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Topics - N.F. Ee

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Marioville! Sports, Politics, Humor and more... / Jenkem?
« on: February 16, 2012, 12:27:46 AM »
Google it and discuss.

 ;D ;D ;D ;D

Now all we need is waves!

For those selfless individuals who rescued Chuck from the brink, I can't thank you enough. His family spoke as though they might have met some of you. If that's the case, I'm sure they thanked you. If not, they surely feel the greatest of gratitude. I want to thank you as well. I have complete faith that he'll pull though, and I look forward to speaking with him again, and going on with our lives as friends.

I wasn't there when it happened, but I might know or recognize his rescuers. Please don't be shy about identifying yourselves. My name is Ee. I've met and gotten to know a lot of the Rock regulars over the years.



Data-collecting Surfboard in Action

ScienceDaily (Aug. 24, 2010) Computers are everywhere these days -- even on surfboards. University of California, San Diego mechanical engineering undergraduates outfitted a surfboard with a computer and accompanying sensors -- one step toward a structural engineering Ph.D. student's quest to develop the science of surfboards.

The UC San Diego mechanical engineering undergraduates installed a computer and sensors on a surfboard and recorded the speed of the water flowing beneath the board. While the students surfed, the onboard computer sent water velocity information to a laptop on shore in real time.

This is part of Benjamin Thompson's quest to discover if surfboards have an optimal flexibility -- a board stiffness that makes surfing as enjoyable as possible. Thompson is a UC San Diego structural engineering Ph.D. student studying the fluid-structure interaction between surfboards and waves. By outfitting a surfboard with sensors and electronics that shuttle data back to shore, the mechanical engineering undergraduates built some of the technological foundation for Thompson's science-of-surfboards project.

Four undergraduates from the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering outfitted a surfboard with eight sensors and an onboard-computer or "microcontroller." The students dug trenches into the board's foam and ran wires connecting the sensors to the onboard computer. From this computer, the data travels via a wireless channel to a laptop on land -- in this case, a beach in Del Mar, Calif.

The onboard computer also saves the data on a memory card.

"We were stoked to get good data and to be surfing for school," said Dan Ferguson, one of the two mechanical engineering undergraduates who surfed while the onboard computer captured water velocity information and transmitted it back to land.

The four mechanical engineering majors built the wired surfboard for their senior design project, the culmination of the MAE 156 course sequence. Each project has a sponsor, and in this case, the sponsor was Benjamin Thompson, the structural engineering Ph.D. student from UC San Diego and founder of the surfboard Web site

The onboard computer is in a watertight case the shape of a medium-sized box of chocolates. It sits at the front of the surfboard and glows blue. "What's on your board? What is that?" fellow surfers asked Ferguson. "We'd have to tell them it's a microprocessor connected to velocity sensors, and they would kind of nod and paddle away. It created a minor stir."

Each of the eight sensors embedded into the bottom of the board is a "bend sensor." The faster the water beneath the board moves, with respect to the board, the more the sensors bend, explained Trevor Owen, the other surfer on the four-person mechanical engineering team.

The data from the sensors runs through wires embedded in the board to the microcontroller. "You can see where we carved channels in the board," said Owen.

The most interesting part of the project for senior mechanical engineering major Victor Correa was using the microcontrollers and wireless transmitters to get the data to land.

Thompson, the project sponsor, is already working on a smaller version of the onboard computer. He hopes to shrink it down to the size of a cell phone and embed it flush with the top surface of the board.

Assembling, waterproofing and installing the microcontroller, connecting it to the sensors, and successfully transmitting the collected data to a computer on land required persistence and a lot of learning, explained senior mechanical engineering major Julia Tsai. "Everything hypothetically should take five minutes, but everything took at least three hours."

Even though the team has finished their class project, Ferguson plans to keep working with Thompson. "This project is going to apply some science that most likely [board] shapers understand pretty's going to settle the debates. It's going to be black and white hard data to let them know for sure which ideas work, which concepts work, and why they work."

Surfboard Flex Surfboard flex refers to the temporary shape changes that surfboards are thought to undergo. While many surfers say flex makes their boards feel springy in the water, it has not been scientifically measured. Thompson hopes to scientifically document surfboard flex. Then he wants to determine if there is an amount of flexibility that enhances the performance and feel of a surfboard, and if this optimal flexibility depends on other factors such as surfer experience or wave conditions.

The surfboard project falls within a hot area of engineering research: the study of fluid-structure interactions. According to UC San Diego structural engineering professor Qiang Zhu, the study of fluid-structure interaction is important due to the large number of applications in mechanical, civil, aerospace and biological engineering. "In my opinion, its popularity in recent years is partly attributed to advances in experimental and computational techniques which allow many important processes to be studied in detail," said Zhu.

I bet every surfing engineering student has wanted to do something similar. I'm a bit skeptical about a lot of the voodoo behind surfboard shapes, and I think that a lot of board nerds base their tweaker tendencies on the fact that you can't really prove that this little cut here improves performance by this much. Does anyone want surfboards to stay magical and not be explained away by science?

I've noticed that after a heavy day of surfing, I tend to get a really sore stiff neck like described here:

Yesterday was fun as hell, but right now, the area between neck and right shoulder is burning, and I can barely tilt or turn my head without pain. Anyone know of good treatments or preventions besides not surfing. Massage or acupressure? I already sleep with an orthopedic pillow.

I think some of you may find this editorial enlightening:

I already knew that we're depleting our oceans of life at a breakneck pace, but I wouldn't have make the distinct connection between menhaden depletion and brown Atlantic waters. Any, take it with however many grains of salt you wish. I always do.

I think this should be common knowledge, because once you're aware of it, there is simply no sane reason for constructing an artificial island anywhere in U.S. waters for the importation of LNG.

The article basically states that new technologies and gas field discoveries have created a glut of domestic natural gas in the United States. Basically, we have more domestic gas than our infrastructure is able to use. The article states that because of the glut, "Liquefied-natural-gas imports plunged, leaving import terminals nearly idle."

We need to make the Coast Guard and our politicians fully aware of this. I believe that we've moved beyond mentally incompetent policy-making in government. Obviously, fringe groups still exist that will try to impose their freakout bizarro policies on the rest of us, but we've put them in their place in the last election, and we need to keep up our guard against them from here on out.

I am taking online courses at The University of Illinois at Springfield and need to take my final exam at a local college under the supervision of a proctor.

Here are the description and requirements:

Proctors for Finals
I'd like those of you who will NOT be taking the final exam with me here at UIS to find a
proctor.   Your local community college would be a good place to start looking.  I will need
your proctor's name, snail-mail address, email address and phone number by April 15.
The exam will be delivered through Blackboard, so make sure that, wherever you take your
final, they have an Internet connection and you can get to Blackboard.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Wouldn't mind having indoor surfing as a result of the recession:

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