blogs tagged "pdx"

Staycation 2018

Sun Dec 09 2018 21:26:27 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: staycation 2018 pdx portland

So I took a staycation! And this time, it was voluntary!

People are often curious about staycations -- asking "What did you get up to? What did you get done?".
I'm not sure why -- maybe they're just nosy, but maybe it's because I always have so many projects in the air and I talk about my interests all the time? Maybe people just love the idea of a staycation. I dunno.

In any case...for my own fulfillment and sense of GSD, I decided to log some of the high points of my staycation. I feel pretty good about it overall. :)

In no real order:

  • I made pretty great bánh mì for my home team. We had some pork chops that needed to be utilized, so I ended up marinading them in a lemongrass/fish sauce potion and quick-pickled some carrots and radishes and made sandwiches with the usual bánh mì gear. They turned out super delicious and I think I will never not marinade pork chops.

  • Hung our xmas lights. Honestly, I probably only actually realize that it's winter and frigging cold when I have to take warm-up breaks during light hanging. Every. Single. Year.

  • Updated the DEQ/registration on the 20-year old car (and the only car I've owned). Another stupid-yet-necessary yearly ritual. In the interest of staying positive and constant learning, I chatted with the DEQ guy and learned that failing vehicles will emit a code(s?) that vehicle owners then take to mechanics to do adjustments. That sounded awful...and I started pondering this later as I caused our car to emit a squeely sound as I hit the gas hard. Hmmm. #thisisfine

  • Topped off the wiper fluid in the car. Yup. AMAZING! Not really, but since we park outside under a pine tree we end up using it a lot.

  • Spent most of Tuesday volunteering with Futel to finish installing a public free payphone on NE Killingsworth (near 12th).
    You should check it out and call your mom (or the operator) and leave voicemail and listen to LPC. It looks like this:

20181209-futel_killingsworth_phone_1024.jpg

  • Made a pretty solid beef stew in the InstantPot. Isn't that like the first thing you're supposed to make? Well, meh, I finally did that...and I tossed in a ton of weird/variety mushrooms that I got in a pack. Between the thyme (maybe I used too much?) and the gross-ass-shrooms...I wasn't that into it...but it was hearty. Ok, it was pretty good.

  • My comic backlog is pretty out of control, so I took some time to get caught up on a few things. Like Prism Stalker (which is amazing and beautiful) and Plastic (which has been sitting waiting for over a year). I don't read that much...but when I do, there are pictures...which I can enjoy while....

  • LISTENING...to a backlog of sounds. So. Many. Podcasts (and radio shows). And sounds. And music. So much everything, always. After binging on Shit Town I also was stoked on this Negativland Vicki Bennett anniversay thing and some Institute of Spectra-Sonic Sound (which I wish was a snarfable podcast) and this recent :zoviet*france: live set and this radio show that LPC did with Negativland and the new Xiu Xiu video (I was stoked to learn that Thor drummed on the upcoming album) and probably several more things I'm forgetting...

  • I attended a parent meeting about middle school safety/climate/culture...and sent emails, and read emails, and planned meetings. We also volunteered to walk around the middle school for 20 minutes to serve as recess monitors. While being notably different from elementary school, wasn't too crazy...just more fuckwords and clandestine cellphones. #dadstuff

  • Got some sweet hot mud drywall repair done in our kitchen and stairs from Ruben Cortez Drywall, who was prompt, reasonable, and kinda excessively (funnily?) chatty.

  • Attended HH with some friends/colleagues who all got fired from Adidas with me a year ago. Great people, good times, harsh nostalgia. ///

  • Hung with my cousin and his partner in their new place which is only about 5 minutes by bike! We went late...and I have seriously not laughed that hard in so so many years. This.

  • We stalked/hunted a wild xmas tree from a parking lot, much like our ancestors. It's a real beauty! At least that's what Stacy's FB feed says.

  • After 10 years, I finally managed to stitch+sync audio with video for a show that I played on KBOO in May 2008. I got it uploaded to youtube and archive.org and maybe one day I'll finish reworking infiltrationlab.com and host it there too. Big thanks to earfeast (2) for getting a huge/rad 1080p recording before it was reasoanble. :)

  • It's the holiday season, so in keeping with tradition, I watched Jason Eisner's "Treevenge". Nothing else can ever get me in the xmas spirit like that brutal short film.

  • Went to a birthday party for my 1-year-old niece, who is frigging adorable. I got to rock her to sleep for a nap and watch her eat cheesecake. What a joy!

  • I hand-sewed 3 patches on my kitchen apron. It always takes longer than I estimate, and my fingers are always cramped and sore after. It kinda looks like this:

20181209-apron2018-12_1024.jpg

I definitely had a different view/perspective/appreciation of the staycation after being laid off last year. I haven't been squarely project focused. I pace myself. I think thoughts and carve a mild trajectory, knowing full well that it's all subject to change at a moment's notice. I feel like a dad. I celebrate small victories and enjoy the variety and base excitement where I can find it.
Positivity. Regardless.

