MOTD::Archive::Spring 2005 (14 May 2005)

Fall 2004 MOTD

Week Ending 14 May 2005

EDU::Learning About Computing and Math a Bit At a Time
Since 14 September 2001, GDT has created 123 Computing::Bits. Computing::Bits help us learn about computing a bit at a time. This semester GDT created BABs--Basic Arithmetic Bits that help us learn about basic arithmetic a bit at a time. 38 BABs were created during the Spring 2005 semester. GDT will be creating additional Computing::Bits and Math::BABs during Summer Break 2005.

Computing::Looking At a TMTA Message Board
I was looking at a Yahoo! Message Board for Transmeta. Transmeta is transforming itself into a different breed of company and its stock almost hit zero. One TMTA posting contained the following quote:

   "Hardware is great, hardware is exciting, hardware is newsworthy, 
    but the heart of this business is about software." 
    --Doug Lowenstein, president of the Entertainment Software Association

Transmeta reported first quarter results for 2005 and I liked the following quote.

   "During the first quarter, we significantly reduced our 
    negative cash flow to $11.7 million, and we are well ahead 
    of reaching the first financial objective of our restructuring 
    plan by reducing our negative cash flow run rate to $5 million 
    per quarter or less by the end of the third quarter. Today, I 
    believe that we should achieve this goal ahead of plan and we 
    are now guiding to negative cash flow of less than $5 million 
    by the end of the second quarter."
    --Mark R. Kent, chief financial officer (CFO)

Now that they have said it; they should do it. Tranmeta's first quarter 2005 press release is dated 13 May 2005. { Transmeta Reports 2005 First Quarter Results }

Foo::The Spring 2005 Semester Comes To an End
I didn't get too much written student feedback this semester. Teaching four sections of Basic Arithmetic may sound boring, but it wasn't. From a schedule perspective, Spring 2005 has been my favorite semester. The GDT::MAT082 website is a legit Version 1.0.

Fall 2005 CSC enrollments stand at 1, 4, 1, 0; therefore, I am considering cancelling at least one CSC course and taking over two sections of MAT102. MAT102 will be a new GDT course.

We end Spring 2005 with a cluster up and initialized; it is named csbio... now what?

RoadHacker::Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska
RoadHacker was at a cattle branding last Saturday.

[14 May 2005 (Summer 2005 has begun; balmy 71° at 5:12am) top]

Week Ending 07 May 2005

Computing::Tempe Gets Slashdotted
The city of Tempe is going wireless and that prompted it to get slashdotted. Key question: will it be secure? It would not be good if Mill Avenue became easy pickings for crackers. { Tempe, AZ To Provide Wireless Broadband WIFI }

Robotics::Robot Attending a San Diego Nusery School
I'm not sure I'd want my kid playing with "humanoid robot" in nursery school, but this is the 21st century. The children "think of Qrio as a feeble younger brother." { Sony's Qrio Attending Nusery School in California }

Foo::Thursday was 05/05/05
Thurday, 05 May 2005, was 05/05/05 and that prompted me to write about the number five. {GDT::MAT082::Bit:: Special Date--05 May 2005}

[06 May 2005 (off to Wyoming for the weekend; 68° at 4:41am) top]

Week Ending 30 April 2005

Computing::C++ Lives
Bjarne Stroustrup, the creator of C++ who is currently a CS professor at Texas A&M, says C++ is alive and well. I agree with Stroustrup. C++ is a great programming language because it supports structured programming, object-oriented programming and generic programming. { C++ Creator Upbeat On Its Future }

Robotics::Smart Chairs
SenseChair is being developed at Carnegie Mellon University. The chair uses robotic technology to "monitor the sitter's behavior and respond accordingly." The SenseChair, which is intended for senior citizens, contains 12 sensors that monitor sleep patterns, vital signs, motion (or lack thereof) and so on. { Robot Technology Creates Easy Chair }

EDU::CSC Enrollments At SCC Remain Stuck At Zero
There are four CSC courses in the Fall 2005 schedule and on 30 April 2005 total enrollment across these four courses was at one. Obviously some form of marketing effort is needed, but that's not my bailiwick and my employer doesn't seem to give a foo. CS enrollments at SCC continue to be reflective of what is happening nationwide. { Interest in CS as a Major Drops Among Incoming Freshmen }

