Vote for my Photo!

I entered a photography contest for photos of art on Iowa State's campus.

University Museums is looking for great unique photos of the Art on Campus Collection for the second annual I Campus Art contest.  During the month of September we accepted amateur photographer’s images of any of the over 600 major public works of art on the Iowa State University Campus. 

Submitted photographs are placed below to be voted on by the community.  Votes will be collected during the entire month of October and the photograph receiving the largest number of votes will be printed as a poster and sold at the Brunnier Art Museum Store.  The winning photographer will also receive a framed poster.Voting concludes October 31. Winner will be announced early November on the website and through a press release. 

To vote for your favorite photograph, please email your choice of photograph with Title and Name of Photographer to Nancy Gebhart at

"Study Break" is my favorite.

Photos are online and voting is open until the end of October.

So, Vote for me!  And then tell a friend!

Also - I have an album online of the photos I took around campus that day, from which I selected these 4 entries.  Enjoy!


Tivo deathwatch!

This news should accelerate the Tivo deathwatch.  Huge.  Now I can get all my tv shows on my PC, no Tivo needed (wish I was more than 1 year into my 3 year pre-paid subscription)!

Windows 7 will support end user addition of CableCard tuners (not just OEMs)!  Huge, and eat your heart out Snow Leopard.  This is much more exciting than anything that came out of Cupertino yesterday.

Original Source -

Microsoft Press Release

O'Hare = Thing of beauty!

I'l bet that headline got your attention. O'Hare (ORD) is a well known airport to anyone who travels regularly. It is the second busiest airport in the world (after Atlanta, on both passengers and flights in/out annually), and it's well known for its delays.

I've flown in and out of ORD more or less every week for the last six years, right after I moved to Chicago for my dream consulting job. In that time ORD has been just as cruel a mistress to me as any other traveler. I've spent countless hours milling the terminals there and at other airports waiting to get back there. However, I've always had a sense of awe when the machine is humming along like a well oiled machine.

A couple of years ago ORD had the worst on time record of any US airport. The majority of the problem lay with scheduling congestion. Most people don't realize how all of the parts fit together to make commercial air travel the safest method in existence. Airlines schedule flights based on supply (gates, planes, crews, etc) and demand (destinations, times of arrival and departure, etc.), and the Air Traffic Control (ATC) is responsible for getting planes safely from gate to gate. So at ORD airlines were scheduling more flights (at peak times - Mon. morning, Thurs. and Fri. Afternoon, etc.) than could safetly take off and land out of and into ORD. There were over 100 flights scheduled in and out per hour, in perfect weather conditions using all runways and maintaining minimal spacing ORD could only handle 94, you do the math. So, with the worst ontime record in the country the FAA, who oversees ATC, stepped in and federally mandated that no more than 88 flights could be scheduled in any given hour.

So, ORD's ontime improved a bit, but it's still consistantly low, and has a reputation for being worse than it is in all reality.

So how in the world can I say ORD is a thing of beauty? Because when it works truly a Modern Marvel (hint hint History channel) it is a thing of beauty. Today my flight pushed back, taxied, and too off all in less than 15 minutes. Who cares you say, what's the big deal. This is the big deal we had to take multiple taxiways, wait in line behind 4 planes, coordinate with the 4 planes on the intersecting runway, oh and by the way, land 4 planes on our runway as well. That's taxing from one terminal away, and be the 12th plane in line for all intents and purposes. It was amazing.

I watched the line in front of us on the taxiway trying to determine which runway we were going to use, spotted the taxi line at the intersecting runway, and watched the finely orchestrated performance. An American MD-80 (I can't believe those still fly). Too off on the intersecthing runway, a plane landed on our runway 15 seconds after the MD-80 cleared. As soon as it cleared another landed behind it. Two additional planes took off from the intersecting runway, then 3 from our runway, then one more landed, then we rolled out and powered off. As we were nosing off the ground I watched another plane land on a parallel runway on the other side of the airport. As we banked to the south and crossed the southwest corner of the airport I saw another plane landing on a fourth runway, and could see 2 more lined up behind it on their way in.

Tell me that is not a thing of beauty!

Now, take that thing of beauty and add a thunderstorm in the vicinity, high winds causing it to be unsafe to use those parallel runways, passengers who can't figure out how to board effeciently and miss an on time push back, a mechanical delay, the list is endless, so when it works it is a beautiful thing!

