What Smart Guys Can Do With Computers

This video is a simulation of the precipitation field from Hurricane Floyd. It looks like radar, but there is no radar coverage where most of this plays out.

My friend Bob Hart is a meteorology professor at Florida State. Of all the people I know, he has the most intuitive mind as far as math is concerned. He immediately sees the route to solving, or in this case, visualizing complex math problems.

This animation is a simulation of the precipitation field from Hurricane Floyd. It looks like radar, but there is no radar coverage where most of this plays out.

Quoting Bob, “This 27hr run took 36hr on 42 cpus.” That’s a lot of calculations!

Speaking Of Hurricanes

This is a very cool simulation of what hurricane force winds can do. Actually cool and scary.

The Cold That Keeps On Giving

I started coming down with a cold right before we left the ship. Now, I have graciously passed it along to Helaine and Stef. Helaine is currently sniffling at home. Steffie is sniffling at my parent’s place in Florida (and therefore gets zero sympathy).

Call Guiness. It’s possible this could go three generations, if my folks catch it.

I originally wrote about my cold because of the lovely sensation of flying cross country with clogged nose and ears and the simulation of knitting needles poking toward my brain.

OK – enough analogy. As a guy who can’t watch someone on TV getting a shot, maybe I should stop.

I wondered, if it’s so tough for me (and, of course, I am a very macho and stoic man), how do pilots perform with a cold? You wouldn’t want the guy at the controls of your jetliner wheezing and feeling loads of self pity.

As it turns out, a friend of Helaine’s is married to a pilot for a major commercial airline. Helaine asked her friend.

You asked how Bill flies with a cold. He doesn’t.

If he feels one coming on before a trip, he calls in sick since he can’t medicate himself. He’s only allowed to take Tylenol. If he wakes up sick while on the road, someone else picks up the trip and he rides as a passenger so he can take cold medicine for the congestion.

He tried to “fly sick” once and the pain was awful. Usually he picks up a cold at the end of his trip and brings it home to share with Jason and I. Isn’t that thoughtful?!

Of course, when we get it, the cold isn’t nearly as horrible as the one he had. Men… Gotta love ’em!

Wow! Who would have thought a cold was enough to ground a pilot?

As far as the comment portraying all men as wimps is concerned…. So?


I don’t drink alcohol. So, I don’t know what a hangover is. However, I think I have experienced a pretty good simulation of one today.

My head is killing me in a very ‘special’ way I’m not used to feeling. This is one headache aspirin has not been able to tame.

It actually goes back yesterday’s poker game. What I didn’t mention in yesterday’s post was, the game was played with Helaine out of town. She and Steffie went to see Rick Springfield in concert (NYC last night, Jim Thorpe, PA tonight).

That doesn’t mean Helaine’s presence wasn’t here. She is the consummate host and incredibly organized. Her work was done before she drove off.

When the gang got here last night, the house was loaded with snacks perfect for poker. We had home baked chocolate chip cookies, home baked chocolate brownies, pretzels, chips and salsa.

My kitchen had become my own personal carbohydrate bulking station!

Back when Helaine and I started dating, I weighed about 12 pounds. I was rail thin while living off Hydrox Cookies and Coca Cola. Unfortunately, that train has left the station. You can’t go back… as I proved.

By the end of the night I was full and hyper, as all that sugar moved nicely into my bloodstream. I woke this morning to a pounding head.

After a few hours awake, I figured the only cure was to go back to sleep. Conveniently, I thought of this while prone on the sofa. By the time I was conscious again, the Sun had set.

The nap didn’t help. Here it is, around 9:30, and though I’m feeling as good as I have all day, I still feel like… well, it’s family blog, but you get the idea.

Tomorrow Helaine will return, and I’ll get back to healthy eating. Not a moment too soon. After all, not only was I not feeling well, I had no one to kvetch to!