Monday, February 22, 2010

Kenny Vs. Spenny

Below is an article I recently submitted to my university newspaper, "The Integrator."

------------------------------Kenny Vs. Spenny-------------------------------

There are many television shows that are completely under watched. “Kenny versus Spenny” is an example of said show. Shown on “showcase” and “Youtube”, “KVS” is a sophomoric performance that follows two best friends who enter competitions against each other for nothing more than victory and the inevitable humiliation of the vanquished. However, while the show may have sophomoric qualities, “KVS” is a brilliant, Shakespearean performance, showcasing the endless epic struggle of good versus evil.
The show is set up in a three act structure. Act one, the set up, begins with a shot of the house with Kenny and Spenny seated, as custom, on their red couch dictating the roles of the competition. They state what it will be, how an individual can win and what each competitor can and cannot do. As the two argue and debate the nuances of the rules, the audience begins to view the competition’s first emergence, as good tries to minimize evil’s options and evil attempts to find loop holes it can work its way into.
Act two brings the audience face to face with rising action and suspense as the protagonist Kenny “battles” the antagonist Kenny in anything from who can remind blind the longest to who makes the best woman. But, as in a real situation, our hero is actually an anti-hero and the antagonist is the anti-antagonist. Each operates, imperfectly, toward their goal according to their own ideologies. While Spenny attempts to win by “working harder and honestly”, Kenny battles by “working smarter”.
Act three shows which maxim rang true as the rising action is brought to climax with the realization of the victor. In some instances Spenny’s “work hard and honest” method achieves its goal and Kenny pays the price for bending rules. However, in many other competitions, brilliant evil locates the loophole in the regulations and takes advantage. The act is completed with the inevitable humiliation that that shows how strongly each character believes in his maxim as extreme enjoyment is taken from the act. While the war of good versus evil threatens to go on indefinitely, this war will end the sad day networks pull the plug on their support of the show.

Workin' For The Weekday

Oh man, this weekend was brutal. I had to work on both Saturday and Sunday at Kinney's. I also had school work to do and a fraternity function to go to. On top of that I also had to support the new members by going to their fundraiser which was an Elvis impersonator down in old Snell theatre.

The events themselves were fun, but I am tired. I have a test at 2pm that I have to get some studying done for and I've never been so relieved it is a Monday. I don't have any work for the weeknights, at Kinney's, or any places I absolutely must be. I can actually just relax and do my work.

Good gracious what will I do with myself?

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Global Warming Homework

I recently had to write a paper for homework. Yes engineers write too! It's a bit long, but I thought it was interesting so I included it below. It's a bit on the long side so I won't be offended if you don't read it. But, feel free to read it anyway.

-----------------Global Warming Contributors and Validity----------------

There are many controversial topics within the overreaching dome of modern science. Among the most controversial lies the topic of global warming, and its validity. Global warming is defined, by Wikipedia, as the increase in the average temperature of near-surface air and oceans since the mid twentieth century. Global warming also states that the increase in average temperatures on earth is a result of man’s contribution to the green house effect via the large volume of green house gases that are artificially put into the atmosphere.

Green house gases are a necessary part of earth’s ecosystem. Without GHGs earth’s temperature would be approximately thirty degrees celsius lower than what it is at present. The major contributors to the green house effect are water vapor, carbon dioxide (CO2), Nitrous Oxide (NO2) and Methane. They have separate atmospheric lifetimes which are respectively, 9 days, 1004 years, 1144 years and 124 years.

The major greenhouse gases created by humans include CO2, Methane and NO2. Of the one hundred percent of total GHGs, CO2 has climbed to 72% of the total volume. NO2 has reached a level of 9% of the total volume of GHGs. And, methane has attained a level of 18% of the total volume.

Since the industrial revolution there has been a sharp rise in the total volume of the major green house gases present in our atmosphere. Over preindustrial 1750, there has been a 38% increase in the total amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. Similarly, there has been a 67% increase in the total volume of methane present in the atmosphere. And, likewise there has been a 16% increase in the total volume of NO2 in the atmosphere. Major contributors to the increase are attributed to power production plants (such as coal plants), factories, and automobiles.

While debate on the topic of global warming threatens to continue indefinitely one detail remains evident. The green house effect is a part of our climate. And, when the effect is changed by human activity, the change must be evaluated by climate models. Climate models are defined, by Wikipedia, as models that use quantitative methods in order to simulate the interactions of atmosphere, oceans, land surface and ice.

Climate models take into account the total amount of energy that is either leaving or entering the system. Any surplus energy will inevitably lead to an increase in temperature, among other results. Conversely, a deficit of energy will eventually lead to a decrease in temperature of the system, along with other results. These complex analyses are multivariable having multiple inputs. For example a global climate change model would have many inputs. Some examples of these inputs would include cloud cover, total volume of atmospheric gases, total light energy from entering from the sun, gravitational energy from surrounding bodies, rate of increase of GHGs and many others.

