Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Joy Riding

Joy Rides! from Chris Luomanen on Vimeo.

Here's a blast from the past. These are projects I did for my graduate thesis at Stanford.

These Joy Rides are a series of objects that create unexpected, funny, thrilling, perplexing or scary (but benign) experiences when you play with them. Centipede Board is a skateboard that you turn by leaning forwards and back, not just side to side. The Devil's Shopping Cart is an uncontrollable vehicle. The more you try to control it, the more it goes out of control. The Human Catapult is designed to build nervous anticipation without real danger. And Palindrome is a land proa--a craft that is symetrical from front to back, not side to side. So instead of tacking through the wind, you just stop, reverse the rig and take off in reverse--always sitting on the windward side. Its my 21st century walap.

I couldn't show a couple of the other projects I did, because I tested them on preschoolers. So my bouncing disc shaped teeter totter and jump powered orange juicer are still back in the archives. Damned videography agreements.

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Food Cart of Museums

The SF Mobile Museum is on the prowl, people. Like the entrepreneurial foodies who insert themselves into the fabric of the city with their pop up food cart food courts, the SF Mobile Museum is taking its message directly to its audience, with no walls to keep them out or the work in. I especially like that the current exhibit Genius Loci, works about places with resonance, is doing its part to make the locations it visits a bit more resonant.

All of this public art goodness is the work of Maria Mortati, who, in addition to curating the work for the show, has installed it at the Studio for Urban Projects in SF and The Denver Community Museum, and now wherever the hell she feels like it.

I walked over to Dolores Park to check it out during Mission Open Studios, and it was a really cool scene. It was attracting a lot of attention, but it felt totally at home. Maybe this inside-out museum thing has legs. It definitely goes with red wine in a paper Coke cup.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Model Maker Gets His Due

Italian designers are renowned--especially the great masters from the magical third quarter of the 20th century. Folks like Achille Castiglioni, Enzo Mari, Ettore Sottsass and Marco Zanuso were revolutionary thinkers. But to bring those thoughts to life, they needed model makers. Giovanni Sacchi helped all those guys, and more, bring those thoughts to life with his hands. Designers today have unprecedented control of surfaces and forms. With CAD, I can, all by myself, take a concept from a thought to a ready to mold database. But that way of working is missing something. Its missing guys like Mr. Sacchi. He interpreted 2D drawings into 3D objects. And his very human touch--the way he broke an edge with sandpaper or worked a form with his chisel, necessarily left the hand of the model-maker in the design. Today, the person who ends up doing the CAD for the lead designer does the model maker's job. They interpret. They figure out the detailing. They ultimately build the surfaces that will make of break the overall effect. But for all the power and precision of CAD, there's something about an object that has been touched by a hand, and considered not just virtually, but actually. That feels good. At least it feels good to me.

I love the designed-by-a-patternmaker look too. That's the look that old shop equipment has; presses and mills and lathes. Its focused without being too self conscious. But here is some of that feeling AND Castiglioni!

So here's to you Giovanni. Celebrate his contribution to the world of design through the Giovanni Sacchi Archive. And thanks to Designboom for their story on this.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Making the most of the dimensions you have.

My friend Andre sent me this AMAZING link to the work of Rinus Roelofs. I've done some work with things that fold and join in unusual ways, but this stuff is absolutely amazing. He's like a three dimensional M.C. Escher--carefully constructing a tessellation of identical pieces that nest together to make a surprising whole. Part japanese carpenter, part Bucky Fuller, Rinus sees pattern in a way few people do. Quickly, get over there and check it out. In the mean time, here are a few more objects to ponder.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Recession + Foodies + Twitter = Food Cart Scene

Something amazing is happening in San Francisco. And I hear its happening all over the country. People who want to make a little cash in this depressed economy are turning their passion for food into a small business. But how do you find customers? The answer is they find you. By connecting with customers through social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook, food carts (mostly they're folding tables) connect with their clientele in real time. And it works. This little gathering in our neighborhood park was PACKED. And our good friend Ana Carolina (second photo from the bottom) and her Brazilian Bites cart was sold out before the crowds dispersed. Cheap, delicious, unusual, capricious food on the fly is fun! Look for Brazilian Bites (of course), but don't forget to follow Soul Cocina, the Lumpia Guys and Smitten Ice Cream (made on the spot with liquid nitrogen!).

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Familiar, but not the same.

I love stickback chairs. If you are using solid wood (as opposed to metal or plywood or plastic), its probably the lightest, strongest way to build a chair. And, as is so often the case, that kind of efficiency exudes elegance. That's what good modernism does--express a synergy between materials, structure, form and people.

But sometimes modernism can get a bit sterile. Too much uniformity and austerity lacks warmth. I was lucky enough to visit the Eames House a few years ago and was taken aback by two things. One, it was small! They built it on a budget, and knew how to extract the most from the grand and cozy spaces they created. But the other thing was that it was a really, really warm feeling place. Ray and Charles appreciated that synergy between materials, form and people--not a particular style. That synergy permeated everything they did, and the objects and architecture they surrounded themselves with.

This family of stickback chairs by Lina Nordquist has that sense of warmth to me. They're mismatched enough to feel different from each other--but all have their own internal logic. It feels like a family--not a clone army. I like that. Its warm.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Tenth Dimension and How to Get There...

Wow. This is the best, most visual, explanation of the 10 dimensions (eleven if you count dimension 0) that encompass Everything with a capital E. Everything (with a capital E) is all possible timelines in all possible universes--the dimension that the super strings vibrate in.

