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|Saturday, August 7th, 2010|
MUCH needed update:
->I've only 4 more courses and the thesis to finish off
->I've started writing again
->I have some of the parts for the cheap ROV
my writing consists of the start of a novel, and some 10 short stories. I'll start posting htem as time permits.
|Thursday, September 17th, 2009|
the good and gracious lady Sylvari had these 5 words to say about me:
5. mad scientist
I like the fact that those are the five words that come to mind, when she thinks of me.
I shall endeavor to strengthen these images. Current Mood: cheerful
|Monday, August 24th, 2009|
1.) I really need to update more often
2.) I've put in the paperwork for grad degree #2
3.) This most recent Pi-con was more of a series of informal seminars.
It turns out, what with the way the various pieces of academic official goodness are winging their way to the grad office, I should be about halfway done with the master's, before I'm officially in the program.
This past convention, I managed to get contact info for a few folks I've been meaning to talk to. One friend and I have started the process to create a group of builders/inventors, with a theme of steampunk/dieselpunk/tom swift/johnny quest.
I'm beginning to think that I have spotted at least one of the reasons for the rocketeers leaving Fandom, back in the late 30's, and why they didn't return.
It's the drama.
I love my fellow fans, but the drama of some groups could become a road block to getting things done.
On the other side of the coin, NOT getting involved with a certain level of drama means being perceived as an outsider.
On the brighter side, I seem to have made some new friends. That's always a plus.
|Thursday, July 2nd, 2009|
Here we go...
1.) the three cats seem to be adjusting to us. One of our black cats seems to consider himself as my second shadow.
2.) I'm getting the lab back into shape. I believe I may now be ready again to start working my way through some projects.
3.) My 25th high school reunion is coming up, and I'm thinking of things to do, instead of going to said reunion. Maybe I'll hold a "freedom day party," instead of going to the over priced restaurant.
4.) in about a month and a week, I'm going out to see my nieces. I even got them some of those old style interlocking cubes.
Happy almost independence day.
|Saturday, June 6th, 2009|
|restart, part 1
That's what it is.
On D-Day, Becky and I brought home our new cats. Three of them.
They are now checking out the nooks, crannies, hidey-holes, shelves, tables, floor, drawers, and all other things/places a cat can perch/sleep on.
I think this all helps. Current Mood: cheerful
|Thursday, April 9th, 2009|
|I'm sad now
Springfoot, my very personable cat, has just passed away.
Becky and I adopted him from the animal control center in Eastern Shore, Maryland, back in december of 2000.
About the only good thing about all of Eastern Shore, just passed away.
I found him on the floor, near the kitchen, and we rushed him to the vet.
the vet says that it was quick, and that he didn't feel any pain.
We plan to scatter his ashes at the house in Maine.
I've just lost my muse.
This lab going dark. Current Mood: melacholy
|Thursday, January 22nd, 2009|
activating the lab's utilities and starting to organize the books for mission specific jobs has made me focus on Getting Things Done.
Among the thoughts connected with Getting Things Done:
1.) what books/tools/parts need to be at hand when I build most objects?
2.) which habits do I need to have as reflexive habits?
3.) which people do I want to hang out with, that will help me in these endeavors?
I had a lot of fun at Arisia. Unfortunately, I kept running into a real bad character by the name of Aaron, usually prefaced by a starting prefix of "shut up." In my estimation, he is one of the characters that is dragging Fandom down into the muck. Aaron now has the distinct honor (such as it is) of being on my Do Not Invite/Kick-Ban list. If he shows up at the shop, I'll bar him from entry. If he bothers me at a con, I'll complain to security, and I'll voice my concerns about his conduct to the local police.
Fandom needs builders and innovators, not someone that comes across as a sex predator. Claude freakin' Degler was a veritable diplomat/Pornstar in comparison.
This weekend, I'll building the first project: a mini times square marquee.
|Wednesday, January 21st, 2009|
|Wednesday, January 14th, 2009|
I'm 43 now.
