Posts Tagged ‘ Boston ’

The Past, The Present (The Aftermath)

From the other day…when I tried to write but fell asleep out of sheer exhaustion:

So Irene came and went. We were out of power for most of the day.

I learned three guitar songs and started reading my text books…lol.

It’s amazing how dependent we are on electricity. We should all try living in the old days again…candles are nice. Or get generators. And I was supposed to work on my website today…

Anyway, it seems that loosing power will bring out the worst in some people – literally. Some (large) woman came out in her underwear to bang on the tree remover’s truck. I guess she was trying to hurry them up? Instead several neighborhood children where scared for life.

Ambitionz

My life would be correctly defined as insane. The past few days have been eventful, I’m still teaching at the Fab Lab, we have a meeting tomorrow with someone about setting up a second in this area, we survived Irene and have power, the past few days have been packed (packed) full and oh, did I forget to mention – I just found out that I’m moving into the dorm tomorrow.

(Starts frantically throwing her stuff into boxes)

So packing, shopping, teaching, moving and meeting – all in the same day. 😀
(If you’re thinking this is not possible to accomplish then you’re not the only one. Remember, my life: an insane sequence of improbable events, following after each-other in rapid succession.)

Therefore, I will bid you adieu and figure out which parts of my room stay, go, or must be purchased.

Also, our pastor left this week for Georgia. 😦

Ambitionz

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Fabable Arduinos, Wireless LEDs and Other Cool Things


Yes, those are lights in the table – “Look Ma, no wires!” (Read about it and link to the article towards the end of this post.)

FAFSA must be trippin’ (as is said in the vernacular of the day). They raised my EFC. At this point I’m not sure why.

Our government must be “trippin'” as well. Word is, they’re aiming to create a new legislative body called a “Super Congress”. Click here to read about it. This body would have special powers to draft legislation. It’s supposed to be for situations like the one we’re in now with the debt ceiling debate (a political debate turned civil war(of sorts). Politicians refer to each-other as adversaries. I didn’t know we had all moved to England.) For some reason I didn’t hear anything about this provision in our Constitution.

I’m going to make a point to watch old (’80s or older) movies (in what little time I might happen to have to watch movies 🙂 ). I’ve seen two so far: The Princess Bride and Hairspray(the 1988 version).

I’m officially finished everything my school needs me to finish to allow for matriculation – and…I ordered my books today! (Super excited XD).

In other exciting news: Our first materials shipment (for the Fab Lab) came in!! I went over to MIT today to pick it up, and then spent some time in the lab testing and getting everything working. It’s so great to see how everything is coming together.
Roxbury/Dorchester/Grove Hall: the Fab Lab is moving in!
This is so great for me because it has been one of my dreams to have a Fab Lab in my neighborhood. It’s been a dream of mine for a few years. I can’t wait for our first program day!

Interesting things I found today:

A transparent film allows LEDs (and other electrical components) to be embedded in transparent materials (i.e. glass) without any apparent wiring. Check it out here.

Also, a project I am looking forwards to trying out: Fabbing Leah Buechley’s Lily Pad Sew-able Arduino design. Shelby Doyle (one of Neil’s graduate students) did it and here is her documentation. I’ll let you all know how mine turns out. This is a variation on Ed Baafi’s Fabduino project.

Here’s the Lily Pad:

Here’s the design:

Here’s my goal (from Shelby’s documentation):

Ambitionz
Day 28
72 Dayz to go

The Atlantis (thousands of highly skilled US engineers) Gets The Pink Slip

Welcome home Atlantis – you are a national hero and treasure. In honor of this occasion, I have been commissioned with the task of informing you that – you have been laid off.
You didn’t see that coming, did you?

