November 22, 2010
While New York City appears at the forefront of a national trend to increase access to its scarce pavement, a review of the chronology dating to back to the beginning of the 20th century reveals this “forefront” to be more of a “crest” in a cyclical wave of politics. Somewhere in that mush of time Robert Moses transformed New York– how he did it is as important to cyclists today as what he did.
Cyclists should review the techniques and strategies of Mr. Moses for clues as to how to implement their vision through parallel political and a-political processes. Here are my three cents:
First, frame the message: Moses was ‘giving’ parks and parkways to the people. Cyclists appear to be ‘taking’ from the auto and pedestrians. Since there is little debate as to the future demand, need or desire to implement a healthy and sustainable alternative to the auto, the onus will rest squarely on cyclists to reframe their message as a giving and not a taking.
Second, make no small plans: Develop and sell the entire network–not just the individual intersection. Its too easy for individualized local fights to overwhelm the value of an entire network.
Third, follow the money. Moses gave us toll roads (aka “parkways,” ahem) while Bikes remain basically free. Bike coalitions have largely been self financed and their respective political results suggest this meager purse power. Municipalities that want to encourage the muli-tmodal use of their roadways should immediately enforce a drivers/riders license requirement and impose a new use fee for cyclists that use the road (and not just ‘share’ or ‘borrow’ it). The use fee should start out high and decrease with the actual mileage traveled (or perhaps number of consecutive years renewed.)
I’d value your continued comment and thoughts.
August 18, 2009
August 7, 2009
Over watering plants and lawn and they still look dry? Do you have Clay soils? If you live in the Bay Area you more than likely do. How can one improve their garden soils? Read more
August 3, 2009
Imagine getting to your apartment taking out your iphone and hitting a Home button, your house lights turn on; your climate control goes to your favorite comfort level, your favorite music track starts and your window treatments open, is this really possible? Read more
July 9, 2009
In my 22 years of working with my family’s garage door business, I’ve seen quite a bit of change. This decade, it’s seemingly becoming about the Green movement…but where are we with ‘green’ garage doors, and is it worth it to pursue such a door? Read more
July 9, 2009
Our most precious resource is water but here in the United States we take it for granted. We continue to use clean drinking/bathing water for every aspect of our lives. Here in CA we are in a drought. A law has already been passed to reduce the amount of water each homeowner can use. The law is AB 1881 and Read more
June 24, 2009
June 19, 2009
June 18, 2009
An Interview with Noah Stokes of AVT
Mason Kirby: Thanks for joining me today. How did you get involved with AVT, and what’s the nature of AVT’s business?
Noah Stokes: Our business model includes doing all of the high and low voltage work on a project. This starts with the design and includes the running of the wires, providing the equipment, the installation and all the way through to the programming and final instruction. We have this approach for a couple reasons. With the low voltage industry as a whole, everything has gotten so complicated and there are so many options out there that work great independently but, “don’t play well with others” to quote our Lead Programmer Joe Hutton that everyone has to be really careful with each piece they select. Read more
May 29, 2009
Mason Kirby: Ken, thanks for joining me today. The purpose of our conversation, is to introduce who you are, and what your company, Imaging Perspective, provides. On the outset, Imaging Perspective provides digital as-built construction services and documentation to contractors, homeowners, and building owners. Ken, could you start a little bit, by telling a little bit about yourself, and how fell into the founding of this company and technology.
Ken VanBree: I’m an engineer by background, and worked for years in Silicon Valley, doing both CAD and design of integrated circuits. My wife and I built a house about 10 years ago, and it was just when digital cameras were becoming affordable. I took a lot of pictures as we were building the house, before they covered the walls, and at various stages. I found that those images were useful later, because when we had to go back in and make some changes, and move some wires around, and install things on the walls. It was good to know what was back there so that we didn’t tap into any pipes, or wires, or things that we shouldn’t have, when we were trying to make changes. I had put together a prototype of our e-builts software for my own amusement, but then I talked to some contractors and architects, and said, “Would this be a useful product, a useful service?”, and they thought it would be. So I set out to build a company to provide the service.
Mason: What you built was something that delivers something quite different from standard as-built documentation. For somebody that knows what “as-builts” are, in a standard sense, can you describe what your e-Builts are and how they are different?
Ken: Yes, e-builts are based on photographic record of the construction process. We go in at various stages of construction and take pictures of everything that’s there: all the interior walls, and ceilings, and floors, as well, if necessary, on the project. We put all those together in a website, or a desktop viewer, Read more