Archive for the 'Misc' Category

Safety is my family name

2013-01-26 / 13:19 /


Cold & heavy

2013-01-02 / 01:40 /

Another fun one from Colossal:

That's a big snowflake
via colossal


2012-12-19 / 06:10 /

INSA (via colossal)

Completely unbiased product endorsement: Caveman Bars

2012-12-06 / 14:03 /

In my effort to stuff my self with things that don’t contain gluten, I found Caveman Bars. They’re locally–to the NW–made paleo bars. I liked the almond coconut one I got from the Central Co-Op so I decided to order a mixed box. Unfortunately I had it shipped to the wrong address so I emailed them to admit my guilt, pay my extra shipping, and have them sent to my real address.

Instead they charged me no extra shipping and sent me 2 boxes.

So much paleo for my face!

Two interesting things I’ve seen in Seattle

2012-10-06 / 02:54 /

1. The guy panhandling in Capitol Hill wearing a “I’ve got the dick so I make the rules” T-shirt.
2. The goth girl riding her bike on the sidewalk while wearing headphones and screaming 2 Live Crew lyrics.

Changes 2

2012-09-30 / 20:53 /

Last time I got a new bike, this time I moved to Seattle.

So far I’ve been working and looking for an apartment. Oh, and eating:

Megatransect 2011

2011-11-04 / 16:21 /

I think it was during the Rachel Carson that I first heard about the Megatransect. Hiking buddy Mark sent me a reminder email as soon as registration opens and I managed to register before it sold out (which was only 48 hours after registration opened).

BEFORE Mark and Kelan registered too.

I rented a car and drove out to Lock Haven after work. I picked up my registration packet and went to get some dinner. A phone call from Kelan confirmed that he had made it from Philly and that Mark had almost made it before getting lost. Mark eventually made it, heading straight to the hotel (I camped).

The next morning was a drizzly 40 degrees. The rain was supposed to start at noon.

The first three miles were asphalt. I walked the first mile with Mark then jogged ahead for a bit before setting into a fast hike. I should have started faster as I got stuck in lines as soon as we hit the single track. The crowds were thick all the way to the boulders.

Everyone had been talking about the boulders and they didn’t disappoint. It was a steep section and much longer than I expected. The advantage is that the “trail” was much wider and I could get past the bolus.

The next trail section was “Rattlesnake Ridge”, which had less rattlesnakes and more slippery wet rocks.

After the rest stop I ended up jogging beside British Bob, an experienced local runner in a Union Jack jersey. He was wearing the same Innov8 shoes I was; we both loved them. He warned me repeatedly about The Goat Path.

Bob got ahead of me while I got more gatorade at the next rest stop. The trail lead up a small fireroad to a turnoff with a wooden sign stamped “The Goat Path”. I had a good pace and passed Bob at the base of the climb. “You’ll understand why I’ve got this slow pace.” he told me.

I did: the goat Path is a steep hill that doesn’t end.

AFTER There was a lot of downhill & pleasant flat before the next boulder section. Summary: wet boulders are a terrible, terrible thing.

It was literally all downhill from there. On the last leg I ran beside Francesca, another Pittsburgher. She was in pain from her move to minimalist shoes, I had pain-killers; we were a good team. We paced out of the dirt and onto the asphalt section. “Almost there” she said “all that’s left is the green mile.” “The green mile?” “It’s a 1 mile through thick grass.”

That sounds fun. Her feet hurt and she fell behind. I felt a little guilty since she had finished in 6 hours the year before and should have been drinking a finish line beer while I was still sweating it out on the course. But I didn’t feel guilty enough to wait. I turned off the road and down the grassy slope.

I lost my footing on the off camber hill. The rest of the grass was an unending, annoying slog. The only thing that made it possible was the nice gentlemen who ran 3-feet ahead of me the entire way.

Then it was only half a mile of foot-painful asphalt and the best sprint I could muster for the finish.

My initial guess of a 7:30 finish time was pretty good; I came in at #160 (7:23) (results).

I cleaned up, ate and found Kelan hanging out by the fire. He had sprained his ankle a few weeks before the run and had set himself the modest goal of 5 and a half hours. A wet rock derailed him and he had to “settle” for 6:16. We ate about 3 plates of BBQ and waited for Mark.