Incidently if you you really want to get into the nitty gritty you can always listen to ATC, United broadcasts it on Channel 9 of their audio programming. Or, GQ ran a great article in on of the last couple of issues about ATC, and spent a day at JFK in New York, which is some of the most congested airspace in the world.

I encourage you to sit back and think about all of the orchestrated pieces fluidly working together the next time you fly!

Sold: Sony Vaio UX-390

CIMG2269 See initinal impressions from I picked it up here.

Unboxing/Size-comparison pics here.

Asking $700 or best reasonable offer.

It's in mint condition and truly looks brand-new.

E-mail me if you have questions or interest...


In the box: 
VGN-US309N Sony VAIO Micro PC 
Port Replicator with Guide Holder 
Protective Pouch 
AC Adapter with Power Cord 
Adapter Holding Band 
Wrist Strap 
Kick Stand 
Display/LAN Adapter 
Spare Caps for Multi-Pointer (2) 
Adapter Holding Band 

Windows Vista Business Operating System 
1.33 GHz U1500 Ultra Low Voltage Intel Core Solo Processor 
32GB NAND Flash-based Hard Drive 
4.5” WSVGA LCD Touch Screen 
Biometric Finger Print Sensor 
Two embedded Cameras (1.3MP; .3MP) and Microphone 
Duo Size, MagicGate, Memory Stick PRO Compatible 
1 Built-In USB Port 
802.11a/b/g, Bluetooth and WAN built-in 
Built-In SIMM Card Reader (For EDGE Network Access) 
Includes Microsoft® Streets & Trips for Navigation on the go 
Weighs 1.2lbs 
Hardware Specifications: 
Processor: Intel® Centrino Core™ Solo Processor U1500 1.33GHz Ultra Low Voltage 
Front Side Bus Speed: 533MHz 
L2 Cache: 2MB 
Memory: 1GB (1GBx1) PC2-3200 DDR2 (400MHz) 
Hard drive: NAND Flash Based 32GB PATA 
Display: 4.5" Wide SVGA LCD Touch Screen, 1024x600 resolution 
Graphics Processor: Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator 950 
Video RAM: 224MB Total Available Graphics Memory 
Chipset: Intel® 945GMS 
Audio: Windows® sound system compatible with Built-in monaural speakers 
Action Buttons: Mouse Left/Right, Scroll, Zoom In/Out, Capture, Center Button 
Pointing Device: Pointer 
Security: Biometric Fingerprint Sensor 
Keyboard: 64 keys with 0.15mm stroke and 8.6mm pitch 
Camera: 2 Built-in Cameras (front: 0.3M pixels and back: 1.3M pixels) 
Built-in microphone 
Inputs and Outputs 
Headphone Jack: 1 
Memory Stick® Media Slot: 1 - Supports Optional 
Memory Stick DUO™ media with MagicGate® functionality 
Microphone Input: 1 
Port Replicator Connector(s): 1 (Bottom) 
USB Port(s): 1 (2.0 compliant) 
DC-In: 1 
Ethernet Protocol: Fast Ethernet (RJ-45) using Port Replicator or VGA/LAN Adapter 
Ethernet Speed: 10Base-T/100Base-TX 
Wireless LAN: Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection (802.11a/b/g) 
Wireless WAN: Integrated Wireless Wide Area 
Network (WAN) accessing Cingular Wireless National EDGE Network with SmartWi™ technology 
(Wireless WAN and Wireless LAN radio do not transmit simultaneously) 
Bluetooth® Technology: Integrated Bluetooth® Technology 
Battery Type: Standard Capacity Lithium-ion Battery (VGP-BPS6) 
Estimated Battery Life: 1.5-3.5 hours (Standard Battery) 
3.0-7.0 hours (Optional Large Capacity Battery) 
Power Requirements: 41W+10% 
Operating System: Windows Vista™ Business 
Supplied Software: Microsoft® Works 8.5 
60-Day Trial Version of Microsoft® Office 2007 
Microsoft® Streets & Trips 2006 Essentials 
PenPlus™ for VAIO 
Sony® Original Software: VAIO® Touch Launcher 
Security and Anti-Virus Software: Norton® Internet 
Security™ 2007 60-Day Trial with spyware protection 
Weight: 1.2 lbs with standard battery (weight is approximate and may vary) 
Measurements: 5.91” (W) x 3.74” (H) x 1.27-1.50” (D)