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Showing posts from August, 2009

Run to the river

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While in Wisconsin I took a camera on a couple of runs. This was made possible by the relative consistency and predictability of the weather there, especially that of precipitation. On Pohnpei, a tropical downburst can occur without any significant warning. Carrying a camera on a run is potentially problematic. This term, however, a FujiFilm Finepix Z33 WP, as in "waterproof" to three meters, permitted me to haul a camera on a typical run to the Nett river and back. Outbound, eastbound headed towards centerpoint, Angie's ahead on the left. The river is at the ridge in the distant background.
Downhill just past the new US embassy is the future home of the Bank of Guam. The river is at the ridge on the left - no mountain too far.
The interior of the island is rainier. The view south from the state hospital.
On the bridge, a view south towards the interior of the island. Hidden behind the trees are the homes of Kamar, Meitik, and Lewetik, Nett.
The view northwesterly towards Ko…

A rolling ball can gather moss

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Mason releases the ball from a fixed height. This produces a repeatable speed for the ball, allowing multiple identical runs.

Gina holds the tape measure at the "origin" - zero centimeters, from which the timers started their stopwatches.

Timers mark where the ball was at one second, two seconds, three seconds, and so forth. Each timer has a stopwatch, each keeps track of the their own "seconds" assignment.

The three standing were three, four, and five seconds. In the background the measurements to the time positions are being made. This procedure makes time the independent variable and distance the dependent variable.

Clyde and Warren work from chalk marks that denote the location the timer was at.

Cumulus castellanus

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Cumulus castellanus producing rain over the lagoon to the southwest of the Palikir national campus of the College of Micronesia-FSM.

INS Half Marathon

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Completed the INS Nakasone half marathon, actually 19.7 km, in 2:06:54. Out of a field of 63 participants I came in 20th. I started out a tad fast, as usual, at 10.1 kph. I would finish at about 9.3 kph, averaging 9.5 kph over the route.

I ran in my END Stumptown 12oz. Still unsure if it is the shoes or just my own tightness, but I had arch problems on my right foot about an hour into the run. Still, I finished. No pictures from the support crew at Koahn, no one was there when I passed by inbound at 17:45. Had George carry a sport drink to the U turn-around, that really helped. The August sun was better than the July sun - more shade along the north side of the road. Air felt drier as well. A good run. Ten minutes faster than last year.

Ethnogarden clean-up

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Gary clears around the sugar cane.
The smaller plants require hand-weeding.
CharMarie, Nicole, and Charlene pull around the smaller plants.
Daryl David clearing around the Scaevola taccada.
Clearing the razor grass with machetes.

Looking a tad bedraggled, the instructor wraps by taking role and lecturing on some of the plants in the garden.

Density of soap

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The morning laboratory includes a pot of coffee.
In laboratory one, soap, some bars with a density less than one gram per cubic centimeter and some with a density of more than one gram per cubic centimeter, were carved into slabs of various sizes.
Their volume and mass were both measured.
Theodora working on massing a chunk of soap.
The results were then plotted on a scattergraph, one graph for each lab group. The volume on the x axis, the mass on the y axis. The slope was the density of the soap. The graphing was done in the computer laboratory using OpenOffice.org Calc software.

Ananas comosus var. variegatus

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Probable Ananas comosus var. variegatus blooming in the yard.
The red floral heads have yellow florets with purple tips.
Reminiscent of fireworks.
Two varieties with different variegation.

Ethnobotany SVP Hike

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Tlargest SC/SS 115 Ethnobotany course to date with 30 registered students heads towards the forest to see psilotum, lycopodium, ferns, and their allies. Julie, a lone Kosraen in the course, on the extreme right.

Posing among the keleu, Kristina, Charlene.

No, the hike was not a night hike. The class was deep in a valley under overhanging trees after examining Antrophyum califolium.

