Sunday, February 19, 2006

Maui Memorial Medical Center

When I was learning to kite, just 6 years ago, there were no release points on kite bar or lines. Nearly everyone I knew had a 'kitemare' that resulted in some injury - some serious, but most not. I and several of my friends have 'done their time' - in my case a full day at the Maui Memorial Medical Center getting stitched up. I'm putting these directions on this post so its easy to find with a click. Click here for DIRECTIONS and MAP from OGG (Maui's main airport - very close to the main Kite Beach).

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Valentines Day 2006 - Too Windy to Kiteboard...

wind at 3rd Av VDay 2006My wind alert went OFF at 1PM - a good sign in a month where there is typicaly no wind. The wind hit 20 Mph average with 25 Mph gusts at 1PM. If not for a previously planned Valentine's Dinner I might have given it a shot.

Good thing I didn't...

By 5PM the winds were 42 Mph average, gusting to 50 Mph.

7 stitches from a wacky ride in 35Mph gusting 40 winds 1/2 mile offshore at KiteBeach Maui I have a permanant reminder of the last time I went kiting in conditions like this - labor day weekend 2003 off the north shore of Maui. The wind gusts were so strong that my gear started coming apart -- my leash mount tore off the board, slingshotting into my head. Amazingly there was an ER doc hanging around the beach to save my ___.

In addition to acquiring a nice 3 inch long 7 stitch scar on my left temple, I now also have a really cool helmet I picked up at Aquan Sports in San Carlos- - and some "wisdom". :)

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

New York Times Reviews the Squeezebox 3 from Slimdevices

" Over all, you have to love this sweet, satisfying machine. Its creators have sweated so many details, you want to hand them a towel. Now that CD players, tape decks and turntables are rapidly disappearing, the Squeezebox brings us one step closer to the era of the stereo-free stereo. " -- David Pouge,


While this blog is about kiteboarding, I could not resist passing on this article from the New York Times.

David does an honest, balanced (and very positive) review of one of my favorite products. The one thing i want to highlight --

What's most interesting about this product is the amazing number of downloads available that have been written by the company's fanatical user base. At last count, there are around 150 plug-ins or mods ranging from Netflix and TIVO plug-ins to Asterix VOIP and RSS feed adds for the slim setup -- all generated by the user community. You can find them on the site under community, plugins.

Today, this company reminds me of an on-line version of the homebrew computer club -- for those that aren't familiar with that group, the early meetings were held at Stanford with attendees including Gates & Allen, Jobs & Wozniak, and Bectolsheim & Joy among others. Lots of passionate hackers working personal magic around platforms they believed in and wanted to use themselves.

I can still remember the day when Slimdevices' founder, fresh out of Monte Vista High School in Cupertino was introduced to me after he had posted "illustrated TIVO hacking" and "ethersketch" on his personal website. Sean showed me a radio shack breadboard stuffed with parts (a xilinx fpga, microchip microcontroller, and a micronas MP3 decoder) he had taught himself to program. After asking where my ethernet port was, Sean used a hacked remote control to show me song titles on his home PC which he then streamed with no latency to a boom box he brought to my office.

My reaction? I took out my checkbook and wrote him a personal check and said "go make 'em and send one to me.." (the "bubble" was definitely fun in some ways ;) ) After I rallied a few friends to invest alongside, Sean used that meager capital base to build a solidly profitable company with a huge following today. I happen to have 6 units throughout my home and office. Love em. -- kitevc

Monday, February 06, 2006

Watch and learn - Can it be that hard? :)

This is a video clip of an amazing kiter -Morgan Skiperdene - at the Red Bull king of the Air trails in Hattaras. A real talent. Click on the video to watch. If it does not play, update your browser to be Flash 8 capable. BTW, I used to add the clip to this blog. Incredibly easy to use - drag and drop video clip onto a spot on your browser, and videoegg will transcode it in the browser into Flash 8 format, shoot it up to AKAMAI and autogenerate html and javascript for you to post.

If the video does not display properly
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