Wizards of Oz

"Life is fraughtless ... when you're thoughtless."


Happy Halloween!

All Hallow's Eve has fallen on central Colorado, with crisp clear skies and temperatures well above freezing. Our precious little Lady Bug was joined by:

Jango Fett, and:

A pair of undead teenagers.

CINCHOUSE spent the afternoon carving the kids' chosen designs (a bat, kitty and pumpkin king). Of course, Peanut had to help choose the best pumpkins in the patch!

Shelby's New Teeth

I guess our almost-teenager wasn't yet through growing teeth....


Jango Fett & Elphaba

Man-Cub's class is having their Fall Party this morning. Costumes are allowed, but masks aren't (hence the helmetless Jango Fett and the non-green skinned teacher).

In the words of the inestimable Jack Skellington, "Happy HalloWEEEEN!!!"


Happy 40th, Internet

The Internet is 40 years old today.

The very first host-to-host packet-switched message ever sent over the fledgling "ARPANET", an information network developed by BBN Technologies under a contract awarded by the Pentagon's "Advanced Research Projects Agency" (today known as DARPA), was sent 40 years ago today.

At 10:30pm PDT on October 29th, 1969, a UCLA student using an SDS "Sigma 7" host computer sent the word "login" to an SDS 940 interface message processor (IMP) 300 miles north at the Stanfurd Research Institute. Though the system crashed after only the first two letters were transmitted ("lo"), the remote IMP login was accomplished an hour later.

The original 1822 protocol, which was designed for reliability and assurance (i.e., the host would be able to tell if a message was lost), was later replaced with the Network Control Program (NCP) that allowed simultaneous message sharing between different hosts. The modern Transfer Control Protocol / Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) was adopted by ARPANET in 1983.

ARPA, the world's 200 million plus blogs thank you.

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October Morning in Colorado


[Moblog] Fighting Falcons!

J-man's Cub Scout Bear Den is taking a trip to the Falconry at the U.S. Air Force Academy today. Banshee, a white-faced gyr-saker falcon, is one of nearly a dozen falcons at the Falconry (including gyrfalcons, prairie, tiger peregrines and four hybrids like Banshee).

These Falcons are the only NCAA mascots that actually perform: at USAFA football games, they will fly throughout the stadium.


Boo at the Zoo

This weekend was the start of "Boo at the Zoo" at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. So in the company of a Good Witch, a Lady Bug and a Sith Lord, we had a great evening visiting the 501st Legion:

... and feeding the giraffes:

... and hiking all over Cheyenne Mountain:


20 Years Later

Twenty years ago today, I was a third-semester senior at the University of California at Berkeley. My favorite baseball team, the Oakland A's, were in the World Series facing the neighboring San Francisco Giants in the "Bay Bridge Series". Though the media moguls hated such a "local" World Series, I thought it was the best ever. That is, until Game Three....

During pre-game warmups, as I sat in my room across the Bay in Alameda, the intial jolts of the Loma Prieta earthquake began knocking books off of my shelves. ABC sportscaster Al Michaels turned to his right and said "We're having an earth...", immediately followed by static then a power outage. That fifteen seconds of violent shaking (7.1 surface wave magnitude) felt more like fifteen minutes.

Of the 57 people who lost their lives as a direct result of Loma Prieta, 42 of them were on the Cypress Section of Interstate-880 in northwest Oakland (the photo above). Perhaps the "Bay Bridge Series" had a positive effect, minimizing the amount of traffic that would normally be on this main traffic artery connecting the East Bay and Peninsula during rush hour (the quake occurred at 5:04pm local). That section of freeway would normally have hundreds of vehicles bumper-to-bumper this time of day.... It was also a route that I often took to Cal, having traversed the lower deck the morning prior.

Today, the Cypress is a ground-level, side-by-side freeway. Structural standards for elevated roads have strengthened. And the skill of the first responders in containing the fires that followed prevented a repeat of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake (which claimed more than 3,000 lives). Oh, and the A's swept the Giants, outscoring them 32-14 in four games after a ten-day pause due to the earthquake.

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October in the Springs

Nothing like the crisp autumn air, when the leaves of the Aspens turn yellow and orange and the light breeze brings scents of spice.... Yeah, right!


Me & E.D.

E.D. Hill from *Fox & Friends* fame was the guest of honor at the TapRooT® Annual Summit in Nashville. Though she said she enjoys sleeping in with her later daytime gig (rather than the 6am EDT start to F&F).


Uh oh....

It's the end of the world as we know it....

Sophie, through her precocious powers of observation, has learned how to open the KandyKorn & peanut jar.

Who'd have thunk that a 1 year + 12 day old baby would have the dexterity to do this? (Certainly not me, who -- upon seeing her with the plastic jar -- thought it would be nothing more than a big 'rattle' for her. Who knows how many KandyKorns she ingested before I realized what she had done.....)