Apologies about the hiatus

So… My phone died last Saturday night. I had a whole list of blog posts of various locations where I would need to take photo’s… without a cellphone…

So that got sent to the manufacturer…

Then my family’s car had the side window blown out… Luckily I was not sitting next to that window on that specific trip. (Like I normally would.)

Good news, my phone was fixed for free (well I took it to a local shop to check it out first, that cost money.) and will be coming back. Bad news, it’s going to be at least until Tuesday.

So, I’m going to try and think up some article on something for this weekend… Probably going to edit together the snaptacle footage from my eclipse trip… Sorry about not informing you, I was handling the phone issue. (also a volunteer gig.)

Side-Note, Vid.Me is going down, so I am going to be transferring all my footage to being locally hosted.

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Continental tour trip plan

Note: Two days ago my phone died on me, yesterday my laptop’s battery died on me. While I hope I can continue I may be forced to take a hiatus while I get the problems sorted out.

The following is a rough draft of a plan to travel across the united states in under a year on a bike. One of the things I have found is that by making a solid plan I gain a visible goal to reach for instead of something that may not be attainable.

Based off the current plan, I will have to save up ~$15,500 to get all the gear I would want for the trip. (mostly cameras to record the trip) Food is not included in that estimate mostly because I can’t currently estimate that cost yet. I’m not asking for money, but my plan is to save up and buy the equipment over a few years.

Route:

Now let me be clear, while this is a “continental tour” it only covers the outer edge. Below is a list (In order of stops) of where I would be hitting with this plan.

  • Davis
  • San Jose
  • LA
  • San Diego
  • Phoenix
  • The grand canyon
  • Dallas
  • Austin
  • Huston
  • New Orleans
  • Washington DC
  • Philadelphia
  • New York
  • Chicago
  • Mount Rushmore
  • Yellowstone
  • Seattle
  • Portland
  • Crater Lake
  • Sacramento

I’m skipping a lot here. Total distance would be ~9,600 Miles. It should take around 175 days to do it all.

Activities & Gear:

My plan would be to make something of a documentary series on going cross country on a e-bike. As stated above the items that take up over 75% the budget is gear. I would have 4 or 5 4k cameras (one would be a spare.) and a drone for arial shots of me. (again 4k recording) At the moment I think the best would be DJI Osmo cameras and a Mavic platinum (because it’s quieter) Additionally I would need a decent laptop to process the footage. I could probably shave off ~$3,500 by building a trailer myself however by getting a per-made one it will look more professional and will hopefully make me not look like a homeless dude. The trailer I am looking at currently is a WidePath camper.

With the documentary I would try to interview people with their opinions on Bikes and E-Bikes as well as getting their opinions on riding a E-Bike. I would also have a presentation that I could put on about Bike safety and rules, as well as about my trip.

And of course once I have the gear, the only thing I would have to deal with for future trips is food & places to park and charge. So I could go up into Canada or through the middle of the country. Who knows!

So that’s the outline of my plan (for now), I will probably slowly get the gear over time and the plan will almost certainly morph over time. If you are interested in getting my preliminary spreadsheet with the rough route, just comment, I’ll send you a e-mail with the document.

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A Short bit about taxes.

I swear I am not going to be doing that many post’s about politics, (I have one more but I think that can be a buffer post for when I eventually get sick and need pre-written content.) however this has been bugging me since before I got my bike.

There are tax breaks for Electric cars but not for Bikes or E-Bikes. (I don’t remember but I think it’s a California thing.)

Now I am all for pushing EV’s over petrol cars, I love Tesla cars and if I had a good job I might save up for one. The problem is the tax incentives are pushed as being pro-green. That’s not a problem except that both bikes and E-Bikes are far more green all things considered.

While it might just be a matter of cost… One of the preposed program for bikes and E-bikes would cost pennies compared to the cost of the EV program. Why? Well consider how much a EV costs. $25,000 is one of the cheapest you can get. Now consider one of the more expensive E-Bikes at ~$2,000, or a normal Bike at $300-800. So a rebate on a EV will always be more expensive than a E-Bike since there is more money to reduce.

The problem is people think of bikes as recreational vehicles. For good reason, I had been hesitant to ride my bike to my college (and ended up not doing so) during my summer semester due to heavy construction on the only bike route to the college. People just don’t think of bikes as a day-to-day vehicle.

The rebate would be applied to bikes for kids that are used not to and from school, but for fun in their court. It would not be used to ride to the store and back, but for the odd summer ride down to the lake / beach.

And there is no real solution to that problem. The fact is that that until people can begin to view bikes as a alternative to cars, we are going to remain stuck in this rut.

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Thankful 2017

So, It’s thanksgiving this year. My family is not really doing much this year but I figured that I could try and make it a tradition to post about what I’m thankful for each year… So here I go!

  • My Family:
    I know that I am lucky for both of my parents to be alive and well, Something I hope I never take for granted.
  • My Bike:
    Let’s be honest: If I did not like my bike, would I be writing this blog? I love my bike, it makes me feel free. (Even if I also feel constrained a bit by the range.)
  • Good Books to read:
    I’m going to make a post about this but there are several online story’s that I have absolutely loved reading.

Remember to be thankful for what you have, you never know when you might lose it. Have a lovely thanksgiving.

 

Joshua Cline

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A post about reasonable expectations and perfection.

I recently watched a video with my father regarding the fact that “zero emissions” cars actually do end up causing emissions (due to creation, where the power is produced, etc.) and I wanted to add in my two cents on a few topics related to unreasonable expectations.

And just a heads up, this may end up being quite rant-like. You have been warned.

Now lets start off with renewable energy, climate change, and the opinions surrounding it:

I should start off by saying that I believe in climate change, the science that says it is happening is based in the same principles that brought you the computer you are working on. Similarly I do believe that humans are (the majority) cause of climate change. However I would like to set aside both of those views for a moment and ask a question:

Even if humans were not responsible for climate change (or it is not happening), how is moving to renewable energy a bad thing? By reducing our dependency on finite sources of fossil fuel and foreign countries, would that not stabilize the country’s economy? What about the fact that by distributing the grid’s power supply it could stabilize the power grid, causing there to be less failures. By rejecting renewable sources as a “hippy thing” these are guaranteed losses. It only goes down from there.

Now we are going to move on to the argument of “zero-emissions” cars, before we continue I would like to point out that the cars are in-fact lower emissions than other petrol-powered cars in their weight-class. So, even if they are not “zero-emissions”, why should we look down on a lowering of emissions. This is where we get into a rather annoying perspective I have started to see a lot:

Perfection is key, anything else is irreverent.

Now that might seem like a Hyperbole but it is not. There are a people who will say “the fact is that ‘zero-emissions’ cars aren’t actually that green, you have to remember [insert reason(s)] that makes a impact, it’s not worth the minor reduction in the footprint for me to buy one.” Now before we go further I want to switch tracks for a second to self-driving cars…

Self driving cars is one of the areas that currently suffer from the same argument of “perfection or go home”. The current perspective is that a self-driving car has to be a “zero-fatality” car otherwise we shouldn’t use it… In fact some say that it should even be a “zero-accident” car, it shouldn’t even get into minor ones. But we should ask ourselves the following question about self-driving cars:

If self-driving cars are even 5% safer than human drivers, why should we not switch?

It’s the same thing with “zero-emissions” cars: If the car is even 5% less harmful to the environment than a similar petrol powered one, why should we not encourage the switch? Humanity has this weird thing about seeking perfection when sometimes just being that little bit better is good enough.

So, in summary: we should never forget that marginal gains are better than no gains at all.

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