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January 27th, 2010 space, humanity, NASA

It seems that in an era of epic spending, NASA is going to get the axe. As one of the few agencies that is focused on future things, not months or years but decades and centuries out, this will mark a very real turning point in American history. Already, with the shutdown of the Shuttle program, America will cease to have any means of taking humanity beyond the gravity well we call Earth, and will instead be reliant on Russian capsules and private industry for the continued operation of the ISS until its de-orbit sometime between 2014 and the mid 2020’s. Yes, the United States of America, one of the key pioneers in pushing the envelope of humanity’s drive to further “explore strange new worlds” will cease to be space-faring. Instead, the Obama administration will direct the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to focus on terrestrial science. The irony, usually comical, instead leaves me now in a betrodden state of sincere disappointment.


Prosperity Heresy

January 8th, 2010 Uncategorized

The Prosperity Gospel from The Global Conversation on Vimeo.


April 18th, 2009 FAIL, Internet

Unlike Alanis Morissette, this is /actually/ ironic:

BattleBots is Back!

April 12th, 2009 BattleBots, robots, nerdy

That’s right. After almost 8 years, BattleBots is returning to television. The next competition that will be aired is taking place up in the East Bay on April 24-25. Since it is a college competition, Christian Carlberg and myself are mentoring a group of Cal Poly students and entering CHUNK, a middleweight (120lb.) vertical spinner. We’ve published a few demo videos (make sure to click on the HD link) consisting of:

There are still some modifications to be done over the next week, but we’ve had no structural issues so far. *crosses fingers* A list of our competition can be found at BuildersDB. Time to bring them some pain!

Romans 1:20

March 11th, 2009 religion, NASA

For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse”. - Romans 1:20.

I’ve been really space crazy the past year or so and recently have been reading/watching as much as I can about our adventures past the gravity well we call home. It’s been incredible learning about what NASA did with Mercury, then Gemini, then Apollo. Sky Lab followed and then the shuttle took center stage and gave way (with a /lot/ of help from the around the globe - especially ESA and Russia) to the ISS. Now we’ve had a permanent human presence in space for over 8 years! All these technical accomplishments are amazing, but something caught my attention when watching “In The Shadow Of The Moon” the other day. As we move forward and push the boundaries of science and engineering, it seems that relatively little thought is given to the why. It was refreshing, especially in a Discovery production, to see some time dedicated to this. The movie is a reflection on the Apollo program by the astronauts who flew the missions and at one point, Gene Cernan (Apollo 10/17) and Charlie Duke (Apollo 16) speak about spirituality and God. Gene Cernan’s conclusions about the structure of the universe go hand in hand with Romans 1:20 and Charlie Duke goes on to profess his faith in Christ. It was extremely powerful and quite the blessing as well.

But enough of my blathering, go watch the clip and be blessed yourself. :-) 

Welcome to the 20th century…

December 17th, 2008 humanity, transportation, musings

*HONK* “Welcome to the 20th century asshole!”
No, my blog has not been hijacked by hax0rs, that was the pointed shouting of a random 20-something male in a large SUV as he and his friend whizzed by me on my eGo. It made me stop (not really, I kept riding) and ponder why it is that so many people feel it necessary/acceptable to shout things from their car at a random stranger riding an it’s-not-a-car-or-bicycle vehicle. Maybe it’s the perceived safety in that isolated bubble of steel and plastic? Maybe it’s just an “easy” form of aggression? I still find it odd though. In my 1-year jaunt with my eGo as my primary source of transportation, I’ve been honked, yelled, and sworn at at least a couple dozen times. For you naysayers out there, this scoffing isn’t due to rude riding behavior or any law-breaking. Most commonly, it happens when I’m peacefully clipping along in the bike lane at my steady 39KPH (24MPH for those who haven’t converted yet ;-). I’m aware that I stand out. I’m aware that what I’m riding is radically different from what people would consider “normal”. But where is that line in peoples’ minds when “different” becomes acceptable to openly, /publicly/ mock? I can easily see it on teh webs, but IRL…? Maybe I just have a tinted view of reality, but I thought that such taudry bullying got left on the playground in high school.

In any case, I’m glad that I’ve at least caused someone to question their paradigms, even if it’s just on a subconscious level. We’ll never make any progress as a society if we just sit on what we know and don’t expand our mental boxes.

To finish the story out, I continued on my merry way (it /is/ almost Christmas) and continued to ponder humanity and instinct. I didn’t come to any solid conclusions, so I decided to write it out here. I do remember grinning though when they pulled away, knowing that when they floored their SUV, they’d just used more energy than that of my entire trip home. But hey, at least they had 2 people in the vehicle…

How to change the world (yes, *you* can)

August 12th, 2008 musings

1) To the best of your ability, provide the technical framework for innovation/creativity.
2) Impart the knowledge of how things work to others.
3) Most importantly, encourage passion in the pursuit of everything you do - best done by example.