Shared posts

12 Jul 13:04

Friday Five: Carving Turns - The patent-pending B.A.T.H.E technique to turning

by Seb Kemp

By Seb Kemp

Corners are the cornerstone of mountain biking (*vomits* sorry, I couldn’t help myself). Get them right and everything becomes a little easier. Fail to master them and everything on the trail will be a little harder.

No two corners are precisely the same but these five basic pointers, based on the patent-pending Zero Wash Out Methodology, might help you carve curves a little bit more confidently. The worst thing that can happen on a corner is that you wash out and hit the ground. The answer to this is to B.A.T.H.E. (Brake – Angulation – Twist – Hands – Extension).

Again, this week we have the lovely Candace Shadley of the Trek Dirt Series on board to show us how to corner smoother, safer and maybe faster.

Look up, see the corner, consider the appropriate entry speed and slow down early, while riding toward the corner, rather than when you are in the corner.

BRAKING
Stirling Moss once said ‘It’s not how fast you go into the corner that counts, but rather how fast you leave it.’ Slower in can mean faster out.

Braking before the corner, and then releasing the brakes throughout the turn, lets both your bike and body perform at their best.

In some situations it might be necessary to drag your brakes through the corner to control your speed (you’ll often need to do this on descending turns for instance) but make sure before enter the corner that your speed is reduced to what it needs to be. Sudden braking during a turn will force the bike to stand up, force you to correct your body position and can lead to a loss of traction as your wheels fight to slow down and turn at the same time. It is like rubbing your belly and patting your head at the same time, it makes things complicated. So slow down in a straight line well before the turn.

Lean your bike but not your body. Counterbalance with your body, keeping your weight over the tires.

ANGULATION
We generally steer our bike by leaning it (as opposed to by turning the front wheel as we might do in a tight switchback corner); you lean your bike and counterbalance with your body.

Bikes can be angulated pretty aggressively, and as long as you don’t lean over with the bike you won’t fall over. Try this in a car park at first. Coast along at a steady speed then turn by gently angling the bike while keeping your bodyweight centered over the tires.

Unlike MotoGP racers we should not be leaning into the corner with our body, and certainly never leaning our body over more than the bike. Unlike fire-breathing motorbikes, mountain bikes are much lighter than our own body weight and we are moving relatively slowly, so to generate traction we must get our weight directly over the tires. Remember applied weight equals traction.

There are exceptions to angulating like this (for example, if you are going really fast on bermed trails) but for most corners this technique is going to help minimize the chances of you wiping out.

Point your flashlight (or your headlights if you are a lady) in the direction you want to turn.

TWIST
Twisting your body into the bike (screwing down into the bike and in the direction of the turn) gives you a lower center of gravity, which makes you more stable and gives you space to angulate the bike more. Sometimes I tell people that if they had paint on their tires they’d be trying to make the darkest line possible in the corner by pushing their weight into the bike and the tires. Weight equals traction if applied correctly.

Imagine a laser beam coming straight out of your belly button and trying to shine it towards the exit of the turn. If you have angulated the bike enough your bottom should stick out over the outside of your bike, too.

The twist is the component of this technique that really makes a big difference to many riders. This subtle move helps you see the exit earlier, gets your body weight over the tires more (your booty should hang out directly over the tires), lowers your center of gravity (useful when changing direction) and helps drive weight into the correct hand when turning, which is the next point…

Angulate the bike, twist towards the exit of the turn and place more pressure on the outside grip as you bring it across your body.

HANDS
Weight equals traction, so the more you press, the more grip you will generate. However, you have to be pressing in the right spots at the right time. When cornering, get your weight forward and attempt to press more weight through the grip on the top hand when the bike is angulated.

Pressure control (the act of weighting and unweighting various parts of the bike throughout maneuvers) in the hands is essential. When you angulate the bike bring the outside hand (this changes, obviously, depending on the direction of the turn) toward your midline and as you twist drive your shoulder into what will become the uppermost hand. As you angulate the bike the top hand will be more closely lined up over the tire contact patch. Weight this hand more because it will drive your body weight into the tires. A strong component of this is creating a strong frame with your upper body with your elbows out.

Getting your shoulders over the bars will really help with this. It is understandable that newer, shyer riders will tend to slink off the back of the bike, afraid of what is ahead of them, and fall over. However, this is what compounds the problem. The less weight you place over the front tire, the more likely it is to wash out. Weight equals traction.

Despite what some advice says do not push most on the lowest (or inside) grip. You will end up on your face more than you want by doing this. Pushing on the lowest grip pushes the tire tread outward, not down, and increases the likelihood of washing out the front wheel. Think about an imaginary line running between the two contact patches of your tires and keep your weight directly over that line.

Try this simple demonstration:
Stand over your bike (feet on the ground for now) and angulate (aka lean) it to one side. Now push on the handlebar grip that is closest to the ground. What happened? It slid out, right?

Now start over again. Angulate the bike in the same direction but this time push on the upper grip. The wheel doesn’t shift does it? Keep pushing harder. Even try using both hands. This gives you an indicator of the correct hand to weight when cornering.

Standing at the exit of the corner, you can clearly see how much Candace is twisting. Her eyes, shoulders and bellybutton are pointing to the exit of the turn and the bike will follow

EXTENSION
This is usually only appropriate for riders who have mastered the previous steps in the technique. Don’t rush to get to this point. The previous steps are more important to get right.

When you feel more confident with your cornering, start to drive even more traction to the tires toward the exit of the turn by pushing through your feet powerfully. You should be screwed into your bike anyway (step three: twist), so as you unscrew and straighten the bike upright, in one fluid movement try pushing yourself up to neutral position with a powerful push through the heels of your feet. This should drive more traction to your tires but also generate some momentum and bring you to the neutral position quickly, ready for the next corner or obstacle.

Here Candace is pressing deeply into her bike as she twists, building up traction and potential energy to allow her to burst from the corner with precision and power.

Here you can see she has used that potential energy to press firmly through her heels, extending her body back to a near-neutral position and straightening the bike for the next trail obstacle.

ADDITIONAL NOTES

The Order Of Things:
Remember that we are trying to spell out the word Bathe and to do so correctly means putting the letters in the right order. In the same way, twisting first and braking last might get you all discombobulated. Find a simple easy corner that you can session over and over again, and as you ride through it (quite slowly at first) spell out the stages out loud. B-A-T-H-E! BRAKE-ANGULATE-TWIST-HANDS-EXTENSION

Master each stage of the B.A.T.H.E technique before moving on to the next.