STS-135 Atlantis Landing (201107210007HQ)

If you’ve read my blog in the past, you know that I strongly question the wisdom of ending the space shuttle program. Unfortunately, I wasn’t consulted. 🙂

I did find this awesome, incredibly nostalgic video online however. I am really quite sad about this. I nearly cried (teared up slightly – no sobbing). At any rate – I think this is my dormant thirst for space travel coming out. Its afraid it will now go unsatisfied forever (and ever). Click here to see it

I would blog about how mechanical and computer-like the medical professionals I interacted with today were…
Ok, I will – briefly. I told the nurse that I had never had a particular procedure – and she continued to tell me I had. (No, she didn’t have any records to prove that – and I had really and truly never had that procedure). It was like trying to input data in a form where the option you need isn’t there. And then they made me take tests that, based on previous information, couldn’t possibly have been positive.

Big news: TIE Project Update! (imagine me squealing with excitement – while jumping up and down) (no – don’t, I just did and it was a little disturbing)…but at any rate: We’re really getting a summer lab! I can feel it getting closer! I sent in the order for our “Fab Lab Inventory” sourced materials which should start arriving next week. Setup on Monday, lesson plans coming soon. It’s all so exciting how it’s coming together!

Ambitionz
Day 23
77 Dayz to go

Mosquito Ladies, Summer Reading, Murdoch and the BPS

My summer reading for Wentworth came today. 🙂 They assigned the Pulitzer Prize winner The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.
So far, I find the narrative style to be a bit brash, and the entirety of the first 7 pages (chapter 1) discuss a superstitious curse and how powerful and unavoidable it is. I’ve also started to wonder if epithets aren’t just a tad bit overused (and I’ve only been reading for less than 5 minutes). So far they aren’t as widely used as in A Million Little Pieces. I’m hoping for a great underlying structure and relevant points. I always feel a bit jaded when reading fiction as there are so many great stories that actually happened, but this one looks promising.
So far, so good. Here it is 🙂
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My first Moleskine notebook. (No, I’m not sure what all the hype is over Moleskines but I got this one because I heard that they are good notebooks, it was on sale and I needed another pocket note receptacle. I love it so far.)

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This is one of my other, self assigned summer readings (along with Campbell’s Biology, physics, chemistry, some literature, inventory lists and a yet unknown Calculus book).
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The Boston Public Schools is planning to relocate two high schools. As the daughter of a Hyde Park BPS teacher, I disagree with this move (for reasons I don’t currently have the time to discuss). Click here to read the article

Today, I went to the clinic so my physician could sign some papers for school. The “mosquito ladies” took some of my blood 😦 I miss it.

Why is this Murdoch story dominating the news? The fact that you control the news does NOT make you news! And the whistle-blower is dead? Who could have predicted that? With much power comes much corruption.

The nice folks from Wentworth reopened the English test and called me, saying that I could take it any time in the next few days. It’s done 🙂

Ambitionz
Day 21
69 Dayz to go

T-minus one (last time). A tribute to the NASA Space Shuttle Program

I still remember it as if it were yesterday. It was October 29, 1998. Senator and astronaut John Glenn and the crew of the Space Shuttle Discovery began their expedition. I remember the sound, the fire, the awe. I remember the inspiration. I was only 6 years old – but John Glenn was my hero. I stood in my grandfather’s living room with my mother and siblings, completely transfixed by what I saw on the screen, I knew what I wanted to be. I would be an astronaut.

The Space Shuttle Discovery being towed off the runway after it's final landing

Seeing the space shuttle launch had a lasting impact on me; an impact that continues to this day and far out lasted my notions of becoming an astronaut. It simulated and fertilized within me, as a small child, a true love for science and a desire to participate in this wonderful world of discovery. That experience of watching the shuttle launch helped deepen a child’s curiosity, into everlasting amazement at what science can do- and encouraged a strong desire to be part of the community that made the Discovery’s voyage possible.

Like it did for so many American kids, the space shuttle program, (along with events such as the Apollo mission to the moon and Charles Lindbergh trans-Atlantic flight,) gave me an enduring sense of patriotic pride, coupled with the responsibility of our leadership on a global level.

As a citizen of the world and member of the upcoming generation, the space shuttle program impressed me with a sense of my duty to receive the torch of scientific and technological advancement and to keep it alive as our mothers and fathers did before us. They used it to explore space. What will we do with it?

