Cherise Stander inspired by late husband Burry

first_img28 May 2014Cherise Stander, wife of the late Burry Stander, will be aiming to draw inspiration from his achievements at the Cascades MTB Park when she contests the UCI Mountain Bike (MTB) Marathon World Championships in Pietermaritzburg on 29 June.The Team RECM rider, a stage winner on the 2012 Route de France, has had a tough start to the year by her own admission, but has set her sights on the forthcoming global spectacle.She has been hard at work, preparing for the tough 74km route that will take riders through the Cascades MTB Park and around the surrounding landscape of Pietermaritzburg.‘I am training hard’“It’s been a bit of a bumpy start to the year,” Stander said, “but at the moment I am training hard and focused on the event. I have been focusing on trying to get my strength up, so I have been doing a bit of work in the gym and also focusing on power intervals.”With it being her first MTB Marathon World Championships, she admitted it would be a learning experience: “I really have absolutely no idea what to expect from this race and the main goal is to get through the race and finish,” she said.Winter conditionsThe winter conditions in Pietermaritzburg are often cold and dry and Stander believes that she is more suited to the warmer conditions. However, with the South African Championships providing a dress rehearsal for the UCI event three weeks before it takes place, she has an opportunity to assess whether conditions will be favourable for her or not.“KZN gets really cold in June and I am usually a bit better in the heat, but, having said that, racing in your home country is always an advantage. We will be racing the course at SA champs on 7 June, so I will have a better idea if the course suits me after that,” she explained.Vivid memoriesHaving supported her late husband Burry at the Cascades MTB Park on many occasions previously, she has some vivid memories of him competing at the venue and taking on the best in the world with distinction. Stander hopes to draw on some of those memories for inspiration.“The Cascades MTB Park is a place that is very close to me and it definitely will be motivation,” she said.“I have some amazing memories of Burry fighting his heart out there, so I will definitely be thinking of him and his never-say-die attitude when I’m tired.”She added: “I am really looking forward to not having to travel so far. It is also great that all my family and friends will be able to watch the best in the world compete against each other.”PreparationsStander’s preparation for the World Championships have included time off the bike to work on her strength. She is hoping it pays off when Pietermaritzburg plays host to the latest in a long line of major cycling events that have taken place in and around the KwaZulu-Natal capital.“I’m getting there! It’s a bumpy road, but I’m making progress slowly but surely, and with the Hilton Classic the week before the World Champs, I will be prepared,” Stander concluded.SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Kolmanskop – A Ghost Town (GC1Z46T) — Geocache of the Week

first_imgWhat geocachers have to say:“Hat mich irgendwie an Arizona erinnert wo es auch Ghosttowns gibt. Nur waren es hier keinen Diamanten sondern Gold. Absolut sehenswert. Vielen Dank für den Earthcache. Natürlich ein Schleifchen von uns.” Reminded me a little bit of Arizona, which also has ghost towns. Except here, of course, it wasn’t gold, but diamonds. Absolutely worth visiting. Thank you very much for this EarthCache. Of course it gets a favorite point from us. b012887Check out this amazing story-log by geocacher Henzz: http://coord.info/GLBGA7J4“Great area, easily the coolest Lost Place we have ever been! Thanx go out to the owner, that did a great job at creating this wonderful esrth cache. The questions involved, brought us to think even further about our experience at Kolmanskuppe. If you’re in town, this is the definite must do and the Cache as well! Thank you very much and greetings from germany!” John MiltonPhotos: Geocache Name:Kolmanskop – A Ghost Town (GC1Z46T) — by UdjatLocation:Kolmanskop, NamibiaS 26° 42.167 E 015° 13.876Difficulty/Terrain Rating:D2/T2Why this is Geocache of the Week:Boom-and-bust desert ghost towns are not an exclusive trademark of the American west. The site of this EarthCache is a ghost town at the edge of a Namibian desert. The town’s name is Kolmanskop.In 1908, Namibia was a German colony called South-West Africa. That year, a German man named Zacharias Lewela found a diamond while working on a railway line. Lewela’s lucky find sparked a frantic diamond rush, with floods of diamond hunters arriving and settling in the area, and naming it Kolmanskop.The town was quickly built up by its residents, with a distinctly German architectural style. At its pinnacle in the 1920’s, Kolmanksop was home to about 700 families, and its amenities and institutions included a hospital, ballroom, power station, school, skittle-alley, theater, gym and swimming pool, a casino, an ice factory and the first x-ray-station in the southern hemisphere. That was the boom.The bust came after World War I. The diamond fields of Kolmanskop had been milked for all they were worth, and diamond mining in other areas created competition. By 1954 the town was completely abandoned.Over time, the geological forces of the desert filled the remaining buildings with heaps of sand, blasting brightly colored paint from walls and scouring roofs. Now, visitors who want to see the eerie sights for themselves can take a tour of the town. The company that runs the tours has restored a few of the buildings to their historical looks. But most of the leftover buildings have been left to fill slowly, but surely, with sand. Continue to explore some of the most amazing geocaches around the world. Check out all of the Geocaches of the Week on the Geocaching blog. If you would like to nominate a Geocache of the Week, fill out this form.Share with your Friends:Morecenter_img SharePrint RelatedNamib Desert, Namibia (GC14W63) — Geocache of the WeekOctober 8, 2015In “Geocache of the Week”Geocaching country souvenir: NamibiaDecember 8, 2017In “Community”Happy Halloween! – Geist des Hagen (GC11JM6) – Geocache of the WeekOctober 30, 2013In “Community”last_img read more

