pablo estrada

Fluid Grids

If you have a handle on CSS but want a refresher on how to properly set type size and widths for a more flexible, fluid layout, check out this article from A List Apart, on Fluid Grids. The article explains how a site was designed with a fluid layout, but even if you’re not interested in that, it’s a succinct and simple guide on how px and em relate in type size and div widths.

Pro Tip: Glen Canyon Park Is a Canyon

I learned this first-hand on Sunday, when I went for a bike ride with a friend to explore the park. Our plan was to meet at the 16th St BART station, stash some burritos into our packs, and ride out to Glen Canyon Park where we could have a leisurely lunch under the sun while my friend’s dog romped around the grass. Instead, there were hills, and then more hills, until finally we turned around and headed back to the base of the park and sat in the outfield of a ballfield watching a little league game. But fear not, all dogs were happy.

I’ve had my Garmin Forerunner 405 GPS watch since it came out in 2008, but until now I’ve only used it for running. I wore it for the ride and used the watch (and heart rate monitor) to track it all. Combined with the simply aweome Trailrunner application, it’s all a data geek wants, and more. I’ll save more details about Trailrunner for another day, since it deserves an entire post. The Garmin Connect website lets users view and edit their workout details online, and I much prefer it to their Training Center software, which I avoid if possible. They also allow for export of the map previews. It’s an iframe and not very customizable at all, but it works. This is what it looks like. Click on it to see more details and go to the Garmin Connect site which allows the viewer to play back the workout (upper right). Pretty cool!

A view along the ridge

Numbers

Numbers stations are radio stations dedicated to transmitting sequences of seemingly random and meaningless numbers or letters over the air. Not much is known about them, but it is generally agreed that these are encrypted one-way transmissions, designed to deliver a specific, time-sensitive message to one (and only one) person. However, this has never been confirmed or verified, as far as I know. They’ve been around for decades, dating back to the height of the Cold War, and the mind doesn’t have to stretch far to imagine where this might be used.

Usually a synthesized male or female voice gives out numbers repeatedly, though the stations don’t just transmit numbers and letters. Some intersperse music, tones, or singing, and naturally there are stations in various languages, adding to the mystique. If you’ve ever come across any of these over-the-air, I think you’ll agree they can sound spooky and downright creepy. Especially at night.

Here are a few strange ones, via the Internet Archive: