Some adventures in road and trail running.
For Running stuff click here. For Eclipse stuff click here.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Fort Stevens 2007

Five days out at Ft Stevens for a great relaxing camping trip out to the Oregon coast near Astoria. Relaxing, running, eating, and sleeping with very limited internet access :-)

We arrived Sunday Aug 26 and set up in the dark around 9 pm. Getting better at the setup and it not was not windy like Odell lake. Campsite #270. Really not a bad site. Near some of the best which would be the outer loop of the 270s. Little traffic on the road, close to the bike trails and you do not share the back side of the campsite with a neighbor.

On Monday we slept in late and then headed for the local shipwreck, the Peter Iredale. Not much left of the ship that ran aground in 1906 but the kids love exploring what was left.

Hit the Coffinbury lake for the afternoon. Leah and Cole attempted to catch fish and frogs
After the beach and some napping in the sun I headed out for a 5 mile run with the kids keeping up on the bikes.
We found a garter snake and a large banana slug. We held the snake for a while...beautiful orange color morph. We did not pick up the slug :-) Cole was quite nervous about bears and cougars after attending a nature talk on the subject. The warning signs did not help. Once we explained that he was more likely to be hit by lightning he had no further trouble :-)

Tuesday started with Canadian corn pops (yes there is a difference) for some quick fuel and then hit the trail with the kids on the bikes and Trisha and I running.
We ran the 1.5 miles to the military fort. Cannon, guns, bombs, mines, bullets, knifes...Cole was in heaven. Cool models of the fort during WWII. We became educated on the only documented attack of the US mainland during WWII. A I-25 submarine shelled the coast near Ft Stevens apparantly attempting to lure out ships. The shots were not returned.

We then continued on our run after the history lesson to complete about 6.7 miles. The trails are in very good shape and have lots of shade and changes of scenery. Not many hills though. We believe this is the longest bike ride the kids have done. They did refuel with a pop tart after visiting the fort.
Some quiet time back at the camp for some bbq chicken sandwiches and some showers. Then we hit the ocean beach near the Peter Iredale. Much warmer and less windy today. Built a small medieval sandcastle and played in the waves.

To end the day we watched some of the first Harry Potter movie after the kids have been reading the book aloud with Trisha and family over the last few weeks.

Wednesday started a little earlier. We again headed out a for bike / run up to the Fort this morning to complete our exploring. We toured all the gun installments and up and down all the stairs. Then it was time to head back for Trisha and the kids to make some pancakes and fried eggs (Cole's new favorite) while I finished up my run. We cleaned our plates and then prepared to head back to the ocean beach for a full day. It was beautiful today with fairly weak winds on the beach. We made a fun day of it staying from around noon until 5 pm. Trisha made a snack run to the KOA to keep the sugar levels up. Trisha and Leah went to the JR ranger program whilst Cole and I played more on the beach with some soccer and watching the kite surfers. We attempted to build a Hogwarts castle but we picked a position slightly below the high tide line that played havoc with our creation. It was a night of leftovers for dinner all cooked on the fire. Some popcorn and finishing off the Harry Potter movie rounded out the night.

Thursday we woke up to a very light rain so it was good we had planned a city day in Astoria. Trisha went running with Leah and I went out with Cole. Cole and I saw a fawn and rabbit and explored the Battery Russell. After a light breakfast of fried eggs and fried weiners (time to go shopping) we headed for Astoria near noon. We hit the maritime museum for several hours with Cole and Leah running around the place looking and touching just about everything. Of course there was more guns and bombs for Cole to stare at. We also spent some time building our own little boats as a craft.