Read It Later: Mobile Devices Help Time Shift The Real-Time Barrage of News

first_imgThe time we used to spend sitting on the train on our way to work in the morning, reading the trusty local rag, has changed. Now, we whip out the iPhone, Android or iPad and catch up on all the blogs and online articles we found but didn’t have time to read the day before. On the way home, we do the same for those bits we found at work. According to Read It Later, the app that lets users tag content on their computer to be, well, read later, mobile devices are helping people avoid the constant barrage of information and relegate reading back to the most comfortable time slots and locations of the day.“Printed media used to allow us to read in the places we found most comfortable,” the company writes on its blog. “Unfortunately, as news and media moves online, it moves us away from these places and into our desk chairs.  Even worse, consuming content is no longer on our own schedule.  The flood of content disrupts us all day as if we have a maniacal paperboy throwing new editions on our doorstep every 15 seconds.”According to Read It Later, those users with iPhones and iPads are shifting their reading times back to the most comfortable times – during breakfast, the morning commute, the commute back home and the very end of the day. The first graph the company offers is when users encounter content, according to when they tag it in Read It Later.The graph of computer users (that is, desktops – you remember those, right?) isn’t much different. It follows the same general arc. iPhone users, however, show the greatest difference.There are obvious spikes at the times previously mentioned – breakfast, the commutes, and the end of the day. iPad users, on the other hand, are primarily a prime-time group.Perhaps Mark Zuckerberg wasn’t so far off when he quipped that the iPad isn’t mobile?Read It Later suggests that “When a reader is given a choice about how to consume their content, a major shift in behavior occurs.  They no longer consume the majority of their content during the day, on their computer.  Instead they shift that content to prime time and onto a device better suited for consumption.”Fine. So, if you have a mobile device, you likely read content on a different schedule than if you don’t. What does this really mean? How does it affect the 24 hour news cycle? Although the focus has increasingly been put on real-time information and getting there first, could user behavior shift media back to a focus on quality rather than speed and quantity? I know that when I tag something in my Read It Later queue, it isn’t because it’s breaking – it’s because it sounds like an intelligent, in-depth piece that I want to take time to digest and it’s exactly that type of time-shifting of media consumption that, on a larger scale, could help assure the quality of online content. mike melanson 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostingcenter_img Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#Analysis#Statistics#web Related Posts last_img read more

