2014 Nissan Leaf

After 13 years, I finally bought a new car.  After trying to hold out for Honda to lease me a Fit EV, I finally gave up and bought a new Nissan Leaf.


With an EPA estimated range of 84 miles, it should be a perfect car for my commute to Towson.  My first experimental trip was done at a leisurely pace, and I arrived with 49 miles of range remaining. The University’s charging stations made quick work (2.5 hours) of bringing me back to full charge.  Switching to all-electric fuel should save me up to $250/month in fuel.  Add to that lower maintenance costs, government tax incentives, reduced parking fees, and 72-month 0% financing, and the Leaf was one of the most economical choices we could make for a car.

The car itself feels really space-aged.  I have never had integrated Bluetooth and Navigation before, and the electric features can be partially controlled via an app.  A couple of obvious features are missing though.  Despite all of the features to track the car’s location being present, Nissan sells that capability as a $500 add-on that we didn’t know about until after we took delivery.  (I may have to see if we can get a deal installing that later.) Now if only Nissan would update the firmware with the ability to lock/unlock remotely (or at least check the status of the locks), I’d feel completely like George Jetson.

the “Riot Act”

With all the evictions of the Occupy movement lately, I was thinking about the Riot Act. While I have occasionally been “read the Riot Act”, I had never actually read the Riot Act. To wit:

Our Sovereign Lord the King chargeth and commandeth all persons, being assembled, immediately to disperse themselves, and peaceably to depart to their habitations, or to their lawful business, upon the pains contained in the act made in the first year of King George, for preventing tumults and riotous assemblies. God Save the King!

(Courtesy of Wikipedia)

Christmas Day 2010

Now that the orgy of torn wrapping paper and discarded cardboard is over. The gifts I gave seem to have been mostly duds. Kim doesn’t like the sheets for the bed, and the girls don’t seem interested in building any of their projects. I had planned on spending the afternoon busily assembling the minor DIY type projects with them, but instead I’m posting a blog update.

At the moment all the ladies of the house are working on a puzzle from the Nancy Drew game that the older munchkin got for her hackbook. At least it’s good to seem them puzzle solving and getting some entertainment out of the computers. I’m mostly messing with the fire since we apparently bought very expensive, but not totally seasoned, firewood.

I did make out like a bandit though. I got an Xbox Kinect, three Xbox games, a Micro CNC kit, a Lego Midi-scale Star Destroyer, and a lovely gray heather henley shirt from the girls.

The Importance of Mathematics in Education

Dr. Robert H. Lewis of Fordham University has written a great article on the importance of mathematics in education. Here’s a quick excerpt,

Education is not about any particular machine, system, skill, or job. Education is both broader and deeper than training. An education is a deep, complex, and organic representation of reality in the student’s mind. It is an image of reality made of concepts, not facts. Concepts that relate to each other, reinforce each other, and illuminate each other. Yet the education is more even than that because it is organic: it will live, evolve, and adapt throughout life.

Read the whole article here.

(via Slashdot)

Hey, I won something!

You know those Internet sweepstakes that just about every website seems to host. The ones that end up getting you spam every couple of days, and that no one seems to win. I won one of them.

OK, it was the Esquire Augmented Reality give-away, and I only won one of the fifty webcams (Blue Microphones Eyeball 2.0), but it was a nice surprise to receive it in the mail. They were suppose to notify me back in January, but I never heard a word; it just arrived.

As far as getting spam, that particular contest didn’t increase my incidence of spam. Probably because at the time I was actually a subscriber to the print edition of Esquire. I do wonder if it helped my chances though…