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Segway encounter [May. 23rd, 2003|09:05 pm]
I was downstairs on my way to pick up dinner when I saw a guy zooming around the parking lot on a Segway. This was the first one I'd ever seen in person, so I stopped to watch for a couple minutes... and a guy leaning against the back of a nearby truck said "Want a ride?" What a silly question!

Segways are really cool. It took all of twenty seconds to learn to balance on it. After that, it's all about the center of gravity. Lean forward and it goes faster. Lean backward and it slows down, stops, and eventually goes into reverse. There's a little lever on the left right under your hand that you use to turn. I was surprised at how stable it is: once I learned to stop fighting myself on balance, I didn't even wobble. I would love to commute to and from school (just over 2 miles) on one of these things. If only I had the spare $4000...

Anyway. Segways are very cool. This has been a public service announcement.

[User Picture]From: turnberryknkn
2003-05-24 08:40 am (UTC)
Very cool! Very, very cool!

I wonder why the gentleman in question owned a Segway? Just for personal use?
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[User Picture]From: callicrates
2003-05-26 08:15 am (UTC)
Yeah, it looks like personal use and Too Much Spare Money. It looks like it's been used quite a lot, too. Personally I wouldn't spend $4000 - $5000 on one of those, but then, I did spend close to $3500 on a laptop last summer (okay, okay, so my fellowship paid for most of it), so I think it's just a matter of priorities.

Now, someday when I'm very rich and nearly anonymous (a much better combination than rich and famous), then I may buy one. Or when the prices come down. Or something.
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[User Picture]From: turnberryknkn
2003-05-26 10:57 am (UTC)
(grin) I know all about spending Fellowship money on personal electronics --one of my early fellowships actually had a specific $5,500 component to be used for that. A hot topic of discussion at the national meeting of fellows for that program was just how kick ass of a computer could you buy for $5,500...

(I chose instead to re-invest that money into my research, which down the road netted something north of $100,000 in future fellowships. Got lucky with that decision, there...)

RYN(WhatdotheExperimentalNumbersmean?) Hm! Ooops --forgot to explain. Will have to do that in an entry at some point. But roughtly speaking, what we did was take short bits of gene regulatory sequences from a gene A and strapped them onto reporter genes, then tried to see if Protein X would turn on the regulatory sequence from gene A. If it did, then the reporter gene would turn on and the number would go up. The prediction was the idea that Protein X (as opposed to Protein Y) would turn on regulatory sequence from gene A.
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