Off To Do Battle With Homework


USLI Testing Proceeding Interestingly

Our USLI project is progressing on schedule. We completed the building and launch of a scale model of our launch vehicle, which went very well. Even in a light breeze it was very stable and flew straight and true. Both flights were very consistent, and had almost identical trajectories. I tried to take pictures, but even on a B6 motor the rocket accelerated out of the picture within at least 0.33 seconds (sports mode on my camera snaps three shots per second).

We've also been testing different sizes and shapes of parachutes by dropping the the payload off the top-floor of the atrium in Howe Hall. So far our tests have been inconclusive, but we now know what we need in order to do more thorough testing. But the results we did get look promising. By shortening the lines on one side of the parachute by about an inch, the parachute definitely appears to glide in that direction. I'll post more information when we do more thorough testing.

One of my favorite things about flying in the winter is how rockets tend to "stick" the landing.



One of the first things we're going to be doing in my AerE 161 class is to make a simple computer game. This sounded kinda cool, until I heard that we would be doing it...

... in FORTRAN???

UnFORTRANately, FORTRAN doesn't do anything with graphics, sprites, or anything. We have to be a little creative, and do some research on our own.

It will be a simple tanks game, where you try to shoot a target by adjusting the angle of elevation of the cannon. Much like this game.

Nevertheless, this class is going to be very fun. Later on in the semester we will be building RC airplanes, completely from scratch, all of our own designs. But in the meantime, I will have to be satisfied with scratching my head for long hours.


Making Programming Tutorials

I believe that many of my readers wouldn't be interested in this, because I have an inkling that half of my readers already know how to program, and the other half probably isn't interested in learning the skill, but anyhow, I just thought I'd share a link to my YouTube playlist of tutorials on beginning programming with Just BASIC. If you stumbled across this web-page and are thinking "Hm. Programming. I could learn how to program. Do I want to?" I say the answer should be YES! So click the following link:

Beginning Programming with Just BASIC


Perfectly Centered Yolk

This is the first time I've ever seen an egg like this. It's like it was boiled in outer space or something.

Yeah, that's what kind of lunch I have. Hot cocoa, boiled egg, and chocolate Santa.


Big, Fun, Scary Adventures for 2011

Unlike New Year's resolutions, BFS Adventures are something that last all year. They are akin to resolutions, but are more... adventurous. So here are mine:

  • Get level-2 certified for high-power rocketry
  • Earn at least $5000 dollars by working, and at least $5000 dollars in (non-ISU) scholarships
  • Invent something cool.
What are your adventurous goals for the year?