Spoils Mark showed up and we forced him to eat something before the cold set in (the rain did start at noon and only increased). Then we hung around for a bit before heading into the parking lot turned mud pit. For the next 15 minutes we formed a powerful team of three, pushing sedans out of sloppy tire ruts.

Then we all went home.

Would I do it again? Maybe, but I’d probably do the Hyner before that.

Rachel Carson 2010

2011-10-21 / 18:13 /

I belatedly realized I never talked about my 2010 running of the Rachel Carson Challenge. It was literally a running: I ran the first half. Then my body was like “Hey, dude, that’s not a good idea! My joints feel like rubber and fire!” (though I was happy that my heel only tingled a bit). I power walked the rest and finished strong: 8:55:01.

I sat at the end waiting for Iris–my previous RCT buddy–to finish. She opted to hike with her friends who were doing the hike for the first time. But the thunder storms started and my ride showed up so I wished her luck from the passenger seat.

I might have dozed except I’d had about a dozen Gu packets @ 20mg of caffeine each.

I got out of the car and realized I was starting to pay the price of performance. My hip flexors tensed up so much that I could barely walk stairs.

I took my shoes off to find grape sized blisters. Eventually I would lose 5 toe nails.

Another chance to work with me!

2010-04-07 / 16:32 /

Precision Therapeutics, Inc: Job Description

Job Title: Informatics Intern
Department: Informatics

The Opportunity

Precision Therapeutics, Inc. is a diagnostics services company dedicated to providing physicians and patients with actionable clinical information to personalize cancer treatments. We are currently seeking an Informatics Intern.

Duties and Responsibilities

(Include the following: other duties may be assigned)
The goal is to do a thorough investigation on the best way to measure in vitro chemosensitivity generated by ChemoFx assays. Traditionally the two major schools of thought are IC50 and AUC of the dose-response curves. Due to the special features of the curves from ChemoFx assays (e.g. non-monotone, resistant lines do not respond, non-sigmoidal), there are some AUC derivative metrics (such as aAUC, tAUC) that are intended to account for the curve characteristics that are not captured by AUC. However, it has been unclear which measure is the ‘best’, and it is difficult not to pre-specify this in a protocol.

The current thought is that this research involves two components. (1). Mathematically, what is the optimal way to quantify a dose-response curve from in vitro assays? This step involves the combination of mathematical models AND the knowledge of in vitro biology (especially w.r.t. how ChemoFx is setup). Both parametric models (such as logistic regression model, polynomial model; as well as the choice of IC50, IC25, etc) and non-parametric models (e.g. AUC and its derivatives, smoothing spline) need to be considered. (2). Use clinical data that have already demonstrated the ‘link’ between ChemoFx assay and clinical outcome to compare the performance of different metrics. This can be achieved by in-sample cross-validation approaches or by using multiple independent datasets.


Education requirements

  • Graduate student with 2 years towards PhD in Statistics


  • No prior working experience is needed

Required Skills

  • R and/or SAS programming
  • Good communication skills and writing skills
  • Able to perform statistical simulations

Preferred Skills

  • Knowledge of prediction and cross-validation
  • Knowledge of non-linear regression and model fitting, especially the 4-parameter logistic regression model for dose-response curves
  • Knowledge of area under the curve (AUC) calculation

If you are seeking a dynamic, challenging atmosphere, that is never boring, with a chance to make a difference and help cancer patients, email your resume to with the word “Informatics Intern” in the subject of the email

I didn’t write the posting, but feel free to ask me questions.

CloudFab: now out of beta!

2010-03-23 / 14:11 /

CloudFab basically works like this: Manufacturers list their machines and prices. Buyers can then upload STL files, and request quotes from all manufacturers that have a machine that can make their part. We’ve written software that analyzes the file and automatically generates a quote based on various factors, including shipping cost. That way, quotes are generated (almost) instantly. Some sellers still prefer manual quoting, and so we’ve provided that option as well. We also hold the money in escrow, to mitigate the risk for both parties in the transaction, and will do arbitration as necessary in the case of an unfortunate outcome.

CloudFab blog

Check out my super boring profile: dgingrich

PS: They’re out of Pittsburgh, if anyone wants to rep some hometown pride.