Now, a bit more than a decade later, I am an engineer (in training) and have found my passion in inspiring people to purse an understanding of our world (science) and the development and application of this understanding (technology).

Today, it is with mixed feelings that I bid farewell to the space shuttle program. I think of the twin tragedies which claimed the lives of 14 brave explorers and I am glad for the opportunity to seek new methods of space travel. I think of 132 successful missions and I wonder how we will replace such and integral part of our nation, science program and culture (not to mention job supplying workforce).

We all wonder what the future will hold for American maned space missions; as the question “what’s next” has yet to be answered. No, cargo missions are not what we’re talking about.

I hadn’t planned to watch the launch today. I was scheduled to pick up machines for the summer Fab Lab we’re installing. My little brother and I walked into the basement of MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms just as the live feed showed the Atlantis “blasting off”. We watched until it’s solid rocket boosters fell off and blew up into flaming balls of fire as they returned back to earth. They had done their job. NASA says the space shuttles have done theirs as well. Now it’s up to us to do ours.

I wish the Atlantis godspeed on its journey and return home; and yes, I will be visiting the Discovery at the Smithsonian.


TIE Project update

I spent most of today at CBA, installing software on the brand new lab computers that CBA is lending us. We’re scheduled to set up next week. We still have to pick up consumables and other supplies/lab equipment which hopefully will include a couple more computers. Here are some pictures:

Boxes and boxes!
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(Yep – that’s me!)

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My brother installing Windows OS

20110709-020516.jpg

Ambitionz
Day 10
80 Dayz to go

New Fab Lab comming online! (For the summer at least)(5 minute post)

I have 5 minutes to write this post, as I have homework to do 🙂 (4:59…).

Today’s big news:
In our meeting today with the program director at the Roxbury YMCA, we confirmed that we’ll be operating a Fab Lab out of their former computer lab over the summer! I/we are truly excited. We’re offering minimal hours at this point due to lack of human resources (HR at this point = me) but hope to expand, or at least get some other people/groups involved. We will have two of the four standard machines (thanks to the fabulous folk at MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms 🙂 ) and some of the standard materials. Machines are the vinyl cutter and the mini mill. We’re hoping to expand as the project is successful.

Click here for some pictures of things made in Fab Labs around the world

My timer is screaming at me – back to the books, then to sleep.

Ambitionz
Day 9
81 Dayz to go

July 6th…and the fireworks continue

Hmm…July 6th. Some part of my brain has (subconsciously) been thinking that it’s August 3rd. I’m really not sure why.


Another fireworks video in tribute to those of my neighborhood who firmly believe that the fireworks should go on. I also took this video at this year’s Boston Pops Spectacular.

I talked to my financial aid counselor today. She was really nice. The aid – not so much. It does help however so I’m going to take courage and find a job. I can’t work during the school year since my aid package already includes about 75 hours of work study per semester. I’ve spent the majority of my day researching scholarships, and getting information on loans. In fact – I plan to spend large portions of the next week or so glued to my computer screen, looking for ways to buy that which I can’t afford: an education. (Audible groans)

To be honest, it’s almost funny (and tragic) how poor I am – or how little money is worth – or maybe it’s a combination of both. Oh well, I should make friends with England’s new princess or a celebrity.

I flubbed my health insurance waiver form which probably means I have to wait until next week sometime to get it fixed. At that point I should also find out who my academic adviser is so I can register for classes (before every last one is filled – I already am going to have a significantly less-than-optimal schedule). I think I am registered for micro-biology. (Celebrates.)


On to happier topics. 🙂 I am now an official member of the National Society of Black Engineers, and have a pending membership to the Society of Women Engineers. I feel accomplished. Unfortunately, all of the software I have access to as a NESB student is for Windows. I wish they’d fund copies of Bootcamp for Mac users (like myself).

Of things that are incredibly difficult: “we will remember the Lord our God… “who maketh a way in the sea, and a path in the mighty waters;”

I refuse to become overwhelmed. 🙂

Classes in the morning. TIE Project meeting in the afternoon. Job search: engaged.

Ambitionz
First week: done.
82 Dayz to go

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