I'm now cleaning the shop.
I've got the new projector, the computer, and the 1TB drive/
I still need:
-the 140 function mouse
-the 6 hour UPS
It looks like i've got all pieces for the 3D printer, the message board, the the core of the barge's donkey steam engine.
This years is starting to look like a reset year.
|Friday, January 9th, 2009|
|Wow... a seriously weird year ends
and a new year STARTS with the new moon, traditionally a sign of new starts (at least in many pagan systems.)
I urge everyone to check into the "charlie-fox" that is the TSA Large Aircraft Security Program.
This has given me a strong impetus in Getting Things Moving again.
Mad Science Movement number 00-01: building the kata.
This is an RFC. Current Mood: thoughtful
|Saturday, December 27th, 2008|
|filed under needed a break...
This semester was one of those times that you read about in the better history books/pages.
-the economy tanked
-we almost had a moribund patriot and a screaming loony-tune got into the white house
-we received evidence that the Greenhouse Effect is accelerating
On a more personal level:
-I had my computer crash and burn:
--I've had to recover (partially) the techniki document
--I've had to rebuild some sketchup plans from scratch
--my thesis almost died (thank the gods for hard-copy)
-I had one student threaten to get violent
-the workload (mostly from the school containing the potentially violent student) was great enough that:
--I have built NOTHING this past semester
--I have had three (count 'em, three) colds within this past semester, when I ordinarily only get one every three years or so
--I've lost contact with a few folks, due to said heavy paperwork load
--my yearly reactive skill check up has shown what computer folks would call a major reduction in cycle speed. (Mind you, with the end of this semester, I've gotten most of it back.)
--said check up also showed a vitamin B lack (nothing big, just lower than it should be)
I've finished the scratch calcs for the moonbase and the launch blimp, so there's at least some cause for smiles...
Next semester should be a LOT more fun:
-the new prez looks to be rebooting the economy, ala FDR
-certain groups are already building green power systems
-I'm getting a computer with the intention of using it only for shop functions
-in the warmer months, I'll be helping build the starter piece for the launch island
|Thursday, September 18th, 2008|
|filed under "Oscar Foxtrot Mike!"
This one is REALLY serious.http://www.crooksandliars.com/2008/09/15/youtube-removes-viral-video-on-palins-churches-for-inappropriate-content/
The video shows Sarah Palin's "church." The term "snake handling pentecostals" leaps to mind.
I am now implementing a contingency plan known as "If This Goes On..."
If Palin gets into the office of VP:
-All files related to Delta V and other projects are going to be hard-encrypted.
-All files will be crash coded.
-I'm loading up my computer with 1 lb of accelerated Thermite.
-I'm having a friend start up the evac routes we planned a while back.
Whenever I hear someone like Palin talk about their personal mission from GOD, my mind immediately brings up images of:
-the ruins of Roma Mater
-the few remains of the Library of Alexandria
-the persecution of Galileo
-the burning of Giordano Bruno
Again, this one's serious.
|Tuesday, June 24th, 2008|
|updates and design rant
1.) I am restructuring my shop, so I can have a specified 3D printer space.
2.) The last parts run for the 3D printer is coming up, this time into the Boston Area.
3.) RFC in regards to design and control computers for the 'shop.
4.) While in Boston, I'm treating myself to the sinfully good ice cream shop known as Toscanini's.
Rant: on Libraries, memes, and when smart people do remarkably stupid things.
I was recently given a tour of Southern Connecticut State University's new library addition. The part I saw is to be an interim phase, until they can renovate the whole building in the same style.