The horrible, horrible face of depression

2010-03-08 / 09:33 /

The horribly, horribly illustrated face of depression

Via Lifehacker which links to the New York Time’s article on Depression’s Upsides

A grown-ass birthday

2010-03-02 / 19:07 /

I didn’t do anything big for my 30th birthday with the rational that I would wait for my 25‘th birthday. Then I thought “this year I’m turning python -c 'print 0b11111'! That deserves some sort of nerd celebration!”

Then I got sick.

It didn’t stop me from having a nice dinner & some bluegrass party times on Friday night. Then Saturday I had breakfast, conned my friend into taking me to the Co-op and Trader Joe’s, and then had 18 hours of uninterrupted fevered dreams. Sunday I sat around drinking hot water to try to loosen the massive blockage in my lungs. I also did all the work I was supposed to do Saturday.

Some more anecdotes, told as a pithy definition list:

Best fevered brain sleep decision
“I’m hot but I’ll get cold later when the chills come back. I’ll take just one sock halfway off. Brilliant!
Sunshine ray
Jeanne came over and we tried to make a lemon meringue pie
Bird-poop in the eye
Lemon did not set
Insult to injury
Jeanne insisted that I do not have the flu, which is much worse. I merely have a rhinovirus
Success of blood-line / failure of technology
The fam called to sing me happy birthday over the speakerphone. It was sweet, but I couldn’t understand a damn thing they were saying when we talked afterwards

Now I’m mostly better except that I keep spitting up masses of dead, bloated T-cell and have trouble breathing when I ride my bike.

My birthday has been postponed until next weekend.

WTFOTD: Wirklich Flickr? Du denkst, ich bin Deutscher alle auf einmal?

2010-02-24 / 22:24 /

As of 2010-02-20:
Flickr in German

This is why one of my grandfather’s legs is shorter than the other one

2010-02-21 / 22:05 /

The 442nd is commonly reported to have suffered a casualty rate of 314 percent, informally derived from 9,486 Purple Hearts divided by some 3,000 original in-theater personnel. U.S. Army battle reports show the official casualty rate, combining KIA (killed) with MIA (missing) and WIA (wounded and removed from action) totals, is 93%, still uncommonly high. Many of the Purple Hearts were awarded during the campaign in the Vosges Mountains and some of the wounded were soldiers who were victims of trenchfoot. But many victims of trenchfoot were forced by superiors—or willingly chose—to return to the front even though they were classified as “wounded in action”. Wounded soldiers would often escape from hospitals to return to the front line battles.[citation needed]


Some random pictures

2009-10-28 / 11:08 /

LOL butter!
LOL butter!!1!

Alien veggies via the CSA
I have no idea what those are, but I'm going to eat them

My pumpkin, 2009

What happens when a runner’s stride frequency is the same as a camera’s frame rate?
Running animation

All of a sudden I’m a yogi and/or swimmer for 6 weeks

2009-10-14 / 17:25 /

Success comes with a price, in this case a calcaneus stress-fracture. Ex-runner Mark, in reference to my then-upcoming MRI, warned that my cycling fitness was probably working against me: my cardio & legs were more prepared than my dainty skeleton. My 5 year old New Balance kicks probably weren’t helping, especially since last year I half melted the soles while drying them in a fire. Hiking ruins everything.

Since I don’t have any pain while walking or biking I dodged having to use crutches, which is good since I hear that cycling with crutches is terrible. But I am off “high-impact” foot activity for 6 weeks. Looks like it’s all about yoga and/or swimming for the next month and a half.

It also means I’ve got some open race entries up for grabs. Anyone want to run the Partners in the Park on October 25th (in York, PA) or the Spirit of Pittsburgh half marathon on November 1st? Upside: free. Downside: they’ll think you’re me.

The Nobel conspiracy against Ronald Reagan

2009-10-10 / 14:35 /

Via Open Congress:

I can’t second guess the Nobel, but I will say this: we never expect a conservative Republican to be chosen. For instance, when Ronald Reagan helped to bring about the end of the Cold War and he was ignored by the Nobel Committee. I mean, to me, we’re just used to having the Nobel people picking Democrats or liberals to honor in this way.

