Friday, April 24, 2009

It's Opening Night and Max Has Done it Again

Tonight is a milestone for me as I will be on stage for my twentieth show at Tacoma Musical Playhouse. About seven years ago my oldest daughter was asked to be in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat as one of the schoolchildren. As it turned out, they needed a Jacob. I had done stage before in HS and at the UW, and since I would be taking her to rehearsals anyway I auditioned and got the part. I wish to point out that I was younger than two of my sons in the show, but never mind. That was the start of many shows to follow, thanks of course to the patience of my wife and kids.

Boys From Syracuse, Babes in Arms, Big River, Urinetown, My Fair Lady, Little Shop of Horrors, South Pacific, Kiss Me Kate and more. When the Tacoma Children's Theater was launched I got to be Mr. Toad in Wind in the Willows and most recently was directed by the wonderful Chris Serface in Phantom Tollbooth, I also was the fox in Pinocchio, directed by Maria Valenzuala, which I did with my second oldest daughter. In one show, Radio City Music Halls A Christmas Carol, the entire family was up there including wife and four kids. Thanks for these many opportunities to Jon Douglas Rake who is the Managing Artistic Director for Tacoma Musical Playhouse.

Tonight is opening night for The Producers. Great cast, great show and once again an amazing orchestra led by Jeff Stvrtecky. Written by Mel Brooks and based on the movie of the same name, it is incredibly funny and the songs and dance numbers are all great fun. If you have seen a number of shows at the theater then you will recognize many of the cast.

I don't believe I have ever had more costume changes in a single show before. In the first act alone there are five changes. In the centerpiece of act two there are four changes in ONE number. Peasant, Rolf, Heigh-Low and storm trooper. It was fun to see so many folks supporting us at dress rehearsal and now it is on with the show.

This is definitely not a show for the youth going audience. Thirteen and up please. But then, I don't believe Mel has ever written Children's theater.

"Step One, we find the worst play ever written.
Step Two, we hire the worst director in town.
Step Three, I raise two million dollars...One for me, one for you. There's a lot of little old ladies out there.
Step Four, We hire the worst actors in New York and open on Broadway.
And before you can say Step Five, we close on Broadway, take our two million and go to Rio!"

Cast:
Frank Kohel
Scott Polovitch-Davis
Chris Serface
Gregory Conn
John Huddlestun
Jenny McMurry
Nelwyn Brady
Susan Sipes
Wendy Cohen
Andrew Fry
Kody Bringman
Carol Richmond
Mark Rake-Marona
Ashley Coates
Hailey Hays
Katin Jacobs-Lake
Christine Riippi

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Let's Cut (Fold) to the Video about Origami



I have been very busy.

There is a lot to blog about and many projects from SST 2009 to an upcoming Energy meeting, to a production of the Producers at the TMP, to a Clean Tech Open initiative, to many others.

But for now, and in order to post something.

Let's cut to the video....about Origami

First, is a TED Conference video of Robert Lang talking about very intricate origami. In eighteen minutes he goes from the basics to the complex and remains fascinating the entire time.

Robert Lang folds his way to new origami.

The second was sent along to me (thank you) that uses origami to supplement a discussion of a company. Presented by Mabona Origami it is called.

Origami in the Pursuit of Perfection.

Monday, April 6, 2009

One Last Update on the CIAC

Passed on by Dr. Barbara Endicott-Popovsky

To Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity Advisory Board Members and Extended Community:

Re: Pacific Rim Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (PRCCDC)



March 28-29, the Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity, in collaboration with over 50 volunteers from Northwest academic and business communities and with generous support from Microsoft, successfully held the 2nd Annual Pacific Rim Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (PRCCDC) with seven university and community college teams competing. Over the two-day period, each team was charged with maintaining an eight-workstation network while sustaining and repelling cyber attacks from a team of professional penetration testers. UWTV’s documentary from last year’s competition, downloadable at: http://www.uwtv.org/programs/displayevent.aspx?rid=27982, provides an understanding of the event, its organization and its outcomes for students. (This has become a popular site with downloads in the thousands!)

Competing teams represented the University of Washington CSE Dept, the University of Washington Tacoma Institute of Technology, the University of Washington iSchool, DeVry University, Highline Community College, University of Alaska Fairbanks, and Whatcom County Community College. The point scores this year were tightly grouped with only a few percentage points separating the top three teams. The improvement in scores reflects hours of preparation which means all teams win—their knowledge grows; their skills improve.

This year’s winning team, comes from the Computer Science and Engineering Department at the University of Washington Seattle campus. They will compete in the National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition to be held in San Antonio, Texas April 17-19. We wish them the best as they represent our region.



Collaboration


The event was made possible through a close collaboration among members of the community, academia and industry.

Microsoft’s generosity extended beyond providing the venue, logistics and funding for the equipment to include numerous volunteers who helped during set up and the competition. Cisco provided routing and switching equipment.

To staff the contest, Casaba Corporation, Internap, Microsoft, the University of Idaho, and the University of Washington cooperated in organizing the team of penetration testers. Idaho State University provided a team of judges from their information assurance graduate program, augmented by volunteers from the McChord Air Force base cyber unit.

The organizing committee was a collaboration of several schools and universities: Brian Hay, University of Alaska Fairbanks provided the contest architecture and images, Don McLane and Rick Davidson from the University of Washington Tacoma Institute of Technology provided network design and implementation, Bob Bunge, DeVry University, provided the web presence scoring engine for the contest and contest documentation.



Outcomes


Students are the central focus of this pedagogical event which exposes them to other schools, a network of professionals, career opportunities, new knowledge. Sixteen hours of concentrated effort to manage a network provides intensive education that allows students to integrate and apply what they have learned in their respective curricula. The atmosphere of a competition sharpens focus--everyone wins in this environment.



Future Work

Complicating the event this year was the unexpected eruption of Mt Redoubt in Alaska that caused added delays in setting up the infrastructure. As a result, we plan to virtualize the environment next year.

Microsoft continues to express interest in this event for next year. After analyzing this year’s results, we will begin planning for 2010 and welcome suggestions for improvement.

Dr. Barbara Endicott-Popovsky, Director
Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity