As a common workout, Tara and I run at least twice a week, mostly on the weekends. Depending on how California weather treats us, it can be quite the challenge. But luckily, there's usually a bay breeze to help us along the way. Phew.
A somewhat rare specimen of US currency: The presidential dollar coin (this one featuring Abraham Lincoln). Now, rare isn't quite right: Dollar coins are all over the place, just nobody seems to like them. Quite the pity, considering how nice these coins look! Admittedly though, they are so much heavier and bulkier than dollar bills. -- So whenever you see someone paying with "Honest Abe" or any of the other presidents, they have most likely been using some sort of vending machine recently, which are most of the time incapable of returning bills as change.
Fun fact: The presidential dollar coin program is backed by a law that among other things codifies a long-standing rule: That a presidential coin is not going to be made featuring a president who is still alive. Perhaps it would be a little too Roman Emperor otherwise.
These are two bikes I saw in Mountain View today: First, a bike with a Chrome logo wheel. Luckily for onlookers, they used the old Chrome logo, not the one that made the Internets shudder in horror a few months ago. Next to it, its little sibling, the Google bike. These small, colorful bikes help Googlers get across their ever-growing campus in no time. (Historical tidbit: Before Mozilla moved to Castro Street, we had bikes as well, to move between the two buildings we occupied. In the meantime, we just have to take a quick trip up or down the stairs to get to other parts of the office).
While it is common for people in urban areas of Europe to completely do away with their car, public transport in the US is infamously bad -- partly undeservedly so, when you look at cities like New York that run a successful mass transport system that's basically up to par with other cities of considerable size.
But of course, in the Bay Area, millions of people meet massive suburban sprawl, which is an absolutely toxic mixture for fast and efficient public transport. Still, the commuters are being offered several options depending on where they live. The one closest to where I live is the VTA lightrail system pictured here. It's sufficiently modern (and clean, and safe, at the very least during commute hours) to be a good commute option. Sadly, it is comparatively (and sometimes inexplicably) slow. At best, it's a wash between VTA and driving (when commuting alone), or easily takes 1.5-2 times as long as a commute by car (when commuting with >= 2 people, who can access the "commuter lanes" on the freeway). For cost, the picture is similar.
That commuting by public transport is not the downright best solution on all fronts makes me sad.
On the Interwebs, a blog post on behalf of Internet Explorer 10 made the rounds today, trying to coin the term "native HTML5" for web applications that look like Windows applications, grotesquely turning the cross-platform nature of the Web into a flaw that can only be remedied by ignoring both other platforms and even different versions of the platform in question.
In the community, this curious opinion has been received with humor, which is exactly the kind of reaction this marketing blabber should receive. (This is also in the interest of the engineers at Microsoft who work hard to implement more and more web standards in Internet Explorer, which -- remember! -- greatly benefits all web users who can't or choose not to pick a different browser. They are the people who are unnecessarily and ironically ridiculed by the "native HTML5" blog article).
After I've shown you a small, old (and presumably out of order) coffee roaster on day 67, here's another small roaster, but this time a modern one in best working order.
I saw it running at Whole Foods in Los Altos, CA, and thought it was kind of cool how you could see the beans on the inside.
If you care, here's a video of the thing running:
Look at this Volkswagen Beetle I saw at the Great Mall today (don't ask me what year, or model number, or any such things ;)). There are quite a few of them driving around the Bay Area, I noticed. I wonder if all of those are Beetle enthusiasts, or if some of them are owned by people who originally bought it a few decades ago and never saw the need to replace their beetle with a newer car? Either way, the old Beetle seems comparatively much more frequent here in the US than back home in Germany. Who would've thought.
Named after the peninsula of Kowloon in Hong Kong, China, this cocktail combines coffee and orange flavors to a quite delectable concoction:
1 measure Kahlua 1 measure Grand Marnier 3 measures orange juice
Shake with ice, and serve in a wine glass half full of crushed ice. Decorate with a slice of orange.
Now, in the photo you might notice that I shamelessly replaced Grand Marnier with Cointreau. Also, I had no orange for decoration. It was delicious nonetheless. So sue me ;)
Final day of the Mozilla All-Hands week! Tons of lightning talks about interesting topics today. Here, Lars shows off his Python development environment.
After I get some sleep this weekend, I'll have plenty of software and tips and tricks to try out that I collected over the week. Exciting!