flew tactical aircraft off carrier (USS John F. Kennedy, CV-67), no further academic nor industry related involvement. My problem are questions, to which few know the answers, or where to find them (related to this thread and shorthand notation in GR).

    My lengthy response resulted from learning here about (relatively) local solar disturbances (affecting snowfall at my favorite ski destination).

    Regarding IPCC’s GCM’s ignoring ANY solar influence (???!!!), Niv Shaviv published “On climate response to changes in the cosmic ray flux and radiative budget” (23 Aug 2005), posits high energy cosmic ray (CR) influence on low altitude cloud formation as a possible climate driver. This is, of course, influenced by the solar magnetosphere. Shaviv looks at the ~2Gyr picture, which includes the vertical periodic solar oscillation with respect to the galactic plane (~100kyr), galactic stellar formation and spiral arm passages (~145Myr). Makes a short statement, p4, para 3.1, “On the other hand, it was shown that the reconstructed atmospheric CO2 variations do not appear to have any clear correlation with the reconstructed temperature.”

    This statement coincides with careful analysis by others of historical CO2 vs T: CO2 lags by centuries the T change, both increasing and decreasing. Temperature is the driver, not CO2. Recently, Danish climatologists have experimentally verified CR influence on cloud formation.

    Shaviv followed up a year later (2005) with “LONG-TERM VARIATIONS IN THE GALACTIC ENVIRONMENT OF THE SUN” deals with extra-solar influence but on a smaller time/distance scale, but not directly addressing internal solar mechanisms.

    My question(s) is there any means/ methodology done by anybody which logically encompasses/ incorporates these three related topics (or, am I on my own)?

  18. tchannon says:

    Nothing wrong with leagues or the French mile, are buckets of human sized measurements.

    Galactic dust is a good topic.

    Nothing comes to mind.
    I have some fun to do with CO2 data when I get around to writing the article(s), a lot of work. Related to this is the poor state of long timescales, many are way out. This probably has a knock on to very long as in galactic, are we any more accurate there?

    Lets hope something who knows more reads your comment.

  19. Mike says:

    Do really love your blog everday. Great resource of science for us skeptics minus the nonsense and hyperbole. Was wondering if you could feature the latest Arctic ice graph, since it’s making an historical jump up, how come nary a peep from the media?

    Check out the graph, and comment from the overwhelming warmist denizens of that board.

    Here is the comment.

    “Interesting how 2015 SIA continues to regrow at a rate faster than that seen in any other season in nearly 20 years. In fact, over the past two weeks, CT area has increased by a rate more than four-and-a-half times faster than the 10-year average for the same two-week period, including a whopping 27 times faster than that recorded just last year (which saw just 13k of growth vs. this year’s 363k). My guess–and it’s only that–is that the normal October/November time of fastest growth won’t be quite so dramatic this year as it has been in years past.”..




  20. tchannon says:

    Ah sea ice. Well, I stopped paying much attention after a lot of work over a number of years led to the message invalid data and incessant technical failures. The authors are trying too hard with inadequate instrumentation. Also remember as with all satellite datasets there are far too few satellites. (eg. the RSS/UAH temperature data is not valid, a dozen satellites scanning day and night would be better, not one which only sees things occasionally)

    As I recall a few weeks ago a similar data plot dropped off the bottom… cockup. Now it has tried to go into orbit. Wait and see.

    The instruments are blinded by reflections, polarisation causes no end of trouble. The coastlines have changed, wander around. Now add in robots, human attempts at algorithmic cleverness.

    JAXA seem to have broken their web facility but they do repeatedly push 2012.

    On looking around, breakage and breakage, messed up data.

    Anyway, what I wrote 2013. The more recent failure and replacement AMSU2 instrument is not mentioned, but you can see the mish-mash of different satellites.

  21. tchannon says: September 22, 2015 at 1:15 am

    “Ah sea ice. Well, I stopped paying much attention after a lot of work over a number of years led to the message invalid data and incessant technical failures. The authors are trying too hard with inadequate instrumentation. Also remember as with all satellite datasets there are far too few satellites. (eg. the RSS/UAH temperature data is not valid, a dozen satellites scanning day and night would be better, not one which only sees things occasionally)”

    The data will always be invalid to; confirm, demonstrate, prove, or validate any conjecture!
    The data ‘may’ be valid to; deny, falsify, disprove, or invalidate any conjecture!
    The real problem with current meteorology is that they obtain ‘data’ not measurement. Consecutive nonsense! The actual measurement of anything physical, must be a best attempt to obtain ‘one’ value for ‘one’ property of the physical, while minimizing all error from any conflicting physical property. Sometimes I could do this well, with the best instrumentation.
    I can remember only understanding what I was measuring, four years ‘after measuring’, my best attempt to measure something! I will still defend my stance that my numbers are the only and best numbers you will ever get of whatever I was trying to measure, right there, right then..
    If ‘you’ try to adjust my numbers for any reason whatsoever, ‘you’ must die a horrible death!
    Most adjustments by political institutions are made, not on the poor consecutive automagical nonsense data, but incorrectly on the best attempt to measure. 😦
    All the best! -will-

  22. David Blake says:

    For some reason I clicked and saw the Coda. I hear the Kojac style is in at the moment Tim. Raising a glass ¡Salud!

  23. tchannon says:

    Update a year after diagnosis, where I am at. See link under update November 2016

  24. tchannon says:

    Major update to About Tim.

  25. oldbrew says:

    If anyone deserves a break it must be Tim.

  26. tchannon says:

    They don’t happen mate. You can live a long time and do nothing, a short time and do a lot. I’ve done well on both counts.

    Want to stay around for continence bag, piss, vomit, for years, lose your marbles?

    In this case I have time to say farewell. Is it better to go bang, a heart attack? That’s a tough call.

    Today I hope things will be made calm and pain free for me.

    Those you leave matter. Some things worry me, my wife will have no-one to hold her hand through whatever fate will bring.

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