For an outside break we headed to the Astoria column. Built in 1926 this tourist attraction is basically free ($1 yearly parking pass). Leah climbed the stairs 3 times: once with Trisha, once with me and then up with me again to launch a glider plane. Cole was not excited about the height so he elected to not climb the stairs but had lots of fun chasing the crane flies and other bugs. He also enjoyed playing with the glider plane with his feet firmly planted on the ground. The view from the column is well worth the climbing of the 146 stairs. It was amazing how many people were physically unable to scale the stairs turning back after 50-60 stairs totally winded and straining hard. Ouch!
We went back to the museum and toured the floating lightship Columbia that is permanently on moored at the museum. More great exploration time for the kids. Great museum all around that is very kid friendly. Mexican food for dinner and then Trisha and I poached some internet access from the local Shilo Inn after discovering that free wifi at Starbucks is not free. When the coffee costs 4 bucks a cup, they could throw in some bit streaming for free! :-)

Friday was the day to return home. We did a return to the Battery Russell so Cole could give Leah and Trisha the full tour. I did a short run during this time and then we reconnected to bike / run home together and complete our exploring of all of the 9 miles of paved trails in the park.
Quick breakfast / lunch of leftovers, packed up the trailer and drove back to Portland.

Sad to be finished with the camping trip but excited to get back to the comforts of home: lego collection, barbie collection, personal bathroom and internet connections :-)

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Mangelstock 2007

On Saturday, we got to hang out and enjoy live music, delicious food, cool beverages, and summer conversation at Mangelstock. Bunch of performers such as Kevin Selfe with a passion for music. Terrific time of live jamming. Thanks to Aaron for hosting and to Danielle and Tyson for inviting us!

It was very cool to hang out with old and new friends but especially some quality time with Trisha. Got a chance to dance with Leah as well.

Cole did well playing video games with the other kids such as Warcraft. Only a matter of time till he will be wanting to join the 9 million other WOW players! Cole was very cute bringing his electric keyboard to play one of his songs but got a little intimidated with the "polish" of the other performers :-)

Sunday we hit church which also had an back to school outreach BBQ for some of the neighbors. Bridgetown ministries was there as were the snow cones :-) Check out Brian's pics.

We then did some last minute chores, attended a bunch of birthday parties and then rolled for beach camping!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Oaks Park

Friday afternoon was a IBM sponsored family afternoon at Oaks Park.

Trisha hit the the bumper cars as Cole and Leah did not meet the height requirement (yet!).
Cole, Trisha and Leah all rode the Scrambler. After the first bit of laughing, Cole survived with no loss of "cookies" on the ride.

Trisha and Leah rode the carousel as Cole has deemed it no longer cool. Leah did the RoundUp all by herself.

I just plain do not do gravity altering rides any more...such an old man! I was able to handle the tame and quirky Lewis and Clark ride as well as show Cole some tricks for the video game 1942. Leah is an apparent natural at driving video out!

Cole's gun freak surfaced with a fixation on the midway shooting gallery. How did two peaceful Canadians spawn a child with such an obsession? :-)

We all snarfed down way too many hot dogs and hamburgers at the sponsored BBQ hanging with co-worker and running buddy Rick and his wife Shari.
Fun was had by all.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Where's Waldo 100 km

I got my Waldo hat!

This was my first race over 50 km (31.1 miles) and my first run over 45 miles long. I knew it was going to be challenging especially since my long training had suffered recuperating from my ankle injury pacing Ronda at Western States.
My goals were to finish and to stick to my pacing and fueling plan. I did just that.

The race starts at 5:00 am with the first 7.4 mile leg to Gold Lake up the Perseverance ski run of Willamette Pass Ski resort. It was dusty and busy with the 100 or so runners heading up the road to getting onto the single track trail. I was climbing well and ensuring to not run too hard to save for the later stages of the race. It got pretty busy on the trail so it was hard to run your own pace in this early stage but it was likely good to be kept slower on the first real downhill. I started out with a gel at about 40 minutes into the race...the first of MANY. Drinking as well :-)
Hit the Gold Lake aid station in 1:21.

Next we start climbing to Mt Fuji. Casual, eating every 20 minutes and drinking. Feeling strong. Hit the aid station after 5 miles with a 1:02 split..about 3 minutes ahead of pace.
Now it is time to climb as you summit Mt Fuji (7144'). During the whole race I was really happy with my climbing. I made the summit in 21 minutes and then really had fun on the way down. I was slightly careful with the ankle but not too much. Back at Fuji aid with 2.5 more miles completed in 35 minutes.