A Proposed Passivhaus Amendment for New England

first_imgThere has been no shortage of discussion lately about modifying the Passivhaus standard to make it more adaptable to, and address more precisely, regional climate conditions.Passive House Institute U.S. is exploring ways to fine tune the Passivhaus heating and cooling requirement, and possibly impose a load requirement for dehumidification, to enable Passivhaus builders to cost-effectively address the variety of climate conditions in North America. That initiative prompted architect and Passivhaus consultant Hayden Robinson to suggest in an online petition that PHIUS use a name other than Passive House for its certifications should the group’s requirements deviate from those of the existing Passivhaus standard.While the debate over the appropriate use of the name Passive House has been lively, it doesn’t seem to have curtailed suggestions from those who believe the standard is extremely valuable but also in need of improvement. A case in point is a document titled “Proposed New England Passivehouse Amendment,” which was posted online on March 31 by energy efficiency specialist Marc Rosenbaum.A focus on primary energyRosenbaum identifies what he believes are five principal deficiencies of the Passivhaus standard: RELATED ARTICLES Redefining Passivhaus A Petition Strives to Defend a Certain Definition of ‘Passive House’ The Passivhaus Institut in Germany Disowns Its U.S. Satellite The American Passive House Institute Responds to Dr. FeistRound 3: Wolfgang Feist Discusses the PHI-PHIUS SplitPassivhaus Combatants Continue To Speak OutPossible Relaxation of Passivhaus Standard Stirs Debate PHIUS Tries to Trademark ‘Certified Passive House Consultant’PHIUS Draws a Line in the SandA Bridge Over Passivhaus Waters â— The standard’s annual heating demand and annual cooling demand (AHD and ACD) limits are the same for all regions, leading to extreme solutions in severe climates.â— Meeting the AHD requirement in severe climates diverts focus from the overall primary energy consumption of the building and its occupants.â— The Passivhaus standard limits are set per unit of usable floor area, which means large houses meet the standard more easily than small ones. That creates a perverse incentive to build big houses. Accordingly, the standard sidesteps the core issue of resource-use equity.â— The standard counts solar input from direct-gain solar heating and solar thermal hot water, but it does not allow solar electricity to be used in meeting the standard.â— The standard does not require performance reporting beyond a blower-door test that shows a maximum of 0.6 air changes at 50 Pascals.Addressing these issues, Rosenbaum points out, means focusing more on primary energy consumption (PEC) per person and less on the building’s annual heating demand (AHD). A focus on AHD – the most challenging criterion of the Passivhaus standard – leads to “extreme solutions” that are not only costly but diminish the attention that should be paid to PEC.An AHD-centric approach, he says, “can lead to buildings with excess south glazing, with increased heating season temperature swings (and higher cost). It can lead to quantities of insulation that likely exceed any defensible rationale when compared to investments in renewable energy.”The Passivhaus standard’s AHD, he adds, is based on the idea of lowering the design heating load enough to deliver heat via the home’s ventilation air system – 10W per square meter, which in the climate of central Germany, where Passivhaus concepts were developed, yields 15 kWh per square meter per year. In New England’s climate, it is “extremely challenging” to push the annual design heating load down to 10W/m2, Rosenbaum says.Key features of the amendmentHe contends that building comfort and durability can be achieved with less aggressive levels of insulation than those that would be required to meet the existing Passivhaus AHD criterion. The shift in focus should be to a design heating demand (DHD) limit of 30W/m2 (or 9.5 btu/hr/ft2) based on treated floor area — which, he says, better reflects the fact that primary energy consumption attributable to heating in New England is 25% to 30% of total PEC.The standard’s annual cooling demand criterion would be eliminated for New England because cooling in the region accounts for too small an amount of overall energy usage. Rosenbaum adds, though, that a separate dehumidification calculation (as yet to be developed) should be incorporated into the PEC calculation.As mentioned, the amendment makes PEC the principal focus of the New England amendment, with the PEC limit set according to the number of bedrooms — a surrogate for the number of occupants — in the building rather than setting energy-use limits according to total usable floor area. This per-person budget for energy consumption is intended to help address the fact that, under the current criteria, it is more difficult for smaller houses to meet the Passivhaus standard than it is for larger homes.With the AHD and ACD limits eliminated, the design heating demand limit, based on treated floor area, is 30W/m2. (Rosenbaum notes that this is the limit before solar and internal heat gains are calculated, and so is not directly comparable to the 10W/m2 limit shown in the Passive House Planning Package worksheet, which shows net heating load after those gains are added.)Other key features of the amendment: the domestic hot water limit per occupant is raised to 10 gallons per day from the German limit of 6.6 gpd; photovoltaic power can count for as much as 20% of the primary energy consumption limit (each kilowatt of PV offsets 2kW of primary energy); the dehumidification load is added; and certification is renewed annually based on energy use data.Calculations and expectationsRosenbaum developed an algorithm to calculate the PEC limits — in kWh per year and million btu (MMbtu) per year (see table above) — based on the number of bedrooms in the project. He also describes the processes for calculating design heating demand, annual cooling demand, domestic hot water, and auxiliary electricity and electricity for appliances, lighting, and plug loads – all as they would apply to the Passive House Planning Package program. The data, added together, show total primary energy usage, which can then be compared to the PEC limit for that particular project.Rosenbaum, who founded Energysmiths consultancy, in West Tisbury, Massachusetts, to advance design and construction strategies that make buildings more energy efficient, notes that the Passivhaus standard has been modified to both suit climate conditions in other countries and focus more tightly on primary energy consumption.But he also observes that his proposed amendment is unlikely to be adopted in eager, speedy fashion by existing Passivhaus organizations (including Passive House New England). Nor does he delve into concerns about whether modified Passivhaus criteria should carry the name Passive House. He does hope, however, that his ideas precipitate useful discussions about the standard’s benefits and weaknesses.“At the least,” he writes, “the aspiration is that this proposal may guide a well-focused and thoughtful exploration of how to live ethically and effectively on this planet for practitioners and clients, rather than aiming blindly at what are ultimately arbitrary numbers despite our best intentions.”last_img read more

