Oct
30

October 30, 2005

Polyglotage

David Weinberger pointed to these free language resources from the BBC.

Oct
29

October 29, 2005

Big Ad

Massive beer advertising.
Oct
23

October 23, 2005

A vast laserjet conspiracy!

The Electronic Freedom Foundation "recently reported that many color laserjets print a hidden watermark, composed of tiny yellow dots, that report the printer's serial number and the date and time each page was printed!

Oh, and this is reportedly an anti-counterfeiting measure imposed by the Secret Service.

Ya know, I understand that I have no privacy or anonymity anymore, but geez!

Oct
17

October 17, 2005

Baltimore 5K

I finished the Baltimore 5K this past Saturday in 23:02! I haven't run a 5K in years, so I'm extremely pleased with my time. Of course, Sunday I was hobbling around the house wishing I had a walker or a pair of crutches.

We had a good showing from NBP Fitness, with most of us wearing our new T-shirts with Tom Brown's motto on the back: "Suck it up and quit feeling sorry for yourself!"

The gun went off at 8:30 and I was finished by 9:00 AM! As fine a time as any for (free) crab soup and beer!

Oct
9

October 9, 2005

Launch!

Carter got an Estes Max Trax model rocket for his birthday and we finally got around to launching it today. Carter, Madeleine, and I drove to a deserted parking lot near a big, open field. The weather was perfect, being overcast and not too windy.

The Max Trax has an electronic altimeter in the nose cone, which is supposed to give you a reading on the apogee. According to the product documentation, the maximum altitude is 600 feet, or 183 meters. The first launch was impressive enough, but the altimeter failed, displaying only a blinking dot. The second launch, however, was absolutely amazing, and it seemed like it was going to reach orbit! I was puzzled when I checked the altimeter, because it read "306.8" meters and "06.3" feet. Is it possible that it went 1006.3 feet?

A word of advice: Even though the product is advertised as "ready to fly" it's a good idea to bring some extra tape with you, as some parts fell off as soon as the thing was out of the packaging.

I have fond memories of glueing together cardboard and balsa wood model rockets and launching them from the Forest Lake Elementary School playground when we were kids. It was really gratifying to experience it again with the next generation of Lemenheads. Time to watch the October Sky DVD.