Eyes:
You will go wherever you look. So always look up to be able to see a corner (or other obstacle) early, prepare for it, then reach your eyes through the corner to find the exit.

Pedals:
Often, riders ask whether they should keep their pedals level or drop the outside foot. The answer is that it could be either. It’s helpful to at least start with flat pedals, maybe you’ll then decide that having the outside foot drop works better for you in different situations (especially flat corners) or maybe not.

Corners:
No two corners are the same. However, these are a few elementary techniques that are consistent and which can make your riding more enjoyable. Different corners might require a slight change in timing and execution, but the five stages of B.A.T.H.E. will help.

Some people refer to this skill as ‘high-speed cornering,’ however this is somewhat misleading as you don’t have to be moving at high speed to benefit from this technique. However, this does differ slightly from very slow-speed turns (switchbacks, for instance) when more steering is initiated by turning the handlebars and remaining a little more upright. That is a technique for another time.

Here is a video that NSMB.com, Endless Biking and I produced last year. It might be easier to see the technique in action.

Hey Coach! Ep. 1 – Cornering from nsmb.com on Vimeo.

——

Candace Shadley and the Trek Dirt Series

Candace Shadley is the founder and director of the Trek Dirt Series Mountain Bike Camps, a women’s only and co-ed mountain bike education experience. The program was started in 2001 and they now run an average of 18 instructional camps per season throughout North America. Since starting they’ve taught nearly 9000 participants.

Seb Kemp

Bike Magazine’s Gun For Hire is also a certified mountain bike skills coach and before he joined Bike he worked for the Whistler Bike Park and well as guiding and coaching clients throughout BC, New Zealand, Switzerland, Sweden and Nepal. Seb believes that both writing and coaching are, in fact, very similar roles – both require information to be broken down and communicated clearly and concisely. In an attempt to simplify coaching techniques Seb learned to strip back the skills to their core elements and designed a series word games or visual clues related to each technique that make them easier to learn and remember. We will be revealing some of these throughout Friday Five, however, there is no replacement for hiring a good coach and getting some first hand guidance and feedback.

10 Jul 19:00

The Case of the Missing Human Ancestor (nationalgeographic.com)

11 Jul 11:15

Hey programmers, we need to talk (sealedabstract.com)

11 Jul 15:02

It's a strange and confusing world

by Shaun Usher


In October 1974, as he lay on his death bed at the end of a battle with cancer and reflected on his past, Clyde S. Shield (pictured above) wrote the following heartfelt letter to his 3-week-old grandson and offered some poignant advice for the road ahead. 30 years previous, Clyde had played a significant role in World War II, having first taken to the air immediately after the attack on Pearl Harbor in a valiant attempt to fight off the Japanese, and then, some time later, as lead test pilot during the Manhattan Project—a project during which the atomic bombs that ultimately devastated Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and ended the war, were developed. His military career was a particularly illustrious one.

His proud grandson said of the letter in 2011:
"It has meant different things to me at different times in my life [...] Anytime I am struggling, in tough times or having to make a big decision, it is something I always come back to."
Full transcript follows; images of the remaining pages are here.

(Source: imgur, as kindly recommended by Mark; Image above: Clyde S. Shield via ArmyAirForces.com.)



Transcript
Dallas, Texas
7 October, 1974

[Redacted]

I doubt this letter will mean too much to you now – you can't even focus your eyes, yet, but maybe, years hence, it may mean something to you. So, I hope your father and mother will keep this for you until it does mean a little more to you.

You may or may not get to know me – your Grandfather – that is in someone else's hands. But just in case you do not – I'd like to leave a few ideas with you. Ideas, I may say, that I tried to germinate in your father's mind with varying degrees of success.

To begin with you are very welcome to this sad, tattered and abused old world. We really haven't done a very good job of preserving it for you. On the contrary we have plundered it of its wealth of minerals and oils, polluted its streams and even the very air we depend on for the very breath of our lives – and we've done this with our eyes wide open and with the knowledge that we were doing it! How we explain this, I really don't know except to say that I, for one, am sorry for it.

We have not learned, even, to live with our fellow men. Instead we have perfected more means to annihilate him – to wipe him (and ourselves) from the face of the Earth.

We produce record crops of grains and other foodstuffs, but still much of the world goes to bed on empty stomachs and thousands starve to death every day.

It's a strange and confusing world we leave to you. I only hope you can do a better job with it than we have done.

But, in spite of what I've said, there is much, in life to enjoy – to relish. There is also much that can be done to make life worth while and living worth the "candle." There is a rich heritage of literature and music that awaits your investigation – it's there for the taking – in the libraries of the country and in the archives of the museums. There is poetry and prose – enough to fill all the hours you can spare to listen to them and more knowledge, on every conceivable subject, than you can assimilate in a lifetime. It's all there just waiting for you to ask for it or to seek it out. Don't overlook it or pass it up for less important or less meaningful pastimes.

Most important of all is ability to savor life, to taste of it in as many variances as you can – while you can. Life never looks so short as when you look back on it. Unfortunately you cannot do this until it has passed you by. So, as you go through life, don't overlook the "Lily in the Field," the newborn puppy, the fledgling bird – for they are as much (or more) of life as the tall buildings, the shiny automobiles and the possessions we tend to place so much importance upon. If you can do just this much – life will be more meaningful for you.

When your Dad was born I was busy playing soldier, World War II was history – but recent history – and in which I had a small part. But then I lacked both the knowledge and the wisdom that comes from experience. Now, at 56, I think of what I might have done – and didn't. But all of us are blessed with "20/20" hindsight.

If I could package (with ribbon) those gifts that I would most like to give you, I would. But how do you package integrity, how do you wrap honesty, what kind of paper for a sense of humor, what ribbon for inquisitiveness?

But, since there is no way I can give you any of those things, I can in this year of your birth, wish that you will find some wisdom and some guidance from these words, and, perhaps my wish for a bright new life for you will, eventually, come to reality. At least I hope so – with all my heart.

Love,
Grandad.


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11 Jul 15:20

How Does a Transistor Work, A Video Explaining the Science Behind Much of Modern Technology

by Kimber Streams

In “How Does a Transistor Work?Veritasium explains how the technology behind transistor radios, televisions, mobile phones, satellites, and much of modern technology actually works.