[30 April 2005 (Spring 2005 ends in two weeks; 61° at 5:43am) top]

Week Ending 23 April 2005

Robotics::Airlines Say No to Robotic Passenger
Robotic students from the University of Evansville (Indiana) were going to Connecticut for a robot competition, but their robot wasn't allowed on the plane. { Airline Refuses To Fly Robot }

Computing::Notes From a Vinton Cerf Lecture
Vinton Cerf is a co-father of the Internet who is currently working on the IPN (InterPlaNet). Cerf authored RFC 3271: "The Internet is for Everyone." [At the end of RFC 3721, Cerf specifically states that "everyone" includes martians.] When Vinton Cerf speaks... we try to listen. { Vint Cerf on Internet Challenges }

Computing::Moore's Law Turned 40
During this week ending on 23 April 2005, Moore's Law turned 40 years old. In 1965, Gordon Moore wrote a paper in which he stated that the "number of transistors on a chip would double every 24 months." Moore's Law has been more accurate than expected for longer than expected. Peter Neumann was right when he told us to Expect the Unexpected.

[23 April 2005 (sunny morning, but rain may be coming; 65° at 7:11am) top]

Week Ending 16 April 2005

Space::Visualizing 70 Light-Years in Diameter
We are getting ready to do some introductory geometry and that means looking at circles and defining the term diameter. I took a peek at the Astronomy Picture of the Day on 15 April 2005 and learned up a huge cosmic bubble that was 70 light-years in diameter. {MAT082::Bit:: A Huge Cosmic Bubble of Gas and Dust}

Computing::135.3 Trillion FLOPS
70 light-years approximates 411.6 trillion miles in diameter. The world's fastest computer does 135.3 trillion floating-point operations per second (flops). The diameter of the cosmic bubble greatly exceeds the per second processing power of the world's faster supercomputer, but this all changes when we look at how many flops the supercomputer can do in a day. {MAT082::Bit:: From Cosmic Bubble to Super Computing}

Stocks::The Opsware Story Continues
On 15 December 2004, Opsware "completed the sale of 10 million shares of our common stock at a price of $6.40 per share to certain institutional investors." Today, Friday, 15 April 2005, OPSW shares closed at $4.93.

During the week just ended Opsware had the following news items on Yahoo! Finance.

   "Coverage initiated on Opsware by First Albany" (Fri 7:22am)"

   "Opsware Wins Sallie Mae Contract for IT Automation"
   Business Wire (Wed, Apr 13)"

   "Opsware's Tim Howes Honored as a 'Top 25 CTO of 2005'
    by InfoWorld"
   Business Wire (Mon, Apr 11)

Opsware, Inc. keeps growing and growing and growing, yet the stock lingers slightly below $5 per share. { Press Releases}

[16 April 2005 (sunny, warn day ahead of us; 88° at 14:45am) top]

Week Ending 09 April 2005

Computing::More Women Taking IT Courses
I am working on a document about "women in computing." A headline to a posting at caught my eye. I consider the headline a bit oxymoronic. { Women dominate IT courses but more men get degrees}

Science::Oldest Thing on Earth
The UW-Madison Geology Museum has a collection of zircons and one of them is 4.404 billion years old. The university claims it is the the "oldest known terrestrial object." { Geology Museum}

EDU::College Degrees Can Pay Off
Academic institutions justify tuition rate increases by telling us that a college degree will pay for itself and then some over time. A U.S. Census Bureau report issued on 28 March 2005 states: "workers 18 and over with a bachelor's degree earn an average of $51,206 a year, while those with a high school diploma earn $27,915. Workers with an advanced degree make an average of $74,602, and those without a high school diploma average $18,734." { College Degree Nearly Doubles Annual Earnings }

[09 April 2005 (windy day, but I'm sick from the neck up; 65° at 10:25am) top]

Week Ending 26 March 2005

Robotics::Robots--Land, Sea, and Air
Although they still have a long way to go, robots are being designed that can work on land, in the sea, and in the air. Recall, Kurzweil tells us the future is biotech, nanotech, and, utilimately, robotics. Just think what our world may be like when we get robots that are strong, durable, and flexible while at the same time full of artificial intelligence. { Robots serve humans on land, in sea and air }

EDU::I Have YADN (Yet Another Domain Name)
The Maricopa Community Colleges, by a 4-to-1 vote, are increasing 2005-2006 tuition rates by 9.1%. This increase comes at a time when general inflation rates are approximately 3%. GDT has registered another dot-us domain name: TuitionGouging.US.