The Real Entrepreneur is a Plumber

first_imgYoung entrepreneurs believe that entrepreneurship is the Powerball. They believe that they need an idea, and then they want to collect money from strangers to place the largest bet possible. The outcome they seek is hitting the right combination of numbers and become rich beyond their wildest imagination when they go public or flip the business. The entrepreneurial ethos is about private jets, parties, and disruption of the status quo. It’s a status symbol. It’s signaling. It’s a theory, really.This popular conception is not entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship is starting a business and assuming the risk of doing so. Collecting other people’s money means you have investors, but it doesn’t make you an entrepreneur when you don’t have real skin in the game.The PlumberThe person that graduates from trade school and starts a plumbing service with a single truck, a set of tools, an ad on Google, and a website and phone number is an entrepreneur. The plumber who grows big enough to need a second and a third truck and has to hire two people to help run his business is the real entrepreneur. The plumber finds the money he needs to grow by acquiring customers at a profit, investing those earnings in the trucks and equipment necessary to grow the business.The thought of giving part of their business to a stranger who only wants them to return double the amount given in 60 months would seem outrageous to the plumber. Allowing an investor to have control would be the opposite of why the entrepreneur started their business in the first place.Why Start a BusinessTo our entrepreneur, in this case, our plumber, it’s anathema to consider building a business to flip it. The business is not a get rich quick scheme, it is get wealthy slowly scheme, a difference of a magnitude nearly impossible to describe in words. The entrepreneur doesn’t believe that entrepreneurship is glamorous, least of all the work of plumbing. But they are highly profitable, independent, and have better parties than most of the people who mistake the popular idea of entrepreneurship with real entrepreneurship.The entrepreneur assumed the risk, and for their trouble, they own their business free and clear. They started the business because they believed they could create value for other people and build something around what they do well, maybe better than anyone else. They have a sense of freedom that comes from controlling their own destiny, doing what they want to do when they want to, and growing the business at the speed that makes sense for them, some with massively aggressive goals, and others who prefer a lifestyle business.To our entrepreneur here, owning and running their business is winning the Powerball. Evaluate your motivations. If you don’t want to be the plumber, you will find entrepreneurship difficult.last_img read more