“This equipment is not supported—AT ALL—by the railroad industry. We are fully, self-sufficient.”

Absolutely incredible.

The NYC MTA is upgrading to communications-based train control but the majority of the system still uses electro-mechanical relay switches and other technology from the 1930s to run today’s subway system. And some of the cabling is the original cloth-covered cabling.

Here’s a video on YouTube for a look at this underground system.

Just. Wow.

[As my brother and father were quick to point out both truthfully and comically, there are advantages to this antiquated system: no buggy software upgrades or remote hacking.]

via Laughing Squid

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Travel

Good Morning, New York

This week New York is humid, smelly and full of energy. It’s been over a year since I’ve taken the subway to work. The air underground during the summer is as hot as the women and as dense as the traffic.
I’ve missed it.
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Travel

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In Some Sense

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I think many people feel this way about their own cities, but after living in Los Angeles for a year, I feel more truth to Updike’s quote.
My wife and I have had a great year living in LA, but it is a seriously flawed city, but one with great potential. If you happen to live in a part of LA that doesn’t require extensive use of your car or commuting, you’ve got a great deal. Don’t let it go.
There’s tons of great neighborhoods and culture and food and music here. And the weather. Jesus.
If they could drop in a transit system, this place would be more golden than the sun that shines down every single day.
I lived in NYC for 12 years. I’m a walkabout type of guy. I expect to be able to get around town by foot and subway/bus. Maybe these are unreasonable expectations for Los Angeles. Doesn’t mean it’s not possible.
This is all moot anyway as my wife and I are moving to San Francisco in 2 days.
San Francisco isn’t New York, but I know it well. It is a great city.

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Travel

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Back in Black

I’m back in New York and New Jersey for the holidays and it feels good.

Although, it must have been a while since I’ve driven through the Holland Tunnel because this morning I paid $13 to go through.

Seriously, thirteen dollars?

I didn’t even get a cup of coffee or a cookie or anything.

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Travel

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East Coast Bits

I traveled back to Manhattan for work for the first time since my wife and I moved out to Los Angeles in April. It felt great to be back. I started going into the city when I was a little kid to visit my grandma in Queens. I’ll always have a soft spot for New York.

Here are 5 highlights from my trip:

1. Taking pictures out the window on a plane will always keep me entertained.

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2. The Jane Hotel has the most awesome, train car style, Sherlock-Holmes-will-come-busting-in-any-moment rooms to stay in, and they only cost $135 per night. How much time do I spend in my hotel room on business trips? This is perfect.

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3. I miss the view from my old desk.

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4. Some people still wear watches that need to be wound when you change time zones.

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5. My parents have black bears who regularly visit their house in New Jersey—and leave Sasquatch-looking prints on the driveway.

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Want to use your iPad during takeoff?

Via GigaOm:

The Federal Aviation Administration is asking for opinions on the use of portable electronic devices on flights — including during an airplane’s take off and landing. The agency released a document today asking the public and other interested parties to comment on the use of devices that might include iPads, Kindles (a amzn) and other gadgets — a topic that has become more pressing as more people rely on such devices while traveling.

They want my opinion? They got it.

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Travel

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