I made some good time to Mt Ray aid station cruising the downhills and sticking strictly to eating a gel every time my watch beeped off the 20 minutes. Man, I learned to hate that watch..."There is NO way it has already been another 20 minutes and time to eat again!!!". But it worked. No real energy lows or bonking for the entire race!
I reached Mt Ray after 5.6 miles where Trisha and the kids waved as I trekked through after 58 minutes.

When I did the relay in 2004, the next section to the Twins aid station was less than fun. There are lots of places that are runnable but with 20 miles in the legs you really start to re-evaluate what is runnable! I did better this year but still walked more than I should have. Made the 6.6 miles to the Twins in 1:25.

After the Twins you head up with the promise of a nice downhill cruise to Charlton Lake aid. As well, I knew that Trisha and the kids would be there to greet me. I did OK on the climbing and almost enjoyed the downhill to the lake. This is where I started to realize that I was going to make it through this thing. But also at this time I thought of how great it would be to finish with just a 50km! Into Charlton after 4.9 miles and 56 minutes for a total time of 6:17 at 32.5 miles.

Past half way through the race I was 13 minutes ahead of my goal and feeling good about the rest of the race.

Down to Road 4290 I was slower than planned. I think some of it was just getting tired but also it was the most exposed hot section of the course for me and I just have plain not trained in heat this summer. Made it to the aid after 5.2 miles in 1:05 and about 8 minutes ahead of pace.
Drank a Red bull, ate a protein bar and I picked up Trisha's shuffle at this aid station. Plugged in the tunes...I liked the boost!

The music really helped me with keeping a good pace on the power walking. Jars of Clay "Dead Man, Carry Me" worked really well up to the Twins (7362') and to the aid station again. Power walked and ran my way for 7.5 miles in 1:42 keeping 8 minutes ahead of pace. I really was happy to see that Trisha and the kids had made the 1.5 mile hike into the aid station to boost me onto the next section. They even were offered aid by the volunteers :-)

I ran the 5.2 miles well down to Maiden Peak making it in 1:03. Still fueling every 20 minutes with gels and still drinking. I was even eating peanut butter sandwiches at every aid station now for some protein.

Ok...everyone is known to exaggerate. I had heard the stories about the climb to Maiden Peak (7818'). I thought the runners were taking a little liberty with their tales. Nope...pretty much the most brutal straight up the mountain climb I have ever done. Haven't these people heard of switch backs!! Throw in a few false summits just to keep everything interesting. I did climb well though and passed a number of people in this section. My ankle did come into play after summiting as I had to go slower on the first downhills of the scary Leap of Faith trail...again no harm in a few switchbacks guys! Made the next checkpoint after 5.1 miles and 1:28.

One more section of 7.5 miles to the finish. I knew it was supposed to be nice downhill cruising trail to the finish. I was tired but I also knew I had a really good chance to stick my plan and make it under 13 hours. Back to using the tunes and I pushed as much as I could to the Rosary Lakes. Flat sections were no longer my friends and I hated it every time the trail would flatten out and slow me down. Seeing Cian M ahead of me helped to keep me moving and I covered the last section in 1:28.

I finished the 100km in 12:54:31.
I did 11000 feet of climbing and as many feet of descending.
Very happy with maintaining my pace and fueling.
Really don't know if I want to do anything longer or even this distance again.
I am really looking forward to racing at McKenzie River 50km.

Craig and Curt put on an outstanding race with a tough, beautiful course with amazing aid stations and volunteer. I mean, at 45 miles into the race I had a slushie!!! given to me by the volunteers who had hiked the food into the aid station. Awesome! Clif Bar stepping up and providing gels and bloks at every aid station was great. It was also really cool to see the super strong Masters runners pounding the trail for the national 100 km trail championship. It is always fun to see my ultra running friends.

The postscript to the race resulted in me receiving an IV. My stomach simply refused to keep anything down after I finished. After puking a couple of times, in went the needle and everyone was happy again. The first aid support was another first class part of the race. But also another reason to stick to 50 kms :-)

We had fun the day before and after camping at Odell Lake. We highly recommend checking out Crescent Lake for a great day at the beach up in the mountains.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Off to Find Waldo

The preparations are made and now all that is left to do is drive to the campsite, eat, sleep and then, finally, a little bit of running.

With amazing help from Stacey, along with Caroline, Dave and Rick, I have come up with a pacing and nutrition plan.