The sounds of a murder...

Tue Oct 23 2018 18:56:44 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: sound audio fieldrecording pdx crows portland birds

20181023-crows_1024.jpg

(image attribution: wellcome collection)

It must finally be fall...because the crows are in full effect in Portland.

I took a recording of them this evening in Waterfront Park. Enjoy!

(download)

This office view

Mon Aug 27 2018 21:17:30 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: pdx portland newrelic nr view

I never want to take this view for granted. <3 pdx.

20180827-IMG_20180827_123817_1024.jpg

20180827-IMG_20180827_123810_1024.jpg

Witch's Castle (Forest Park)

Fri Jul 13 2018 21:30:30 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: bicycling forestpark pdx portland witch witchcastle bikes

We've been back in pdx for about 16 years and I had not yet made it out to the Witch's Castle in Forest Park.

So I decided to do that on Monday.

20180713-vc_witch_house_forest_park_2018_1024.jpg

I can't really say that I recommend it on a road bike, but it was mostly fine. I couldn't ride about half the trail, due to the rocky/steep/slippery/muddy nature of a trail in a park...but it was quite ok early on a Monday morning. Only passed about two other people on the trail (one hiker, one jogger).

The trail dumps you out on Cornell, and then you get to take the lane and bomb maybe 2 miles downhill, including 2 tunnels. I didn't know the area that well, so I was fully clenched and expecting to fall/die.

My device said I hit 40MPH. It was insane and also fun as hell...

Portland street art

Tue Feb 20 2018 22:00:29 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: pdx portland art flyers streetart wheatpaste

Some interesting street art in Portland (not mine):

20180220-MVIMG_20180203_100951_1024.jpg

20180220-MVIMG_20180116_085351_1024.jpg

Seen in Portland

Mon Jul 06 2015 20:11:22 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: pdx portland graffiti stencil

Sidewalk graffiti in PDX.

pdx_sidewalk_graffiti.jpg

S1 show

Thu Nov 20 2014 08:59:22 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: s1 pdx noise portland mshr

Fantastic noise show at S1 tonight. Excellent sets all around! I didn't capture much, but the MSHR set was absolutely amazing and I offer up a few clips:

2014 Church of Robotron

Fri Sep 26 2014 22:42:31 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: portland pdx cor robotron 2084 churchofrobotron dorkbot dorkbotpdx diode diodegallery

The Church of Robotron has been working hard to find the mutant savior and to train members of the last human family. We had an opening on Wednesday, and my friend Zach edited together this fantastic video:

Here's a test video I shot of oscule's much improved jacob's ladder...it's terrifying:

If you have not yet been tested, please join us on First Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 at Diode Gallery for indoctrination, testing, anti-robot training, propaganda distribution, and some good old-fashioned street devival.

Open Source Bridge notes, 2014

Mon Jul 21 2014 22:47:05 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: osbridge pdx portland oss foss opensource

So Open Source Bridge was a month ago, and I had been so bogged down and frazzled thinking about an planning for toorcamp 2014 that I didn't have a chance to collect my thoughts/bookmarks. Until now.

So yeah, this is a series of thoughts random, poorly organized thoughts and bookmarked tabs from the conference. In no particular order...

  • Aaron Parecki gave a great talk on OAuth and "IndieAuth" and what it means to an open and free web. There's this thing called web sign in, and they have a wiki on how to set it up. I want to get this going on noisybox.net. There are a bunch of important reasons why this is mostly rad, but it can also allow you to do powerful things like using 3rd party tools...like...
  • Quill. Post content to your own website, securely, using a 3rd party tool. Shows the power of these open interchange technologies, and formats...like...
  • Micropub. An API spec for doing time-based content posting (blogging, microblogging) with 3rd party tools, but to your own site, in a way that you are fully in control of. It's kinda deep and complicated and gnar, but it's damn sure the best thing I've seen in this direction...
  • Mesh technologies, especially after certain leaks, are hotter than ever. They still don't live up to their expectations/misunderstandings yet, but have real potential for grassroots and emergency response situations. The Mesh Potato seems like a fun device for experimentation, if not already antiquated.
  • Not only are tons of nerds using Python for data analysis and visualization, but there are mature OSS product suites that help with this stuff. Also data dorks often use iPython notebook to facilitate sharing and exchange of bad-assery. Reminds me of a cool mashup of sketchpad.cc and etherpad and pastebin, but Python.
  • The Internet Archive is still kicking ass. They could stand to be more redundant (DR) though. No seriously. They also have detailed APIs (change the "details" in any item url to "metadata" for an example), an s3 compatible API, an rich suite of open source cli tools for interacting with their APIs. They also run openlibrary.org, an amazing lending library for digital book content.
  • I learned a little about Camlistore, which is a complex personal storage system. I think the goal is to provide a framework into which you can store and index the stuff you create online (blogs, tweets, photos, recipes, fanfic? all the things?) and have it be robust and searchable and have many other advanced things. I'm having a hard time trying to grok how it might fit into my own personal storage needs, but I sure do get the sentiment. It also reminded me about Tahoe-LAFS and the interesting things that can be done with that.

