Archive: March 20, 2016

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Iditarod wrap: Seaveys one two again, Sass 20th after 26 hour delay, DeeDee 44th!

Sunday,  03/20/16  09:45 PM

The 2016 Iditarod is history (sorry for the delayed wrap, but I picked a lousy time to move :)... and I'm going to say it was kind of boring at least compared to other years.  Defending champion Dallas Seavey won for the third time in a row and fourth time in five years (wow, but ... yawn), and his father Mitch finished second for the second year in a row; he's won twice but would have won four times if it wasn't for his son.  They are pretty dominant right now, and Dallas is the youngest champion ever, so it could be is quite a dynasty.

Dallas and his leaders, top dogs of the 2016 Iditarod. 
Click through for live video of the finish! (actual finish is at about 24:00)

The most interesting story was Brent Saas and his team; after being in the top three with Dallas and Mitch for the whole race, he came into White Mountain in third, and took his mandatory eight-hour break.  But then ... his team didn't want to go!  He ended up saying in White Mountain for 26 hours, resting and feeding his team, and finally finished 20th.  Too much run and not enough rest caught up with them; they ran a great 900 mile race, but the Iditarod is 1,000 miles.

right: Brent Sass and his team *try* to leave White Mountain



My favorite (and many others') DeeDee Jonrowe finished a fine 44th.  She was never in it to win it, but ran a steady race and finished strong.  After all she went through this past year (losing her Mom to cancer, and her home to a fire) it was a great showing.  Look for her to be back next year, running strong!

left: DeeDee and her team finished a steady 44th



My favorite part of this year's race was hacking together my little Iditaflow tracker, which made watching the race way more interesting (and way less time consuming, because you could see easily what had happened).  I have a number of ideas for improvement, but they'll have to wait for next year.

Below is the final view of the tracker, showing all 86 mushers' tracks.  Onward, 'till next year!

(please click to enbiggen amazingly)

[All Iditarod 2016 posts]




Sunday,  03/20/16  09:56 PM

Whew, we moved!  (made it :)  So much fun ... all the boxes, and figuring out where everything goes, and getting your servers back up.  Fortunately everything went pretty smoothly and after a metric ton of work, [almost] everything is up and running.  I am now back on Time Warner cable, after four years on Verizon Fios, and it is surprisingly faster!

In case you're wondering, we moved about three miles, no longer on Westlake Island but now back in the hills, in an area called North Ranch (where we lived before, for many years).  So be it ... change is good :)


{filter pass}

Sunday,  03/20/16  11:05 PM

A Sunday night filter pass ... after a day of unboxing and folding paper and sailing (!)  Yes I am quite sore and tired, so naturally, it is time to blog:

[Note to self: do not use <angle brackets> in headlines, the blogging software does unusual and unexpected things.  {braces} seem okay.]

Apple's iPhone SE announcement: what to expect from Monday's (tomorrow's) event.  As a devote of small phones, I am excited about this; I've had my iPhone 5S for over two years now, and yes it's a great little device but it might be fun to get a new toy.  Other than "thinner and lighter", the best new feature for me will be Apple Pay.  Potential show stopper: if the camera protrudes from the back.  That is the ugliest crappiest thing about the iPhone 6 family. 

Not gonna say anything about the primary elections and the fact that it looks like our unattractive choices for President will be Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.  We get the leaders we deserve, apparently. 

I did enjoy this note from chess champion Garry Kasparov: Don't lecture me about socialism; I lived through it.  "A society that relies too heavily on redistributing wealth eventually runs out of wealth to redistribute."  There are NO counterexamples.

There has been some great cycle racing, have you watched?  My favorite so far was Fabian Cancellara powering to victory in the Strade Bianca, which finishes in the Plazzo of Siena.  An amazing setting for an amazing race.  The one-week stage races of Paris-Nice and Tirreno-Adriatico were both interesting and well fought, and amazingly both had their queen stages cancelled due to snow.  Al Gore must have flown out to watch. 

Coming up next week (Thur 3/31): Tesla's Model 3 unveiling.  Teslarati recently reported Analysts Tour Tesla factory, cite "stunning progress".  This is the $35,000 car for the masses which *could* enable electric cars to cross the chasm.  Stay tuned. 

Cars are cool: they are robots built by robots.  How soon before they are sentient?

While you're waiting for a Model 3, you can build your own 3D printed Tesla supercharger (for your phone!)  Oh I am SO going to do this... hehe. 

VC Brad Feld: help me understand the value of Slack instead of an email list.  Yep, this emperor is wearing clothes, but they're nothing we haven't see before.  Best advantage of email over Slack is that you can have one inbox for everything, while for Slack you have to explicitly check each one.  I find the decay constant of Slack usage/excitement is short. 

The next three-person ISS crew is on its way!  It still seems so weird that the only launch vehicle to reach the ISS is Russian.  Not good.  But it is good that these launches are now so routine. 

Another there with no there there: In Africa, IBM Watson's sister Lucy is growing up with the help of IBM's Research team.  It is increasingly evident that "Watson" is a branding effort, not a thing.  IBM have spent $100M over three years in Africa to create this AI, and so far it doesn't "do" anything, seems they could have spent it more wisely. 

Onward into the week!



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