Thursday, December 30, 2010

Drifting Trikes... Pure Awesomeness!

Holy crap this looks like a lot of fun!

It's like a Big Wheel for adults! Too bad about the freewheeling pedals though... Part of the charm of the Big Wheel was skidding to a stop with the front locked up and the ensuing flat spot you had to ride around with forever afterwards.


Piano Playing Flying Robot vs Steve the Light Pointing Robot

Well this is pretty cool...

A flying robot playing 'Jingle Bells' on a piano. For those of you that doubt, they threw in a clip at the end of 'Echo' (the robot) failing. Looks like it had a bit too much to drink...

Kinda puts my first robot, Steve, to shame....

Yeah, that is all Steve does. He sweeps across 180 degrees looking for the brightest light source and points at it. Not very useful except as proof that I could make and program something like that. I have some ideas for some cooler shiznet, but first I have to learn.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Snowpocalypse 2010/ Life in the Convergence Zone

This morning it was snowing at the house... Since I was home (took the week off), I drove Carrie to the park and ride so she wouldn't have to worry 'bout the driving.

Good call by Mikey! Our neighborhood roads were white, but not too bad. We got on the freeway to go a mile or so up to the P&R and it was a disaster! A couple of cars in the ditch, and a few more facing the wrong way. The exit that we take was all but impassable as cars were strewn every which way. I bailed out as it would have taken just one more car loosing traction and it'd be blocked.

The next exit up the freeway was in better shape so we got off and headed back down South. There was a bus jack-knifed on the off-ramp. We decided to go to the P&R within walking distance of the house in case Carrie can't get a bus. When we got close, we crossed a line and, bam, the roads were no longer snow covered, just wet. I dropped her off, and within the 3/4 of a mile from the P&R, the roads were again snow covered and slick. Weird!

Word, this is what life is like in the PSCZ*, yo! We don't front!

*(Puget Sound Convergence Zone)

Ahem... Here are a few pics to show what is going on.

Here is a radar image of the convergence zone. We live right in the middle of it (North-South). Basically, the Olympic mountains split the upper atmosphere winds causing them to come back together (converge) directly over my house. this causes updrafts that lead to more active weather.

Traffic cam close to my house...

Traffic cam close to my office...

Quite a difference eh? Unfortunately I clipped the cams wrong so they advanced to the time that I saved them. When I first looked at the cam the entire freeway was blocked. Cliff Mass has a better, earlier shot on his weather blog.


Monday, December 27, 2010

Mike's Playoff Rant

I am SOOOOO sick of listening to people bitch that, should the Seahawks win next week, they don't deserve a playoff spot because of a losing record. They deserve a playoff spot because that is in the rule book. A division winner gets a home playoff game. Simple as that. Therefor, if they beat the Rams, they will be 4-2 in division play, and deserve their playoff spot.

Boo hoo, that's not fair!!!

Is it any more 'fair' if an OK team is in a division with three crappy teams giving them six easy wins?

In 2008 the Cardinals went to the playoffs with a 9-7 record, 6-0 in the division. That year the Rams were terrible (2-14) and so were the Seahawks (4-12, with two wins over the Rams). If either of those teams were at the level they are today, the Cards could have easily been 7-9 and still won the division. Oh yea, and they went to the Superbowl that year... Is that 'fair'?

Is it fair that the Seahawks typically travel the equal of a flight around the world every season (~25,000 miles) while some teams travel less than 10,000?

Life isn't fair, and sport is like life condensed into a one year season. Work hard, make the right choices, and being a good person is no guarantee that nothing but good will come to you. It sure helps your chances. There is alway the randomness of being in the right place at the right time.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas - My Gift to You!

Merry Christmas everyone! I present to you my present to you. (heh!) A physics lesson. Oh joy! Force = Mass x Acceleration, or in laymans terms the law of tonnage. The heavier they are, the harder they are to stop.

3,500lb Audi slides slowly into parked car, there is a bit of jostling. 35,000lb snow plow slides slowly into parked car, there is a whole bunch of jostling.

Here is an extreme case... Prolly the same speed, but the mass is way higher!

Skip to around 4:23 for the meat of the damage. As far as I can tell nobody was hurt. More here...

Again, Merry Christmas, I hope you are enjoying family and friends today.


Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Tree 2010

Our tree for 2010... If I'm taking pictures like this, there isn't much need for Carrie to decorate. Look closely and you can tell where the red ribbon is.

Oh Chrismas tree, oh Christmas tree
Oh Chrismas tree, oh Christmas tree

Inside joke, you had to be there....

Blurry picture of our tree this year. On purpose.


Mike's Epic Non-Traditional Christmas Music Post!

I guess it really isn't epic, that just sounded good in the title. Anyhoo, Here I am, sitting in front of my laptop, sipping coffee, and thinking of my favorite Christmas music. Hell, why not share!

#6, "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" by Dweezil and Ahmet Zappa.

BTW, Ahmet taught me how to dance.

#5, "Merry Christmas (I Don't Want to Fight Tonight)" by the Ramones

#4, "Christmas in Hollis" by Run DMC

#3, "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" by Bruce Springsteen

#2, "Christmas Wrapping" by the Waitresses

Bonus - as performed by the Donnas

Of course these all cower to the greatness that is Andy Williams singing "Happy Holiday/The Holiday Season"

He'll have a big fat pack, upon his back
Lot's of goodies for you and for me
So grab a peppermint stick, for old St Nick
Hang it from the Christmas Tree


Thinking about it, these aren't non-traditional, at least in my house...

While we are at it how about a little Streisand...

Uh, Babs, that last take was pretty good, but you know what would be better? Speed it up x6....

Sorry 'bout that last one. It could have been worse. I could have posted "Blue Christmas", "Hey Santa", or "Little St. Nick". Or this...

Merry Christmas all!


Merry Christmas - Star Wars Style

There won't be snow in Dagobah this Christmas time.....


DV sounds a little different IMO...


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