Monthly Archives: June 2012

Derecho of June 29, 2012, with time lapse radar video

ANN ARBOR (June 29, 2012) An intense storm called a derecho with long lived straight line winds passed to the south of the area today. The Disaster Mapping weblog entry 6/29/2012 Derecho has a good summary of the impact to the power grid from storm, which had knocked out power to over 3 million people as of 11:45 p.m from Illinois all the way to DC. Wind gusts of over 90 miles per hour were clocked in some areas as the storm blew through. This time lapse captures NEXRAD radar throughout the storm event, via Daryl Herzmann (akherz) at Iowa Environmental Mesonet.

NOAA has an interactive storm map of reports (SPC Filtered Storm Reports) from this event; this snapshot is an overview.

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Another image from IEM show the maximum intensity of the storm for the whole day; it's from their Ring Of Fire Derecho post analyzing the storm.

The IEM Local Storm Reporter application captured this collection of watches and warnings across the affected area.



In Ohio, AEP Ohio reports over 500,000 without power and restoration efforts expected to take 5-7 days. Some 200,000 plus are without power in the Columbus area. AEP says this is the worst storm since Hurricane Ike. The Governor of Ohio declared a state of emergency for Ohio (PDF).

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In Virginia, the Washington Post reports that Dominion Power has 275,904 of their 831,912 customers without power. 6 are dead in the aftermath of the storm.

In West Virginia, Governor Earl Ray Tomblin issued a state of emergency for the entire state following the storm. WSAZ News reports that 53 of 55 counties have power outages, and in some counties more than 75% of people are without power.

The Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang is live-blogging the storm.

The National Weather Service has a summary of the impact of the storm measuing peak winds across the affected area on their Facebook page. Additional reporting is from The Weather Centre, which has photos of one of the shelf clouds associated with the storm, and Weather.COM which has photos of the impact of the storm collected from Twitter.


DTE substation fire and Ann Arbor power outage, June 28, 2012

ANN ARBOR (June 28, 2012): A fire at a DTE substation on South State Street caused over 6,000 people to lose power on the hottest day of the year so far. The fire was located at the State Substation, located between South State Street and Boardwalk near the Ann Arbor Public Schools Balas Administration Building.

A number of organizations have been reported to be affected by the outage. News coverage includes reporting from Detroit WXYZ Channel 7,, and the Ann Arbor Chronicle.  

Buses on the AATA Route 6 are delayed between 25 and 49 minutes as of 5:20 pm, according to the AATA's Mobile Ridetrak. Expect bus system delays systemwide, from the AATA press release:

Routes that serve southern Ann Arbor near Scio Church Rd, State St, S. Industrial Hwy, and Briarwood are experiencing major delays as traffic backs up in those areas due to traffic light outages.  This includes routes 6, 7, 15 & 36.  However, routes across the entire system are also suffering delays.

A major accident near Carpenter Rd and Packard Rd is creating traffic backups in that area.  Routes 5, 6 & 22 are experiencing significant delays as a result.

You might want to have an emergency sump pump and basement water sensor and alarm. Be aware of approaching weather with a weather alert radio and a hand crank emergency radio. Or spring for a 27 kilowatt whole house generator that runs on propane or natural gas.

DTE Energy outage map at 5:06 pm:

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Google Traffic map, showing congestion on S State St:

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Finally, the Wundermap from the Weather Underground showing just how beastly hot it is.

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Hoo d’etat

From UVA Today:

June 26, 2012 — The University of Virginia Board of Visitors today voted unanimously to reinstate Teresa A. Sullivan as president.

University Rector Helen E. Dragas apologized for actions that sparked the controversy and pledged that she will work with Sullivan to capture the energy from the events of the past three weeks to address the issues confronting the University.

The University of Virginia Libraries is documenting this turn in the power struggle at UVA, which saw Sullivan ousted from her post by the Board of Visitors. From the Chronicle of Higher Education:

The University of Virginia library staff is archiving materials related to the recent events that forced Teresa A. Sullivan to resign as president of the institution.

This is the first time the libraries have tried to preserve materials from a large-scale, continuing event, said Bradley Daigle, director of digital-curation services. The staff did not begin collecting materials on the subject until a rally on June 18. As of June 22, the team has archived nearly 20,000 tweets, 61 blog posts, over 200 media posts, and about 100 physical objects, such as signs from protests.

Credit for the phrase "Hoo d'etat" to Paul Jones at UNC, among others. The response from Twitter: "I'd buy the t-shirt!"



Jobs in Ann Arbor, a list of links to employer web sites on Arborwiki

As part of my search for work in Ann Arbor, I've been compiling a list of employers who maintain lists of open opportunities on their web sites. You can see the list here

As of this writing there are about 60 employers listed, though not all of them have open positions at this time.

There's a wide variety of online job postings systems being used by employers, ranging from the simple web page listing one or two positions to the unimaginably complex setup when an HR organization has hundreds of positions to fill worldwide.

Quite a few positions are filled without going through online job boards, of course – but it never hurts to see what's posted and available.

The Universal Authority on Authorities, from Second-hand Knowledge (Patrick Wilson)

From a book by Patrick Wilson, as referenced by Soo Young Rieh in a conversation we had last week. Consider that this was written before the appearance of both Wikipedia and Google, and ask yourself how each one appears to be both universal and authoritative in its recommendations.

"An authority on authorities is one who can be trusted to to tell us who can be trusted…. A universal authority on authoritie would be one who could be trusted to tell us who else can be trusted, in all possible spheres; such a person would be potentially an authority on everything, for if he could identify the authorities in any sphere, he could in principle find out what they claim to know and so inform himself on any subject whatever, and subsequently inform us. He could find out literally anything."

See Amazon, Second-Hand Knowledge: An Inquiry into Cognitive Authority (Contributions in Librarianship and Information Science); I got my reading copy through MeLCat.

Prompting questions

For reference, here's some prompting questions that are showing up in my social media streams. These change from time to time as online sites try to cajole, coerce, trigger or prompt people to participate online.

Typepad wants me to share this post, and to "Enter a short message about your blog post to get people excited to come read it."

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Facebook is asking me "What's the best thing that's happened to you today?" I'm sure that this is not the only question that Facebook asks, based on other people's reports, but I haven't yet seen a comprehensive list of the prompts.

Picture 1Twitter is asking me to "Compose new Tweet…" 

Picture 2And Google's Gmail is just directing me to "COMPOSE". Better to compose than to decompose, but looking at just the one word out of context makes it look very out of place. Email is of course much harder to write than a wall post or a tweet, since you have to come up with To, Cc, Bcc, Subject and email text and since you can go well beyond 140 characters.

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