Tag Archives: Rock

Hey Little 12 Toes

12-numberI was recently reminded of a schoolhouse rock episode about a base 12 numbering system. It wasn’t an episode that caught on, but it made a mark on me throughout my school years. Specifically with respect to how arbitrary any base numbering system was. Of course, this doesn’t mean that our use of base 10 is arbitrary – but that our having five fingers and five toes on each limb is arbitrary. And if we had more or less, that our numbering system would reflect it.

What made me think of schoolhouse rock was a short discussion of base-12 numbering (a dozenal, or duodecimal system) by James Grimes. (I apologize for including a video with such restless camerawork that you may need a Dramamine to watch. However, Dr. Grimes does an excellent job explaining what can be a confusing topic.)

The video from my childhood that this reminded me of is ‘Little 12 Toes.’

The music accompanying this video holds up extraordinarily well and adds something trippy to the lesson.

Another appeal for a base 12 system comes from ParchitaFM, who apparently is mostly into music – and base 12…? That’s interesting.

Lastly, check out the Dozenal Society of America to see more from people who would like to adopt this system universally. I would remind the DSA that people have been trying to promote adoption of the metric system in the USA for at least 40 years. A change to the metric system faces far fewer barriers to acceptance than a base 12 system would, yet we remain (along with what, Somalia and Burma?), as one of the last countries clinging to the unwieldy imperial system.

No – I just looked it up. Somalia is metric – Liberia is not. Burma, I was right about.

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Posted by on December 28, 2016 in Uncategorized


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Sorting Books

Hey, if you’re reading this, honey, I am still working!

Hey, isn't that where Jon dropped Ed? (Neaderthal, 5.8)

Hey, isn’t that where Jon dropped Ed? (Neaderthal, 5.8)

I have a lot of boxes of books and CDs I am going through today because the house is supposed to look unpacked by tomorrow. Today, I got into the climbing books. I’m keeping just a handful because they’re special:

Self Rescue, because we took a self rescue course together at the PRG many years ago

Classic Rock Climbs of Ralph Stover Park, because that was my home crag for a lot of years. Even when I wasn’t climbing there, I was mountain biking or just hiking around because the scenery was beautiful.

129083844-High_ExposureCU_web_Finally, my Gunks Guide, because that was the real home crag in the Northeast and we did a great assent of High Exposure there that I think of quite often to this day (and thanks to Barry for going back to retrieve the cam that I thought would be part of the route forevermore). Oh, and it’s also the place where I got a concussion from hitting my head on Dave’s knee after falling off a bouldering problem and complained about the damned hippie music coming from the woods all night.

Other than that, I’m working and just have some climbing videos running in the background – you know, while I work.

(if you are not a fan of bolted routes, skip this one – but what a climb!)

(if you don’t want to be completely schooled by a 10yo, skip this one)

boy, I miss having hands!

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Posted by on September 11, 2015 in Uncategorized


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Evidence of Man for Eons to Come

I don’t mean to exclude women at all, in fact, I really mean that evidence of humans show signs of lasting for eons to come, but it just didn’t sound like a title to me.

ImageAnyway, what do I mean?

Enter Plastiglomerate rock.

Science magazine explains, ” When the plastic melts, it cements rock fragments, sand, and shell debris together, or the plastic can flow into larger rocks and fill in cracks and bubbles to form a kind of junkyard Frankenstein.” Hawaii appears to have just that perfect mix of steady volcanic activity and trash-generating humans to spawn these new rocks.

ImagePatricia Corcoran, of the University of Western Ontario in London, Canada, describes how the accumulation of plastic waste material since the 1950s has resulted in this phenomenon of plastic entering into the fossil / geologic record. The unique characteristics of Pacific Ocean create what is known as the North Pacific Gyre, that collects and concentrates waste of all kinds into an area known as the Eastern Garbage Patch. Kamilo beach, located on the southern tip of the big island, provides an excellent place for this vast amount of marine – and now human- debris to accumulate. Once this trash – including a significant amount  of long-lived plastic- comes into contact with the volcanic islands of the Pacific, it has the opportunity to become Imagefused, via the heat of the lava, with this igneous rock and sand resulting in the newly minted plastiglomerate rock which can now settle onto the sea floor and become a ‘permanent’ part of the fossil record. Perhaps these rocks will become the coprolites of our age, abundant records of our waste, for future generations to find.

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Posted by on June 6, 2014 in Uncategorized


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Friday Night in the Listening Booth

Come Listen to the music interlude on 100filmsIn100days for a taste of 70s Glam Rock and some outgrowths into the 80s.


Glam Rock Nobility: Bowie

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Posted by on September 6, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock

The first project in ‘An Introduction to Interactive Programming in Python’, a course I am taking / watching in Coursera is writing code to analyze the results of randomly generated  rock paper scissors lizard Spock games. This game is an adaptation of the standard rock paper scissors with two added items… because it comes from Big Bang Theory, of course it has Spock.

By the way, we often play Rock Paper Scissors at home, but try to come up with new symbols  fairly often.

(Alien populates asteroid, asteroid smashes spaceship, spaceship shoots alien)

(The witch commands the flying monkeys, The flying monkeys carry away Dorothy, Dorothy melts the witch)

The trick for me when writing this code was remembering to import the random module and getting the syntax correct for the if/elif/else statements:

if difference == 1 or difference == 2:
winner = “player”
if difference == 3 or difference == 4:
winner = “computer”
if difference == 0:
winner = “tie”

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Posted by on October 17, 2012 in Uncategorized


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