SpaceX’s NSFW Rocket

September 28, 2016

Tim Urban at Wait But Why did what he does best, a long blog post about SpaceX’s plan to go to Mars.

A couple months ago, when SpaceX first announced that this would be happening in late September, it hit me that I might still have special privileges with them, kind of grandfathered in from my time working with Elon and his companies in 2015 (which resulted in an in-depth four-part blog series). So I reached out and asked if I could learn about the big fucking rocket ahead of time and write a post about it.

They said yes. Baboom.

He calls the rocket the Big Fucking Rocket, which is amusing, but I like even more that Musk might call the first one the Heart of Gold (Google it and skip the Neil Young references).

Anyway, read the post

Go to Mars

September 27, 2016

Today, Elon Musk presented a more detailed version of his plan for SpaceX to help colonize Mars.

This is not news. Elon Musk’s grand plan has always been to get humanity onto a second planet to help insure we don’t blow ourselves up. I wrote about this a year ago.

This is why technology folks think Elon Musk is the coolest guy out there. He isn’t just proposing a crazy plan to go to Mars. He will explain in detail which propulsion system is best and why reusability is key. He landed a rocket on a robot ship (multiple times). And he’s putting his money where his mouth is and literally dedicating his Tesla profits to the Mars mission. It’s crazy super cool and even as an old guy, there’s a decent shot I’ll see someone on Mars and a better shot my daughters will see a city on Mars.

Crazy stuff made real.

If you want to watch the full version (and I would argue you do), click the bottom link. But The Verge tried to condense the hour long talk into five minutes.

Full talk:

Heard the Explosion, Went to the Deli

September 20, 2016

An amusing round-up from BuzzFeed of New Yorker tweets following the Chelsea Flatiron bombing…

He elaborates…

Fashion = Grammar

September 19, 2016

From xkcd

Roots and Shoots

September 18, 2016

Jane Goodall has an organization in 130 called Roots and Shoots that encourages kids to come up with practical community ideas for conservation. She recently had an event in NYC and my daughter and some friends got to represent their school.

They got to meet Jane, discuss their idea and hear her speak.

Not your average Saturday…


The stuff in the movie 300, but regular speed and with more clothing

September 12, 2016

The tallest image I’ve seen and in typical xkcd style, both informative and funny.


September 12, 2016

My oldest brother Tom is 58. He’s a professor at University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. Generally he teaches summer sessions, but Governor Walker has cut back on education spending, so this past summer those sessions didn’t exist. So what did my brother do with the extra time? Catch up on reading? Travel? Spend lots of time with his new grandson?

No, he trained for an Ironman Triathlon.

If you are aware, the “Ironman” designation for the race means specific distances. A 2.4 mile swim followed by a 112 mile bike ride followed by a full 26.2 mile marathon. Any one of those individually is brutal. To get an official finishing time you have to complete them all in under 17 hours.

Tom has done this before when he was younger, so his lack of sanity was not in question. I saw him in July when we visited his new grandson in Chicago. He looked crazy in shape.

So I’m pleased to announce that yesterday my brother finished the Wisconsin Ironman. He was slow and steady the whole way, finishing a bit before midnight.

If you want to see the crazy mass swim start, this video is from two years ago: