Monday, April 28, 2014
Saturday, April 26, 2014
Heidenau K28 has a square profile for more rubber on the road and a stiff sidewall to handle the lateral loads and is available in the correct inch size for my bike, 4.00x18. It went on very easily with the new tool and it took much longer to loosen the bead on the old tire than putting the new one on. Both wheels took less than an oz of weight to balance.
Of course, I had to try out the new tires and was amazed how much quieter the ride was. The studs do make quite a bit of noise. One more task done and the studded tires still have plenty of life left and will be re-installed next October. My winter commuting only totaled a couple of thousand miles.
Friday, April 25, 2014
Thursday, April 24, 2014
This is just about all the snow left in our yard. Not much to speak of. The mornings are still ~28°F but it has been warming up well into the 50s (°F) by the end of the afternoon. So it'll go pretty fast. Pretty nice riding weather. But still see very few other bikes on the road in the morning. This morning, I'm on lower campus for a meeting and there is an older Honda Shadow in the motorcycle parking area. There has also been a V-Star in the parking lot next to my building but they're choosing to park far from the building instead of prematurely "claiming" the motorcycle parking spaces. Not sure why.
Yesterday was my birthday and Bridget gave me one of the new GoPro Hero3+ "Black Edition" video cameras. She has seen me watching video from various road trips blog posts (Bob, Dom, Chris, Gary, etc.) and said that I needed to yield to peer pressure and post videos. Lots of video modes including 4K as well as wireless control from either the included wireless controller or the free iPhone app. It requires a microSD card with a class 10 speed rating, something I didn't have lying around so no video at the moment. I did pair my iPhone with the camera and it even gives you a live view from the camera in addition to being able to change settings. I think that would really help when mouting it on the rig and trying to aim the camera. And you can start and stop recording from the wireless remote control with the remote LCD mirroring the one on the front of the camera or from the phone app. I hear that the down side of the Wi-Fi is the hit on battery life.
Now I just need to go somewhere interesting…
Monday, April 21, 2014
Yesterday evening, I finally got around to removing the screw-style tire studs and, as I had feared, I almost waited too long. The screw heads on about ¼ of the studs were so worn down that they needed to be removed with vice grip pliers on what remained of the head. I'll swap out the studded tires maybe in a week or so.
Friday, April 18, 2014
It was great to hear about all of the power and communication advances that were being made to support science in Antarctica but almost disturbing to hear about how much was being spent on infrastructure and logistics compared to science. The photo was taken by the NSF liason officer, Lt. Doll, and it shows just one example of why Antarctic and Greenland research is so expensive. A lot of effort is being made with improved communication and power systems but having facilities to allow people is just expensive. A British engineer was talking about some new facilities and commented that the existing facility was ~25 m under the snow. This is just from accumulation. The psychological toll on individuals staying there was, as he put it, "very significant". The new lab is designed to jack itself up back to the top of the snow so that the inhabitants could see out of the windows even if all they could see is snow.
BTW, the Thai food was also very average and somewhat bland even though I asked for hot "4" on a scale of one to five. Maybe no one likes "spicy" in Bloomington.
One last photo of the IU campus. This is an HDR photo and all the way on the right, you can just see a tree starting to "green". On the way to the airport, you could just see a hint of leaves on some of the trees.
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Here are a few more photos taken this evening as I was walking towards a get together associated with the PTC. This is the exit from campus towards Kirkwood Ave. one of the restaurant lined streets near the campus. The get together was at the Irish Lion, a recreation of an Irish pub. On the way back, I stopped at the Bombay Cafe, a very informal Indian place a couple of blocks from campus.
This is the courthouse and is a good example of the masonry found on just about every public building in town. This building looks pretty nice compared to the well weathered buildings on the IU campus. N.B. no leaves on the trees yet but there are flowers planted in some of the planters both here and at the campus.
Another public building, the local Carnegie library extending out of the back of the more modern public library. Again, note the use of limestone to cover the building.
Today, there was more discussion on power systems in use by projects including an excellent presentation on LiFePO4 with an emphasis on discharge performance at extremely low temperatures. The batteries are extremely light for their capacity and that attracts some motorcyclists to them. But they can be easily destroyed by improper charging. In fact, Enduralast, the maker of my new alternator, does not recommend them due to the difficulty charging them. I guess each cell needs to be independently monitored by the charge controller to prevent overcharging. They are being used successfully but with sophisticated charge controllers for their solar and wind power systems.
I also talked to several folks with experience using the same radios that I am planning to deploy in Barrow this summer. They have been using them very successfully in Antarctica where the climate is much harsher than Alaska.