RoadHacker::Spring in Arizona
Hadley and her mom Elna were visiting from Oregon so I took them on a 110 mile roadtrip. {RoadHacker:: Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park}

[26 March 2005 (sunny day under construction; 70° at 10:32am) top]

Week Ending 19 March 2005

Computing::Metcalfe Awarded Medal of Technology
Dr. Robert M. Metcalfe was awarded of Medal of Technology by U.S. President George W. Bush on 14 March 2005 (Pi Day) for inventing Ethernet. Metcalfe is considered one of the 'fathers' of the Internet. Here are some Metcalfe quotes.

   "Ethernet was invented in a memo I wrote at the Xerox Palo 
    Alto Research Center on 22 May 1973."

   "Ethernet is plumbing for the Internet, which is in turn plumbing 
    for the World Wide Web, which is plumbing for Google."

   "Everything I needed to know about Ethernet I learned at MIT."
{ Ethernet Pioneer Earns Medal of Technology}

EDU::Tuition Rates at Maricopa Community Colleges Going Up
On Tuesday, 22 March 2005, the MCCCD will vote on a proposed $5 increase in tuition rates. During the middle of Spring Break, on 16 March 2005, the MCCCD issued a press release on the subject, but the newspapers have not reported on the news.

RoadHacker::Spring Break 2005 Road Trips
Spring Break 2005 is over and RoadHacker did about 1300 miles of roadtripping. 308 pictures have been added to the website.

[19 March 2005 (a few rain drops are falling; 58° at 10:14am) top]

Week Ending 12 March 2005

Computing::Cerf and Kahn Receive A.M. Turing Awards for 2004
The ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) has named Vinton G. Cerf and Robert E. Kahn winners of the 2004 A.M. Turing Award for their "pioneering work on the design and implementation of the Internet's basic communications protocols." Note: Cerf is a member of the GDT::DreamTeam. { Press Release, February 16, 2005 }

Robotics::Kurzweil Speaks About Robot Wars
Ray Kurzweil is a GDT::DreamTeam member who has a strong belief system about what our future will be like. Here are some Kurzweil musings from an interview he gave with

   "Within 25 years, non-biological intelligence will match 
    human intelligence in areas in which humans now excel, 
    principally in pattern recognition."

   "Within 50 years, the non-biological portion of the intelligence 
    of our civilization will predominate."

   "Cyberspace will be a key battlefield."

   "One major development will be swarms of nano-engineered devices."

   "[...] but decentralized, self-organizing systems are far more secure:"

Kurzweil ends his interview with the following.

   "I think classical wars will occur less often. Decentralized 
    communication such as the Internet is inherently a democratizing 
    force, and has been behind the move towards greater democracy in 
    the world. Although not a perfect system, democracies tend not to 
    fight wars against each other. Future conflicts will tend to be 
    with smaller groups who will try to amplify their impact by finding 
    vulnerabilities in our technological infrastructure." Robot Wars

RoadHacker::Driving East and West Across New Mexico
Spring Break 2005 has started and RoadHacker in driving from Tempe, Arizona, east across New Mexico to the Texas border. At the Texas border, RoadHacker will turn around and drive west across to New Mexico back to Tempe. {RoadHacker:: US Hwy-60 and US Hwy-70 Across New Mexico}

[12 March 2005 (Spring Break 2005 is in progress; 64° at 9:42am) top]

Week Ending 05 March 2005

Computing::Jef Raskin Added to the GDT::DeadTeam
Jef Raskin died just a few days short of his 62nd birthday. Raskin played an instrumental role in the development and employment of the GUI (Graphical User Interface) and was a co-creator of Apple's MacIntosh computer (named after his favorite apple). {GDT:: DeadTeam}

Technology::Virgin Atlantic Global Flyer
Sounds like science fiction... around the world in 80 hours without re-fueling. On 28 February 2005, at about 18:47 CST, the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer took off from the Salina Municipal Airport located in Salina Kansas. Salina airport was chosen for its central location, and the fact that it is one of the few air strips long enough for the flyer to take off successfully. Around the world approximates 36,787.559 kilometres (or about 23,000 miles) which is equal in length to the Tropic of Cancer. { Home Page}

RoadHacker::Arizona City and Bartlett Lake
I have lived in Arizona for almost 20 years, but only now, in 2005, have I taken the time to visit Arizona City and Bartlett Lake.