The green house effect clearly exists and it is evident that humans have been increasing the amount of gases that are involved in the green house effect. However there is a widespread debate on wither global warming is a product of man’s misuse of natural resources or of pure imagination. On one side of the debate there are scientists and supporters who state that there measureable changes in the atmosphere that are a chemical result of the increased presence of certain GHGs. On the other side of the debate are scientists and supporters who state that the increase in global temperature is a direct result of cyclical trends. They state that these trends have occurred since the formation of earth’s atmosphere and will continue to heat and cool as time progresses indifferent to human intervention.

In order to determine wither or not there man is having significant impacts on the green house effect, evidence must be evaluated. One such piece of evidence states that global near-surface air temperature has increased by 1.33 ± 0.32 °F, in the last century. Climate models predict that within the 21st century temperatures will increase by 1.33 ± 0.32 °F. There is also evidence that proves that the polar ice caps are decreasing in size. Ice caps, located under low ozone zones, have shrunk by 57% in the last four years, decreasing thickness by 2.2 feet. As temperature increases so does the probability of more intense droughts, heat waves and hurricanes; as seen in 2004-2005.

The idea of global warming is such that an increase in temperature will cause irreparable, negative changes to our environment. It is evident that CO2, Methane and NO2 increase the green house effect. It is also clear that humans have dramatically increased the volume of these gases in the atmosphere, recently. This information coupled with negative effects, such as shrinking ice caps, climate sensitivity, more intense hurricanes and higher impact forest fires shows that global warming does exist and is having immediate consequences.

Even though global warming is manifesting itself with new vigor every year, this is not to say that both sides of the argument do not have valid points. There may well be a cyclical process by which the earth increases and decreases in temperature. However, this does not disprove the fact that if the habits of humans do not change dramatically, the point about which the temperature cycle oscillates may increase to a point that no longer supports normal life on earth.

Sources:
1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_warming_controversy
2. http://cdiac.ornl.gov/pns/current_ghg.html
3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_model
4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_gas#Anthropogenic_greenhouse_gases

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

5/50

Clarkson University has a semesterly career fair. This year was one of the worst for company participation in a long time. There were only 60ish employers there, and not all of them were looking to fill open slots. This may seem like a bunch of companies, but these 60 odd employers were there to cover every Clarkson major. There are more than three schools at Clarkson. The school of business, engineering, science and more. Within each are an almost incalculable amount of majors.

Long story short I did not have much luck. So I have to search for a job on my lonesome, unlike my classmates from a few years ago that were getting multiple offers. So, my plan is likened to carpet bombing. I am going to apply to 50 companies. And, I'm going to give it up to five months after graduation. If after five months, I do not have a job, I will enlist and attempt to become an engineer through military means. This is because after six months of post graduate life I have to start paying back my loans, and I will not be caught without a job. And so far, I've applied to five places other than the ones at the career fair.

Oh me oh my...

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Avalanche Effect

So there is this course that I've found my self a wee bit behind on. What actually happened was that I neglected to do one assignment a while ago and now it's comming back to bite me because it all builds on itself. But that isnt what I want to talk about. What I do want to talk about is how I have the class in 11 minutes and it is taking every ounce of self control and courage not to just run home wildly screaming "I hate Alternate Energies." Which is the name of the course by the way, but I digress.

I don't know why I do it, but I'm sure there has got to be oher students out there like me. Students who are almost out of control of anxiety. Now, I don't want to be dramatic or anything but I seriously don't want to go to the course right now. I just want to sit here and just keep on typing. Just type type typing away and pretending like it doesn't matter. I could even tell myself that I'm taking a "mental health hour." But I know that once I get in there, once I get over my fear of even being there in the first place it will be better.

Eight minutes and counting, wish me luck...

Monday, February 15, 2010

Relationships

I've noticed an interesting relationship between the number of times I blog and my life. If I am busy, I will hardly blog. If I am stressed, I will blog a lot. If I am bored, I will constantly blog.

Now, I want this blog to be successful and interesting enough to capture and audience. However, I find that my blogging habits run against it's success. According to my prediction on the way I behave, based on past events, when I do blog; in all likelihood it is either going to be about my boring life or my stressed out life. Which is great if I'm trying to corner the market on stressed out boring people, but I'm not. My blog is counter intuitive. Oh well, I've got to study for a test tommorrow.


which is probably why I'm blogging now...

Frantic

Frantic! I'm in a panic! The real world is approaching with increasing speed and I have to prepare! There are resume's to hand out. Schools to apply for! Bills to pay! Plans to make! There is soo much to do.

But if there is one thing I've learned from college it's to break work up into bite size peices. Making progress, or at least a sense of progress, is important to moral. However progress does not detract from the issue at hand. I have class in ten minutes and have to run!

I'll see you around!

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