Our lives depend on this device. When I mentioned to people that I was doing a video on transistors, they would say “as in a transistor radio?” Yes! That’s exactly what I mean, but it goes so much deeper than that. After the transistor was invented in 1947 one of the first available consumer technologies it was applied to was radios, so they could be made portable and higher quality. Hence the line in ‘Brown-eyed Girl’ – “going down to the old mine with a transistor radio.”

But more important to our lives today, the transistor made possible the microcomputer revolution, and hence the Internet, and also TVs, mobile phones, fancy washing machines, dishwashers, calculators, satellites, projectors etc. etc. A transistor is based on semiconductor material, usually silicon, which is ‘doped’ with impurities to carefully change its electrical properties. These n and p-type semiconductors are then put together in different configurations to achieve a desired electrical result. And in the case of the transistor, this is to make a tiny electrical switch. These switches are then connected together to perform computations, store information, and basically make everything electrical work intelligently.

via Adafruit Industries

11 Jul 03:04

Photo



09 Jul 02:11

truckee > tinker knob (1 | 5)

by erik
amtrak

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backcountry portal

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tinker knob in the distance

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afternoon thunderstorms kept company on the climb

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big

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darkness

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scramble

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storms over I80

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heading the other way
16 May 03:27

http://billyisgray.blogspot.com/2013/05/blog-post_15.html

by billy gray
16 May 03:30

Meet the man voted “Mr. May” down here in The...



Meet the man voted “Mr. May” down here in The Near-Sighted Monkey Lounge…

Richard Phillips Feynman was an American physicist known for the path integral formulation of quantum mechanics, the theory of quantum electrodynamics and the physics of the super fluidity of super cooled liquid helium, as well as work in particle physics (he proposed the Parton model). For his contributions to the development of quantum electrodynamics, Feynman was a joint recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1965, together with Julian Schwinger and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga. Feynman developed a widely used pictorial representation scheme for the mathematical expressions governing the behavior of subatomic particles, which later became known as Feynman diagrams

SOURCE

06 Jul 07:30

Interview: Dave Weagle, suspension designer

by Josh Patterson

If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery then suspension designer Dave Weagle has a number of admirers, some of whom he’s been locked in costly legal battles with. Weagle freely admits that he didn’t know what he was getting into when he started developing his now famed dw-link system - he just wanted to build a better mountain bike.

BikeRadar caught up with Weagle at the recent launch of the Salsa Cycles Spearfish and Horsethief, both of which now feature his Split Pivot suspension design. We picked his brain about his recent legal battles with Trek and Giant, how he works with companies to integrate his suspension systems into their bikes, and what motivates him to keep developing new designs.

There are a number of similar and sometimes conflicting suspension designs on the market. Are there a finite number of ways to make mountain bike suspension work?

There are a lot of ways to make suspension work in general, but there aren’t a lot of ways to make it work within the structure of a bicycle. It’s difficult when you have a person involved and you have to fit that person to the machine - it makes things tricky.

The litigation side is brutal. It’s probably the worst thing I’ve ever gone through in my life. I hate everything about patents. I hate the patent system, but I can’t change it. I have to work within it. It gets insanely convoluted when you get into the litigation process.

As a small company it’s incredibly difficult to enforce patents. In this business, if I want to continue to have a business I have to do something, I have to protect something. I only protect my most worthwhile ideas; even then it’s extremely costly and time consuming.

Split pivot uses a rear pivot concentric to the rear axle to increase the range of suspension tuning options available to a single-pivot suspension: Trek's abp system also uses concentric axle pivot, which makes it very similar to weagle's split pivot:

Weagle's Split Pivot and Trek's ABP systems both use concentric rear axle pivots

There are many dual-link bikes out there from a number of companies. In your opinion, how many do you feel are skirting or infringing upon what you’ve done?

I think that’s a good way to put it. I think there are a lot of them that are ‘skirting’ what I’ve done, or trying to make a ‘me too’ bike.

It’s funny, when you start looking at some of them, some of those dual-link bikes are closer in terms of function to Split Pivot than a dw-link bike. The axle path curvature really doesn’t change all that much throughout the stroke of the travel. For a dw-link bike, a millimeter or two is worlds of difference in terms of performance.

Weagle's dw-link is licensed by ibis, pivot and turner: weagle's dw-link is licensed by ibis, pivot and turnerGiant's maestro link functions much like weagle's dw-link; weagle is currently suing giant for patent infringement and breach of contract: giant's maestro link functions much like weagle's dw-link; weagle is currently suing giant for patent infringement and breach of contract

The dw-link and Giant Maestro systems are functionally very similar

Here’s another battle of sorts - Split Pivot versus dw-link. Is one better than the other? Do they have different strengths and weaknesses?

They’re both incredibly capable systems. Every bike is a compromise. In the bicycle industry I think people think ‘compromise’ is a dirty word. Some companies might be like, “We have no compromises.” That’s bullshit - suspension is all about compromise. Geometry, fit and feel are all about compromise. If you can’t admit that then you have no idea what you’re doing, because that’s the reality.

I look at each bike on its own merits. We design for feel. I sit down with the companies and discuss feel. For example, an Ibis Ripley; the desired feel is probably closer to the 80mm Salsa Spearfish than it is to the 120mm Salsa Horsethief. I really try to boil it down to the desired trail feel.

How do you start working with a company to integrate one of your suspension systems into their bike line? What’s the development process like?

We start off riding their existing product - product they are comfortable with or product they are interested in - and talk about how it rides. We develop a language of feel and break it down to different parts of the travel, different situations. Sometimes it’s not even real words. Sometimes it’s like, ‘Clack, clack, clack!’ As a rider, you kind of know what that means.

When comparing dw-link bikes from different brands, it seems as though they have different feels from one brand to another.

Each company has its own vision for what the bikes should be. It’s the combination of everything: pivot placement, dampers, etc. It comes down to how we want a bike to attack corners, how we want it to handle square-edge bumps. Do we want it to be firmer or more plush?

Do you spend a lot of time working with specific athletes to refine your designs?

On request I do. When you have a guy like Stevie Smith (who is at the top of the sport) I do because I want them to succeed. If I can help Steve pull a tenth of a second off of his run, that’s awesome. It’s actually easier than designing a trail bike for a wide range of riders. I know how he rides. I can run data on the bike and I can build the bike to suit.

If you were designing a bike for yourself what sort of feel would you prioritize?

I think it’s a lot of the things I’ve prioritized in dw-link and Split Pivot designs. For me, I definitely look for cornering support. I definitely want the bike to be efficient out of the saddle.

