ArchiveApril 2013

Why Physics is Awesome


One common application of the atomic force microscopes that we make is to measure properties of bio-molecules. AFM’s have long been used to image DNA strands, but the more interesting work is when you functionalize the probe, and then try to “pick up” a bio-molecule (like a protein). I am working on definition of improvements to our analysis software, and since I know squat...

@$$hole driving


I often flow with traffic keeping a low key, and cluck-cluck people who do dumb a-hole driving stunts around me. Phoenix (and SE Phoenix) drivers rarely fail to amuse me. But once in a while, I get an itch, and to scratch it, I need to drive like an a-hole. Honestly, it can be fun, as long as you do it in limited doses, and take care to not be near Johnny Law when you break free. Last night was...

Growing up “Gifted”


In a prior post, I discussed how a pretty big familial change greatly affected me during a critical period of development. Now I would like to discuss another, somewhat related, topic. In the third grade, I was identified as “gifted”. This means that I scored high on the standardized tests, and consequently, I was “invited” into the advanced learning program. This was 2-3...

Weight Loss Update


Two weeks ago, I lamented the need to get back on the horse and lose some weight. Of course, I know the formula, and I have tools to help me with my endeavor. But it is difficult to train the body to accept the new status quo. For the stats: Starting Weight: 232# Today’s weigh in: 225# Total lost – 7# Not a bad first two weeks, but a lot more to go (my goal is 190#). In the last two...

Where have all the UFO pictures gone?


Lately I have been grooving to the X-Files episodes over on Netflix streaming. I remember waiting with baited breath each week for the next episode, and cursing the creators when they used a cliffhanger at the end of the season. If you haven’t watched the show, it has a fairly large portion of its episodes based on the idea that extra terrestrials (aliens, little green men what have you)...

Garage Sale Culture


On this morning of our neighborhood’s “community yard sale”, I am reminded of something that appears to be a uniquely American cultural phenomenon, the “Garage Sale” culture. Simply put, it is people who are clearing out unused items by putting them in their yard, or their garage, putting prices on them, and then having people come by to buy stuff. I am not sure when...

Things I don’t need to be told


Number 1: I weigh too much and should lose some weight. Duh. Number 2: I drink too much. Time to do something about #1. #2 follows from #1. But first, why am I in condition #1? Well, simply, I like food, and I like to eat. Add to that that I am a stress eater (I fall back to comfort foods when I am highly stressed), and since I am a product manager, I am stressed pretty much 24-7-365. Last time I...

Customer support followup – Bose Headphones


Last Thursday, my Bose Quiet Comfort 2 headphones broke. I was bummed, but hey, they were almost 10 years old, so I couldn’t complain about the life. I tweeted about it, and somebody (not Bose) said that I should call their support line, as they often offer smoking prices to exchange your broken headset with a new one. I figured, why not try. ┬áSo I called. After a very simple IVR, I got to...

Growing up Poor


Perhaps I should clarify this provocative intro. My early childhood was well taken care of. Late 60’s, Sunnyvale California, father worked at a defense contractor (and made a good salary). I was too young to know that this made us solidly middle class. There weren’t many worries about money, and the essentials. Then, when I was in 1st grade, my mother decided that she wanted out...

My first Street Bike – 1978 Honda CX500


Not long after I started riding off road motorcycles, I came of age to get a learner’s permit. At the time, with a simple test, I could ride a motorcycle on the street (with surprisingly less restrictions than driving a car). So I was on the prowl for a good ride. I didn’t need a tame “starter” bike, as I had learned all the basics off road, so I was looking for something...


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April 2013

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