Let me be brief:
***_THE_DESIGN PLAN SUCKS!!!_***
Longer and less screaming version:
The design philosophy of this building explicitly favors form over function. The lighting system are perpendicular to the rows of books. There aren't enough data cables for the computers. There is this weird penchant for curved spaces, and even a promenade deck for a first floor. I mean it! There is a railed GAP of some 7 - 15 feet between the edge of the first floor, looking directly into the basement. This allows for a greater amount of noise transference. There are two bathrooms for a fire-max of 238 people. the layout does NOT encourage an easy flow of traffic. Nor does it encourage quiet spaces. The curving lanes of the book cases seem designed for low security/better mugging/stealing. The fake cherry-wood and light sage /medium mint green carpeting look like something out of an upscale gay club.
I never thought I'd actually say this:
I won't be entering this pathetic abomination they call a library, unless a friend is in trouble. I
The company performing this abomination is named Shepley Bulfinch. I honestly hope they go out of business, so that they won't destroy any more nice libraries. I couldn't find _one_ building that I liked. Their big claim to fame is that they designed - at least in part - the capitol building in Washington, DC.
1.) I dislike DC in general (and most of the buildings in particular.
2.) The capitol building is pretty much built to impress, and not intended for standard use.
3.) ALL of the shepley buildings have the problems of overly ornate atriums, double height rooms (which are GREAT for creating noise clutter), construction delays as standard business practice, very little attention paid for bookspace, and poor quality contractors.
The overall message I get from their buildings is that I'm not welcome, that the association represented by the building has far more important things to do than help me find a book/continue any studies and or research/ensure a safe and quiet study area.
|Thursday, June 5th, 2008|
1.) codified the new GUFS designators (SET for set up, and SCN for Scenario [or Stone Cold Nerds])
1.1.) finished first run of cross reference system
2.) finished the organization of the shop nook books
2.1.) I can now tell you books are in which sections of the shop-library
3.) NEED TO GET a second steel table for the shop nook
4.) RFC in regards a shop computer
5.) ordered some of the last electronic parts for the 3D printer
6.) created my for-fun summer reading list
6.1.1.) Candle, by john Barnes
6.1.2.) For Us The Living, by Heinlein
6.1.3.) Crashlander, by Niven
6.1.4.) Mask Market and terminal, both by Vachss (listed as the "lord of the Asphalt Jungle")
6.2.1.) Power Plays, by dick morris
6.2.2.) the little black book of connections (about making social networks)
6.2.3.) Caveman Chemistry
6.2.4.) The Deltoid Pumpkin Seed, by John McPhee
6.2.5.) the last frontiers on earth, the late great Loompanics book publishers
|Monday, May 26th, 2008|
Okay... here we go:
1.) thud week is over, and I can now start organizing things
2.) in about 13 days, my friend is getting ordained as a UU minister
3.) I'm finishing the notebook sketches of the floating island thing, and the launch platform.
4.) at the request of a friend, I've worked up some quick and dirty gomi islands
5.) I've noticed that the SDS is back, we've got a lot of people figuring that McCain will push for a draft, and that people at some parties are very interested in geek solutions to the energy crisis, global warming, and the economy. Fulton once said "when it's time for steam, people will make steam." Have we actually wandered into the political version of "time for steam?" Were the last last 8 years just what the body politic needed to restart the movements of the sixties?
1.) codifying the new GUFS designators (SET for set up, and SCN for Scenario [or Stone Cold Nerds])
2.) finishing the organization of the shop nook books
3.) getting a second steel table for the shop nook
4.) shopping for a shop computer
5.) ordering the last electronic parts for the 3D printer
6.) creating my for-fun summer reading list
|Monday, April 21st, 2008|
1.) I have survived my first English Conference. My presentation on Techniki was apparently well received.
2.) I now have most of the electronic parts for the 3D printer. I still need a few, which I'll probably order from Digi-key, Mouser, or Octoparts.
3.) Looks like I need to pick up some washers, bolts, and screws, to finish up the printer.
4.) One of my friends is up for ordination as a Unitarian Universalist Minister.