I want geometry to be lower, slacker, longer. I grew up riding motocross and I love downhill bikes - that’s the side of the sport that I cut my teeth on. I ride my cross-country bikes like I ride my downhill bikes. For me, I’m just trying to have fun out there and get a little rowdy on the trail.

Weagle's designs seek to balance the attributes that make riding most enjoyable

You have three suspension designs on the market: dw-link, Split Pivot and Delta. Why develop competing suspension setups?

Because I can. It’s my passion. You can’t ask a painter to stop painting. I think there’s still a lot of real estate out there. I have other designs I’ve developed and haven’t brought to market.

It seems as though your designs have led to a sea change in how companies approach suspension design. They’ve certainly introduced the phrase “anti squat” into the parlance of mountain bikers. 

I think that, over the past five years, there’s been a mass realization that the kinematics of suspension are a really efficient way to extract performance from a bicycle.

We went through the whole platform damper phase and that’s kind of fading out. Some companies are still doing it, but most are realizing that the best way to do this is to use the kinematics of the bike and let the damper do its job separately.

It’s asinine to me that you would choose to use a bunch of low-speed compression to slow the suspension down when you’re accelerating, because then you are drastically over-damped when you’re coasting. It’s a terrible compromise.

One of your constraints is that you’re working within the confines of existing damper technology. If you were to create a new shock from the ground up to work with your suspension designs, what would it look like? How would it be different?

I would simplify it significantly. We don’t need all those bells and whistles.

Is there a project you’ve worked on that you’re most proud of?

The Orion project. It’s a motorcycle project I’ve been working on. I actually developed a prototype, but I didn’t finish building it because I spent all my money on stupid litigation. But now I’m working with a specific company on it.

Can you say which motorcycle company you’re partnered with?

No, but it’s pretty awesome.

What do you want your lasting impact on the sport of mountain biking to be?

I hope I’ve helped people to enjoy the trail more. Everyone can benefit from more traction. Everyone can benefit from more confidence and not having to mess around with more levers. I hope some of the things that I’ve done have helped to push the industry in a direction that’s more positive.

    


30 May 04:15

A return guest speaker tonight down here in The Near-Sighted...



A return guest speaker tonight down here in The Near-Sighted Monkey Lounge. We buy him as many juice boxes as he wants. We just want to keep listening.

13 Jun 10:09

Things Come Apart

by Scott

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Ja-party VLTM12
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Object autopsies from Todd McLellan’s book Things Come Apart. No idea how he got those exploded views but they’re incredible.

Via Wired


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Post tags: Books, Photography, Products, things come apart, todd mclellan

13 Jun 22:11

Sarah Silverman "I’m Going To Change Your Life Forever" - Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee by Jerry Seinfeld

04 Jul 23:18

Destroying a leg

by Scott

It all came together perfectly.

BLM increased the flow in the Gunnison Gorge to simulate a spring runoff.

Kurt was wrapping up his big tour in Durango.

Mike dropped me an email. Packraft the Gunni Gorge, tomorrow?

I dropped Kurt a text – want to float the Gunni Gorge tomorrow? He was somewhere up on Indian Trail ridge when I sent that. “Sure” was his reply.

I missed out last time, with a bum knee preventing me from doing the hike down to the river. Not this time. I had seen photos and video from Mike that made the Gunnison Gorge an absolute must-do. I didn’t ask any questions, just knew I was in for whatever it entailed.



really? we’re going down there?

I had vaguely recalled talk of a couple mile hike down. Enough that I couldn’t fathom it a few weeks ago. But I figured I could fumble my way through it this time.

As we entered Black Canyon National Park Mike began describing the day, eventually admitting we weren’t doing the easy approach — that this hike down was the crux of the day. He described how he and Doom had first done it with snow, and that Doom had said it was the sketchiest “climbing” he had done all year. Hiking poles were recommended, as well as grabbing onto any and all vegetation possible.



There’s a bit of trail, then it’s just a route down a gully, heading straight down to the river, losing several thousand feet. It’s pretty amazing this kind of travel is sanctioned in a National Park. Even more amazing that these routes down to the river exist, and don’t get cliffed out.



I made a strategy error. I favored my bad knee all the way down. Why? Because it still hurt. I couldn’t support myself with just it. So my good leg did all the work. And work it was — and sweating we were, all from a downhill hike. It was brilliant.

It was a relief to finally get near the river, and the cold water was calling me, ever so loudly.



Putting the pack in packrafts! This was the first time I’d used one to run a stretch of river otherwise completely inaccessible to other craft.

We aired up the boats and readied ourselves for some rapid fun. I fooled myself into believing that the hike down really was the crux. I knew it wasn’t, of course, but it was useful to believe that before we put in. That way the roar of the water below us didn’t redline my heartrate… yet.



We were off and scouting very quickly. Nothing too serious, but enough that lines needed to be examined. Especially for river newbs.



Mike showed us how it’s done, going first and making it look smooth enough that we were tempted to give it a run.



Only Kurt ran this one, and he ran it well. It was early enough in the day that Skippy and I decided to not risk a swim.



The twenty mile run had a very nice flow to it. Calm sections would only last a few minutes, leading to rapids that required attention, followed by a few more minutes of calm.



During the calm our heads would be spinning, trying to take in all we were experiencing in this deep and mysterious canyon. I think this is the aspect of running rivers I enjoy most — the unique perspective and means to see places otherwise impossible to access. Dodging boulders and getting adrenaline spikes is fun and all, but there are many ways to achieve that. There’s only one way to see the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.

Speaking of adrenaline: the last rapid, a class 4 (not that I understand what that actually means!). Kurt and I watched Mike and Skippy roll off the drop and pop up still afloat. I couldn’t see where Kurt was readying himself, since I had missed the first eddy for the scout. As I pushed off from the rocks, I saw Kurt in front of me. “I’ll follow him,” I thought, stalling a second, then going for it. There was a lot to negotiate, especially to hammer over to the far wall from my last ditch eddy. I dug in hard and made the turn, rounding a boulder just as I caught a glimpse of the drop. I looked at the pool below it, in the split second I had, and saw Kurt’s boat, upside down, but no Kurt. Not good. Better pay attention or you’re going to end up upside down in the water too, dummy! I paddled as actively as I could, came too close for comfort to the wall, then hit the drop at what Mike had described as the correct angle. Sure enough, the drop flipped me about 30 degrees, which had me going off it straight. Woo hoo!

