Super Snark Sailboat

Super Snark Sailboat - Aft port view
Super Snark Sailboat - Aft port view

I just bought this sailboat, an 11′ Super Snark. I’ve wanted to learn to sail for a few years—this seemed like the perfect sailboat with which to start. It is purportedly unsinkable and very stable. The ABS clad EPS foam hull certainly seems very durable and indeed, could not possibly sink even if completely swamped.

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Geotagging Nature

Every now and then—well, every spring—I get the urge to go hiking, which to me means looking for interesting, beautiful, or uncommon flora and fauna. Over the years my interests have varied among ferns, fish, insects, birds, fungi, and trees. This year it’s back to the ferns and fern allies. I recently had the idea to start recording more data about my ‘discoveries’, and with the iPhone, GPS, camera, this blog, and geotagging, I could have a bit of geek fun recording it.
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Computers

Dan got a new MacBook Pro today. Aaron got an iPhone. Started me thinking about the computers I’ve used or owned over the years.

Prehistory

Coleco Pong – Dad had one at the little house he lived in after my parents divorced. I was maybe 8…or 9 or 10, which would be sometime 1977 – 1979.

Commodore Pet – at Heinz Semder’s import office in Brooklyn. I only really sat in front of it.

Borroughs 68000 – I took a Pascal programming course at Franklin & Marshall when I was in seventh grade. We used terminals (Honeywell or Teledyne?), but I have no idea what the OS was. Once they toured us through the Burroughs 68000 mainframe room. What a cool memory. A roomful of well organized blue refrigerator shapes. Whisking tape machines…and those massive, multiple-platter hard disk machines that were about the size of a dishwasher. Capacity? I don’t know. Each student had a chance to make a punched card—probably with our name.

Mattel Intellivision – Shared it with my step-dad for years.

Commodore Vic-20 – Dad bought this and I started learning BASIC programming. Cool sound chip, simple as it was. 1/4 audio tape storage.

Commodore 64 – My first computer. Awesome sound chip, SID. Programmed in BASIC, Logo, Pascal, broke things in 6510 assembly language. Massive external 5-1/4 floppy drive. Used GEOS for a short time before it finally fried…something in the power supply must have shorted, because when I opened it up, paths on the circuit board were warped and wavy. Melted!

Atari 1200XL – My friend Rick got this for Christmas. Best thing I did on it was write a program to make random geometric shapes. We thought they results would make great OP t-shirts.

Apple Macintosh SE – Borrowed from Casey Dixon, who would later become my wife.Apple Quadra 605 – The first computer I bought on my own.

Apple Quadra 630 - Second computer I bought.

iMac – This was Casey’s.

Apple PowerMac 8200AV

Apple iBook – Casey’s first generation iBook I think.

iMac G4 17″

Apple Powerbook G4 – One of many laptops I used at Ritter. Other machines I used there include Quadra 950 with Daystar accelerator, PowerMac 7200, PowerMac 9500, G3, G4.

Apple Powerbook G4 – 15″ Casey’s last school computer.

Apple iBook xxxx – I’m not sure which one Casey has right now.

Dell Latitude 810 – My Develisys laptop. Ah,…Microsoft Windows. Words cannot express…

iMac 24″ Intel Core Duo – No longer my current machine.

Poster Design for Peace

When Lancaster Coalition for Peace and Justice asked me to design a poster for their M15 event, I was delighted—LCPJ has become a tremendous force for good in Lancaster County, PA.

M15 is the antithetical celebration of the anniversary of the beginning of the War in Iraq, which is commonly regarded as March 15.

Visit Lancaster Voice for more details on the M15 event and peace efforts in general; and see the Iraq Veterans Against the War website to learn more about their plan to end the war.

A Spanish translation of the poster is also available.

First public sighting of the poster: Lancaster Dispensing Company, a nice 18 × 24 in format inkjet.

Remnants of the Reading & Columbia Railroad

Reading & Columbia Railroad

I often wonder about the possibility of combining my varied interests to create something more meaningful, more lasting, than any one avocation ever has the chance to produce. Last night while looking at my partial schematic of the former Reading & Columbia Railroad that runs through Lititz I thought the text labels on the diagram might be more understandable if I rotated them 90 degrees. This felt like the first time I thought about the railroad as a designer, not simply a rail fan. Within a short time I transformed my barely serviceable sketch into an a more lucid and artful interpretation of the subject at hand. I don’t expect that a “map” like this could matter much to anyone else, but I feel compelled to pursue the idea a bit further, and to eventually take it into the letterpress shop.

Stay tuned.

Fallen Peony

peony.gif

Here’s a small linoleum cut that I just finished. This peony will illustrate a collaborative letterpress piece I am doing with J C Groff. In the final piece the peony will print white on a medium toned paper. The body, typeset by Jim, is excerpted from a letter he sent to me. One hundred fifty finished prints will be submitted to the APA. I’ll try to remember to post the finished piece. And yes, I did notice that it has been exactly six months since I last posted to the site. Ouch.

A Domestic Scene

After spending several hours working on a painstaking, rather fussy linoleum cut for a client, I needed to do something quick and loose—something to clear out the cobwebs and relax my tense mind. I looked up from my work table to see the scene pictured above, only, in reality, the image is reversed, left to right. This is because I drew the scene directly onto the surface of my linoleum block before cutting. Once cut and printed, it became flipped.