I have never gone to this much detail but then I have never run this far before.
General plan is to:

  • drink 20 ounces of water / hour
  • take 200 mg of electrolytes / hour (S caps, Clif bloks, etc.)
  • take in 280-300 calories / hour
  • 1/2 a banana at each aid station
  • get some protein in for the later stages
The nice thing is that with my watch beeping at me every 20 minutes to take in a gel (about 100 calories) I should actually remember to fuel. To properly digest the gel, I will need to take a good swig of water.
I will start out fueling on a gel every 30 minutes and then move to every 20 minutes after the first 1.5 to 2 hours.
The REI guy really wondered why anyone would need so many gels!

I will be carrying my own little pharmacy to deal with pain and stomach issues..oh joy!

I also plan to make use of Trisha's trusty shuffle to have about 2 hours of tunes to keep me moving. This is something new for me in a race.

My goal time is 13 hours. Patience is needed to not start to fast!
The weather is looking great with only a high of 70 degrees.

We are driving up tonight to the Odell Lake campground and I am looking forward to just relaxing and reviewing the race plan tomorrow.

All that is left to do now is run :-)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Nehalem Bay 2007

This past weekend was the annual family camping event for our church.
It took place out at Nehalem Bay near Manzanita, Oregon.

We had a great time hanging out with the Rouses, Manglesdorfs and the rest of the church families for Thursday night through Sunday morning.

We were in campsite F34 which was a good location right beside a camp host on a quiet corner not too far away from the beach, restrooms nor the kid's playground.

Most of the time was spent hanging out with friends, eating their food :-) and hitting the beach.

Another sand creation was born with the emergence of the giant lobster or crayfish (depending on who you ask).

I did limited running as I have started tapering for Waldo but we did a cool family run to Manzanita on the back road. Trisha discovered that there was a Manzanita Beach 5k walk, 5k & 10k run Saturday morning but we were too late to sign up. We will have to check it out for next year.

We then hit the local ice cream shop for some cones and sundaes.
The return trip was via the beach since it was low tide. With the all the beauty and the tailwind it is worth the little rust on the bikes :-)

Friday and Saturday were sunny but relatively cool with the breeze off the ocean. Sunday brought in some rain but it mostly held off while we packed up and headed for home.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Waterfalls towards Waldo

I set out one of my toughest stretch of workouts for my final build week before Where's Waldo 100km.

With the kids away visiting Grandma I in Canada, Trisha and I have a little more freedom and flexibility :-)

We started the string of workouts on Thursday night with a hard flat 8 mile run on the Fanno Creek Trail. Trisha was on the bike and I was hoping for a heat workout but alas our relatively cool Portland summer continues.

Friday morning I went out early and pounded out a 10 mile tempo run.

For Saturday I had originally thought of heading out with Stacey for a real workout but then realized there would be no way to get in the 4-5 hrs of running and still make Dave S Flowerdale Farm Blueberry Harvest Party. And there was no way I was missing all that great food!
So I headed out on the Wildwood Trail for 13.1 miles out and then back. Why 13.1? Seemed like a good goal to run a marathon that morning :-)
I ate, drank, power walked etc. like I plan for Waldo. This trail has way less vertical (I figure about 2800 ft of climbing) but I was happy with the results in terms of time (4:10) and generally feeling of the body.

After eating my fill on Saturday, I had the privilege to run with Trisha on the Eagle Creek Trail Sunday afternoon. After hitting the early service at church, we were on the trail by about 12:30 pm. The parking lot was busy but not full and we really did not have too much trouble passing all the hikers.
You climb pretty quick up to Punch Bowl falls at about 2 miles. After this there is something interesting every mile or so: either a waterfall or a bridge over the creek.

There are some pretty hairy ledges you traverse. One section is called the Vertigo Mile. Find Trisha in the picture to the left.

We did see a lady collapse and sit down on the trail as her brain could just not cope with the drop-off going around the Pothole section. Trisha appreciated the wire rope to hold onto :-) We are not sure if we will attempt this with the kids any time soon.

The Tunnel falls are the largest on the trail and the experience is heightened as you pass through the tunnel carved behind the falls by the trail designers in about 1910.