As soon as I could focus on anything else, I saw Kurt’s boat again, and could see his head floating along side it. He swam off to an eddy and got himself back together, shivering the whole time.

Two rapids later, and twenty yards from the last flat water to the take out, I was dodging boulders and riding waves just as I had been doing all day. Then, before I realized what had happened, my brain realized, “Ummm, we’re upside down and underwater here!” “Not good.” “Issue new command!” Uhhh, kick and swim! I was very quickly out of the boat and next to it, head above water. I lost the paddle, and my dry bag. I swam to the side and stood up in an awkward spot, then realizing that I couldn’t really see anything. Uh oh, my contacts are gone. But, I was fine otherwise. Blinking around I thought they may have just rolled back on my eyes, and pushing them down I got some sight back. OK, no dry bag. Mike signaled to let my boat go — he’d catch it. I could then scramble backwards over some rocks to look for my paddle and dry bag. They were circulating in an eddy. Just as I thought my dry bag was going for a ride down the river it spun around and shot right back to me.

Adrenaline. Near life experience. It was pretty awesome.

As we floated the last miles, feet dangling over the edges of the rafts, Skippy summed up the day, “I like doing rescuing, not being the one rescued.” We owe both Mike and Skippy for their patience and the amazing opportunity. We wrapped up the day with a lot of driving and a divine DQ blizzard, just as the video promised.

I summed up the aftermath of the day – “I’m not sure what’s going to be sore tomorrow, but I think it may be more a question of what’s *not* sore.”

Sure enough, I was pretty worked over, especially my good leg, which grew to be as sore as I have ever experienced. I made the call to skip the Durango Dirty Century after a painful and sloppy rim trail ride. Kurt went on to scorch the DDC for 3rd place, tour legs, Gunni Hike and all.



Eszter and I went to go explore Engineer Mountain instead.



More accurately, I climbed a while with her, then turned off to do a shorter ride. Pedaling was weak, and downhill very difficult. My leg was destroyed.



Leg destroyed, trail divine.



I kept expecting the singletrack to get steep, choppy, brake bumped, rutted, or something, but it was nothing but a pleasure cruise all the way down.



When Eszter came down from the same trail, she was bubbling and asking me what front tire I had. “Do you still have a Rampage? A Rampage?! I really hope you got to ride that trail, that was the best!” New favorite trail in Colorado. :)



So good, we went back the next day to climb it. It’s pretty dang climbable, but still steep enough to cause suffering for those of us in less than showroom condition.



backside of Engineer

Small price to pay for where it takes you.



Land of rainbows and unicorns.



And acrobatic caterpillars, spinning themselves a cocoon. This guy was hanging right in the Engine Creek trail, where we watched him do his dance, slowly growing his ball of fuzz as he went.



We’ll definitely be back to Engineer, hopefully many times over the rest of the summer. Luckily an extremely sore leg heals much faster than a bashed knee. A small price to pay for a memorable day in the Gunnison Gorge.

03 Jul 19:21

ridepdw: THIS IS THE BEST THING YOU WILL SEE TODAY. Ibis...



ridepdw:

THIS IS THE BEST THING YOU WILL SEE TODAY.

Ibis Cycles resident Artist Chris McNally doing his thing.

04 Jul 02:06

Merckx Mondays! (by John Prolly)



Merckx Mondays! (by John Prolly)

04 Jul 03:22

Wild Ass Tour days 6,7

by doom

I wouldn't normally bore my readers with a, bland dude riding up a hill shot, like this. Butt......take a look at the seat configuration.....  Shortly after returning to our stashed bikes on the morning of day 6, Jon's fat wild ass broke his seat post. Yep, sheared it right off at the seat collar. This would not be that big of a deal, except we were smack in the middle of our trip, and nowhere near a bike shop... With several stokes of luck, not the least of which was having a cell signal, calls were put out, and it looked like Mama Doom would meet us the next night, with (hopefully) the right size seat post. Until then, Jon would ride with his sleeping pad strapped to the seat, to help boost it's height. Not cool......We had a long way to go!



 I'm not sure if it was the seat post thing, or some sort of hallucination, but I swear JB's facial expression went through some dramatic changes over the course of the day.


 Our goal on day 6 was to ride up to the top of the large bench above the hole in the rock area, stash the bikes at the lake trail head, and then once again head out on foot. This time up, up, and up to the top of the Fifty Mile Mnt area, and more specifically the plentiful springs in the area, where we could replenish our always shrinking supply of water.










 This is the old Griffin Cabin above the Lake Th. It's in the middle of nowhere, and was also the middle of some of the more dramatic controversy surrounding the Grand Staircase of the Escalante National Monument. Seems like the Griffin's had a good thing going and the NM pretty much shut down their 3rd generation cattle grazing lands up on Fifty Mile.  The whole town of Escalante 50 miles to the north, was violently opposed to NM status change. Things got so bad that President Clinton held the opening ceremonies in neighboring Arizona due to security concerns.



There are still FBI warning signs near the cabin. Premises under constant FBI surveillance, ect...
This did not deter us from spending a couple hours hacking off the handle of an old posthole digger to make an insert for Jon's seatpost!!



We pretty much got "cowboy" on that ol' post hole digger, precisely hacking off an 8 inch piece with a bent steak knife, and two broken rusty ax heads.





I have to wonder who will find this note, and when?


We made our way back down to the bikes where the real wood working project started. We now had to size down the hickory stick to fit the inside diameter of the seat post. This job took about an hour or so. And was completed using my pocket knife like a chisel, and a rock to strike precise blows.
This  vid (my first, and rough) should make you piss your pants! Especially if you shotgun a beer, or 3 first.
https://vimeo.com/70603178

hickory stick about to get the desert beatdown




Here it is after a full day of washboard riding on the hole in the rock road. It's still perfect and could have made the rest of the tour, had our rescue post from Mama Doom not actually fit.  Thanks Mama Doom!!!!
26 Jun 01:04

Summertime Festivals | Old Faithful Shop

03 Jun 21:06

On the cusp.

by MC
Cessation of wind +

(rapidly) increasing temps +

glowing globemallow +

(rapidly!) dwindling numbers of tourists = 

Summer.


There is a certain finality to that statement if you count yourself among us desert dwellers.


The translucent glow of yellow, purple, orange, or pink flowers is a welcome sign, a cause even for celebration (water! and sun!) but also a harbinger of...

...what?  

Heat, in a word.  

Our next three months are consistently hot by almost any standard.  Surviving, even thriving is easy in this modern world, but we do so always with an eye toward fall.  The shoulder seasons are what make summer tolerable here.

