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String of DC
|| 5/24/2005 || 5:54 pm || Comments Off on String of DC || ||

: rendered at 15,000X10,000 :

23 hours 47 minutes render time.
600mb TIFF

What I like the most about this rendering is the way the pixels blend over each other. A refraction over a redaction.

String of DC, it’s definitely not made of pearls….

view rendering detail:

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3/5’s compromise
|| || 9:30 am || Comments Off on 3/5’s compromise || ||

So Congress didn’t go nuclear, but was it really a compromise? In my opinion, it showed me that the democrats are 3/5’s republican. This deal, or so-called deal, is really a crock of shit. It’s 3/5’s of a compromise, and I think it shows that we are still slaves to a corrupt two party system.

“In a Senate that is increasingly polarised, the bipartisan centre held”, said Senator Joe Lieberman, a Democrat.

Increasingly polarized? Well when the American electorate is given two options, there is a reinforcement of the bipolar paradigm. Even a cocktail of Welbutrin, Prozac, and Paxil will not fix this electoral depression that has become the normal way of life in American politics, and it’s sad. Fear that a vote for a third party is a vote for the majority party; a fear so unfounded that it must be reinforced in the debates and in the media, a fear that has become of a nightmare of democracy. At least I can say that I’ve become a part of the solution.

So….

The judicial nominees who will get votes:

•Priscilla Owen, a justice on the Texas Supreme Court, nominated by Bush for the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. A Sunday school teacher who graduated at the top of her law school class, Owen had been repeatedly blocked by Democrats who labeled her an ultraconservative activist and faulted her rulings.

•William H. Pryor Jr., nominated for the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Pryor is a former Alabama attorney general whose comments and writings on abortion and homosexuality have irked Democrats.

•Janice Rogers Brown, nominated for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. She is California Supreme Court judge who had been blocked by Democrats for nearly three years for what they say is her conservative activism.

Source: The Associated Press.

The text above from USA Today sounds a lot like Bush is trying to install “activist judges,” weird huh?

Regardless, 3/5’s of bullshit is still bullshit.

If congress would have gone nuclear we might have seen Congress actually work for their inflated salaries. We would have been able to watch on C-Span longwinded, albeit boring, sermons about how absolute power corrupts absolutely. And I think in the end, we would have seen the nuclear option blow up in the faces of the republicans. Bush is at his all time lowest approval rating, and the American population already thinks that the Republicans have stepped too far on quite a few issues (like Teri Shiavo and even this issue!), and in the end it would have shown that they are really power-hungry zealots. But of course a shitty deal was hammered out and congress wiped it’s ass of the matter…..for now. I can’t wait to see what activist Supreme Court nominee Rove selects…

I think this animation I made last summer says it all…



S. Capitol or RFK
|| 5/23/2005 || 11:58 am || Comments Off on S. Capitol or RFK || ||

RFK stadium


VS

South Capitol Street

Although this issue is really dead in the water, I can’t help but to think that the area around RFK stadium could use some redevelopment just as much as the area they are planning on tearing down to build the new stadium. There are 3 parking lots around RFK Stadium that could be modified to become multi-level parking garages and there are currently no businesses that will need to be destroyed to do so. Talk about savings!!! The DC City Government could knock the overall price down a few hundred million if they just decided to refurbish RFK stadium and redevelop the area around it. Yet I think the deal with the MLB was to construct a new stadium, which is total BS.

This same hoodwink happened in Saint Louis a few years back, and now they are building a new stadium for the Cardinals, even though Busch Stadium is one of the nicest stadiums in the country (in my opinion). This happened in Saint Louis so the city could host an All Star Game! The MLB said “Build a new stadium, you get to host the All Star Game,” and the fat cats in Saint Louis city government rolled over backwards (just like Mayor Williams). The parallel here is that it was Saint Louis City (300 thousand people) that had to pay the bulk of the stadium instead of the Saint Louis County(1.5 million people), just in the same context that the DC residents will have to pay for the bulk of stadium when its going to be primarily used by people from Maryland and Virginia. Although a new team is nice, the pricetag for the new stadium as well as the fact that they’ve decided to redevelop an area that is already populated with businesses just doesn’t make fiscal sense.

from DCist via DC.gov:

Third Public Meeting for South Capitol Street Corridor and Baseball Master Plan Announced

(Washington, DC) On May 24, 2005, The Anacostia Waterfront Corporation (AWC), the DC Office of Planning, and the DC Department of Transportation, invite you to a Planning Meeting for the South Capitol Street Corridor and the area around the planned baseball stadium.

