My family took a two week trip to Korea in June of 2000. We visited several locations around the country including Seoul, the DMZ, Puson, and Kyong-Ju. This is a collection of the best photos from the trip.
This is a brief compilation of photos highlighting the Aurora series (1 thru 4) of solar cars built by the University of Minnesota Solar Vehicle Project. A more detailed history can be found at the Project's website.
I remember the jokes about what would happen if Microsoft wrote automotive software - you know, pulling over to reboot, etc. Well, it appears this is not altogether just a humorous jibe. Reference Saab electronic dashboard crash.
"Sure, the Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which is holding the competition, had to relax the rules for qualification a bit even to get that many [three] teams in the race. And expectations are now so low that none of the robots entered are expected to even finish the race. Hmmm. Maybe it's a good thing we cancelled our plans to fly out to Vegas for this."
Some people have sweeter 16th birthdays than others. In a NYTimes article, a 16 year old girl appears to have a firm grip on worldly issues and the appropriateness of her new $53,000 Cadillac Escalade EXT. She did have to earn better than a 3.0 GPA after all.
"Hey, having a pickup truck is way cuter than having a car."
"The first time I drove up to the school, about 25 girls came running out to look at it. "That is so cool," they cried. "We hate you!" It was like a dream come true. I felt like, "Wow, I'm a princess.""
I wonder if Ms. Hyan and her father understand how scathingly satirical the article is - their interview responses give me little hope. The article, by the way, could easily pass for something from The Onion. [via Phillip Greenspun]
A recent inquiry about vanity plate ideas on the Miata Club of Minnesota mailing list brought reference to Leon Poon's Vanity Plate website. If you're not feeling very original, you should be able to come up with a few ideas here. I also found the story of the problems encountered by this poor sap who accidentally got the plate "NO PLATE" quite amusing. It might be the stuff of urban legend, but it's still pretty funny.
I'm embarrassed to say I read "The Week" magazine (imagine the Glamour Magazine of news rags), but they published this interesting snippet from USA Today, only a few pages away from the feature on the Bush twins' exploits:
When the road is wide open, Americans are driving faster than ever. Ten percent of motorists caught speeding are doing more than 90 mph, a study of 1.2 million speeding tickets reveals. That's up from 2 percent in 1991.
This statistic is likely understating reality, since it is common practice for law enforcement to "let you off" by citing a speed less than metered. I also am always frustrated by the lack of basic statistical information surrounding data like this. It would at least be nice to know the variance!
I've been following Keith Tanner's build of a Caterham Seven replica from CMC that uses a Miata drivetrain. He has an interesting build diary and series of photos documenting progress. If you have any interest in kit cars or cars in general, you owe yourself a visit.
An amendment to Statute 169.13 "Reckless or Careless Driving" chiefly authored by Mike McGinn (R), proposes additional language which could be interpreted by law enforcement as banning autocross racing and road rallying. The members of the MN Autox Club have contacted Senator McGinn regarding the bill and received a somewhat confusing response. Sen. McGinn has emphasized that the spirit of the amendment is to provide additional grounds for eliminating illegal street racing a la "The Fast and the Furious" and is in no way intended to forbid organized automotive competitions like AutoX and rally, in fact, he encouraged the club to support the legislation. The concern of the racing community, however, is that under the current language, such competition could be deemed illegal.
The Carnegie Mellon Robot Racing team has an interesting website about their autonomous vehicle development project. They have been building a heavily modified HumVee for entry in DARPA's "The Grand Challenge" competition. The site is light on engineering info (very disappointing) but the general content is informative and there are a lot of good pictures from the development. I also mentioned another entry for the challenge in this post.
Keith Richtman, a good buddy of mine from high school (years ago) and more recently a force to be reckoned with on the NDSU Sunsetters solar race team has been working on building an electric moped for a few years. I never doubted for a moment it would become a reality, only how long it might take ;-). Well, he got it running and I'm impressed. Find out more here.