This summer is starting to look interesting. It looks like I'll be able to pick up 3 grad courses in the summer, my friend from maryland (now virgina) is planning on visiting in early june, some other friends who are in the Ren Faire circuit have suggested that we either audition for parts in the Faire, or just hang out with them after the show, AND my shop goes live this July 20.
Mark that on your calendars... July 20th, we go live, and start the building of wonders.
|Monday, March 31st, 2008|
1.) I will be unable to attend I-con, as the first set of parts for the 3D printer came in...
2.) BOTH colleges where I teach have asked me to post the pertinent information, as members of the colleges would like to hear me speak on slangs.
3.) within the next week, I should be posting a link to show off my shop-nook.
YAY ME Current Mood: cheerful
|Wednesday, March 26th, 2008|
|updates and questions
1.) Last thursday, I ordered all of the non electronic parts for the 3D printer
1.1.) when the parts arrive, I get to play circuit scavenger hunt.
1.2.) would scaling up or scaling down the second printer be better?
1.3.) giving the level of fine scale work, the only way to build the static electric power cube may be via 3D printer.
2.) I am slated to speak at the English Grad conference. The organizer of said conference says that my topic of Techniki as trade language as seen in Science Fiction Fandom, sounds fascinating, like it is innovative research, and is perhaps insightful. That usually translates out as "you may have a dissertation on your hands."
3.) for the launchpad: I need input on what level of control complexity people would be comfortable dealing with.
3.1.) how many indicator devices (lights, meters, counters, sirens, etc) would be a good idea?
3.2.) how many control tools (HOTAS pilot joystick, knobs, levers, buttons, switches, etc) would be a good idea?
3.3.) how long can most people handle a job that requires near constant scanning of sky and indicators?
3.4.) given that the basic lifter concept has damn near unlimited range, the question of launch zones comes up. Where should we launch from? It has to be in international waters. (NB, with the shrinking of the polar ice cap, a polar launch is possible. It would allow passing through the gap in the Van Allen belts.)
|Tuesday, March 4th, 2008|
|And yet another of my role models passes away...
Gary Gygax has died.
The guy who is pretty much the signature personage, perhaps even the Icon, of Fantasy RolePlaying Games, is no more.
In a way, I feel like what many Jazz lovers must have felt, when Charlie Parker, or Loius Armstrong must have felt. Like it's the end of an era.
From 1979 to 2003 - 24 years - I've run D&D games (riffing on the notes that Gygax set down.)
D & D taught me Game Theory. It also taught me visualization and Critical Thinking skills. A number of very good teachers saw the educational potential in this game, and allowed my friends and I to play said game. I don't believe I'd be quite who I am without Mr. Gygax's work (say what you will about property rights, or who actually wrote the game, it was published under Gygax, and he wrote many of the supplements.)
Time to take stock of things.
More on this later.
In other Bob related news, I am take give that presentation on Techniki as seen in the Technical Underground, in front of the upcoming English conference at Southern.
Still getting the parts for the printer, and I've worked out one possible mechanism for the printer's upgrade: carbon/carbon composite printhead, instead of just working with the thermoplastic.
I'm writing up a summer reading list for my students, in case they want to find out more about the things I've talked about in class.
|Saturday, March 1st, 2008|
Okay... it looks like my humble paper on Techniki is going to maybe be a Thesis. On April 19th, I get to present a quick version of this study, in front of a bunch of English Profs.
I intend to bundle this paper, along with others, into a great big book of Fandom...
2.) history of the various sub groups
3.) social rules
4.) Noted group concepts
On to other things...
Now that I've got the shop-nook more organized, I can have company over. Please feel free to stop by, grab a chair, and start working.
I'm now going through the last spec lists for the power cube. Anybody want to offer some comments? (As in: form factor, mode of power, should it be broadcast-power compatible... that sort of thing.)
I'm taking a few pages from the lifehacker books, and building a schedule of habits. I'll post at least some of them here.
First Friday meetings, plus shared language, plus chosen habits...
equals the start of a culture. Current Mood: thoughtful