Author Archives: admin

Computable – iPython for the iPad

Now there’s a full featured iPython implementation for the iPad called Computable. It includes NumPy, SciPy, matplotlib and Pandas. It supports the creation of iPython notebooks that you can then share. This is a handy tool when a typical scientific calculator or spreadsheet just won’t cut it. Recommended.
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NB: Sadly, due to Apple’s restrictions on apps and executable code (including scripts) the app is not able to download or sync iPython notebooks. I understand and agree with the restriction from a security standpoint, but it does limit the usefulness of a tool like Computable.

Third Time’s the Charm

I wrote in a previous blog about commuting to work by velomobile. I found writing just about the Leitra a bit confining and wanted a broader scope. 🙂 So, here it is. This blog will be about bike commuting, managing a technical team, photography and other random things. It’s about trips that take some effort and by expending the effort the traveler learns and grows.
Along the way, I upgraded my server to OS X Lion and lost the nice Apple provided Blog tools. 🙁 So, I took the advice of my friend Hal Stern and made the jump to WordPress. My third blog platform. It’s pretty slick. So I imported most of my previous blog posts into this one. I think this will carry me for a while.

I Commute by Bike!

The commute by bike blog is running a video series with quick introductions from a variety of bike commuters. Here’s the latest one:

NB: Catch the quick greeting from Sam Whittingham. Yeah, the man who set the world land speed record for recumbents at 82 MPH commutes by bike. Maybe I should buy that streamliner…

New Brake Pads, Warmer Weather

It’s finally warming up in Indiana and I’m back to riding the V-Rex. I installed new brake pads on the V-Rex last weekend.
That’s my V-Rex leaning up against my work stand. It was nice enough to work outside which is more pleasant when doing tasks like lubing the chain.
The V-Rex has Magura hydraulic rim brakes. One of the best feature of these brakes is their tool free, adjustment free brake pad replacement. The pads snap onto a fitting in the brake assembly while the assembly stays in place. The only thing you notice is that the brake handles do not travel as far with the new pads. It’s quick and easy.
Unfortunately, the Magura’s are very powerful and therefore hard on the rims. I have box section, mountain bike rims on the V-Rex now after damaging less sturdy rims with the brakes. I think if I were to replace the brakes on the V-Rex now, I’d opt for hydraulic disk brakes like I have the Leitra.

Spring Parts

Magura Rim Brake Pad
Much as I have enjoyed riding the Leitra all winter, I’m really looking forward to switching to by fair weather ride, a Rans V-Rex. Looking over the V-Rex last weekend, I think I’m in pretty good shape. The drive train is in need of a good lube job, but is otherwise ready to go. I need new brake pads for the Magura rim brakes which can be hard to locate, but Cambria had them which made that part easy. Now all I need is some warmer weather…

Repairing a Broken Fender Mount

If you’ve been reading my blogs you know how much trouble I’ve had with the wheel pants and fenders on my Leitra. I had hoped that after switching to fenders, my troubles would be over, but the damage caused by multiple issues with the wheel pants caught up with me.
The section of the wheel / brake / steering bracket to which the fender or wheel pants bolts had developed a crack that went through the bolt hole and onto the other side. I noticed the free play in the fender and found the crack on disassembly.
I don’t know how to weld (at least not yet…), so my repair plan was to fabricate an ‘L’ shaped metal plate. The plate bolts to the disk brake mounting bolts (far right in the picture above) and extends back along the fender mounting bracket. A trip to the local hardware store and a couple of hours of measuring, cutting and drilling and I had this:
The cracked section is between the new metal plate and the vertical metal section of the fender mount I built earlier this winter. Test riding this morning, it seems to be sufficiently rigid.