Log from 2019-06-28:
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[15:52:31] <Z-Man> I mean a bicycle. No motor. Motorized stuff is heavily regulated over here. The kind of electrical bikes you're allowed to ride without driver's license are limited to 25 km/h, and they just now legalized electric stand-up scooters (skateboards with handlebar), and they are only allowed to go 20km/h and do require insurance (not expensive, but annoying). Those aren't really useful speeds.
[15:52:44] <Z-Man> ]math convert 20 km/h to miles/h
[15:52:45] <ljrbot> Z-Man: Error: h is not a valid unit.
[15:52:51] <Z-Man> ]math convert 20 km to miles
[15:52:52] <ljrbot> Z-Man: 12.4274238447
[15:52:57] <Z-Man> ]math convert 25 km to miles
[15:52:57] <ljrbot> Z-Man: 15.5342798059
[15:54:01] <Z-Man> Electric skateboards and all the other toys where you don't have a firm handle to grab on to are still not legal to use on public ground.
[15:55:48] <Z-Man> Those bicycles with electric support are probably great for going uphill or accelerating when the lighs go green or if you are transporting something heavy, but Cologne is mostly flat and I personally tend to optimize my routes so that I don't have to stop too often.
[15:56:58] <Z-Man> Anyway, turns out not just Americans suck at geography across the ocean :) I totally didn't know Texas was this big and varied. Though I do remember you talking about floods before.
[16:02:26] <Z-Man> Yep, AC units in homes are not very common in all of Europe, even Greece where it can get murderously hot. As a result, whenever there is a really big heatwave, the death toll can be measured in the low thousands. Mostly old people, their circulation just can't keep up.
[16:03:41] <Z-Man> In the workplace and shops, they're pretty much standard, though. There, every degree too high is MONEY lost, much more important than lives.
[16:18:14] <Z-Man> A proper AC unit costs around 500/600 Euros. By proper I mean one that consists of a part inside the building, one outside, and the one outside gives away the heat extracted from the inside.
[16:18:46] <Z-Man> Somehow, I don't see any where the outside unit just evaporates water and uses the lost latent heat to cool the inside.
[16:20:49] <Z-Man> Just crappy ones for < 50 Euros without an outside unit, they essentially just evaporate the water and give off the high humidity air. Not sure those are a good idea.
[17:16:55] <Lucifer_arma> Those are swamp coolers, and they're used extensively throughout the southwest
[17:17:24] <Lucifer_arma> they can make it fucking cold, too. My bed used to be directly under one of the vents for one when I lived in New Mexico, and in the summer I needed two blankets :)
[17:17:48] <Lucifer_arma> in the desert, they work great because of the dry air. The added moisture to the air from the cooler really helps improve the indoor climate, as well
[17:18:38] <Lucifer_arma> standard a/c like we use in texas, with freon and the outdoor unit, actually takes moisture out of the atmosphere, which, in a subtropical climate like we have in Austin actually improves the indoor climate quite a bit
[17:19:04] <Lucifer_arma> when you try to use a swamp cooler here, though, there's already too much moisture in the air and it just can't take much more, so the swamp coolers don't work all that well, if at all
[17:19:57] <Lucifer_arma> the nice thing about the window units, like I mentioned, is that they hang the condenser outside and the evaporator inside, but they're still wrapped up in one tight unit
[17:20:20] <Lucifer_arma> the a/c's we had at Wendy's, in Kansas, were gigantic roof-mounted units that were essentially the same thing, just much bigger
[17:23:58] <Lucifer_arma> and wow, the electrical push scooters are really popular here. In densely packed inner city areas, like downtown Austin, especially immediately north where the capitol is and the big university, you can get a lot of mileage out of them
[17:24:15] <Lucifer_arma> and uber, bird, et al have the rentals just laying around, littering up the place
[17:24:38] <Lucifer_arma> but we also have a really shitty public transportation system
[17:25:03] <Lucifer_arma> the entire metro area is around 2 million people, and we still only have one single light rail line and a shitload of buses that don't go where we actually need them to go
[17:25:44] <Lucifer_arma> the looser motor regulations are nice because it means I can drive my scooters for pennies on the dollar what it would take to drive a car, and I can zip through traffic like there's no tomorrow :)
[17:26:23] <Lucifer_arma> but we also have a huge urban sprawl problem, which, when combined with our shitty public transportation, makes bicycles require a lot of dedication to be viable transportation
[17:29:34] <Lucifer_arma> some tricks you might try, though, that are used in the southwest, and that I've managed to make work in kansas
[17:30:15] <Lucifer_arma> get a big box fan, drape a damp towel over the back. You'll have to change the towel every now and then, but it'll function as a swamp cooler, as long as your relative humidity doesn't get too close to 100%
[17:30:50] <Lucifer_arma> check your open window air circulation, because the damp towl over an open window that takes in air can help lower the indoor temp
[17:31:08] <Lucifer_arma> ummm, I found stainless steel ice buckets near the air intake to be helpful, as well
[17:31:18] <Lucifer_arma> none of these are going to make the indoors comfortable, but they can take the edge off the heat
[17:31:53] <Lucifer_arma> loose fitting cotton clothes help your body's natural swamp cooler function more effectively
[17:32:30] <Lucifer_arma> that's more of a desert survival trick, though, but I've found it works in Austin most of the year
[17:32:56] <Lucifer_arma> and, of course, salty ice water on the back of a fan can really help a lot :)
[17:33:27] <Lucifer_arma> I never had any luck trying to use a bucket of ice water behind a fan with a towel dipped in it, hoping to use the capillary effect to pump water up into the towel
[17:33:55] <Lucifer_arma> it's one of those things that should work theoretically, but I may have just been in the wrong place for it
[17:34:36] <Lucifer_arma> and, of course, don't forget the value of a good mist spray :)
[17:35:11] <Lucifer_arma> we use those around here on shaded patios to cool the area a bit. I've gotten some mileage out of the mist setting on a spray bottle.
[17:35:24] <Lucifer_arma> you probably already know the wet towel on the neck trick for when you're riding
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