Travels and Images
WEEK 39 2007
Mon- Tue- Wed-
Thur- Fri- Sat- Next Week
Picture of the Week
17 March 2002
Ago, This Week, 2002
Ago, This Week, 2003
Years Ago, this
Ago, This Week, 2005
||A Year Ago,
This Week, 2006
- on my way down to my friend Tims barbecue in San Diego. It's always
fun and this was no exception. Good company, good food, good weather :-)
Friday 28 September
- I saw a bum on the street the other day and tried to give him a
dollar. When my hand hit the mirrored glass window I knew it was time
for a haircut. And my friend S took care of that. Thanks!
From a comment on John Scalzi's blog:
"The Internet, where the men are men, the women are men, and the 14 year old girls are FBI agents."
Okay, Worldkit is free software. The GIM page of yesterday didn't mention it, but the AM page had a little icon at the bottom. Interesting. But I still would need something to map! There is some interesting stuff in the examples section.
On the road this weekend, probably not a lot of posting.
27 September 2007
- an interactive map of terrorism and suspicious activities, Global
Incident Map. [via, remarkably, Ghost of a Flea]
And an Alert
Looks like the same s/w technology - I wonder if it's free? It says
"Powered by Google" and there is a reference to Google Analytics in the
source. Interesting, even though I don't actually have any worldwide
stuff I need to plot.
Not quite so high tech and a bit lighter in tone is the Best of
Craig's List, (admittedly a little crude and sometimes
My favorites so far:
Oddly the Friedensbrücke
is not on the big river in Plauen, but over a street and, perhaps,
small stream, to the north and west of the city center. There is a
Panormino photo icon in Google Earth you can click on. Look for
the intersection of Friedensstrabe & Senefelder Strabe, it's near
I couldn't find Wuchao. China's a big place. And Google Earth has mostly terrible resolution there.
Wednesday 26 September 2007
- I was led astray today, doing some research on another subject (weirs,
note: I added the sentence about grade stabilizers to the wiki) to the
non-business oriented, but interesting to me subject of Stone
The stone bridge with the greatest single span in Europe is apparently
in Plauen, Germany, the
Friedensbrücke, with a clear span of about 90
For the entire world the current bridge with the largest single clear
span would apparently be the Wuchaohe
Bridge in Hunan Province (1990), at 120 meters, though it
apparently contains some reinforced concrete elements.
Note the grade stabilizers (weirs) in the river. Heh.
Here is a modern program, Archie,
for designing masonry arches and viaducts.
The late medieval and renaissance (secret) method of design was
apparently "As the chain hangs, so the bridge stands.". In other words,
hanging a chain across a gap gives a shape of perfect tension - invert
it and you have a shape of perfect compression (a 'catenary'
actually) suitable for stone and brick. The greater the drop of the
chain, the greater the rise of the bridge. The greater the rise of the
bridge the less the outwards thrust at the abutments and the less
foundation work required there,
the trade off being a heavier, higher, and harder to cross bridge.
The Romans just used circular arches, and, to be honest, almost
everybody else did as well. Those that didn't use circular arches for
the most part used elliptical
sections. Much simpler to lay out and construct than trying to find a
perfectly straight flat wall hundreds of feet high and long to draw on,
or to solve the hyperbolic cosines involved in a catenary by hand (and
note: that extra mass of material needed to create a
sloped or level roadbed over the arch would modify the basic catenary
The original (sort of) London
was made up of twenty small circular arches. Demolished in 1831 after
about 600 years of use, it was replaced by a bridge designed by Rennie
with, I believe, elliptical sections. That bridge only lasted 150
years, when it was torn down and shipped to Arizona.
The 3rd, current, bridge is an ugly concrete box. Why the British
didn't do something more interesting than the
monstrosity they built is beyond me. They beat the Germans in WWII, but
then adopted the Teutonic grim grey concrete design philosophy that
they are only now starting rebel against. I suppose it was a reaction
to the Victorian clutter, 'honesty in architecture' or something, but,
I've been on the Ugly London Bridge (bus), Tower Bridge
(bus and foot), and Arizona's London Bridge (car and foot).
I'll have to see if I can dig up some pictures.
Tuesday 25 September 2007
- I'm starting to get some spam in Gmail. Not much, one or two messages
a week, but it's worrisome. For the longest time there were none. Yahoo
mail gave me two or three a day. My own server mail? I had to turn it
off. Overwhelming amounts of spam. I know it's an ongoing battle, but
it looks like Google is not keeping up :-(
Sposky on 'bloated' software, sort of. "HTML is CICS with fonts."
No, that's not the point of the article, but it's true enough to be
funny. [via Newmark's
Monday 24 September 2007
- so for lunch I was having a nice peanut butter sandwich, with the
leftover heels from my last loaf of bread and the Skippy Super
Crunch (thanks Dad).
And broke off part of a molar, the inside half. Leaving a filling
out into my mouth like a dead tree trunk leaning out of a stream bank.
I linked to an article online about writers' offices the other
ran across a reference to a mystery book: An
Arsonist's Guide to Writers' Homes in New England. Heh. I
wonder if any of the featured writers have read that. They probably
wouldn't have been as eager for an interview.
Sunday 23 September 2007
- The 49ers' lost to the Steelers, which was a bit of a downer. But
they weren't terrible. In fact they led for a brief while (14 seconds)
and in general played a reasonable game. The receivers' weren't up to
snuff, and there was a bit of miscommunication, but they did as well
against the Steelers' as one would expect in such a match up.
I will even go so far as to say I
expect a SF winning season this year, over 0.500.
This was the Autumnal
Equinox. I meant to get out and get my picture of the sun
setting due West, but didn't. Forgot completely. But, what the heck,
it'll happen again next year...
I am reminded
that this is the anniversary of the victory of John Paul
Jone's USS Bonhomme
Richard over the HMS Seraphis.
#15 this year was a biography of John Paul Jones
and it went into detail about that battle. Jone's had come upon a
fabulous chance - a fleet of heavily laden merchantman and escorted by
was leading a small flotilla of ships, but his leadership was in
dispute. Rather than following his commands and lead to engage the Seraphis
the others sailed off, leaving him alone to fight the newer heavier
gunned British frigate with his ancient converted Indiaman. (Well,
there was a French captain who would sail about the cloud of gun smoke
that completely engulfed
the two ships, firing indiscriminantly into the cloud. Not much help there.)