Rhymes with “Snowing”

Boeing Surplus to Close

The Seattle Times reports that Boeing Surplus is going to be closing their doors come December 21st:

From seattletimes.nwsource.com:

Boeing instead plans to sell its surplus items in bulk to wholesale buyers over the Internet and through a more traditional contracting process with business partners, said spokesman Dean Tougas. Boeing will develop a Web site over the next few months to support its online plans, he said.

The store’s final day will be Dec. 21.

For 35 years it has sold just about anything that Boeing no longer uses, except aircraft parts. Boeing employees and retirees enjoy discounts of up to 20 percent.

Seeing that I worked at the Kent Space Center the last two summers, it was really just a short 8 minute drive to the surplus store. I’d sometimes stop by on my way home, seeing that I’m already down there and such.

It was really just fun to walk around. It would take me at least an hour, and that was if I was going fast.

Bruce Lane has started a website, SaveBoeingSurplus.com, to try and save the surplus store.

Photo Credit: The Boeing Surplus website


Because It’s Cool

I’ve been a great deal of my life dreaming about the stars. I grew up watching Star Trek and now I’m at an engineering school to become Rocket Scientologist (okay, electrical engineering…but it has practical applications in Rocket Scientology).

I current work for a company that is in the aerospace business and I’m now with a team on campus that is helping design a robot that could go to the Moon (2008 Regolith Excavation Challenge). I need my space.

Lately, space has become dull. Without delving too much into the details, I attribute this dullness to a lack of funding and ambition on NASA’s part. That’s why things like this practically tickle me pink:

From googleblog.blogspot.com:

In 1961, Yuri Gagarin became the first man to go into space and orbit the Earth. Two years later, Valentina Tereshkova became the first woman in space (she orbited the earth 48 times — take that, Yuri). By the end of the decade, the Apollo teams, rising to President Kennedy’s challenge, made Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin the first human beings to walk on the Moon.

Great things can happen when you reach for the stars. That’s why we’re thrilled to be sponsoring the Lunar X-PRIZE, which will award a total of $30 million to teams competing around the world to land privately funded spacecraft on the Moon.

Why does Google love space? Well, for one thing, we just think it’s cool.

Insert lame joke about space being cold here.

See ya’ll on the other side of the moon.


Unified Field Theory

One of my coworkers sent this to me:
From ken.coar.org:

Unified Field Theory by Tim Joseph

In the beginning there was Aristotle,
At objects at rest tended to remain at rest,
And objects in motion tended to come to rest,
And soon everything was at rest,
And God saw that it was boring.

Then God created Newton,
And objects at rest tended to remain at rest,
But objects in motion tended to remain in motion,
And energy was conserved and momentum was conserved and matter was conserved,
And God saw that it was conservative.

Then God created Einstein,
And everything was relative,
And fast things became short,
And straight things became curved,
And the universe was filled with inertial frames,
And God saw that it was relatively general, but some of it was especially relative.

Then God created Bohr,
And there was the principle,
And the principle was quantum,
And all things were quantified,
But some things were still relative,
And God saw that it was confusing.

Then God was going to create Ferguson,
And Ferguson would have unified,
And he would have fielded a theory,
And all would have been one,
But it was the seventh day,
And God rested,
And objects at rest tend to remain at rest.

[tags]Unified Field Theory, Aristotle, Newton, Einstein, Bohr, Ferguson, God, Seven Days, Tim Joseph[/tags]


What If I Really Need To Go Pee?

The Blue Angles are in town for Seafair. In preparation for tomorrow and Sunday’s air show, they have two days of practice over Lake Washington.

Unfortunately, their performance zone violates FAA flight regulations and so they have to obtain a waiver so they perform their crazy cool acrobatics.

What is also unfortunate is that this waiver forces the closure of the I-90 floating bridge for about two to three hours from Thursday to Sunday.

Even more unfortunate is that this continues to backup traffic into my commute back home home. That, however, is not the point of this posting. This is:

From www.wsdot.wa.gov:

What if I have a medical emergency and I need to get to Harborview Medical Center or Children’s Hospital?

The center roadway of I-90 is reserved for this purpose. Contact 911 and Washington State Patrol will escort you to the hospital.

Having to go up I-405, across at SR-520 (which also has less capacity), and then down I-5 to Harbor View Medical Center can take up to 50 minutes with traffic (according to Google Maps). Being able to go straight across I-90 takes up to 15 minutes with traffic (again, Google Maps). That’s a pretty significant delta time*.

