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happy Bicycle Day!

Thursday,  06/12/08  09:28 AM

Just wanted to wish you all Happy Bicycle Day!

Megan - bicycle day - June 12, 2001In our house we celebrate June 12 as bicycle day, because it is the anniversary of the first day upon which my daughter Megan was allowed to ride a bike following her successful heart surgery, in 2001 when she was four.  Riding a bike became a symbol that she had "recovered", and indeed if you know Megan she is fully recovered, a high-energy kid, healthy and wonderful. 

(At right is a pic of Megan on the original bicycle day :)

Nowadays we generally celebrate with ice cream (!), and I send a thank you note to Dr. Michael Black, her surgeon, and to Yulun Wang, founder and CEO of Computer Motion, the company which made the robotic arm used to by Dr. Black to perform the surgery.

Thinking about Megan's surgery reminds me of the worst / best day of my life, the day on which the surgery took place; I have vivid memories of wandering the halls with Shirley in the Lucille Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford University, waiting while the surgery was performed...  Megan was born with an Atrial Septal Defect, a little hole between the two upper chambers of her heart; the surgeon takes a small section of the meniscus which surrounds the heart and uses it to patch the hole, all done through a 1" incision using a robotic arm and internal camera!  Amazing fantastic wonderful technology.  If repaired young, as Megan's was, the long term prognosis is excellent, with only a tiny fading scar to show for it.

Today is Megan's last day of school (can it really be summer already!  Wow) and who knows, maybe later we'll go for a little ride together...


school's out for summer...

Thursday,  06/12/08  11:11 PM

... school's out for ever, school's out completely ...

Well okay not completely, but yes today was Megan's last day in Elementary school, so we are now "done"; they've all moved on, there are no more little kids.  And the summer is upon us.  Kind of bittersweet.

Megan and I did take a ride together to celebrate Bicycle Day, a 15 mile lap around Westlake, and it was very nice.  Looking at her long legs it is really hard to picture her as a little four year old.  Man, they do grow up...

And today was a day for reflection in other ways; yesterday I participated in a successful walkthrough of a new Aperio product, really great work on the part of our team, following another last week.  Our next release is by far our biggest ever, with multiple large projects in parallel.  It is amazing to see it all coming together, but also prompts a bit of nostalgia for "the old days" when we were just a little gang, and we all knew what everyone else was doing...

Dude, where's my recessionRetail sales jump by largest amount in 6 months.  There are some big challenges in the economy right now, gasoline / transportation costs and the general bursting of a property bubble among them, but still money is being made and businesses are growing - as is the economy as a whole.

NBA finalsWell, boo; the Lakers lost to the Celtics tonight, after leading by 24 points, and now trail in the series 3-1.  Someone once said a best-of-seven series doesn't start until one team has 3 wins, so I guess this one has now started.  The Lakers better figure something out or before long this one will have ended.

Tomorrow is a big day in sports; Holland plays France in Euro 2008, a clash of favorites, while we have the "Queen stage" of the Dauphiné Libéré, a seven-climb trek over the Croix de la Fer which finishes atop the Col de la Télégraphe that should determine the overall winner.  My picks are Holland and Leipheimer :)

Have you had enough of the iPhone hoopla yet?  No?  Well, then here we have iPhone 3G: everything you wanted to know (but were afraid to ask).  Have a ball.

Meanwhile the Palm Centro is now on Verizon, too.  "Thanks to Verizon's expected announcement today, the top three US carriers now carry the diminutive Garnet device, which Palm actually says is 'off to the strongest start of any smartphone in Palm's history'."  Hey, if iPhone is Pepsi, something has to be Coke, right?

Slashdot links an interview with Douglas Hofstadter, of Godel, Escher, Bach fame.  He's an interesting guy, and GEB is my favorite book of all time, but yet I couldn't even finish I am a Strange Loop.  I think he's mellowed and diffused, and lost a bit of what he'd found.

So are you ready for Friday the 13th?  Hope you're not afflicted with paraskavedekatriaphobia...


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