The purpose of the meeting is to update the public regarding the planning process, take in further community feedback from area residents, and present preliminary options and recommendations for addressing key planning issues.

The meeting will be held:

Date Tuesday, May 24, 2005
Time 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm

Location
King Greenleaf Recreation Center
201 N Street SW
Washington, DC 20024

I think I might actually attend this…



string of…
|| 5/22/2005 || 10:17 pm || Comments Off on string of… || ||

I just started the final rendering for this image. The final size will be 15,000 X 10,000 pixels and should be finished rendering in about 10 hours or so. I think I can make a nice template from the scene and create an interesting series called “String Series” or maybe call it “the String Project,” regardless, first up will be String of DC.



violation of dignity
|| || 8:28 pm || Comments Off on violation of dignity || ||

Article 3 of the Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War states:

To this end the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned persons:

(a) Violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture;

(b) Taking of hostages;

(c) Outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment;

(d) The passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples.

The photograph above, in my opinion, clearly violates section c.

I sincerely feel sorry for Saddam right now, I mean, what if that was your grandpa in his skivvies? Would you like this picture being used as tabloid fodder? I think not.

The photographs of Saddam were published in publications owned by Rupport Murdoch, The Sun and The New York Post, and I think Murdoch had the option of not allowing these to be printed. But why not make a few bucks at the expense of a dethroned dictator right? I sincerely hope that Saddam sues him for the amount of money that was made from the sales of the issues where the illegal photographs were printed.

Murdoch is definitely the Bad Santa….



Moving without moving
|| 5/21/2005 || 4:22 pm || Comments Off on Moving without moving || ||

I rediscovered an old flash animation I made in August of 2003. I took a series of delayed exposure photographs using a tripod over a stretch of highway (aerial photograph above courtesy of USGS via World Wind). I then imported them into flash and made each photograph one frame. The effect is similar to the cinematography used in Koyaanisqatsi. This afternoon, I decided to add the missing element, or at least something more evocative than a series of pictures, I added words. This weekend is graduation weekend for a few of my college friends, and many are moving. Time to go to a graduation party…


click an image above to view the animation

==Update==

In that whole relocation context, the graduation party began deeeep in the burbs out in Oakton, VA and eventually the keg was moved back to my house in DC, and oddly enough, it seemed that yesterday I ended up moving without moving….at least to party.



Store Wars
|| 5/20/2005 || 3:27 pm || Comments Off on Store Wars || ||

Because timing is everything, the Organic Trade Association in conjunction with Free Range Graphics, have produced “Store Wars,” to coincide with the release of the final Star Wars film. I remember when “The Meatrix” came out right when the Matrix #2 came out and must say that co-opting the national attention for the advancement of ecologically sound issues is pure genius.

Related Humor Entries:

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Careers Day at Overlook Elementary School
|| 5/19/2005 || 10:56 am || Comments Off on Careers Day at Overlook Elementary School || ||


a look over Overlook Elementary School

Yesterday I had the opportunity to go to the Overlook Elementary School in Temple Hills, MD. I was invited by the guidance counselor to speak to the students about “Careers in Geography” for their annual Careers Day celebration. This was my first time in Prince George’s County and I must say that it was very interesting. First off, I rode the Green Line as far as I ever have before- all the way to the Naylor Road Metro Stop. Once at the school (thankfully only a short walk) I realized that aside from 2 teachers, and 3 of the careers guests, the entire student body was African American. I’m not a person who brings up the race card often, but I was just surprised that there wasn’t any racial balance. I expected some sort of desegregation program to be in place in the area, and this realization surprised me.

Regardless of that observation, I had a blast! I brought a few maps to show the kids (a satellite image of Washington, DC and surface map of the United States) as well as my computer with World Wind loaded. The kids were SO enthralled by the program! What I did was locate their school, then before they arrived, I would use the scroll wheel on my mouse and zoom out to the globe, and when I was ready for that portion of the talk, I’d slowly zoom in to the school. The kids would push and shove each other to get a better view of it all! Next year I am definitely going bring a projector so they can see everything in better and larger detail. This is the kind of educational outreach I love and I sincerely hope that I get more chances to visit schools around the DC area. I am itching to volunteer some of my time to help students.

