23 February 2014

Sochi Success

Category: Randomness — Posted by Michael at 0937

sochi_logoIt’s always sad when the Olympics are nearing an end. You know that you’ll have to wait another 4 years (well, 2 years, really, even though the Winter Games are much better) for them to come around again. Going into this year’s Olympics in Sochi, I wrote a post about not being as excited as I have been other years. That was partly because I was busy in the weeks leading up to the Olympics, but moreso because of the location. Prior to the start of the games we heard nothing but stories of how hotels weren’t ready, terrorist attacks were a real possibility, the Russian government would curtail some human rights, Sochi had gone so far over budget, stray dogs would be slaughtered and so many other negative things. Now, with the closing ceremony less than 24 hours away, the games seem to have gone off without a major hitch. Bob Costas even made it back so we didn’t have to endure any more of Matt Lauer and Meredith Viera!

What’s more important, it seems like everyone, myself included caught the Olympic spirit once the competition got underway. I watched way more of these olypics than I expected. Thanks to my DVR, I recorded dozens of hours worth of Olympic broadcasts. The best part is being able to fast forward past the stuff I don’t want to see like figure skating and cross country and catch all of the events I do want to see. I even got into curling a little bit this year for the first time.

Did Russia deserve the host the games? I’m probably not qualified to answer that question. Did they pull it off successfully? It certainly appears so!

28 February 2011

Fire and Ice Festival Photos Posted

Category: Life,Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 0018

Dog Sledding DemoI just posted the photos that I took at the Mount Holly Fire and Ice Festival. It’s a ice carving competition and chili cook-off. This year is was nice and cold and there was even snow on the ground which made it even more fun than the last time I went four years ago. Check out the photos here.

23 March 2008

Newport RI Photos

Category: Life,Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2206

I was in Newport Rhode Island on business recently. While I was there, the Newport Winter Festival was going on. It was the weather was beautiful for the two weeks that I was there. Of course, on the one day that I had free (the day I travelled home) there was an ice storm and the skies were gray at best. But I made the most of it and went out and did the tourist stuff and took a bunch of photos.

Check them out here.

02 February 2008

Now that’s what I call Winter

Category: Interesting Links,Randomness — Posted by Michael at 1446

I like the cold weather. I enjoy getting all bundled up and going out in sub-freezing weather. Sometimes I don’t even get bundled up.

However, even I have a limit. After reading this interesting article about Yakutsk, a city in Siberia, I’m pretty sure it’s WAY past my limit!

Read the piece in The Independent.

03 December 2007

Peddlers Village Christmas Festival

Category: Life,Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2312

Peddler's VillageYou’ve seen my photos from Peddler’s Village taken during the summer. (If not, view them here.)  Their annual Christmas Festival was this past weekend, so Kelly and I went back to see what it’s like in winter. It’s a whole different experience. The sub-freezing temperature was made bearable by marshmallow roasting over an open fire, hot cider cooked over a fire, carolers and even a little parade to welcome Santa Claus. Add thousands of Christmas lights and you have a great start to the Christmas season!

Click here to view my pictures from the festival.

11 December 2006

James Kim Coverage

Category: Interesting Links — Posted by Michael at 2304

It’s amazing how far and wide-reaching the coverage of James Kim’s tragic death has been. Usually a tech journalist such as James has a small following who will pay attention to something like this (I’m among that group.) but his tragic demise has been covered by every news outlet imaginable. I can’t stand People magazine, but even they put him on their cover. CNN had a special about it tonight as well. Even competing tech media outlets are doing memorial pieces about him.

The latest news is that he actually walked 16 miles in his attempt to save his family, not the 10 that was first thought.

07 December 2006

James Kim — 1971-2006

Category: Life,Technology — Posted by Michael at 0046

You probably already know that I was a huge fan of the long gone cable channel ZDTV/TechTV. One of the people who contributed to that channel’s success was James Kim. Last weekend he and his family disappeared while on their way home from Thanksgiving at a friend’s house in Oregon. After being lost in the snow for over a week his wife and children were found. James, however, had left them to find help 2 days earlier.

After an extensive search by land and air James’ body was found earlier today. It appears he was leaving a trail of clothing to help searchers track him, but they got there too late.

Besides losing a great technology journalist what strikes me is that this could happen to anyone. They missed a turnoff and looked at map and found another route to take. It was a National Forest Service road that, unkown to them, is not plowed in the winter. They became stuck and wound up staying in their car for a week with little or no food.

I’ve seen a lot of people who were critical of James’ decision to leave the family and car. But I can’t imagine how desparate he must’ve been at that point. They ran the car heater until it ran out of gas. They then burned the tires for warmth. Seriously, how bad does a situation have to be to push you to the point where burning your tires is the best option. After a week of being stranded, he had to think that they’d never be rescued unless he went for help.

Like I said, what is so scary is that this could happen to anyone. I mean I don’t expect that you could get quite that lost in the this part of the country, but there are is still plenty of wilderness in places like Oregon. It’s definately making be reconsider what I carry in my trunk.

