Wednesday, October 22, 2008

CML Learn & Play Thing #8

This has turned out to be one of the most (in fact the only) frustrating things to learn in this whole project. I was able to set up the Bloglines account and it was very easy to set up feeds of 13 of the things I regularly read. What I haven't been able to figure out is how to get my feeds to display to the public. I'm also at a loss how to use the orange RSS feed buttons on sites to subscribe. At this point I'm of a mixed opinion as to whether it will be any sort of time or effort saver and worth the effort to use. I may try to see what other options are out there that do the same thing.
In an attempt to see if my feeds can be shared:

If not maybe Google reader in a later post.

Amazon Kindle

My department owns an Amazon Kindle which we are in the process of routing around so that everyone here can get a feel for how it works and what it can do. My first impression is that it had a nice balance of portability and readability. The buttons on the front panel are far too small for my liking, but fortunately you don't seem to need to use them much for most functions. The "e-paper" display is nicer than I thought it would be--easy on the eye with decent contrast. Off axis viewing works much better than your typical LCD display. I do loathe the lack of colors other than black and white, and the momentary display color inversion when you change pages really bugs me--to the point of being a deal-breaker if I had to plunk down my own cash for one. I'm very curious to see if the thing has a long enough life to get generational improvements like cell phones & digital cameras. I still intend to buy and read something on it so I'll give a content spiel later.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Airstream Cruisette in earlier days

Our Cruisette has gone through a variety of changes since it has been in our family. It still carries WBCCI number 1764, though we're not members. Various parts have been polished, the streetside window had been out and re-sealed, carpet replaced, a new. table made, fully rewired, a range top to replace the vintage apartment stove a previous owner installed. The tounge and LP tanks were repainted. Several generations of mice have been evicted over the decades, and at least 5 coats of paint hang on the walls.
Inevitably the relentless forces of entropy have undone all of the prior refurbishing to our trailer. At this point in time our Cruisette will require a new floor, some panel repairs, LP system upgrades, new weatherstripping, frame and tounge painting, new 12V & 110V wiring, plumbing upgrades, cabinet work, paint and upholstery. Future posts will outline what has been accomplished thus far, and will track the progress of our ongoing restoration.
The photo at the right is our trailer during the mid 70's about to embark on a hunting trip with my father and uncle.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Learn & Play @ CML Thing 7

Since the object of this thing is to post about anything technology related I'd like to share the single thing that may make me get an IPhone when my battered old Nokia gives up. One word: DYNOLICIOUS
For a mere $12 you get most, if not all of the tools that are in a stand-alone G meter. Logging lateral acceleration on the off-ramp on my daily commute would be the bomb, not to mention the dynomometer functions. Imagine being able to do somewhat accurate A/B comparisions for modifications (ported exhaust manifolds for instance?). Cooler than cool.
Another tech (ish) geek moment is that this blog now registers when it is Googled. Yee haw!
Also here's a shout-out to my friend Jennifer over at Sweet Baby Bungalow:

Sunday, October 19, 2008


The title of this blog.and this post refers to not only my interest in Airstream trailers, but a trailer that I own. It is a 1952 Airstream Cruisette, which holds the distinction of being the smallest production Airstream ever produced. Its a mere 15' long. Its been in my family since around 1967, and passed through only a few hands since. My grandfather purchased it used from a trailer dealer in Sylvania, Ohio. My parents obtained it when he was no longer interested in using it. I grew up camping in this trailer. My wife and I received it from my parents in 2002 after it had lain fallow since 1985 when my folks bought a newer, larger trailer.
We've used it a few times, however, it is in need of extensive refurbishing. Our long range plan is make it structurally sound, discreetly add as many modern features as possible while maintaining the integrity of its late Art Deco design. Not surprisingly money and time are my main limiters, so it may be a slow process. I'll add to the blog as progress is made.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Thing 6 part 2

This is fun! I made a postage stamp out of my daughter.

I cant wait to show her and Mommy when I get home!

CML Learn & Play Thing 6

Its been a busy week and my "real" computer is dead (and just today I found out that the new hard drive is on backorder--drat!) so tending to the blog got nudged down of the list. After a lot of experimenting and poking around I was able to figure out how to map my Flickr photos:

I used the resident mapping function on Flickr since Mappr's tool seems to be defunct. Pretty cool. It'll come in really handy when I'm old & senile to remember some of the places I've been!

The Mt Victory gas station sign is one of my favorites in this bunch because it has a backstory. MV is one of those two traffic light small towns that cover rural Ohio. Typically filled with late 19th and early 20th century buildings, you get a real feel for the fabric of the past since the geographic context is quite intact, even if many of the commercial/industrial buildings no longer serve their original function. The Gulf sign is attached to an early '20s gas station that is fully restored down to the vintage candy bar rack on the glass counter inside the office. The only thing lacking is Ethyl flowing from the pumps. I first spotted the place at night driving south on SR 31. It was lit up brightly in an otherwise sleepy dark town. An oasis for the weary (time?)traveller. It made the hair on the back of my neck stand up for an instant. I made a trip back during the day-time to photograph the hell out of the place.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

L&P @ CML Thing 5 continued

This line is very nearly aways a hive of activity where books go from vendor boxes to readers' hands in a matter of hours. Truly a book junkie's magnet.

L&P @ CML Thing #5

Line wall
Originally uploaded by Airstream Moderne
At this point in my career I work for the library but not in a library. I do get to buy books which is cool beyond belief and get to toil away in a really cool Retro-Mid Century Industrial style building. This wall of glass and aluminum is the main public face of the building and provides real light for the processing line where get products from vendors into the hands of readers.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Starting Learn & Play--finally

A day late and a dollar short (weeks late and many dollars short?), I finally started my blog for CML's learn & play. The name of this blog....if you have to tied-in to my interest in Airstream trailers and Art Deco/Streamline Moderne stuff.