image the original scan looks like this...

convert magick.png -transparent "rgb(255,255,255)" -fuzz 10% newmagick.png

and, yes, i did misplace the little ^ sign for the word "many".



from the new yorker ...
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before the leaves fall .....


In Providence with Jim, Audree, Ralph and Judy for wine and jazz.... and, of course, shoe shopping... (yes, Judy is missing here ... except for her arm .... my fault).
the jazz trio was excellent ... hard to believe these kids ( < 50) were so cool, provocative, sweet and subtle ... lots of respect for the style and the talent to do it so well... never even found out if they had a name, but i will remember their music.

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YFT .... Jim was rambling at the table about work and I heard him say YFT and it knocked me out of my seat ..... I though John or Debbie put him up to say that, but no ... he is really looking for someone who knows YFT .... (he and Ralph work at GE, Lynn) .... I told him he just found his man, and promised to send him info on some of my YFT models, after I whitewash them into unreadability..


buttons buttons who's got buttons ... this morning's excitement was i figured out the code to execute a print command in TCL, and added a button to SantaFe ....(i'm still out of breath !) ...
printbutton watermark an image (using imagemagick) ... in this case, lay the image [newsig.png] on top of the image [prov6.jpg] .....
type this command in a terminal window....
composite -watermark 10.0 -gravity South newsig.png prov6.jpg markedimage.jpg

the 10.0 is a transparency value for the top image.


cool and rainy today ...finally worked on Mohave / xmahjongg (hasn't run since the ubuntu/gnome overhaul)


added a read-only window to SantaFe ...


Added a Junior Achievement page to


wrote a neat utility in TCL to pick colors (for things like web pages) and get the RGB and #hex values (so the color can be added to code). simple to write and it works pretty neat.



spent 2 days with mike up in the white mountains. he was there to scope out a condo. i was there to buy a coffee cup and an urn. he didn't buy the condo and i came home with a new hat, but no coffee cup or urn.

we had a great 2 days. ate at nice places ... (noteable was flapjack's for breakfast.... but have them back off the hollandaise sauce if you order the poached eggs on ham with fries and muffin) .... we roamed nice stores.... bought nice books. i was bad only once when i walked out of a store because the line was too long and i got pi$$ed. but i paid the price in that i gave up a very very nice handmade cup.

i got a book by doris kearns goodsomething ....i actually know who she is and like her and the book is a memoir and it is just excellent, especially since she is from BROOKLYN !!

the condo mike looked at is in very nice condition and needs no serious work. the immediate area is very nice. 30 years ago, i would have killed a person to have a condo up in the white mountains.... but my life didnt go that way. but then mike's life is extremely different than my life was, so how relevant is my opinion here?

we discussed the topic endlessly.

had a great drive home .... stopped in Concord and i decided i liked the place and we had lunch at the bagel something and a supremely fine cup of french roast coffee.

a bottle of stewart's root beer carried me the rest of the way home.


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and when i got home.... my buddy was waiting for me, right where i left him....


Hilton Head

next week we are visiting B and R down in their condo in HH. this is our first visit.

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Remind to rant next week on this topic. the new dean of lifelong learning visited my class (she is visiting all classes) and..... according to my students (i was asked to leave the room while she spoke)..... "engineering is a dead profession".

i am sure she did not say that, but that's the thought that they walked away with..... to be continued when i get back from hilton head.

[new topic]

i officially retired from GE in 1998. nonetheless, i continue to get e-mails from them regarding my training schedule. the latest one (received today) reads as follows ...

This e-mail is to advise and/or remind you that training course(s) in your myLearning@GE Learning Plan (1) have recently been assigned to you, (2) were assigned previously and are approaching the due date or (3) were assigned previously and have passed the due date. Those courses are listed below along with the date required for completion:

LEO, DAVE (SSO ID %$^#@*&%^$ ) - has a requirement for: COURSE PREVENTING VIOLENCE IN THE WORKPLACE- GE ENERGY (GEE-HR-100) due on 10/3/2007 11:59 PM America/New York

[my response]

my "GE Learning Plan" ?????

i'm ready, Lord, i can't stand any more of the BS going on down here ..... send down that golden chariot and take me home... (can i bring my ukelele with me?) ..... well..... please don't send the chariot until i get back from vacation next week .... and please don't make me die in an airplane crash on the way back .... i'm looking forward to something sweet, soft and euphoric if You could arrange it.


back from a great week in hilton head with B and R..... nice to see how the rich folks do it. if i hadn't already spent all my money, i'd get a condo down there..... will ramble on tomorrow.

Hilton Head Pictures

notes from hilton head

HH is prettier than you imagine.... homes and condos look like they grew in the forest .... it is pretty just about everywhere you turn, and it's hard not to buy property down there, except of course for the $$$$ !!

B and R have a one-week-a-year 2 bedroom apartment on timeshare.... very nice setup. we met their friends who have a whole house for a week / year.

you can get a 2-bedroom apartment for 1/4 year (13 weeks) for about $50k, but the killer is the maintenance fee, which is something like $7000 / year (that amounts to $7000 for the 3 months that you live there !). that is tough to live with.... it's more than our total annual real estate taxes, oil heating bill, electricity and insurance back home.

we started in Savannah since we landed there. went to the emerging "riverwalk" .... it needs more emerging..... lunch was excellent.... had the local beer on draft... was very good. then 60 minute drive to HH. on the highway we saw the immediate aftermath of a horrible accident involving a motorcyle (broken in half) and a truck (furniture scattered all over the road).... i looked at the bike and knew he was dead .... he was.

we spent the week hopping from bistro to shopping to beach to shopping to bistro, and i enjoyed every minute. the night in the hot tub and pool was memorable.

deb got seriously ill (she had a flu shot the previous week) but she held up like a trouper .... bicycling wore her out for a day, but she medicated and bounced back.

image i medicated also (using a comforting southern elixir), so i wouldn't get sick..... but try as i may (with R helping out) i could not finish all the elixir before the week was done.

but .... i didn't get the flu either !!!

we ate at many nice places and the food was always very good, and the ambience .... was always nice.

HTML : turns out that N (who stayed home) wants to learn HTML to create web pages. his photo-artwork is excellent, but he needs HTML tutoring..... right up my alley..... we got him a good book (that B spent all week reading!) and i will do some on-line teaching if N stays interested.

cameras : i had the leica D2 in its bag and the little panasonic FX-30 on my belt. the FX-30 took 99% of all my pictures because it was always with me and incredibly convenient to pull out snap-snap and put back. and for web-page pictures, the FX-30 is out-f^%$&ing-standing and is now my favorite user...... the leica pictures are better, but for a web page (96 ppi, width=600px), the little FX-30 is just as good.

also learned to get the GIMP to do a drop-shadow around the image and have it blend into the page background.... i like the effect and used it in the HH picture page.

from the new yorker


Oct.31.2007 ..... Halloween


when i was a kid, i spent halloween with my cousins gus and iani (aka john in later years). we watched horror movies until we dropped, and slept in their bunk bed, and iani was a crazy kid.... he was so afraid of vampires that he marked crosses on his neck and held garlic leaves in his hands across his chest and he looked like he was dead in a coffin... and thats how he fell asleep at night.

to this day, i still watch those old horror movies (just ask deb if i'm lying) and remember those times.

last night i watched frankenstein meets the wolfman .... things were simpler in those times .... i wished gus and iani were there with me.