And no, they won’t let you cross if you just need to go pee. Even if you need to go real bad.

*Boeing^ lingo for difference in time.
^Yes, I realize that Boeing is probably not the only company in the universe that uses that phrase. It’s just been used a lot lately, so that’s where I’m attributing it this time.


Evening Whine

I was driving home yesterday. It’s was around 5:15pm and the traffic was moderate, but flowing – although not a speed limit commute*. I’m listening to Ron and Don’s coverage of the I-35W bridge collapse in Minneapolis when I hear this whine from behind me.

I hunch forward over my steering wheel just as the shadow of TS-3 encompasses my car. The air feels cooler as she blocks the evening sun. I shout, “Oh cool!” and realize that this will probably be the closet I will ever get to seeing one. I gaze up and look for a few seconds as she flies overhead, on her approach to land at Boeing Field, probably after flying since 9am.

I think about taking a picture with my phone, but my eyes are frozen and I don’t.

Eventually, she drops below the tree line and I continue my commute; steering a bit to the left after drifting too far right.

* “Speed limit commute” is radios secret way of saying that that there are no blockages and people are driving as fast as they want.

Image source: http://www.af.mil/factsheets/factsheet_media.asp?fsID=98



The guys in my group play an almost daily game of chess. I usually lose, which I’m fine with. I don’t play that often and I’m not terribly good. But I’ve been learning and today I beat another one of the guys.




The 787 will make its official public debut in a couple days on July 8th, 2007 (that would be 7/08/07). It’s going to be pretty spectacular.

If you haven’t had a chance yet, you should take a look at NewAirplane.com and then click on the “Launch 787 Dreamliner Site” button. A video has been released every day since last weekend showcasing a different aspect of the new 787.

There is some really cool stuff going on.

Everybody knows that the 787 is the new composite-fiber airplane.

But there is so much more.

Some of my favorite features include electronically tintable windows, sawtooth pattern of the engine chevron makes for a quieter flight, the main cabin is pressurized to 6000 feet (compared to 8000 feet of current airplanes), LED lighting that can emulate earth cycles, huge windows sizes, and so much more.

I’m having a 787 launch party at my house if anyone is interested. Show up around 3pm on Sunday. The fun starts at 3:30pm local time!

Save: Buy Boeing / Buy: Save Airbus“: © Chappatte/International Herald Tribune, Jun 22, 2007


Things Start Rolling at Boeing

I can already tell that things are going to be different then they were last year. Not in a bad way, not a in good way; just different.

For example, last year I had one project that I focused on pretty much the entire time. Because I only had a single project, I really only had a single point of contact for day-to-day activities and then my boss.

This year is different. I have the same boss as last year, which is blessing because he’s great. He’ll handle high-level items. Then I have a manager who will cover middle-level activities. Finally, I have a slew of people I work with everyday. Co-workers in fact, although they’re more then that because they’ve been there longer and know what they’re doing.

I also have about three projects I’m working on. Less deep and more wide when compared to last year.

Which brings me to what I’m working on: I’m in the hardware group and I’m working on drawings and hardware selection.

Could I be anymore vague? Probably.

Life as an intern is good.

[tags] boeing, intern, internship[/tags]


When We Last Left Our Hero

  1. I was in Colorado
  2. Didn’t have a job
  3. Hadn’t started work
  4. Had only been to one wedding this summer

One week later:

  1. Back in Seattle
  2. Have a job
  3. Started work
  4. Have been to two weddings, sorta

So how does this all work out? Well, getting on a 8:30 am flight to Seattle last Sunday morning was the easy part. Then the real fun began. I really don’t care to get into the details because A) they don’t matter to people who aren’t involved; and, B) it would probably be appropriate to keep them under wraps (at least until sufficient time has passed that people no longer care about/read this site).

What I can/will say is that I’m back at Boeing and started on Friday. I spent most of the day reading hard copies of material related to my project because my computer access hadn’t been restored yet.

I was supposed to go to Brent’s wedding today and I did, just at the wrong time. So pretty much completely botched that one. I did catch him before they left for the reception.



Now that school is actually done, I can focus all my attention on the summer.

Unfortunately, the summer may be off to a bad start. My boss at Boeing called me today and there might be some delay in me starting. Boeing hasn’t been awarded the contract yet, despite the fact that it was supposed to be in place by now. So I’m in a holding pattern (ha, great pun) until they get that signed.

Until then, I’ll probably be opening up shop again, doing random computer-ish stuff in the meantime. Drop me a line if you’re in need of a tech. My rates are reasonable and I make house-calls.