What is it?!
Thursday, September 30, 2010
There's a big debate at any school, college, or university: Whiteboards, or Chalkboards? There doesn't seem to be any middle ground: you love one and hate the other. Personally, I prefer whiteboards -- but blackboards make better texture.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Pieces from Treehouse, a game which uses "Icehouse pieces". They're very flexible, and are used in dozens of different games. Treehouse is one of my favorite short games, very simple and extremely easy to teach.
A bottle of Traminac -- a Croatian wine which I obtained during my summer trip to Croatia. This one was recommended as a true "taste of Croatia". Sometime when Sarah, my parents, and I are all together, we'll give it a try.
Sunday, September 26, 2010
I'm catching up after a weekend trip to Madison with the Lovely Sarah. (Note -- WITH her, not to go see her! Yay, living within 10 minutes of each other!)
From today: The Quincy Mine's old roundhouse has been undergoing an extensive rehabilitation lately. All of the old, rusted beams were taken out (there was no roof left), and replaced with nearly identical (but new!) beams, and a whole new roof. It looks pretty nice, and a good example of how to restore a building while keeping its basic identity intact.
A wet leaf on the ground.
You! Go! That way!
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
One of my favorite light games seems to have a message for me...
Fluxx is a fun light card game. The rules are incredibly easy: they're right on the cards! On your turn, you just follow the rules (which are usually something like "draw 1, play 1). The cards you play will change the rules, set the goal, and let you win. Sarah and I often play a fast game or two of Fluxx at lunch.
An old house at the Quincy Mine. It almost certainly was built for the mine agent or possibly a doctor -- someone very important. The house is huge, and has at least 2 stories, an attic, and a basement -- not something the mining companies would normally bother with for a mere miner!
Saturday, September 18, 2010
The lovely Sarah and I took a grand tour around the Keweenaw today. Our first stop was Seven Mile Point, a beautiful nature preserve on the shores of Lake Superior. Several years ago, the Michigan Nature Association bought up the rocky point as it was about to be used to build some very large vacation homes. While there are still some vacation homes nearby, the point itself is wild and beautiful. The preserve is open on weekends from noon until sunset, all through summer and much of the fall.
A crime happened here... a homi... no, wait a sui..., ummm, a homi-sui-cide?
The big Elmo came from an old friend, who had him hanging up (yes, with a noose) in his house for a long time. The old Elmo followed us around to our various houses, and last year the small Elmo came to our house on a birthday cake. The heart, I have no clue.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
A photo from today's exploration -- this part was at the old Atlantic Mill (on the cleverly named Old Mill Hill). The Atlantic Mine (the ultimate goal of our exploration) once had a hill here, on the shores of the Portage. Like all other mills on the Portage, its waste sands filled up too much of the river, and had to be moved. There is very little of the mill left -- just this brick-lined flue, leading to the old smokestack, and perhaps one other foundation. If you look closely, you can see a shaft of light where the stack vents the flue.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
St. Ignatius Loyola is an old church in Houghton which is quite spectacular inside -- and somewhat modernized outside. The church is a registered historical site, made (mostly) of the bright red Jacobsville sandstone which was so popular during the mining era. The church has been modernized by the addition of a large entryway and additional rooms, which works surprisingly well with the older part.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
This is a view of the Rekhi Hall "Tiger Pit" -- a big circular study lounge connected to the MTU math building. Why call it the Tiger Pit? Well, because it's round, people go there to suffer (while doing homework), and because there is a nice viewing balcony for those who wish to watch the unfortunate students in their plight.
Monday, September 13, 2010
I'm on the road again -- this time in Normal, Illinois, for another math conference. Don't get me wrong -- conferences are good places to do math, make contacts, and learn new things -- but I've been to a lot of them lately. Also, I don't have much time to think about (and set up) good photos while I'm at conferences.
Here, a very ABnormal meeting room, where I gave yet another math talk! (Title: "Using Steiner designs to construct entanglement-assisted quantum LDPC codes")
Every college town, ever, has a generic Irish Pub.
Ahh, those completely normal (and boring) hotel rooms...
Saturday, September 11, 2010
As you may know, I teach math (in addition to being a graduate student). This semester, I'm teaching a "Quantitative Literacy" class -- math for students who don't need a math class, except that our technological university still requires them to take one!
This is a view inside my Big Box O'Learnin' -- filled with hands-on items which I use throughout the semester. There are a bunch, and they all serve many purposes.
A bulb, reflected.
And finally, a lovely day to sit on the waterfront.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
On Saturday and Sunday, the Lovely Sarah and I took an overnight camping trip to the Porcupine Mountains, a huge and wild state park in northwestern Michigan. It was a beautiful weekend, and an excellent trip.
On Saturday, we hiked along the Escarpment trail, which runs along a high ridge between Lake Superior (just barely visible on the horizon) and the rest of the mountains. The view here is the Carp River, leading up to Lake of the Clouds -- Michigan's highest elevation inland lake.
Later, we visited the western end of the park, and saw the many spectacular waterfalls on the Presque Isle River. This is a macro view of one of them -- I highly recommend going there!
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Friday, September 3, 2010
Thursday, September 2, 2010
The lovely Sarah and I just got back from a great mini-vacation to Washington DC. The reason for the trip was our friends Job and Rachel's wedding. Because we arrived one day early, we had the chance to wander around the monument and national mall area. We visited the Jefferson Memorial, which I had never seen on my one previous trip. It's an amazing and beautiful monument, and very powerful to see in person.
Job and Rachel's wedding was beautiful. Because there was no photography allowed, I don't have any photos of the ceremony -- but instead, I do have this photo of the cake topper. I helped to photograph the reception, as part of a gift to my friend, the bride.
After a VERY short night, we got up bright and early (actually, dark and early) to fly home. Our sleepy feet rested a bit at Washington National Airport.
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Our old friends Kyle and Amy were up visiting the Copper Country last week. Their wee one, Nicholas, is very interested in the straps to his chair!
We had a great time hanging out at Kyle and Amy's camp site, eating delicious camping foods (i.e. smores), and playing games.
Another day, another cute baby photo!
A photo from the last day of this year's Copper Country Explorer weekend -- hanging out on the Robbins Mine's rock pile, overlooking the cliffs. We had a great time hanging around, talking "shop" (meaning, mines, ruins, and history), and eating brats!