On a completely unrelated note, I brought a couple of the Arduino boards with me to play with while in the hotel. This is the Uno R3 with built in PoE Ethernet and SD card slot for data storage. The little daughter board on top in the picture is the USB interface that is only used when downloading programing onto the board. I now have a web server running on this tiny computer and will be using that to post environmental data on a regular basis to another server. I'm thinking that I may want a RTC (real time clock) so I can timestamp my data.
Thursday morning - This pipe organ is in the back of our meeting room and, as I was told, it has only been here a couple of years. What that didn't tell me is whether it is new or restored. But it looks like it's been here for a long time.
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Breaking Away. Back then I was really into cycling and that is what the movie was about. The first photo was taken from my hotel room this morning. It was still below freezing and there was still a bit of snow sitting around from yesterdays storm. The Bloomington campus of IU is the "flagship campus" of the system and the largest enrollment at 40,000+ students. The buildings match the founding date of 1820 as everything is some shade of brown.
The next couple of pictures were taken during a tour of their cyberinfrastructure operation. The first is a video wall showing a movie of Indiana University's activities in Antarctica. To the left is one of their new supercomputers. This was in the half of the data center that supported organized research. Most of the buildings are covered with limestone with elaborate carvings but the data center was granted an exception due to the cost.
Monday, April 14, 2014
I wasn't able to capture the entire road as I quickly ran out of memory on my phone. The original was captured at 1080p/60fps and I have never looked for a way to change the default resolution. The transitions were added as we stopped several times along the way for pictures.
Saturday, April 12, 2014
Yesterday afternoon, Dom aka Charlie6 of redlegsrides picked me up after the Internet2 Global Summit conference ended. We took off early this morning on his 2014 Ural, Scarlett, and headed south towards Cañon City and Skyline Drive. I had always enjoyed the videos that he has posted of this road and was anxious to see it in person.
I believe that the The mountain in the picture is Pike's Peak but not 100% positive.
This arch is at the entrance to Skyline Drive and as you will notice from the sign, it is a one way, very narrow road. The next several pictures are from the road including one of Dom and his new ride. I took video with my iPhone but haven't figured out how to upload the edited video from the iPad to YouTube. So I will post it later.
After Skyline Drive, we headed to Royal Gorge. There was a large fire about a year ago which burned 48 out of 52 structures. After repairs to the bridge they just started to allow visitors but only on buses due to all of the construction. The bus stopped in the middle of the bridge to allow folks to get out and take pictures.
While we were at the overlook on the far side of the gorge, another bus stopped mid-span on the bridge. Pretty impressive structure that was completed in only 7 months in 1929.
There was a steam locomotive parked which, I believe, used to be one of the displays.
Friday, April 11, 2014
This is a sculpture outside of the Sheraton Hotel along the 16th St pedestrian mall. There seems to be numerous sculptures everywhere I ventured in the downtown area. I kept trying to remember if I've ever been in downtown Denver before and I only remeber using the airport and moving on to Boulder, Aspen or Snowmass. Locations that I do remember visiting in the past to attend meetings or conferences.
Yesterday evening, a half dozen of us went to ChoLun, which advertises itself as "A Modern Asian Bistro". The menu offerings were so unusual that we just ordered all of the apetizers and small dishes on the menu. Such things and corned beef & sauerkraut spring rolls and soup dumplings. Wonderful place, great food and interesting company. All network engineers from South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Colorado some of whom I have known and worked with for years.
This is just a shot of one of the meetings. Again, primarily network engineering types with a few program managers and executives thrown in. The group was tasked with coming up with policies, measurement techniques and definitions that we could all live with. Herding cats came to mind. The Internet2 engineering community has been a fabulous group to work with over the last 15 years.
BTW, it seems that winter has returned to Fairbanks much to the chagrin of those back home. This was taken yesterday morning.
Wednesday, April 9, 2014
yesterdays post. It looked like there was some sort of construction project and to me it looked like the beginnings of some sort of park. This was about halfway between downtown Denver and EME. The river was a pleasant surprise and it had a nice cooling effect. Especially after walking along the frontage road for a highway. This was along the bus route and my plan was to simply hop on the bus whenever it came by but that never happened. The busses must be pretty widely spaced.
JJ's Bistro and Sushi which bills itself and the "Best Chinese Food" in Denver. It was decent enough though not quite like places in San Francisco. This was taken later in the afternoon after walking to REI just past the South Platte River (see below and above). I liked the way this pedestrian suspension bridge looked. If you look closely, you could see the moon near the top of the photo.