just thinking out loud, Uncategorized 0 comments on When men don’t wear pink

When men don’t wear pink

The NC State’s Men’s Basketball team lost to UNC today. It wasn’t a great game, and there was definitely a large discrepancy in both talent and desire. This post, however, isn’t about the frustration of being an NC State fan. That’s chronicled well in the hearts and minds of Wolfpack nation. This is instead one fan proclaiming his embarrassment that the men’s basketball team did nothing to commemorate the late Kay Yow.

When Kay Yow passed away last Saturday, I think that there was an immense level of shock throughout the population of people who have ever had anything to do with Kay Yow in one shape or another. Over the course of my 24 years in North Carolina, I was a fan, journalist, and disciple of Kay Yow’s career and philosophy. I read everything that I could find about Coach Yow, watched all of the multimedia pieces compiled by NC State’s Technician and the Raleigh News & Observer, and watched all of the specials which were played by the various TV networks. Just listening to the women’s game on PackPass this past Thursday, I knew that the weight of losing their coach, and wanting to win their first game back in her honor, was too heavy for these young student-athletes. Clearly, the reach was much larger than one basketball team.

Unfortunately, the reach did not include the men’s basketball team. I was more embarrassed by the fact that there was nothing more than a small black patch on their jersey’s to commemorate her memory than by the performance which was put forth against rival UNC in the match today. Kay Yow’s presence on this campus pre-dates everyone on that staff except for Associate Head Coach Monty Towe, and not even a pink ribbon. Going the full monty and wearing pink jersey’s in Yow’s honor may be asking too much for a group of young men, but imagine this scenario.

The men’s basketball team wears the pink jerseys, and regardless of outcome, auctions off the jerseys with all proceeds going to the Kay Yow/WBCA Foundation. There are only 12 of them, and they were worn in an NCSU/UNC game. How much money could that have fetched?

Let’s say the problem was that wearing a color jersey at home would lead to the team getting fined $100k. Have the Wolfpack Club start a fund to pay the fine, and then, on top of that, convince some donors to challenge the student population, young alumni, the alumni association, etc. to come up with certain percentages of that money, and they will match that percentage as a donation to the Kay Yow/WBCA Foundation. As an example:

if Student Government can organize and raise $25k, which is about $1 per student on campus, then the Vaughn family would have donated $25k to the Kay Yow/WBCA Foundation.

But no, none of this will come true because a simple black patch with white letters spelling out Yow on an illegible corner of a jersey is enough to honor a woman who was THE face of those who do not give up. Today the student section was pink, Wolfie wore a pink jersey, and the coach of the opposing team wore pink shoelaces, but the NC State Men’s basketball team didn’t realize that pink for one day would be a fantastic message to send for a generation of fans who need to remember and grieve when giving up is more difficult than it has been in a long, long time.

random findings, Uncategorized 0 comments on Closing paragraph of Obama’s first inaugural speech

Closing paragraph of Obama’s first inaugural speech

America, in the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Comments to come…

Technology, Uncategorized 0 comments on CES 2009

CES 2009

While the pundits were relatively correct in pronouncing the death of CES, and trade shows in general, those who didn’t make it out to this year’s trade show really missed out on what was probably the top show in the last 3 years.

In truth, it’s really difficult to go to CES every year, and expect to see something new each time. I just don’t think that the industry moves that quickly. This is also why most feel that Apple pulled out of its relationship with the MacWorld conference. It’s just too hard to come out with something amazing year-in, year-out on such a tight schedule. However, the benefit of going every year is that you really start to notice when amazing, cool things are coming down the pipe. Case in point, when I met up with fellow NCSU classmates Jordan O’Mara and Win Bassett a few years back, they had discovered a game called “Guitar Hero” which they immediately fell in love with. The rest, as they say, is history!

What were this year’s gems?

I’ll be honest and say that I didn’t get to spend as much time at the trade show as I would have liked, and so I’m sure I missed a lot of stuff. With that disclaimer, here are some of the really cool technologies which I saw that I think will make big splashes in the years ahead.

These guys aren’t a technology, but instead a way to make your
technology look good. I think it’s really interesting that everyone has
the exact same computer, and that there isn’t a larger push by the
masses to be unique. Are unified, recognizable computers the “uniform”
of this generation? Is the thought that I can’t make myself different
or everyone won’t know that I have a Mac, and that makes me cool? Lame.
Anyway, these guys had some really good computer covers, iPod holders,
etc. for all of your digital gear.

  • Microprojectors

This was by far and away the coolest thing that I saw. The days of clunky, A/V club driven projectors seems to have come to an end. The quality was good, but not great, but yet the thought that the full projector get up can be miniaturized to the point where it will fit into your backpack just seems awesome to me. I was most impressed by 3M’s product, though there were some Asian companies which had products that seemed to be close in the race. The main features to look for are

  • Luminance
  • Battery Life
  • Size

And for some pretty obvious reasons, size really matters in this regard! My prediction is that within 3-5 years this technology will be embedded into your smart phone, and you will simply bring your presentations/movies to class, work, community theater, and project away.

A really cool, though still somewhat gimmicky, technology which I discovered was 3-D television. It was quite spectacular to see some technologies created in real time (which is what Sony was doing), and other companies such as TDV Technologies using the glasses, also real time, and providing an out of TV experience. I’m not really quite sure what the use case is today, but I’m imagining a scenario where I can walk into the 3D projection from my screen and watch as Shawne Merriman breaks through the line, and turn around and watch him sack Peyton Manning. That, I would buy.

  • NetBook Computers

The Intel booth was highlighted by the rise of NetBook computers and their ATOM processor. I think that the ultimate goal for NetBooks is truly having a portable document, e-mail, and basic browsing machine for situations, such as travel, where you probably aren’t doing truly intensive work. I’m just not convinced that it’s for me as the machine I have already does quite poorly when I try to get work done. Nonetheless, everything seems to be included (optical drives, webcam, and the standard array of USB slots). Also, you can’t disagree with the argument that you’re paying for exactly what you’re getting, and so I see the value for the heavy traveler.

This was just really, really cool. I took a photo of this because I almost couldn’t believe it. The focus of Gravitonus seems to be accessibility, but they’ve also made quite the fashion statement when it comes to “Pimping My Workstation”. Check out the photo, and the link, but I think as ergonomics becomes a bigger, and bigger, issue in the technology workplace these out of the box approaches will become more and more popular. I’m not quite sure what the pricing is, but that’s probably the limiting factor right now. Nonetheless, this ranked extremely highly on my coolness radar at CES 2009 this year.

  • OLED Technology

The OLED technology which was in the Sony TVs was unbelievable. The colors are ridiculous, and they could be the thinnest monitor-like device I’ve ever seen. Just a few years ago, the push amongst the TV Manufacturers was size of the screen, contrast, true 1080p, and now it seems to be thinness, as this was on display in many places. However, the OLED screens at Sony were hands the ones I found to be the most unbelievable. The width of my thumb was probably 4x wider than the entire television. Just awesome!