Saturday, May 10, 2008

End of semester stuff

More random things: I previous wrote about launches to "high inclination orbits. A recent Popular Mechanics has a nice diagram and talks about space shuttle aborts.

A Hodg-man posting reminded me of Match Game's Gene Rayburn, and ended up with videos of celebrities smoking on television.

Over seven million people watched a three year old describe Star Wars, but how many of you have seen it with Spanish subtitles?

Bob Sutton has a couple of interesting applications of his "no asshole rule": a theological approach, and a sad tale of bullies in the medical world. It seems like there's another wave of cross disciplinary work going on with the healthcare. This reminds me of the paper by Mamrak, Ordonez, and Boyd about working with medical folks on an information system for their brain tumor research. Great quotes. More on that later.

Dr. Dobb's has two things worth at least a skim: "Has agile peaked?" and "Requirements are required reading". Here's a quote:
Driving up the cost of the 2010 census is the Harris Field Data Collection Automation (FDCA)—essentially a mobile hand-held device on the front end... —which was supposed to save taxpayers $1 billion, but instead may end up costing $3 billion extra. Why? Because, according to people who participated in real-world trials, the mobile FDCA system (which will be used by 600,000 temporary census takers) is just too doggone hard to use.
Harris is standing behind its FDCA system, claiming that the computers actually are easy to use. "After you spend about 30 minutes to an hour familiarizing yourself with it, it's as easy to use as a modern cell phone," said a Harris spokesman. Well now, that's comforting. After 30 minutes of fiddling with a new cell phone, I'm lucky I haven't chucked it.

Finally, two short videos: a cockpit video of the downwind and final approach to HNL. This is the usual approach with Waikiki to the right, Pearl Harbor, and then a right turn to land. Second, there's been a clamor for years to get the 1986 CBS Fresno miniseries on DVD. You can torment yourself by watching the intro and a brief clip.