We turned around just past the Crossover falls...great place to stop and eat!

In the scree / old lava sections watch out for the little lizards...did not know we had any around here? I believe it was a Northern Alligator lizard. Which, apparently even live in!

Finished with a dip in the creek to wash off the sweat and salt accumulated over the 14 miles...poor salmon.

This trail is truly amazing with the quality of the scenery, the close location to Portland and how much fun it is to run. Mostly uphill on the way out and nice downhill running on the way back.

Pictures do not do it justice.
Get out there and try it.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

OSCON 2007

I had the opportunity to spend a day at OSCON 2007.

This is my attempt to capture what I found interesting from the presentations that I attended for future exploration and reading.
It is long and not formatted very well. The content is thought triggers for my future explorations. Hopefully yours as well.

Note: that most of the thoughts here are from the presenters with my note taking and comments in italics.

KeyNote: Year in Review: Open Source at Microsoft
Bill Hilf: Open Source software lab at Microsoft.
- Their progression has been from Experimenting to Learning to Architecting.
- Worked to overcome open source bias within Microsoft.
- Check out: Port 25, Channel 9, CodePlex
- Microsoft has submitted shared source license to OSI for approval: read more
- New Microsoft open source web property: (live at 7am July 27th)

Definitely some interesting new movement that will be fun to watch.

Key Note: Copyright Regime vs. Civil Liberties
Rick Falkvinge, The Pirate Party
- Sweden political platform at the web page.
- Copyright is intended to be commercial...but in the digital age is touching everything and is everywhere.
- Under current law that messenger is not responsible for the contents of the message...commercial interests would like this "limitation" to be changed.
- Society must choose: privacy or copyright
- Another possible outcome is a filtering the internet.

I think this is a group of people who are asking questions that are great to get people talking. Not sure I agree with everything but...discussing the situation is good.

Key Note: How to Ignore Marketing and Become Irrelevant in Two Easy Steps
Steve Yegge (works at Google):
- New Coke is like New God??!! Who needed the redefinition.
-59% said New Coke tasted better in blind.
-With label 59% old coke
- Turbo C and Quick C : which sounds faster to you?
- Brand is a a pointer in programming (constant identifier).
- GTE trying to change image...constant.
- Data indicates it takes a generation to change a brand perception...GTE --> Verizon
- Eclipse must be careful...watering down of brand by becoming a mega-brand...a brand must stand for something...and the consumer usually picks.

- 22 immutable laws of branding (book to check out).

- IBM Visual Age for Java - names can really hurt adoption
- Visual Age for Java --> Eclipse
- eBay / - which one is the better name?

- Eclipse known as Java (joke from the audience is that Eclipse is associated with being slow...ouch!)
- Hard to successfully move into other spaces
- Attempting to extend brand...Eclipse main web page given as example...(even though the old quote of good for everything but nothing in particular has been gone for more than a year!)
- Claims Eclipse should just stay focused on Java...but then admitted that Java is getting close to being your father's programming language.
- Open source licensing: GPL brand leader for OSI
- What does open source mean...depends on license...hard to define. Brand has no strong meaning. Needs attention and a solution.

Likely the best talk I have heard where the presenters slides refused to show up on the screen!

How to Protect Your Open Source Project from Poisonous People
Subversion anecdotes
- Producing open source software, Karl Fogel (book)
- Attention and focus is the scarce resource: conflict drains this aware, infighting
perfect is the enemy of the good --> good old analysis paralysis
- build strong community based on: politeness, respect, trust, and humility
- increase bus factor for many people need to get hit by a bus before your project is in real trouble.
- Don't be afraid of process
(Wahoo...just what we believe on the Jazz process team! The team owns their process. The process must be easy to explore and open to change. Only an enacted process is real.)
- Genius is now a commodity so just don't let someone in just because they are smart.
- EVERYONE must be a team player.
- Everyone agreed that no one really understands "angry demands for help".
- Pink bike shed: so true!!
- Apparently this talk is available on Google video

People Hacks: Adam Keys
Machines tend to be rational / people tend to be irrational
(at this very moment someone in the audience took a cell phone call that was very disruptive to the talk: hilarious)
- There is no readme for humans
- Easier to convince someone to do something if they like you
- There is a reason programs have laff tracks
- Negativity is lazy
- Criticisms --> turtle with its head stuck in a shell can make no progress. Be gentle when critiquing someones work.