Social media survey fall 2009

A convenience sample of 74 students in the MS 150 Statistics class at the College of Micronesia-FSM Palikir national campus fall 2009 produced the following results:

45 MySpace members
41 Bebo members
13 students who use no social media sites
9 FaceBook members
7 Yahoo members
6 Tagged
4 Ning
6 Other [single memberships each in six other social media sites)

Note that students often have membership in more than one site. The seven who listed Yahoo could conceivably be listing that they have an email account with Yahoo. Six of the seven listed no other social media presence.

MySpace and Bebo remain the lead locations for statistics class students in social media space. Many students belong to both, FaceBook is a distant third. At the start of the spring 2009 term, however, no students reported being members of FaceBook. The students had not heard of FaceBook, as unusual as that must sound to those outside of Micronesia.

Blue Sunset

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Blue Sunset sakau market in Enipein, Kitti, has added satellite tables up on the nan mal. Not sure I would want to try the descent when pwopwida!

Each hut includes a table. This particular hill is burned regularly, maintaining a large clear area. When the wind and rain whip up, these are probably not as desirable a location. On clear, cool tropical nights, however, these would be the perfect place to enjoy sakau.

Growing up I learned that children should be seen and not heard. This one seems to be kept behind barbed wire as well!

The fence is actually more of an illusion than a reality. Neighborhood children and dogs slip through the fence daily without a scratch. Good fences may make good neighbors, but holes in fences allow the children to play.

Registration fall 2009

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Registration day two at the College of Micronesia-FSM. Random convenience sample statistics: 103 people on an hour long line were then fed serially onto a second line of 110 people, duration unknown at the time of this writing.

Counts do not include those who are sitting, they have stood in both lines and await the paperwork process completion, whereupon their name will be called.

Casino Royale

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Back in 1995 there were proposals to build a casino and resort in Lukop, Madolenihmw. The project never materialized. Fourteen years later and the idea has been given a new lease on life. Whether or not the project comes to fruition, it seems like the group on my front porch is preparing for future careers at the facility.

As a Sunday morning treat, Shrue made a coffee cake based on recipe she learned while in Wisconsin this past summer. The coffee cake was a real treat and reminded everyone of the wonderful summer we had all had.

While we at home devoured one pan, another pan went off to church where it was very popular after the service.

Nomenclature of the RipStik

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He really wanted a RipStik, a friend had one and he had learned to ride the board last spring. Thus a final shopping item on the trip home was a RipStik. As an instructor I know that a good portion of mastering any field, be the field economics, physcis, or castor boarding, is learning the vocabulary, the language of that field.

While trying to pull the nose of the board into the air, he would invariably fall. I asked him what he was trying to do and he said, "A manual." He then explained a manual and a "nose manual."

The word seemed odd, he was I felt trying to do a "wheelie." I figured the local neighborhood kids on this remote island must have either developed their own odd language or have mixed up terms they might have heard.

To my surprise, my son was using exactly the correct term. Now I wanted to know how the "trick" became known as a manual. I realized that RipStiks and Wave Boards were probably borrowing the language of skate boarding. Th…

FaceBook wins out over education, shopping

During January and February of 2009 FaceBook surged passed shopping giants Amazon and eBay in terms of unique visitors. FaceBook is now the planet's fourth largest web site as measured in millions of unique visitors, trailing only Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo. FaceBook is now more than double the size of MySpace, with some 250 million unique visitors. MySpace may even be "hemorrhaging" visitors, showing losses to FaceBook. In May 2009, FaceBook rode into the number four slot on the planetary Internet, climbing past Wikipedia. The social media, chat and share emotions giant surpassed that vast collection of the sum of human knowledge. Hanging out with friends was always more fun than going to class to learn something, little wonder FaceBook went past Wikipedia.

The long journey home

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The long journey home involved lots of flying. Four aircraft and seven airports.

Exhaustion and jet lag were our companions.

But inbetween the long flights were moments of bright beaches, warm water, and

meals with family and friends.

More photos of this long journey.