What a wind can do

Nature woke us this morning at 3:50am as high winds hit our house and storm sirens sounded. When the rain came, the view northward looked like a hurricane, nearly impossible to see across the street. We never lost electricity, and it seemed like a strong but thrilling storm, not a big deal, until morning.

Oh goody. 13 posts down, and the steel ones seemingly bent.

It was much too exciting for anything but a walk through the neighborhood and to the path Sophie and I like to walk.

Table testing Hades

For what seems like forever now, I’ve been working on developing a DCG process for myself that I could use when making white-light copies of my silver masters.

After some inconsistent results I stripped the table top of all components and set up an interferometer to see how stable the table was.

IMG_1751

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Wandering around St. Louis

I was here on a business trip and ended up with an afternoon and night (to come) to kill so decided to play the tourist.

StLouisArch2 

After getting "lost", I found myself heading toward the arch so I headed there long enough to stop and walk up and take a few pictures.

 StLouisArch click to enlarge

I finally stopped in at Hannegan’s and had some black gold and lunch.

Guinness

What will I do tonight?

Big brother is definitely here, well, there

I like to think that it couldn’t happen here. The fact is that cameras are on their way to becoming as common in the USA as they are in Britain. Did you know that there’s one camera for every four families in Britain? Can they even go to the bog without being watched?

The Daily Mail precently osted an article on a new development in people-watching by the British government with the addition of loudspeakers that allow the watchers to start talking as well as watching.

The Mail on Sunday watched as a cyclist riding through a pedestrian area was ordered to stop.

‘Would the young man on the bike please get off and walk as he is riding in a pedestrian area,’ came the command.

The surprised youth stopped, and looked about. A look of horror spread across his face as he realised the voice was referring to him.

He dismounted and wheeled his bike through the crowded streets, as instructed.

Law-abiding shopper Karen Margery, 40, was shocked to hear the speakers spring into action as she walked past them.

Afterwards she said: ‘It’s quite scary to realise that your every move could be monitored – it really is like Big Brother.

‘But Middlesbrough does have a big problem with anti-social behaviour, so it is very reassuring.’

I certainly don’t have much complaint with methods that reduce crime, but the Big Brother of 1984 is definitely settling in to stay over there.

How much time will pass before the cameras start appearing in people’s homes? How often do the operators, or even more likely hackers, record video from those cameras and post them on the internet? What sort of controls are in place to keep the operators from behaving as though they can dictate lawful behavior?

I also wonder how long it will take before people who live and work in high traffic areas get sick and tired of the disembodied voice interrupting their lives. It’s bad enough having to listen to people going by, talking loudly on their cell phones. What’s it going to be like having to listen to a government loudmouth shouting at people all day?

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Ft Lauderdale laser park

It won’t be long before tourists to Ft Lauderdale will be dazzled by laser light as they walk through Huizenga Park

By years end they should have a new installation in place that will

soon turn one downtown Fort Lauderdale park into an interactive art display, with lasers bathing trees in sequences of color and transforming grass into a sea of almost translucent reeds of light.

The laser-light project is expected to be installed in Huizenga Park by the end of the year and will include motion sensors that will set off light displays on 34 trees along the perimeter as well as across the lawn between the park’s fountain and its performance stage.

The artist, Seattle based Dan Corson had originally envisioned lighting up the nearby New River but discovered that the river is so murky that even lights similar to those used in the movie Titanic barely worked.

Residents and businesses near the fountain pictured above originally weren’t thrilled with the music that went with the fountain but are pleased with the light show and are looking to additional lighting from the laser project.

The trees in the park will be cast in white light until people walk by or activate one of five motion sensors in the sidewalks. The tree lights will change either as the person moves by or as part of a 3-to-5-minute programmed sequence. With the lawn, green lasers will be activated by people sitting on or walking by a bench near the fountain and will run through a variety of programmed sequences.

"It will be a real unique experience," Downtown Development Authority board member Jack Loos said. "All great downtowns involve art and involve interesting and unique things. To the extent we can, we should bring more art that can draw people and make it a more attractive place to be."

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Spotted Sep 10, 2006

So on Sunday Michael and Susan picked up Michael’s sister Liz and took her down to Chuy’s on Henderson for a late birthday lunch.

Unfortunately they had to put me in a sea of other cars in the back parking lot but there weren’t any safe spots open. That always makes me nervous.

At any rate, while they were eating, a cute little red number showed up and parked behind me and Michael put a spotter on her as they were starting their post-meal walk.

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Ceili social dance at Denton Senior Center — Sep 16, 2006

The next ceili social is coming up as hosted by the Denton Celtic Dancers. Mark your calendars for that evening from 7-10:30pm with walk-throughs starting at 6:30. This has been a great event in the past so don’t miss this one.

Twas a fine weekend

On Thursday April 20th Susan and I headed off to Chicago for the Comhaltas Weekend held by the Murphy Roche Irish Music Club.

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