Archives for March 2005

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Back From Work on Two Wheels

JPL to Downtown I was proud of myself today for riding my bike in to work. I didn't even feel all that winded afterward.

And so, tonight, I thought "why not?" and proceeded to ride from JPL to Downtown. bikemetro gives a route that's 14.43 miles long for that trek, so I'm sure that's about what my ride was. I made it in about 70 minutes, which sounds a lot more impressive before you hear that I had 837 feet of elevation loss to push me onward. Still, though, it was a good workout.

The first five miles or so are along the Arroyo Seco, which makes that by far the best part of the trip. After that I sort of meandered through South Pasadena, Highland Park, and finally Chinatown. I generally picked whichever route looked like it was heading downhill.

bikemetro says the average cyclist would have burned 566 calories on my trip, which really doesn't seem like that much, but I guess every little bit counts.

Controllable Power

I could really use some sort of a cheap power box that's controllable via serial. When the internet goes out in my apartment, 99% of the time it can be fixed by just cycling power to the DSL bridge. I'd love to have some way to let my server ping out every five minutes or so, and if it sees the connection go down let it try cycling the bridge. If that doesn't work it could just hang out for someone else to fix it, but it would be a good first line of defense for when I'm not around.

In fairness, I haven't done any googling to see if anythiing exists for a reasonable price. I'm just writing while it's fresh in my mind.

A Very Mobile Connection

I just wanted to brag that I'm posting this from my seat on a Gold Line train, travelling back from Pasadena to Downtown. I had to go up to Pasadena to pick up a document from the city transportation department, so I grabbed the laptop and my bluetooth adaptor and hopped on the train. My connection through the phone has worked perfectly for looking up the facts I needed while writing a paper whose draft is due this evening.

A Month of Fun With Numbers

So far in the month of March my three main sites (this blog,, and blogdowntown have served a combined total of 23,884 pages and used 723.86MB of bandwidth. Not a ton, but I can't hope for too much and still serve the site from my living room ceiling. I'm sure the site could be a little snappier on a better connection, but I haven't noticed any peaked bandwidth spikes. And since everything goes through the server, I still have quality of service things I could do to prevent apartment Internet usage from interfering with the web if it comes to that. For now, though, I'm satisfied. — Continue Reading...

LAist Spurns LA News, Looks to Desert for Info

It's not that I set out to take issue with LAist, though obviously it does happen. Today "we" look at "their" coverage of Chico State, in the aptly named post, "What's Up at Chico State?."

While everybody else tries to figure out where the severed foot came from, we've got our eyes a little further east. KESQ in Palm Springs reports that Phi Kappa Tau has been suspended at Chico State for participating in a porno film.

Issue number one: Chico State is west of Los Angeles, and really more distinctively quite a bit north. Perhaps "they" are just indirectly looking at Chico through the lens of Palm Springs, but I still find it to be sloppy writing.

Maybe we should worry a little less about the sex and a little more about the violence.

Perhaps if "they" kept up with more traditional news sources, such as the oft-maligned LA Times, LAist would know that the news is doing exactly that.

Good Old Newspaper Typos

As proof that newspaper typos aren't just confined to the Daily Trojan, I present this from page 1, front section, of today's Pasadena Star News. In the story on eminent domain we find the following:

From the construction of Pasadena car dealerships, to an ongoing lawsuit over a Temple City office building, eminent domain -- or the threat it -- has been a major tool for economic stimulation in the San Gabriel Valley.

The story led the print version of the paper, running above the fold, front and center. I found the typo while scanning the little bits of paper visible inside the paper boxes waiting for my bus. — Continue Reading...

Freeway Drama

I almost forgot to mention that riding the Green Line westbound at about 1:40pm I saw a guy getting arrested on the eastbound 105. His car was stopped in the right lane, and two police cars (didn't see if they were LAPD or CHP) were stopped a short length behind him. The man was out of his car, kneeling on the freeway with his hands up in air. We passed too fast to get a picture, but not too many seconds later we were passed by two more units rushing to the scene.

Hitting South Bay on Bike

Even though I had a decent amount of work I probably should have been doing this afternoon, I decided to get a little exercise and head down to the south bay area for a little food and shopping. I first hit-up South Bay Galleria to get some Chick-fil-a, and then went from there up to REI to talk to the bike people. It's a good trip with a little bit of exercise, a little bit of sun, and a good dose of LA's public transit. — Continue Reading...

Tough Times for the Blue Line

The Blue Line's had a bad run over the past few days. First catenary troubles suspend operation Wednesday and then about twenty-four hours later service is again interrupted when a Sherriff's deputy and a robbery suspect are both wounded in a shooting. Interesting about the second story is the fact that deputies were even on the train.

I think I'm going to have to join others who are beginning to complain that these deputies are rarely around. Wednesday night around midnight I walked over to the Pershing Square Red Line station and then took the Gold Line up to Pasadena. The only time I saw deputies was when I saw a group of four of them relaxing on a southbound train. Many days I never see them. — Continue Reading...

A Busy Life

Here's a little taste of what my schedule often looks like: Tomorrow morning I wake up, take a trip down to USC to attend a 10am class and take a midterm in another class at 12:30. That midterm's scheduled to go until 2pm, but I can't stay that long. I've got to be in and out in an hour to make my way up to North Hollywood to attend a 2pm meeting. I was planning to attend a CCA event at lunch, but had to change those plans once I realized I had a midterm.

I know that ostensibly I'm supposed to be a college student right now, but it's hard to keep that as priority one these days.

Photos Photos Everywhere

City Tiles

I really like the current, especially the header that rotates in random LA snapshots from the Metroblogging LA flickr pool. With my last look I wanted to do a similar thing with changing the out-the-window picture to show current conditions. The idea is a lot simpler and cleaner, though, and works well.

What I wanted to point out, though, is that in the current masthead (linked above so it doesn't change on me) seven of the fifteen pictures are ones I've taken. My pictures are the fourth, fifth, nineth, twelfth, thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth. And yet if you look at the Metroblogging pool I've only submitted twenty-five pictures (of 210). My pictures must just have good karma. One was also used as the mast photo for a blog (which I fully allow in the Creative Commons licensing).

Mysteries of the Circle

Sean's posting about circles now but I need to correct his timeline. LAist made their original post on Sam Woo back in February. Then Jonah, who's a bit behind these days, quoted that on LABlogs just two days ago. Then yesterday at 6:51pm Sean made his great retort post on I followed with my accolade for Sean at 8:01pm. Then, sometime last night, a much quicker Jonah made a post quoting both Sean and my posts, thereby completing the circle. Sean kept the circle going at 7:56am and, well, I guess I'm doing the same right now a little before 9am. Whew.

But explain to me this... Originally my stated purpose in this post was going to be to say that I posted before Jonah put the full circle post up on LA Blogs, but then I noticed that LA Blogs doesn't include a time on posts. For the circle post it just says 3/22/05. Finally I got smart and said "Duh, I can just check the RSS." That says the post was made this morning at 5:30am. Which is it? — Continue Reading...