Sen. Orrin Hatch [R, UT]

I’m a (somewhat) Great Race(r)

2009-09-27 / 20:56 /

Last night at 6:45 pm I was at Finnegan’s Wake for Heather’s birthday. Then we watched the Pirates lose 8-4 and Foreigner careen through a mediocre set. I got home around 11 pm and made some late night pasta in preparation for The Great Race.

I was asleep by midnight.

At about 1:45 pm I got to hear an argument outside. I didn’t catch the details, but Allie was mad at Pam because Pam wanted to call Dominick to get a ride. But according to Allie he just wants to fuck her and isn’t even taking care of their 6 year old. Allie said that If Jamie ever did that to her she wouldn’t stand for it. Pam just wanted to know where her phone was. She was also mad because Allie wasn’t listening to her. I think they both made reasonable arguments, I just wish they had made them quieter, or somewhere else.

For the record, Allie stated several times that she wasn’t drunk.

At 6:30 am I woke to my alarm and the sound of rain.

I had planned to eat eggs but realized that might be a bad running breakfast since running is so much harder on your stomach than biking. Some googling turned up recommendations to stick to simple carbs. To reinforce the point, the search also turned up information on Running Trots. I’ve heard of people pulling over in the woods during cross-country meets but didn’t know it was common enough to merit a name. Scared potentially shitless, I ate a little left over cold pasta and the Snickers nutrition bar (really, I couldn’t make that up) that came with my registration packet.

After pinning my # & attaching my timing chip, I got on my rain bike and headed downtown to catch the bus.

The line started at 3rd & Stanwix and wrapped up past the PPG fountain. It was a wet chilly wait for the bus, a comfortably heated bus ride, then a chillier wait at the start. To be fair, some of the chills at the start was probably pre-race jitters.

At the start I ran into Will, who worked a checkpoint with Louisa during the Pittsburgh-Roubaix and his friend Carolyn(?) who I met once at a Bike Pittsburgh fundraiser. She was an actual runner and looked the part. Will was wearing a stained white cotton T-shirt, guerrilla style.

While listening to droning opening ceremonies I looked around and saw Neil, partner to Boca Chica and big cheese at my CSA waving at me. I waved back.

We waited in the rain another 10 minutes while someone said something unintelligible over a megaphone. The racers would occasionally boo or shout “start the race”–a much clearer message. Eventually there was a gun shot and we all shuffled forward to the timing pad and then started running.

Like any large amateaur sporting event, the first 10 minutes was a cluster of almost running over slower people. Then it thinned out a bit and I settled into a rhythm.

My splits were around 7 minutes/mile, faster than my normal pace but I figured it was sustainable given that the course was mostly downhill.

One of the slight uphills was on Boulevard of the Allies right before town. I started to feel a little bad but grabbed some water and was fine.

Then it was mile 6 and we were turning the corner into Point State Park. In true “I actually used to be a sprinter” fashion I sped up for the last 200 feet, shaving at least .1 seconds.

I came in with a wall clock time of a little less than 42 minutes. They’ve since posted the results: my chip time is 40:56, which I’m pretty happy with. My “I’ll be disappointed if I run slower than this” was 50 minutes (5 min/km), my realistic goal was 42-45 minutes and my dream time was under 40. 40:56 is 6:35.4 splits. It puts me 256/6961 overall, 238/3860 males and 32/503 for my gender & age division.

For comparison the fastest male was 30:35, the fastest female was 35:59.

After drinking ice water and eating two orange slices & a banana I walked to my bike and rode back to the southside. I ran into Jonah outside of Yo Rita (his employer) then went back to my apartment (which is a convienent 50 feet from Yo Rita).

I changed into dry clothes and finished my left over pasta & both of the recovery drinks from the registration packet. Then shower and finally a slice of Pizza Sola before a half an hour nap.

Then I woke up and pooped. Twice. But at least it wasn’t while running.

Who reads my blog?

2009-09-27 / 11:26 /

According to Google Analytics, at least 1 pervert with poor spelling.

Casey’s got bikes for days

2009-07-16 / 17:47 /

Casey's newly green-ified IRO

Casey's clown mountain bike deluxe

Clearly, the white balance is different.