Monday, November 23, 2009

Water Conservation Starts at Home

I attended a two hour rain barrel workshop hosted by the Alabama Cooperative Extension Service last weekend. The workshop started with a great presentation by Tia Gonzales describing environmental impact of storm water and runoff on watersheds followed by an introduction to rain water harvesting. Tia also sent us a link to this cool map of the watersheds around Auburn, AL.

I walked away from the workshop thinking that the building code ought to include requirements for storm water management in new construction and tax incentives to encourage water harvesting. That idea was re-enforced today by this front page article on the New York Times web site describing how even light rain generates enough storm water to overwhelm many city sewer systems which overflow sewage into watersheds, drinking water sources, and basements.

Mike Rogers Disappoints on Health Care

I was disappointed, but not surprised by Mike Rogers' (Congressional representative for Albama's 3rd district) recent press release opposing health care reform. The health care bills before the House and Senate address the systemic problems in our health system that include fast rising costs for employers and patients, a growing numbers of uninsured, and an insurance system that discriminates against an American with any pre-existing condition.

It is true that the health care legislation involves trade-offs, costs, and risks. Healthy American who do not currently cary health insurance will be required to buy insurance. The wasteful Government subsidies to private insurers for Medicare Advantage programs will decrease. Medicaid expansion will increase financial burdens on federal and state governments.

The financial and humanitarian jeopardy we leave ourselves vulnerable to by not pursuing health care reform far outweighs the risks and imperfections we accept with reform. We can see that the dam will burst if we do not attempt to re-enforce it. There are good sources of information online that describe the costs and benefits in detail including and Wikipedia.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Banana Muffins

I prefer muffins to pan cakes - I always burn the pan cakes. This recipe evolved from Fannie Farmer's muffin recipe.

  • 4 Tbspn melted butter
  • 1/2 cup wheat flour
  • 3/2 cups flour
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup Soy milk
  • 1 Tbspn baking powder
  • 1 tspn cinamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 Tspn vanilla

Mash the banana with the egg and vanilla and mix everything up, then load into a greased muffin tin and bake 20 minutes at 380 degrees F. Muffins with coffee start the day with a smile!

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Publish javadoc to Google Code via Mercurial

I like Google code more and more the more I use it ... more. Why don't I have a vocabulary ? Anyway, I also like Mercurial, so combine Mercurial with Google Code and you have chocolate with peanut butter.

Here's how I managed to post javadoc to

  • Clone the wiki mercurial repo:
        $ hg clone littleWiki
  • Copy your javadoc into littleWiki, and add it to the repo
        $ hg add -I 'glob:javadoc/**' 
        $ hg commit
  • Push the patch back up to google code
              hg push

BTW - I just tracked down how to tell blogger not to insert <br /> tags all over my post ( in the HTML editor. What a stupid default!