The biggest environmental problem I realized when I was at the school, was that every student was served their lunch on a styrofoam tray. I’d love to graphically show the principal (who was super nice!) how much waste that piles up to be in 1 year, 5 years, etc… I hate styrofoam!



p3 continued…
|| 5/18/2005 || 10:15 am || Comments Off on p3 continued… || ||

Via MSNBC:

Students awarded for ‘sustainable designs’
EPA contest showcases environmental technologies

MSNBC
Updated: 12:57 p.m. ET May 18, 2005

Seven teams of university students and professors beat out 65 others in a “sustainability design” competition sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, presenting technologies that ranged from solar ovens to small wind turbines.

“The originality and breadth of these projects demonstrates the high degree of innovation and environmental interest that exists on college campuses today,” E. Timothy Oppelt, Acting Assistant Administrator for EPA’s Office of Research and Development, said in a statement announcing the winners. “These young students represent the scientific leadership of tomorrow.”

The idea behind the first-ever P3 Award — named for people, prosperity and the planet — is to get students and others to think about how to use energy and other resources in a way that doesn’t threaten long-term survival, both in the developed world and in developing nations.

Some 400 students and professors set up their presentations on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., over the weekend. A panel convened by the National Academy of Sciences judged the competition.

The seven winners were teams from:

* Oberlin College. They designed a system that monitors total energy and water use for individual dormitory floors or an entire college campus.
* Rochester Institute of Technology. Their study looked at how solar ovens could be mass-produced at low cost in Latin America using local resources. The idea is to reduce wood consumption and thus deforestation, while providing local jobs.
* University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Students are measuring the effectiveness of three drinking-water treatment technologies intended for the developing world.
* University of Colorado at Denver. The team looked at Trishul, a tribal village in India, to see if it could adopt environmentally friendly energy technologies, such as small wind turbines, composting and solar cookers. The idea is to use what’s learned in other developing areas that lack traditional electricity.
* University of California-Berkeley. Students are testing two designs to disinfect drinking water, and even conducting user preference and willingness-to-pay surveys.
* Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A management model for research labs is being designed that allows labs to use less toxic and less polluting green chemical alternatives.
* University of Michigan. A computer-based tool was developed to let homeowners monitor their resource consumption. Real-time costs and environmental impacts are delivered to then show how conservation actions are reflected in dollars saved and emissions reduced.

I have done some extra legwork for the article above and I added the links to the winning project abstracts. All the projects can be viewed here.

Nonetheless, I am sad my favorite design didn’t win….

However I am surprised that the University of Michigan’s other design didn’t win. When I spoke with the creators I mentioned how their design seemed to based off of an idea that was posed by Adbusters Magazine a few years back. The student actually mentioned that there was a prototype created by someone in Norway that they based their design from. Essentially they created a means for consumers to find out a wide array of the product’s information by scanning the barcode. The Norwegian prototype didn’t have the ability to check a real database. Check their website for more information.



P3
|| 5/17/2005 || 10:14 am || Comments Off on P3 || ||

Today and yesterday I manned a booth at the EPA’s P3 student competition. P3 stands for People, Prosperity, and Planet, and the student competition was focused on sustainable development. I had the chance to walk around and see every one of the finalist’s proposals, and I must say that I was quite impressed.

My favorite student submission was a solar powered hydrogen gas generator. I’ve always been told that the ability to make hydrogen gas for personal, industrial, or commercial use was not feasible because it takes electricity to separate the hydrogen from the oxygen through electrolysis and thus not financially practical. Yet what they demonstrated was passive hydrogen creation, where the electricity from the sun was used in the electrolysis. Depending on the size of the solar panel, the more/less hydrogen gas is produced. If this apparatus is sold to people along with a hydrogen powered car, people could just fill up their cars every morning with hydrogen gas they passively created.

Yet, in my opinion, this practical application will not come into existence for awhile, and not because the technology doesn’t exist, rather there is no money to be made from such a creation. It’s ironic that capitalism and sustainability are so diametrically opposed. It’s well understood that the current form of capitalism cannot be sustained indefinitely, yet the same factors also prevent such sustainable options as the solar powered hydrogen gas extractor from coming into existence. I can only hope that people interested in making change take it upon themselves to be the first converts and show the rest of the world that another option is possible.





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  • thank you,
    come again!