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Sat, 16 Aug 2003
The power grid and the moon
We were fortunate to buy a new house and to work with a builder who was willing to make reasonable changes for us if we told him in advance. I got some changes made to the wiring closet in the house that makes it easier for me to keep some server equipment in there. Assuming that it doesn't make too much noise, which it kind of does.

One of the changes that we didn't do was add a gen trans to the main electrical panel for the house. Bainbridge has been famous for power outages because trees on the island keep getting blown over and taking down lines. We've had a few outages, including one for over 12 hours, but still, not that bad. So when I saw Paul Boutin's article about home generation, I started thinking about it again.

Living on an island has only increased my awareness of how reliant we are on infrastructure. We have a bridge on the north end, so we're not totally cut off, but I'm more conscious of things like electrical, telephone, and other infrastructure since moving here. Over the years, I've heard about home fuel cells, wind machines, and other techniques for putting power back into the grid, or storing power so that you're not dependent on the grid. Given the events of this week, and 9/11, maybe now we'll look at some alternatives to our current means of generating power.

Today I saw articles on flow cells that would store power off grid as a way of balancing production and consumption. I also saw an article on collecting solar energy on the moon and then microwaving it back to Earth. This would assume that we still have the capability to get hardware to the moon and back. At the rate things are going for us in space, the Indians may be the only people who can put a man on the moon. It's been at least 25 years since we wera able to do the task.

[01:58] | [society] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Blaster causes MS blogstorm...
Scoble says:
Today also is the first time anyone at Microsoft asked me to post something on my weblog. I'm happy to do so in this instance.
I noticed a lot of other MS bloggers posting Blaster instructions. Has something changed today? I can't decide. Certainly lots of other bloggers pointed to Blaster instructions.
[01:38] | [computers/internet/weblogs] | # | TB | F | G | 1 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
When I first saw that Joi Ito was writing about P-time, I immediately thought of Polynomial Time. Of course, I had missed Joi's initial post about P-Time during my jury duty week, when I was madly scanning just to keep up with feeds.

I think that P-Time is the right mode for stirring things up, or getting things together, trying to find a way when there is no way. During the conversations about XMLBeans or Geronimo, I found myself living more of a P-time style day, although it was mitigated somewhat because the ASF culture is more e-mail based, not IRC based. I think M-Time is better for (certain kinds of) production, writing a program or a book, although you could argue that pair programming is about switching programming from M-Time to P-Time.

[01:33] | [computers/internet] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Innovation and Sustainability with Gold Cards
Today on java.net, Dan Steinberg had a post entitled Recharging your Batteries. It was mostly a reflection on taking some time off to recharge / sharpen the saw / whatever, using the theme of the East Coast blackouts as a hook. He referred to a paper from AgileUniverse 2001 called Innovation and Sustainability with Gold Cards.

Gold cards are a simple idea. Every developer on an XP project is issued 2 gold cards per month. The cards allow the developer one day of work on a topic of their choice. You can read the article for the rest of the details, but I think that this is a great practice that can help keep people energized, enthusiastic, and thinking of the bigger picture.

[01:19] | [computers/programming] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
ASF Newsletter #1
Tetsuya Kitahata has been working tirelessly to compile the first ASF wide newsletter. This is a great contibution on his part. Maybe he can put it out in RSS format as well. And then maybe we could do a releases RSS feed, and then...
[01:09] | [computers/open_source/asf] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
Old connections
Writing this blog has been a great way to find old friends and colleagues, or perhaps more correctly, for them to find me. Today's reconnection was David Temkin who was the manager of the NewtonScript toolbox and apps group when I worked on the Newton team at Apple. The connection with David actually goes back further than that. Julie knew David from our days at Brown -- they were both involved with the Brown Daily Herald.

These days, David is a co-founder and CTO of Laszlo Systems, which some of you may have seen on Marc Canter's blog. I think that Lazlo is a pretty interesting technology -- if it had been around when I was a CTO in 2000, we definitely would have used it with some of our customers.

Anyway, David is a smart guy, and it's good to see that he's taking another shot at changing the world.

[01:04] | [computers/internet/www] | # | TB | F | G | 0 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post
My current project unveiled...
I've been hinting at my current project here and there. Today my agent told me that I am clear to talk about it, so since a picture is worth a thousand words:

Professional XML Development with Apache Tools : Xerces, Xalan, FOP, Cocoon, Axis, Xindice

The goal of this book is to help people use the unique features of various XML related projects at the ASF, mostly those that were a part of xml.apache.org at the beginning of the year. I'm pretty well along, but if there's something that you always wanted to know about some Apache XML tool, drop me a note, comment, or trackback, and I'll see what I can do.

Thus far, writing a book has turned out to be a bigger experience than I thought, but so far I'm enjoying it. I was really able to identify with Erik Hatcher's post today.

[00:49] | [computers/programming/xml] | # | TB | F | G | 3 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post

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Ted Leung FOAF Explorer

I work at the Open Source Applications Foundation (OSAF).
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