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Blogging from space September 22, 2006

Posted by Matsu in News and politics, Technology, Weblog.
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Believe it or not, there is a private citizen acting like an astronaut (or cosmonaut) and blogging about it from the International Space Station (ISS). You can find it here.

There is also a web site dedicated to Anousheh Ansari, the first female private citizen in space. This is what they say about her:

Anousheh Ansari, has been officially part of to the Soyuz TMA-9 primary crew. The first female spaceflight participant launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on September 18, 2006 and is now aboard the International Space Station (ISS) along with the Expedition 14 crew members: NASA astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria and Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Tyurin.

As you may already know, the NASA Space Shuttle returned to earth so it is no longer up there docked to the ISS. The person who is blogging even wrote about watching the Space Shuttle re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere. Cool!

The latest post is interesting as it was actually written from space and recounts the trip into space aboard a Russian rocket. Scary!

Quote of the week September 21, 2006

Posted by Matsu in Management, Open Source, Software, Technology.
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This week I just happened to see part of an interview of Vince Vaughn on some cable TV show, as I was channel surfing. He ended the interview saying something rather interesting.

You can get so much done when no one cares who gets credit.”   Vince Vaughn (TV Interview, 2006)

That quote could apply to many things in life, but it seems to be perfect for describing open source software.

Arrrrgghh! Don’t Ye forget to talk like a Pirate today! September 19, 2006

Posted by Matsu in Humor, Random, Weblog.
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Talk Like A Pirate Logo

I gave my regular readers plenty of advanced notice when I wrote this post, so this news will not be a surprise to them. But, the rest of ya who may have stumbled across this blog should know that today, September 19th, is International Talk Like A Pirate Day!

It’s not rocket surgery! September 18, 2006

Posted by Matsu in Humor, Random, Technology.
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About four weeks ago I was working way too many hours for too many days trying to get ready for the start of fall semester and I was exhausted. Late one night I was discussing something with Bert that I don’t remember now, but it was important at the time. Trying to impress on him that whatever it was that needed to get done for the technology to work could be done without too much intellectual effort I blurted out, “It’s not brain science!”

Bert immediately recognized my sleep deprived faux pas and responded without missing a beat and said, “Don’t you mean it’s not rocket surgery?” It was a perfect comeback. Bert had actually put in more hours than me and he still had a great sense of humor.

Even now, as I remember that moment, it makes me laugh out loud. Since then, I’ve said that phrase about a dozen times because it relieves the tension at work. Bert’s used it almost as often as I have. Truly, we must learn not to take ourselves so seriously.

Laugh a little; it’s good for you and great for those who you may be responsible to manage at work. Remember, it’s not rocket surgery!

iVideo: Nirvana for video rental customers September 12, 2006

Posted by Matsu in Apple, Information Technology, Mac, Technology, Web.
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What would you think if there was a way to rent videos without driving to the video rental store and spending time looking for what you want (if they have it) and then standing in line to check out? I don’t want to admit how many times I have had to pay late fees to Blockbuster over the past 10 years. Now, there will be no more rushing back to the video store at 11:55pm or paying those late fees.

I would like that. I know that Apple is selling videos through the iTunes online store, but what about video rentals – view once or only watch it until the rental runs out (1 or 2 days).

Interesting idea. And, it’s coming.

Remembering September 11, 2001 September 11, 2006

Posted by Matsu in News and politics, Random.
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Where were you on September 11th when the planes hit the World Trade Center towers? I was sitting in a semi-weekly meeting with some of my staff. We were in the middle of an Instructional Technology Team meeting when someone came into the I.S. conference room and told us that the World Trace Center tower was on fire. We immediately turned the TV on and watched for a while. I think we were watching when the second tower was hit, but I can’t say for certain because I saw that video replay at least a hundred times that day so it seems like I saw it when it happened.

Then, the towers began to fall. We ended up cutting the meeting short and began to verify that our critical communications systems (Internet and telephone) were fully functional because many people on our campus would be checking with family in the New York area.

There was a lot of chaos that morning. Lots of misinformation from the major broadcast news organizations was reported as they tried to figure out what was going on. When all planes were grounded, we knew there was a national threat that went beyond a building in New York. I remember they could not seem to either find out or figure out where the President of the United States was throughout that day. How could you lose a President?

I remember the most eerie feeling that night as I looked up in the sky and didn’t see or hear a single airplane. That lasted for a few days. Then, when I once again heard a plane in the sky I found that sound to be just as foreign as the absence of that sound had been just a few days prior. It was all very surreal and in some ways, looking back, it seems more like a dream than a memory.

But, it happened. All of it. God be with those who were there and survived. God be with those who were not there, but lost loved ones. In New York. At the Pentagon. On Flight 93. I am certain that for them the past five years have done little to dull their pain or lessen their nightmares. They are all in my thoughts and prayers.