Hiking Camelback Mountain’s Echo Canyon Summit Trail


View Camelback Hike 3/27/11 in a larger map

The summit trail to the peak of Camelback Mountain is deceiving — it’s only 1.2 miles from the parking lot to the top. But a steady elevation gain (1,300 feet total) on a trail of boulders and loose gravel makes a rather strenuous adventure. It took a little over an hour to summit and a little more than half that to get back down. But my quads still feel as though they’ve both been charlie horsed after absorbing the shock of the descent.

Awesome hike, tracked here with MyTracks, an open source Android app led by a team at Google.

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Jad Abumrad Interview After Radiolab : Symmetry Live at UCLA Royce Hall

Jad Abumrad Interview from Andy Sternberg on Vimeo.

It’s not often that you get to see your favorite radio show or podcast produced and performed before a live audience. Granted, there are more opportunities to “watch the radio” than you’d imagine and I’ve seen my fair share of Buzz Out Loud and TWiT podcasts live in person. But I digress.

I posted some of my favorite Radiolab episodes right here a few months ago. Soon after that it was announced that the show was going on the road. A typical hour of Radiolab is likely to contain some of the most incredible, cerebral and aurally tantalizing radio you’ll hear. And it was just as fulfilling and entertaining as I could have expected live. Hosts Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich were brill as usual — the 5-part show was built around the theme: Symmetry (I’ll post it after it airs). And a big bonus was live cello machinations by the incredibly talented ZoĆ« Keating.

Thanks WNYC for taking the show on the road and especially for giving me a few minutes to “geek out” with Jad about everything from writing to production to sequencing the Novation Launchpad MIDI controller for Ableton Live.

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SXSW 2011 Highlights

In an eleventh-hour decision, I cashed in some American AAdvantage miles and caught a flight to Austin for spring break — or more specifically, the 25th annual South by Southwest Conference. With all of the networking opportunities, free food, drink, music and friends – some of whom i only see once a year or so – i’m glad i took advantage and visited the great city of Austin. It was a whirlwind four days but the photos and video below provide some flavor.


See my photos from past years at SXSW

The trip began with an amazing takeoff directly into the fading sun over the Pacific. This would be the last time the sun set before Daylight Savings time kicked in. Got in to Austin and met up with Jory, provider of a fine crash pad for the duration of my stay. Then began a serious of meetups, events, and parties: All Hat III, which was a priceless opportunity to visit with many of the folks I most admire in the interactive space who happen to share a passion and commitment to do-gooding.

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Will Radioactive Fear-Fomenting Continue This Week on CNN?

It’s pouring in Los Angeles right now and if you kept an eye on the news last week you’d be excused for worrying that exposure to said rain might give you cancer. “Miniscule” amounts of radiation hit the West Coast this weekend as a result of the multiple nuclear reactor mishaps in Fukushima Prefecture triggered by the 9.0 earthquake in Japan. More accurately, as radioactive vapor from the busted nuclear energy plants collided with the jet stream, it travelled across the pacific as it dissipated amid other clouds. But there is always a “miniscule” amount of radioactive element in the air we breathe here in Southern California and pretty much every other major city. It’s not just FOXNews and CNN, it’s the local TV and radio news too. Anchors and reporters are consistently talking over the analysts they are interviewing so that “nothing to worry about” cannot be heard so much as the key fear-triggering phrases “nuclear,” “radioactive,” “headed this way” are repeated before and after every break. Will the fear-fomenting carry on for another week?

I originally filed the following post at LAist. Click here to see all my recent posts at LAist.com.

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CNN proves once again that the only imminent radioactive threat stems from staring at Wolf Blitzer in the Radiation Situation Room all afternoon.

After spending much of the week threatening the West Coast with radioactive thunderstorms should anyone dare turn the dial, CNN decided to recreate the geography of Caifornia, placing San Francisco a hundred miles or so from the Mexican border and throwing Los Angeles to the sharks, at the tip of a peninsula in Northern California that appears to be all but detached from the rest of the continent.

OK. So it was early in the morning and someone decided it would be fun to flip SF and L.A. on the map. And to misspell San Onofre.

We’re convinced this is a direct side effect of redundant fear fomenting under the guise of expert analysis. Turn on any 24-hour news network, or even local AM radio, and you’ll hear lots of mumbling broken up by words like “radiation,” “nuclear disaster,” and “headed to California.” These catchphrases subliminally enslave listeners to the nearest breaking news device, be it a transistor radio or the plasma section at Best Buy.

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Neighborgoods and Tiziano Project Recognized at SXSW 2011

Good friends Micki Krimmel and Andrew McGregor & Jon Vidar were recognized at SXSW Interactive last week for their respective startups, Neighborgoods and Tiziano Project. I originally filed the following post at LAist. Click here to see all my recent posts at LAist.com.

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LA Tech’s finest represent at SXSW Interactive in 2009. (Photo by JD Lasica via flickr)

Los Angeles represented in a big way at SXSW 2011 in the film, music, and gaming world — no surprise there (both The Roxy and The Echo hosted parties in Austin last night). But this week two locally-based startups were recognized for their ability to use the internet as a tool for action and a community resource for social change.

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