Please enjoy a few hundred thousand pixels illustrating how, and even a bit of why, we've enjoyed the last moments of spring.




































































Oi.






Hope that you have, in your own way and place, been doing a lot of the same.

Thanks for checkin' in.




31 May 18:42

Video: Continuous Integration for Your Puppet Code

by Mike Hall

Matthew Barr of Snap Interactive gave a great talk at Puppet Camp New York about bringing continuous integration (CI) tools and practices to Puppet code. It’s a good introduction to the ways you can manage the automation of your infrastructure in a safe, reliable manner.

Matthew started his talk with a reference to our own Adrien Thebo’s blog post about using Git with Puppet environments. Environments provide a way to break up your Puppet installation into multiple configurations. With Puppet environments, it’s easier to create development, testing and production configurations, or isolate configurations by roles, such as database servers or web servers.

Since Git branches are cheap, Matthew noted, they’re a natural way to store Puppet environments in a CI environment: One branch per development stage.

Alongside Git in the core toolchain Matthew discussed is Jenkins, an open source CI server that makes it easy to apply automated tests to a codebase.

Getting Jenkins set up is made easier with R. Tyler Croy’s Jenkins Puppet Module, which automates Jenkins’ installation and configuration. You can also use the module to install Jenkins plugins, including a Jenkins plugin that builds pull requests in Github and reports the results.

Static Analysis

The first stage of Matthew’s Puppet/CI workflow involves performing static analysis against incoming Git commits. The tools he mentioned include:

The static analysis tools validate the basic syntax of your Puppet manifests and erb templates, then make sure they’re in line with recommended style by catching whitespace errors and other issues that might not cause Puppet code to fail, but could make it harder to maintain.

Module Testing

The next stage in Matthew’s workflow involves module testing. With rspec-puppet tool, Puppet code can be tested in greater depth: Issues with more complex logic or Hiera data sources are surfaced during this stage.

Catalog Testing

Once the Puppet code is validated and tested, it moves on to catalog testing. At this stage, Jenkins jobs are running shell scripts that update the repository under test from Github, then attempt to compile a Puppet catalog against a set of Facter facts.

Where previous stages in the CI process can catch more formal issues with logic or style, catalog testing can catch dependency loops or missing modules, variables or facts.

Dynamic Analysis

Having moved through a number of Jenkins jobs that test your Puppet code in isolation, Matthew’s workflow moves on to dynamic analysis. This is a stage where virtualization helps, because the Puppet code must be deployed to running systems.

During dynamic analysis, testing is centered around making sure the target systems themselves will work with your Puppet code: Missing packages, or problematic configuration files that might break a service in production are caught at this stage.

Integration Testing

Once your Puppet code has been validated in isolation and in virtual environments that match what your code would encounter in product, the next step in the workflow involves integration testing.

Matthew said he uses integration testing to check critical functionality on each system to make sure necessary services are running, applications are responding as expected, and that key resources such as databases are present on the system.

He said tests don’t have to be complex. Jenkins can work with anything that can return a “0″ for success or a non-zero value for failure. A simple script that uses curl to pull down a web page, for instance, can serve as a Jenkins integration test.

Nightly Rebuilds

Once everything makes its way through testing, Matthew said it’s important to perform nightly rebuilds in order to have confidence that you can redeploy your Puppet-managed infrastructure in an emergency.

Nightly rebuilds check for dynamic factors outside your Puppet code: Updated package repositories, changed or updated packages, altered kickstart files, or other elements Puppet isn’t directly controlling.

Deployment

And there’s the purpose of the whole workflow, which is deployment to production. Matt’s talk covered the use of canary servers doing “noop” and live puppet runs before merging the Puppet code and doing a full deployment.

If you’d like a look at some tooling Matthew himself has produced, he’s published his puppet-ci module on the Puppet Forge.

19 May 22:32

fabbricadellabici: Jens Voigt doing hi fives up the TT climb...



fabbricadellabici:

Jens Voigt doing hi fives up the TT climb yesterday at @amgentourofcali
emily_maye, instagram.com

I can’t give dude anything but respect for this. He’s all class. You want to endear yourself to the cycling public? Act like Mother Fucking Jens Voigt.

20 May 02:16

Carbon Footprint

by swiggco world
Most of the time when I write on this blog I'll be making some sort of scathing comment about a process or a fellow builder-I'm not immune to ripping on industry trends or corporate greed, all that stuff. I'm not doing anything like that this time as this story that follows is ironic enough to stand on its own. I build frames every day of my life but this particular frame is special, as is its story.

Awhile ago , the main supplier of aluminum tubing for U.S. builders ran out of large customers and ceased to produce the material you see in the frame above. After manufacturing tubing in the U.S. for twenty-odd years, the company decided to move production to Taiwan where some large customers still existed. Within a few years, the aforementioned customers decided (  or the market at large decided ) to go to molded carbon fiber for the bulk of bicycle frames for the world market. When this happened , the company that produced aluminum tubing had lost the bulk of its customer base and ceased production altogeter.

As a builder who relies on having access to good aluminum, I took the step of buying as much of the soon-to-be-extinct material as I could afford. Some of this was from the U.S. company , some from the Taiwan operation and some from manufacturers ceasing business. The tubing in the frame in the photo is my very last set of GX-2 flared scandium that I had been saving for myself. The tubes had been sitting on a shelf for several years when I got an email from a distant customer requesting a 'Team Carbon' road frame , just like the one I had personally been riding for the last eight years. I decided that this customer who had ordered a steel frame two years earlier needed the tubes more than I did so I took the order and got ready to build the frame. This would be the last frame of this kind to roll out of my shop....ever.

This is where it gets interesting-that is, if you are still interested enough to read on. To complete this frame I would use this tubing but I also needed a full carbon rear stay kit so I got on the phone and started calling suppliers. I tried all the suppliers I knew of who might stock this kit but nobody in the U.S. had one-and nobody really was interested in carrying them any more. I decided to try international sources and luckily a company in the U.K. had most of the kit in stock-I would have to scrounge a couple of small parts but the bulk of what I needed was available. A bit later I was able to source the rest of the small parts and constructed the frame.