- No Asshole rule
(Book to check out)
- Generally not worth tolerating even geniuses
- Start your own method of coping (My method is to write an scathing email to a jerk and then delete it! Always ensure the TO address is to yourself :-) )
- It is good therapy to admit you are a jerk...sometimes
- Advocating ideas:
  • understand the box/context someone is living in. Then you can move towards thinking outside the box
  • resistance to change
  • prepare for the tough questions
  • honesty and modesty
  • plant ideas in other people...then be ready to implement when they see the light
- move teams to hive mind
- make easy for people to try out and make them feel like a hero when they do
- move "know it all" (teenage mentality) to mentor, if not mentor then friend
- give people an incentive to really care...even just implied rewards.
- social gatherings to grow team dynamic. Even team "inside jokes" grow the dynamic.
teams that can have fun produce more...feel of belonging, pride in group identity
- How to win friends and influence people (old school book that is still relevant)
- Test out someone: jerks will generally show their hand dealing with wait staff at restaurants.

Next generation Version Control Systems
Distributed src control
We all need to keep up with
- Git
- inode history uninteresting, derivable from the content
- important to encourage frequent topic branching
- if you want a usability feature...patches welcome...not the focus
Apparently there is a Git eclipse plug-in ?



- And for lots of fun on a Sunday night: Comparison of revision control software

Body hacking and functional body are the platform (Quinn Norton)
Enhance function of body or perceptions
- rare earth metal implanted in ring anesthetic--> artist not doctor
- re-purpose brain for new functional capacity
- RFID implantation
- people putting together CT scan with open source packages
- Emotiv - basically a game controller but ooohhh the potential for "hackers"
- if steroids are cheating why isn't Lasik?
- Provigil - reduces need for sleep...7-10 dollars per pill
- CUV1647 - tan, weight loss and increases sex drive
- vaccination is required modification
- black market medicine---back alley hospitals
- What makes or defines a human?
- When does someone stop being human?

Not directly related to anything I do or would try but man is this a conversation starter!

Art of Community Panel
Great code comes out of a good community
Is it really about the community or is it the code?
-over the long term these merge to become one
- people are important. Anonymous software, ability to get away with lower quality
-Wikipedia - people building an encyclopedia. Healthy community software is emergent
-Ensure your community has a defined goal. This makes it much easy to define healthy community

Is a community healthy?
-consistent, constant participation
-distribution of workload
-many roles in a community
-ease of joining and ease of use, ease of sampling...taking college course
- self moderating, self governing
-vested interest in community success

Benevolent it dead?
- General consensus...yes. Always really a core group of committers that you can trust.
- You do have the opportunity to take your toys and leave the party

Community that is too large?
- attempting to break down areas of expertise is a sign of too large of a community
- having a reputation system - tends to be gamed
- Linden Lab love machine - A vehicle to give someone kudos for doing a good job. Giving and getting. Hard to game as transparent
- Communities just plain do not scale: look at a map

Are communities becoming a commodity?
- Source forge into marketplace
- Value is in the committers: IBM and committers for Apache
- Community only stays if things are still healthy

- Community about in the works: link

What Do You Mean, Marketing? Promoting Open Source Projects
- If your project sucks no amount of marketing effort will make it successful
- It is not evil to engage in marketing
- Give talks and presentations to promote
- write articles
- A really good web page is a must
- postgres sql given as an example: web page
- simple but provides the user with everything in an expected and easy to recognize format
- Do not hide the source code
- make it easy to get and try out the project
- VMWare image
- Good documentation is great marketing
- Don't disrespect the competition
- have a low traffic announce list
- have predictable release cycles for users, downstream vendors --> great comfort for IT managers
- regular users should be involved in every stage of the project
- get the stats of your users: Who is your consumer?- Fedora project doing good work here
- Eclipse given as an example still run by IBM...memories are long :-(

Overall interesting and thought provoking talks.
I appreciated the slack time to think about these tangents.