Moving on…

Alas, it is time for me to move on from my wordpress.com hosting to my new site.

Please update your RSS readers and such.

I’m now at http://jritch.com

See you there!

This site will no longer be updated and jritch.net will be moved over to my new blog as soon as I can get wordpress hosting to email me back.

Walking Dead Book Four

The Walking Dead story continues where the third book left off with the inevitable confrontation between our heroes currently housed in the prison and the disgusting (redneck) camp from last issue. The story continues to become more entangled by its ever growing cast, diverging into a zombie survivor soap opera at some points during some slow paced parts… but that was just the necessary set-up for the bludgeon of an ending. Wow. I’m shocked disgusted and horrified. In some ways it was hitting a reboot button on the characters, in some ways it was simply the natural progression of the story. But it was completely in style with what I’ve come to expect from Kirkman’s Walking Dead.

If you’ve enjoyed the first three books, how could you stop reading there? Pick up the fourth one for an equally tragic continuation of humanity’s life after the apocalypse.

Making this story more interesting was the recent C-Realm Podcast discussion on Zombie fiction as a reflection of latent societal fears of human nature. Walking Dead follows in line with all good zombie stories, the atrocities committed by humans against each other overshadow the disgusting yet rather straightforward motivation of the walking undead themselves. Perhaps the greatest horror is the revelation that humans may be the true soulless sacks of meat, simply with more complex reasons for acting. The Walking Dead is the best zombie story I’ve ever experienced and I’m not sure how much more my stomach can take. But for now, bring on the 5th hardcover collection Robert Kirkman!

After starting Hawken and Lovins’ Natural Capitalism in late October, I just finished it up today nearly two months later. Amazing book with many insights for the upcoming economist, engineer, architect, manager and leader. Natural Capitalism provides a realistic look on how to develop new business and markets around enhancing our natural capital instead of degrading it. Some interesting insights back in 1999 (when the book was originally published) are only now being realized nationally such as comments about the “Big Three” automakers and non-sustainable nature of credit markets (indirectly commented on).

Finishing this book made me wonder if we’ve been on pause for the last decade. Have we begun to address any of the approaches in this book at a national level? Is it too late? Quite possibly.

However, it has fully re-ignited my interest to have a long and exciting career as an engineer in the field of resource efficiency which I’ll hopefully be able to devote towards policy later on in a local civil elected position.

This book is a must read for anyone interested in making money in a quickly changing market.

My next read? After a brief fiction detour, Hot, Flat and Crowded by Friedman. Will be an interesting contrast to Lovins and Hawken regarding where we are at as the United States, nearly ten years after Natural Capitalism was written. In what I assume will be political commentary and a recommended course of action from Friedman, I’ll look to glean some base reference for what our federal and state policy makers will think as we head into the most crucial 6 months of US history.

This book was a great follow up after reading Cradle to Cradle on the plane to Austria, many of the same concepts were discussed in both books and McKibben was referred to multiple times in Natural Capitalism (NC). However, considering that NC was published first… I have to wonder if this article “outing” McKibben as a fraud and plagarist are true.

The most mentally revolutionary concept from Natural Capitalism? Tunneling through the cost curve,

Essentially, you can reach a point with energy efficiency that it reduces the capital cost of initial purchases. I can’t do the concept justice here but for planners and designers including this idea in college courses could reap immeasurable and exponential benefits the world over.

Current RPI: 191 (-2 from last game’s RPI of 189)

Changes: The Niners defeated the Youngstown St. Penguins of the Horizon League by 20 in dominating fashion. Clearly a different 49ers team than the group that lost at the buzzer to teams equally futile to Y’town. Lutz is minimizing substitutions now as he appears to have a feel for how each player fits into the lineup. The Penguins were a very inferior opponent and never really threatened to take control of the game.

My Thoughts: Lamont Mack returned to lackluster play after breaking it open vs. Miss St. in the previous week. However, Dijuan Harris had a career game, finally pulling up to take the shot instead of passing as he went perfect from the floor scoring 20. Those twenty points were the difference in the game. The Niners hit 100 pts. in a regular season game for the first time since they lost in 3OT vs. #22 Alabama my freshman year… four years ago. I would continue to be optimistic about the improvement of the team if An’Juan Wilderness, the 3rd leading scorer wasn’t out for the next two weeks with a stress fracture.

Ugh. Right when we were making progress after losing 2 of our top three guards at the start of the season, we lose another top guy. I’ve now got to re-adjust my outlook on the season. I think we’ll take down Long Island to go 5-6 but at Maryland on the 3rd is now the definition point of the season. Can we beat an NCAA caliber team? Without our top defensive presence? I’m not very confident.

I’m down in Lousiana where everyone is getting hyped up about UL-Lafayette’s Ragin’ Cajuns taking on #18 Tennesee so I won’t be in Halton for the Long Island game. Hopefully I can catch it on internet radio or Uttervision via NNN.net shoutbox.

Data based on Sagarin Ratings via RPIForecast.com,

Probability of NCAA Tourney at-large bid (40 or lower RPI) = .03%<

Most probable end of season record = 14-16

I’ll be posting an RPI update for the Charlotte 49ers after every game (once data is available). You can subscribe to these updates without reading menial stories from my life by subscribing to this RSS feed. I will be launching a 49ers sports only blog in the next few months to cover this kind of information so you won’t have to read all this other stuff for too long.

Dec 28th RPI

Now that’s UNC Charlotte


UNC Charlotte Flash Rave

Photo credit: Alex Krohn via Erby’s Blog

Inside the Atkins Library during the exam  flash rave. I thought this was a spectacular picture so I had to post it here. Thanks for finding it Erby! And thanks to Alex for taking it! 

From a flash rave in the library on Decemeber 16th during finals,

The quick summary and then the full thing:

I’m looking forward to graduation on Saturday but I’ll sure miss my undergraduate school.

The Decline of Civilization