The path that the materials for this frame took to get to me is pretty amazing. The tubing was made for the U.S. manufacturer in Taiwan  . The carbon kit was manufactured in Taiwan for an Italian company who in turn sold it to the supplier in the U.K. and then eventually to me here in the U.S. Here's the punch line-the customer for this frame lives in Taiwan, not that far from where all the materials for his frame originated from. The aluminum will wind up making two trips across the Pacific ocean. The carbon kit will wind up literally circumnavigating the earth. Up until this frame I had never thought of where the pieces of a bicycle frame might go travel on their respective journeys between from birth to frame and eventually to the customer. This one tops them all. The ultimate carbon footprint.
18 May 14:33

UP All Night

by Dave

Desmond Dekker, Israelites

17 May 21:39

The Bike Maker, Short Film About Harlem Bike Builder Ezra Caldwell

by EDW Lynch

“The Bike Maker” is a short documentary about Ezra Caldwell, a bicycle builder who runs a one-man bike fabrication shop in Harlem, Fast Boy Cycles. Caldwell left a career as a dance teacher to pursue bike building in 2007. One year later he was diagnosed with cancer. Since being diagnosed he has been struggling with the disease, and building bikes during periods of remission. About six months ago he was told he has six to eight months to live. He is chronicling his experiences on his blog. Caldwell is no longer building bikes.

The film was directed by Keith Ehrlich and is the fifth in the Made by Hand mini documentary series. The series is produced by Brooklyn creative agency Bureau of Common Goods.

submitted via Laughing Squid Tips

17 May 10:30

Gorgeous Black-and-White Photos of Vintage NASA Facilities

by Maria Popova

From the wind tunnels the made commercial aviation possible to the analog machines that preceded the computer, a visual history of the spirit of innovation presently unworthy of the government’s dollar.

Among the great joys of spending countless hours rummaging through archives is the occasional serendipitous discovery of something absolutely wonderful: Case in point, these gorgeous black-and-white photographs of vintage NASA (and NASA predecessor NACA) facilities, which I found semi-accidentally in NASA’s public domain image archive. Taken between the 1920s and 1950s, when the golden age of space travel was still a beautiful dream, decades before the peak of the Space Race, and more than half a century before the future of space exploration had sunk to the bottom of the governmental priorities barrel, these images exude the stark poeticism of Berenice Abbott’s science photographs and remind us, as Isaac Asimov did, of NASA’s enormous value right here on Earth.

NACA's first wind tunnel, located at Langley Field in Hampton, VA, was an open-circuit wind tunnel completed in 1920. Essentially a replica of the ten-year-old tunnel at the British National Physical Laboratory, it was a low-speed facility which involved the one-twentieth-scale models. Because tests showed that the models compared poorly with the actual aircraft by a factor of 20, a suggestion was made to construct a sealed airtight chamber in which air could be compressed to the same extent as the model being tested. The new tunnel, the Variable Density Tunnel was the first of its kind and has become a National Historic Landmark. (April 1, 1921)

Pressure tank of the Variable Density Tunnel at the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company, Hampton, VA. Photograph courtesy Northrop-Grumman Shipbuilding-Newport News (February 3, 1922). The tank was shipped by barge to NACA, now NASA Langley Research Center, in June 1922.

Workmen in the patternmakers' shop manufacture a wing skeleton for a Thomas-Morse MB-3 airplane for pressure distribution studies in flight. (June 1, 1922)

A Langley researcher ponders the future, in mid-1927, of the Sperry M-1 Messenger, the first full-scale airplane tested in the Propeller Research Tunnel. Standing in the exit cone is Elton W. Miller, Max M. Munk's successor as chief of aerodynamics. (1927)

16-foot-high speed wind tunnel downstream view through cooling tower section. (February 8, 1942)

Free-flight investigation of 1/4-scale dynamic model of XFV-1 in NACA Ames 40x80ft wind tunnel. (August 18, 1942)

Engine on Torque Stand at the Aircraft Engine Research Laboratory in Cleveland, Ohio, now known as the John H. Glenn Research Center at Lewis Field. Torque is the twisting motion produced by a spinning object. (April 15, 1944)

Detail view of Schlieren setup in the 1 x 3 Foot Supersonic Wind Tunnel. (October 26, 1945)

Boeing B-29 long range bomber model was tested for ditching characteristics in the Langley Tank No. 2 (Early 1946)

Looking down the throat of the world's largest tunnel, 40 by 80 feet, located at Ames Aeronautical Laboratory, Moffett Field, California. The camera is stationed in the tunnel's largest section, 173 feet wide by 132 feet high. Here at top speed the air, driven by six 40-foot fans, is moving about 35 to 40 miles per hour. The rapid contraction of the throat (or nozzle) speeds up this air flow to more than 250 miles per hour in the oval test section, which is 80 feet wide and 40 feet high. The tunnel encloses 900 tons of air, 40 tons of which rush through the throat per second at maximum speed. (1947)

Analog Computing Machine in the Fuel Systems Building. This is an early version of the modern computer. The device is located in the Engine Research Building at the Lewis Flight Propulsion Laboratory, now John H. Glenn Research Center, Cleveland Ohio. (September 28, 1949)

Guide vanes in the 19-foot Pressure Wind Tunnel at Langley Aeronautical Laboratory, National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, form an ellipse 33 feet high and 47 feet wide. The 23 vanes force the air to turn corners smoothly as it rushes through the giant passages. If vanes were omitted, the air would pile up in dense masses along the outside curves, like water rounding a bend in a fast brook. Turbulent eddies would interfere with the wind tunnel tests, which require a steady flow of fast, smooth air. (March 15, 1950

24-foot-diameter swinging valve at various stages of opening and closing in the 10ft x 10ft Supersonic Wind Tunnel. (May 17, 1956)

A television camera is focused by NACA technician on a ramjet engine model through the schlieren optical windows of the 10 x 10 Foot Supersonic Wind Tunnel's test section. Closed-circuit television enables aeronautical research scientists to view the ramjet, used for propelling missiles, while the wind tunnel is operating at speeds from 1500 to 2500 mph. (8.570) The tests were performed at the Lewis Flight Propulsion Laboratory, now John H. Glenn Research Center. (April 21, 1957)

8ft x 6ft Supersonic Wind Tunnel Test-Section showing changes made in Stainless Steel walls with 17 inch inlet model installation. The model is the ACN Nozzle model used for aircraft engines. The Supersonic Wind Tunnel is located in the Lewis Flight Propulsion Laboratory, now John H. Glenn Research Center. (August 31, 1957)