You can donate to the family at the site set up by a friend while the family was missing at www.jamesandkati.com.

You can also view a tribute from his coworkers at C|NET.

27 February 2006

One last Olympic Link

Category: Interesting Links,Randomness — Posted by Michael at 2125

OK, OK, so you’re tired of the Olympics. I’ve been talking about the Torino 2006 Winter Olympics for 2 weeks or more now. However, I have to point out one more link that I thought was pretty cool. On the Bejing 2008 Summer Olympics site they have a page that shows all of the medal designs used in every Olympic Games and the torch design as well. You might not agree, but I thought it’s pretty interesting to see how the designs have changed.

View the medals here and the torches here.

26 February 2006

Torino 2006 Closes

Category: Interesting Links,Randomness — Posted by Michael at 2114

Torino 2006It’s hard to believe that it was 16 days ago that I sat here in fron of a roaring fire watching the Opening Ceremony of the XX Olympic Winter Games in Torino. Now here I am sitting in front of a roaring fire watching the Closing ceremony. Lucky for the althletes and attendees of the ceremony it’s actually warmer there than it is here. It’s aout 40 degrees in Torino tonight, here it’s only in the teens!

If you’re looking for info on the next Winter Olympics, check out vancouver2010.com. If you want info on the upcoming Summer Olympics check out beijing2008.com or london2012.org.

In the meantime, I’ll still be watching the Torino Games for a few more days because I still have some left on my DVR that I haven’t watched yet. 🙂

25 February 2006

Nothing predictable in Torino

Category: Interesting Links,Randomness — Posted by Michael at 0051

While watching the Olympics over the past 14 days, I couldn’t quite put my finger on why I thought this year’s has been more interesting than some other years. The main reason that I could come up with was that this is the first time I had a DVR while watching the Olympics. It lets me completely skip over the really boring sports like hockey, figure skating and cross country.

However, tonight while watching the primetime broadcast I realized that there was something else. Jimmy Roberts mentioned during his nightly “Chevy Olympic Moment” that nothing has gone as predicted in these Olympics. He pointed out that there were no real sure things in these games. He also pointed out that so far during the Olympics, 26 different countries have won medals. There were some Japanese gold medalists, Croatian gold medalists, and many others you might not expect.

You can read/view tonight’s “Olympic Moment” on NBCOlympics.com.

20 February 2006

Torino 2006 Widget

Category: Interesting Links,Randomness — Posted by Michael at 0051

Looking for a way to keep up with the latest from the Olympics in Torino without having to head to the web? I finally found a good way. You very likely already use Konfabulator (now known as Yahoo! Widgets.) If not, go get it and then continue reading.

The Turin 2006 Winter Olympics widget puts the current medal count on your desktop and continuously updates it. It also gives you all the latest photos from the games and the day’s latest news.

Get the widget right here. It works on both Macintosh and Windows.

14 February 2006

The appeal of curling

Category: Randomness — Posted by Michael at 2003

NBC airs some of the Olympic curling matches live in the middle of the night on its cable channels. The beauty of having a DVR means that time doesn’t matter so I decided to record a few of them. It might not have the excitement and speed of the luge, but it involves strategy and careful consideration, etc.

After watching a men’s match and a women’s match, I learned something new about curling. It’s insanely boring! Don’t get me wrong, it’s interesting for an end or two but then it just keeps going and going and going at the slowest pace you could imagine. Oh well, I guess there’s a reason they show it live instead of saving it for primetime on the network. 🙂

13 February 2006

Luge

Category: Randomness — Posted by Michael at 2355

Singles luge has always been one of my favorite Winter Olympic sports to watch. I’ve also always thought it would be fun to try. Not that I’d probably ever have that chance, but if I had to try one Olympic sport, I’d pick the luge.

After watching the women’s singles luge yesterday my opinions changed slightly. It’s still loads of fun to watch. But I’m not so sure about wanting to try it now! There were a few pretty fierce crashes, but the worst was Samantha Retrosi an American girl who got knocked out and slid down half the course unconcious. Read the details here.

Oh well, maybe trying the skeleton would be safer. What? Face first? Oh…

12 February 2006

Day 1 over

Category: Interesting Links,Randomness — Posted by Michael at 0053

Day one of the Torino Olympic Games is over. I just remembered what one of my favorite parts of NBC’s Olympic coverage is. It’s the late night coverage that begins at midnight. Maybe it’s the cozy set with the leather chairs and fake video fire; maybe it’s the fact that watching Bob Costas late at night brings back fond memories of watching Later with Bob Costas; maybe it’s the fact that they do more in-depth stories and summarize the day’s events.

Speaking of summarizing the day’s events, the US team came out of day one with their first gold medal. It’s their only medal at the moment. It was won by Chad Hedrick in 5000m speed skating.

10 February 2006

High definition heaven

Category: Randomness — Posted by Michael at 2100

Torino 2006
Some evenings are better than others, but at the moment I can’t think of a better evening than sitting here watching the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics in high definition with a fire roaring in the fireplace. This is the first year that the Olympics are being broadcast in HD. Very cool!

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