Code Louisville 2.0, Shelving Various Things, New Tech

Tonight was my first night of mentoring at Code Louisville 2.0.  I don’t know if I’d mentioned it before; I volunteered to be a mentor in a program that the city is putting together.  The City’s viewpoint is, we need more skilled IT people (there’s a shortage).  My viewpoint is, I get to help somebody who wants to learn, to learn something, is good with me.

It went pretty well.  The program is using Treehouse for the source of instruction; the Louisville Free Public Library made a deal with Treehouse to make it available to all library patrons.    The quality of the instruction is pretty decent, and it takes the stress off me for being a source of instruction.  Instead, i just need to share my experience with folks.  Some of them are right at the level of the instruction, some are much more advanced.  It keeps it interesting.

To keep the mentoring / labs interesting, I’m trying to do a mini version of a standup at the start, and then circulate amongst everybody to keep things personal.   I’m trying to keep a live document editable by all going as class notes / links / what did we decide.  I hope its a good example for them, of how to use technology to collaborate.

As a result, though, I’ve had to shelve my architecture build.  I simply don’t have the 4-6 hours it would take for me to go to LVL1 and print out the 3D parts of my house model.  Each part.   Times 8 parts.   Times 4 levels.  Without being a hog.  

My current geeky project inventory:

  • A family project: old 35mm slides converted into slideshow project for delivery at Thanksgiving (where I’ll record everybody’s commentary about what the slides were about)
    • I need to find decent screencast recording software that will let me create a DVD later.  I think I’ll be trying SnagIt.
    • Planning on using Picasa as the presentation vehicle.  My wife has already scanned in all the slides from the negatives.
  • One more birthday song, for my stepson, coming up in December
  • One last soccer banquet slideshow, as requested by one of the kids I know.  He’s a good kid, and yes, I’d be honored. To be delivered probably late November or early December, i don’t know yet.

I’ve also had an infusion of new tech into my life:

  • Samsung_ATIV_Smart_PC_Pro_700T_35511640_06_610x436[1]A Samsung 700T that I got off a co-worker at about 50% of the list price.  This is a Windows 8.1 (thanks Anthony!) tablet device with a keyboard that makes it pass off as a laptop pretty well.  I’m writing this blog post on it.   However, while in tablet mode, the near field pen thingy works perfectly.  It even does the “hover” thing that mice do, that I really miss on the Apple.    And I’m getting used to the flexibility of reaching up and touching instead of trying to force the mouse to get to a certain spot on the screen.
  • A whole house water pressure regulator to cap water pressure at 75 psi.   What was happening was spikes up to the 150’s, which caused the pressure relief valve on the tankless water heater to dump scalding hot water onto the concrete basement floor.

Running wise, I (barely) ran my last half marathon of 2013 (time: 2h48m).  Due to a calf injury, i could not train much – my longest run the month prior was 5.5 miles – but thanks to Mr. Calvin Spears of Occupational Kinetics, I got put back together.  They also used a cool app – it seemed to be called SparkLines, but i can’t find it anywhere – to measure me while I was running, and detect that my form is lop sided when I’m in my right foot.   Good stuff to know.   They also say they can make me faster. 

My running schedule is currently clear of all races.  I intend to sign up for the Polar Express series (3k, 4k, 4mi) which runs Dec-Jan-Feb, as a way to have a goal to stay in shape over winter. 

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