The Gimbal Rig, formally known as the MASTIF of Multiple Axis Space Test Inertia Facility, was engineered to simulate the tumbling and rolling motions of a space capsule and train the Mercury astronauts to control roll, pitch and yaw by activating nitrogen jets, used as brakes and bring the vehicle back into control. This facility was built at the Lewis Research Center, now John H. Glenn Research Center at Lewis Field. (October 29, 1957)

Lockheed C-141 model in the Transonic Dynamics Tunnel (TDT). By the late 1940s, with the advent of relatively thin, flexible aircraft wings, the need was recognized for testing dynamically and elastically scaled models of aircraft. In 1954, NASA's predecessor agency, the National Advisory Committee on Aeronautics (NACA), began converting the Langley 19-foot Pressure Tunnel for dynamic testing of aircraft structures. The old circular test section was reduced to 16 x 16 feet, and slotted walls were added for transonic operation. The TDT was provided with special oscillator vanes upstream of the test section to create controlled gusty air to simulate aircraft response to gusts. A model support system was devised that freed the model to pitch and plunge as the wings started oscillating in response to the fluctuating airstream. The TDT was completed in 1959. It was the world's first aeroelastic testing tunnel. (November 16, 1962)

Alas, the names of the photographers — as is often the case with creators working on the government dollar — were not preserved. If you recognize any, get in touch and help credit them.

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16 May 12:50

Hunger, and the quote of the day.

by Fast Eddy
Order it here.
Saw yesterday that Sean's new autobiography is coming out later this month.    Add it to your summer reading list jongens.

For those of you who like me are unabashed fans of the hardest man in cycling, there's some great Kelly stories and anecdotes here at Worldwide Cycles blog.   Check it out.  Two of my favorites.


"Figures have become all important, Vo2 max, threshold , 10 second wattage now mean much more than the old ‘my legs feel good today’ and performances have improved as training time has become more efficient .... These tests are not a new phenomenon . Back in the late eighties teams had begun testing their riders and analyzing the figures.... 

Sean Kelly was at the height of his career and winning more of the biggest races than any of his contemporaries.  He was the greatest cyclist in the World at the time and during one test session the coaches were perplexed. They asked,  "How he could be winning so much when his figures did not correspond to such results?"   

Kelly sat back and said...

‘that machine measures power , heart rate , Vo2 max and all that, but what it doesn’t measure is how much pain you can suffer'... "

The other story is one where Kelly reflects on the role his farm upbringing in Carrick on Suir played in learning to suffer...

"...he recounted working days that began at 7 am and finished at 8 pm, no matter what the weather was like. On one not so unusual day a particularly feisty bullock had to be moved. Two ropes were attached and two brothers were warned by their father that no matter what they were not to let go of the ropes. The Bullock was released from a shed and immediately reared up on its hind legs and bucked and jumped all the way across the farmyard. One brother released the rope. The other brother did not and was dragged ruthlessly across the yard, but never let go of the rope. Eventually his Father managed to calm the animal and when the son regained the energy to stand up the jacket and jumper were torn from his shoulder, as was much of his skin. He continued on working."

"A few years later the same young man was riding the cobbled classics of Belgium and Northern France.   When the races would get hard, so so hard for twenty minutes at a time and many of the best in the World were falling by the wayside, the farmers son from just outside a small town in Ireland would think of the day he was dragged across the yard by the bullock and from deep down within he would find the tenacity and courage to endure pain well beyond the limits of ordinary men and he would survive."

"Whilst those around him suffered he managed to hide his own pain. Why should he show it ? There would be no sympathy for a bit of pain endured whilst riding around the countryside on a bicycle when he should be hard at work at home on the farm."

"The finish line would come into sight and the victor would be the one from a group of the hardest of the hard men who would want it the most.  With the option of returning to the bullock on the farm being pretty much the only other choice he had, the young Irishman usually came out on top."

"Books, magazines and Internet articles on sporting success often refer to the fact that the mind usually gives up before the body during prolonged periods of intensity within competition.
The hardships of life are very often the cornerstones of success later on.   Interval training strengthens the body but perhaps it’s the really crappy day at work or the time spent forcing yourself to do the things that you are afraid of that give the mental toughness needed to really succeed, no matter what level you are at."

13 May 00:46

You need to see this incredible music video from the International Space Station

by Sean Ludwig

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield has charmed us from the International Space Station with music before. But his latest (and last) song from the ISS is a rousing cover of David Bowie’s classic “Space Oddity,” and the visuals alongside it match the tune perfectly.

Hadfield has been commanding the ISS during the past five months, and he’s taken some stunning photos, participated in fun science experiments, and shown how you sleep in space. Sadly, he handed over control of the ISS to Russian cosmonaut Pavel Vinogradov on Sunday eventing and will be returning to Earth shortly.

On top of the music video, Hadfield also recorded some final thoughts before he departs the station.


Filed under: OffBeat, Science
    


11 May 13:40

CocoRosie – Gravediggress

by Ashley

The ability to realize that there is more happening in a song than what we realize upon first listen, makes songs that much more beautiful. I find that this is always the case with the music that CocoRosie produces, because there are so many elements to their music that one might not realize immediately. The first sounds that enter the ears are beats, but if you listen closer, you’ll notice that they are produced by a mouth. This is something that sets them apart, making their live performances that much more special. Their new album, Tales of A Grass Widow, is set to launch at the end of May, but I’ve already listened to the album in its entirety and I’m not surprised that the work is beautiful. They successfully manage to keep every track diverse, while still threading the whole work together in a solid continuation of sound. It’s a listening journey and definitely one best enjoyed in one sitting.

This song stopped me in my tracks upon first listen, much like everything else that’s happened in my life as of late. I haven’t been able to write for EMPT for the past week due to a broken limb, and while I was sad that I could not serve up quality music for your days, I allowed myself the time to re-evaluate some parts of my life. Approaching my final week of undergrad leaves me feeling ambivalent but mostly thankful — I can safely say that this is one of the things I’ve worked hardest for so far in my life, and my broken collarbone only enhanced my desire to push through and succeed in graduating from this one part of my life. I’m excited and scared but mostly just thankful that it’s all happening right now.

Bad things do happen for a reason, and I think this eerily beautiful track embodies the exact sentiment that I’ve experienced for this past week. Plus, it’s got a hell of a beat.

CocoRosie – Gravediggress

 

12 May 19:59

Bugatti 



Bugatti 

09 May 17:41

wtfkits: File this one under “holy fuck”  Bear Vs. Monkey...



wtfkits:

File this one under “holy fuck”

 Bear Vs. Monkey Bicycle Race Ends With Bear Eating Monkey