[05 March 2005 (the rain returns; 55° at 6:35am) top]

Week Ending 26 February 2005

Computing::DreamTeamers and the Computer Museum of America
Four GDT::DreamTeam members were 2004 inductees into the Computer Hall of Fame at the Computer Museum of American. The 2004 inductees were Vinton Cerf, Bjarne Stroustrup, Marc Andreessen, and Ken Thompson. These four computing gurus join fellow DreamTeam members Ed Yourdon, Dennis Ritchie, and Tim Berners-Lee who were previously inducted into

Computing::My First Dot-US Domain Name -- FreedomQuoteGiver.US
I used Yahoo to purchase the FreedomQuoteGiver.US domain name. The domain currently redirects to and maybe someday we will turn the redirection off.

Robotics::If Monkies Can Do It...
Scientists at the University of Pittsburgh have created a thought-controlled robotic arm. And this is true even if the thoughts are being generated by a monkey. { Brain-Controlled 'Robo-Arm' Hope }

[26 February 2005 (sunshine returns; 63° at 10:05am) top]

Week Ending 19 February 2005

Robotics::New Robots Walk Like Humans
These type of stories remind us that it is the 21st century. The story begins as follows: "In what could be described as one small step for a robot, but a giant leap for robot-kind, a trio of humanoid machines were introduced Thursday, each with the ability to walk in a human-like manner." [Thursday was 17 Feb 2005.] The walking robots had "eyeballs added for effect." { New Robots Walk Like Humans}

Computing::The HP Garage
I received the following email message shortly after Carly Fiorina resigned from HP.

   Date: Wed, 9 Feb 2005 17:38:33 -0500
   From: Arthur Eves 
   Subject: Picture of the H-P garage

   We're preparing a historic timeline of HP and were wondering 
   if we could use your picture of the garage as part of it.

   Arthur Eves
   Creative Director
   BusinessWeek Online

I said "Yes. The Company That Spawned Silicon Valley The HP Garage

[19 February 2005 (another rainy day... we are the Valley of the Weeds; 55° at 11:35am) top]

Week Ending 12 February 2005

Technology::Augmented Reality Today, Virtual Reality Tomorrow?
High-performance computing and advanced visualization systems keeps moving us closer to living in a virtual reality world. I guess it only makes sense that we first experience an augmented reality before moving on to the real thing. { Augmented-Reality Machine Works in Real Time }

EDU::UW-Whitewater to Host Controversial Professor
On 01 March 2005, my alma matter -- the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater -- will allow Professor Ward Churchill to speak as part of a Native American forum. Churchill gives speeches in which he compares 911 victims to Nazis and he gives thanks to the terrorists behind the 911 attack on America. { Chancellor Decides to Continue Ward Churchill Lecture} { Ward Churchill is with the Department of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado.}

[12 February 2005 (more rain than sun; 52° at 6:18am) top]

Week Ending 05 February 2005

Technology::MIT Entrepreneurship Center
The future worlds of biotech, nanotech and robotics, will require a never ending stream of entrepreneurs. These entrepreneurs are our high-tech leaders and since 1896 MIT has been producing technical leaders. { Technology Leadership}

Computing::History of Computer Languages
Fortran was created during November of 1954. According to some resources this was the first computer programming language. Other early languages include LISP, Flow-matic, Algol 58, APL, and COBOL. { Computer Languages History} [source::Slashdot]

Robotics::Kurzweil Says... GNR
Ray Kurzweil tells us that the future is "genetic engineering, nanotechnology, and, ultimately, robotics." { Sex and the Single Robot }

[05 February 2005 ( Route 66 in Illinois; sunny 70° at 12:52pm) top]

Week Ending 29 January 2005

Computing::Bill Joy Enters the Financial World
Bill Joy, co-founder of Sun Microsystems and GDT::DreamTeam member, has teamed up with venture-capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. { Technolgy Guru Joins Venture-Capital Firm}