I'm sure I've only captured a fraction of what I found fun/interesting/inspiring! Until next year...

Ca$h for my HARGADON

Fri Jun 27 2014 01:00:18 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: street-art art pdx portland 2014

I know what I'm doing when the next economic downturn slices our faces in half! I'm going to the pawn shop with all of my Hargadons!

banksy_pole_01.jpg

For historical record: First observed yesterday morning, around Broadway and 3rd (??). This is not a common morning route for me, but the sign was there and appeared fairly new. I considered going back last night to pick it up but decided to give it a day or more to cook(?). Tonight it's mine mine mine mine mine mine mine...

lols_nabbage.jpg

I want the g-voice number response team to be moar responsive, though I respect that my calls are hopefully just noise in the matrix. From the support perspective, we should be OUTRAGED that it's this difficult to get actual cash money for your actual Banksy (original artwork). Actually.

Please call the above sales line and let them know how upset you are that you can't actually sell your actually original Banksy.

I Like Thai Food (OMG)

Thu Apr 10 2014 22:45:30 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: pdx food carts thai

I can't speak to the authenticity, but the Pad Kee Mao today from the "I Like Thai Food" cart (10th and Alder) was perfection. Ingredients were amazing and fresh, flavors were balanced, and the heat was thru the roof! Bonus points for no mushrooms (default!).

I especially love their spice scale:

thai_omg.jpg
At the chef's recommendation I went with OMG.

I know I've had their food a few other times...but I can't ever remember it being this good. Wow.

Hollywood Bowl is closing

Mon Mar 10 2014 22:48:15 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: portland pdx hollywood bowling

The view from the max station is probably just as iconic as the view from the front...but maybe 1000x worse.

hollywood_bowl_2014.jpg

Sadly, it seems that the bowling alley will be closing in May.

Humans of Portland

Thu Dec 26 2013 23:38:13 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: pdx portland fieldwork

This is inspiring: http://humansofpdx.com/

especially this:

http://humansofpdx.com/post/69692797209/ronald-spoke-softly-seeming-vulnerable-and-with

Reinvigorates my desire to do grassroots street recording, interviews, exploration. I vowed to field record once a month. Starting that again.

Broadway Bridge memorial

Tue Dec 17 2013 22:21:17 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: portland pdx bridge broadway

Seen this morning on the Broadway Bridge.

broadway_bridge_memorial2.jpg

broadway_bridge_memorial1.jpg

(presumably a jumper)

Tonight...

Mon Dec 06 2010 23:55:56 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: tonight dorkbot dorkbotpdx pdx portland

Tonight I...

  • ...rode a bicycle across two bridges.
  • ...was approached by a man and a woman (both strangers) and was told "we wish to join the cult".
  • ...witnessed a man tapping a plastic pad connected to a tangle of circuits and wires and causing a drum sound to be played.
  • ...saw a pair of multicolor robot eyeballs glowing on a tabletop
  • ...witnessed a middle-aged man covered in a mass of glowing LEDs and EL wire.
  • ...listened to the sound of a cello convolved with the impulse response from a wooden door.
  • ...helped a woman field test a subversive, covert anti-television teddy bear implant prototype.
  • ...watched a slot car adjust its speed in response to a computer's system load average.
  • ...was in good company.

Dorkbot.

Retinal tattoo gun

Wed Feb 25 2009 23:22:25 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: dorkbotpdx dorkbot portland pdx lightbar

So my pal Mykle has done this EPIC event called LIGHTBAR to cheer people out of their seasonal affective disorder during February in Oregon. If you can't see the victory in building a GIANT and BRIGHT bamboo-event-party-dome, by hand, in the middle of winter, then you need to be poked (with sharp bamboo).

A few of us from dorkbot PDX have been peripherally involved, even contributing some works.

retinal tattoo gun

My friend Brian and I collaborated on a light-based project dubbed the RETINAL TATTOO GUN. The concept involved a series of bright flashes intended to [temporarily] imprint iconic imagery directly into the retina with strong after-images (ghosts).

We had a semi-working prototype up at LIGHTBAR last weekend before it collapsed(!!!) this week. This iteration of the retinal tattoo gun was a pretty big technical failure, but it was a fun project and we have a nice foundation going forward.

The circuit I designed/built had a series of issues, the worst of which was some form of ground bounce or inductive jibber jabber that caused all 8 flash channels to fire when any of them fired. Turns out that yeah, it's nontrivial to sequence a bunch of disposable camera flashes.

The day of installation we also found out that the repurposed viewmaster switch was connected in a way that caused the flashes to trigger when the advancer jobby was directly in front of the slide...so most of the light power was dampened. Whoops, doh!

We hope you enjoy the above image, and we hope to have something dangerous, compelling, and electrical to mount to your face in the near future.