Technology::Radio Frequency IDentifiers (RFID)
The Chief Information Officer of Harvard Medical School was implanted with a VeriChip(TM) in December 2004 to begin an assessment of the technology. Dr. Halamka sees three applications for the VeriChip. Chief Information Officer of Harvard Medical School Receives VeriChip

[29 January 2005 (let's try to get to Illinois again; 50° at 5:17am) top]

Week Ending 22 January 2005

Space::Huygens Space Probe Sends Pictures From Titan
The Cassini-Huygens space mission was launched 15 October 1997 from Cape Canaveral, FL, to study Saturn, its rings and moons. The mission is a collaboration between NASA, the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Italian space agency. Cassini is the name of the spaceship and Huygens is a probe. The Huygens probe is probing one of Saturn's moons called Titan. The temperature on Titan is estimated to be 292 degrees below zero. { Cassini-Huygens: Close Encounter with Saturn}

Computing::DeadTeam::New Member -- Kenneth Iverson
Although he died back in October of 2004, I only learned about his death during early January of 2005. Iverson was a Canadian-born Harvard Professor and an IBM Fellow. He created APL (A Programming Language) during the early 1960s. In 1979 Iverson received an ACM Turing Award followed by an IEEE Computer Pioneer Award in 1982 followed by a National Medal of Technology in 1991. [Note: APL is briefly covered in ASU's CSE240 course along with the Maricopa Community Colleges' CSC240 course.] {GDT:: DeadTeam}

Foo::Having Fun With University Names Institutionalized

[22 January 2005 (Saturday posting schedule begins; 55° at 6:00am) top]

Week Ending 14 January 2005

GDT::Blogs::Change To the Posting Schedule
Last week I reported that the MOTD and related blogs would be updated on Saturdays... well there is a saying that goes "plans are made to be broken." Saturday updates to GDT::Blogs will start 22 January 2005. [I think.]

Technology::Hydrogen Bus Hits Iceland
Last week's MOTD posting contained information about the "hydrogen economy." This week we learn about "hydrogen buses" being used in Iceland. The hydro-bus cost "about $1.67 million each" and "it takes about six to 10 minutes to refill giving a range of 240 miles." {CNET Iceland Buses Come Clean with Hydrogen }

RoadHacker::Time to Visit Mom, Dad, Sister
I visited my family last year over the MLK Day weekend. {RoadHacker:: Illinois: Joliet, Plainfield, and Lockport}

[14 January 2005 (heading to chilly Illinois; 44° at 4:55am) top]

Week Ending 07 January 2005

Technology::The Hydrogen Economy
Hydrogen is a potential alternative to fossil fuels. The "hydrogen economy" can be thought of as a "network composed of three functional steps: production, storage, and use;" however, moving toward a such an economy requires extensive research with the key challenge being to discover "inexpensive and efficient routes to create hydrogen in sufficient quantities from non-fossil natural resources." { The Hydrogen Economy [via Slashdot]}

Foo::New Pictures and New Quotes
RoadHacker didn't do much roadtripping over Winter Break 2004-2005, but some pictures have been added to the POTW (Picture Of The Week) database. Early during the break I received some spam email messages that contained quotes that ended up being added to the QOTW (Quote Of The Week) database.

GDT::Blogs::Change To the Posting Schedule
Starting next week this blog (the MOTD) and its related blogs (Internet Observer, Unix & Linux Logger, Security Watchdog, Computing Bits, Stocks Stuff, Biotech Trekker, Nanotech Smallblog, FLOSSER, and Grid Utilitarian) will be updated on Saturdays instead of Fridays.

[07 January 2005 (Rock'N Roll Marathon on Sunday - go Bree!; chilly 56° at 2:28pm) top]

Spring 2005 MOTD Started -- 01 January 2005

Fall 2004 MOTD Archived; Spring 2005 MOTD Started
The Fall 2004 MOTD has been added to the MOTD archive. This posting starts version 23 of the MOTD and includes postings for Spring 2005. { Happy New Year 2005}

[01 January 2005 (another year is upon us; 56° at 10:30am) top]

GDT::MOTD::Archive:: Fall 2004

Author: Gerald D. Thurman []
Last Modified: Saturday, 05-Jan-2013 11:17:46 MST

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