When I was in High School, my outstanding geometry teacher (and dashiki wearing, former rocket scientist) Ed Murrell recommended that we read Flatland to help us to imagine the leap from 3 to 4 dimensions, and beyond. At the same time, I was obsessed with physics in general. I had been exposed to the very fine info-comic Einstein for Beginners, which was helping me to begin a lifelong struggle to grasp the interconnectedness of time, space and probability. Then in college, I read The Fourth Dimension by Rudy Rucker. And that really blew my mind.

But I guess the lasting impression of this journey is my continuing awe at the possibility of the universe (or should I say, universes). Just as Neanderthals probably thought fire was magic, this stuff seems absolutely fantastical, especially if you are, like me, a visual and tactile thinker. But this movie really gets it right. Stick with it, you'll be glad you did.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Genius Loci

My old pal
Maria Mortati is an exhibit designer and curator, in addition to being just generally hilarious, sweet and brilliant. I've contributed to things she has curated before like her awesome book and Maker Faire exhibition Power of the Prototype last year and the Bay area Furniture Art Show, back in 2003. So when she asked me to contribute something for her latest show Looking for Loci, I was happy to help out. But this time, I got the whole family involved.

Let me back up a little. Looking for Loci is a show about capturing the feel of a place that is really special to you. Everyone involved created a little diorama in a box (provided by Maria) in which to capture what was special about your Loci. I managed to turn this call for entries into an enforced family art day (what could be more fun?). When I asked my daughter Dinah what place is really special to her, first she said "going to sushi". When I asked for a place that was not a restaurant, she burst forth with this fantastic and magical scenario.
If I could go anywhere I would get shrunk down really small and live in a rabbit hutch. I would ride the bunnies all day long. And at night I would sleep with my head on their fluffy tails.
My wife, Rebecca was more concise.
Its the fridge. It contains life's greatest joys.
My loci was "in my head."
Sadly, my Genius Loci is in my head, which is like a big cluttered workshop with partially finished projects lying around all over the place. I go there to relax, pick up one of those dusty projects and putter. Sometimes things get done, sometimes I just make a bigger mess. I should probably get out more.
In any case, the project was a lot of fun. And the show is going kick off its SF debut at the Studio for Urban Projects on August 28th. So check it out.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Turbines, Hot Rods and the Optimism of the Space Age

Back when space suits had laces on them, the world seemed to be careening towards the future in a way that car geeks could understand. Rockets and spyplanes were all about horsepower and plexiglas bubbles. Who knew that in the 21st century, you'd be using all that space technology to tell several hundred of your closest friends that you are waiting in line for a latte.
But I digress. In the 50s and 60s cars wanted to be airplanes and airplanes wanted to be rocket ships. So why mess around with some steam age relic like a piston engine? You need a turbine, man! Indy cars had had them. Chrysler was even trying to make a passenger car with a jet engine in it (which ran on almost anything, from vegtable oil to Tequila!). So it only makes sense that regular guys would be trying to power their choppers and hydroplanes with them. If you are crazy enough to make a turbine dragster, why not make it a 3 wheeler? Or you could upholster your battery box on your to match your turbine-cycle's ridiculously long seat. Why not? You're already a certified nut job. Here are the rest of the images. Thanks Boing Boing!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Pink Pyramid Passes On

It has been over 8 years since I first stepped into this freaky pink pyramid, rising from the Michigan prairie. Steelcase's Development center is one of the weirdest buildings I have ever been in. Its radial symmetry made way-finding baffling at best. Its enormous central pendulum, skimming the surface of a slick black granite fountain was a bizarre centerpiece. But best of all, the tip of the pyramid glowed pink at night, like a beacon of gay pride in the heart of western Michigan. What else could it be?

While its not exactly my favorite building, I was sad to hear that it is being closed down as part of cost cutting at Steelcase. There's a sense of capriciousness that a pink granite pyramid represents that I, for one, will miss. Goodbye pyramid.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Aviation Eye Candy

If you haven't been there, you really should check out xplanes. I don't have any penetrating insights here, besides the fact that the these folks were insane! Hey, isn't that the plane that the six million dollar man crashed in the second and third picture from top?

Be sure to check out the tag "nobody died." You gotta go one way or another! Unless of course, you are Steve Austin.

Surfing into the Future

Surfboards are an ancient design. Nobody knows for sure when pacific islanders first started riding logs in the waves, but it was a while ago. And the recipe has been fairly consistent. Sure there have been variations in nose and tail shape, and various fin configurations, but that basic canoe-shaped slab with convex sides that the ancient Hawaiians invented has held up pretty well.

One of the things I love about surfboards is that they are still largely made by hand, one at a time, by skilled artisan builders. These designer/builders are largely guided by their eye and guesses supported by their experience on the water. So I was really excited to see Thomas Meyerhoffer's work on designboom. (Check out this article in the NYT as well.)

Here is a guy who has worked as a designer at Porsche and Apple, taking a crack at this ancient archetype. This is a classic form as function problem, approached by someone who is clearly facile in both areas. The breakthrough of his design comes from dividing the surfing experience up into two parts; tail riding and nose riding. By redefining the problem, he can see answers that nobody (that we know of) has thought of before. And people have been working on it for a while.

Clients sometimes balk when I suggest that a naive but inquisitive outsider can often see things that established experts miss. Surfing experts know what the acceptable range of surfboard shapes are. A naive outsider can create something unique, and sometimes groundbreaking, because they don't know any better.

Here's Thomas talking about the design in his own words.

Friday, June 5, 2009

The Gift of Speed

Who is the luckiest husband on earth?  It is, in fact, me.  For my fortieth birthday, my wife, Rebecca, gave me a 3 day driving school at Jim Russel Racing School.  This is not messing around in some hopped up mustings.  This one is in open wheeled, carbon fiber, full ground effects, turbocharged mitsubishi powered F3 cars.  Well, they're not really F3 cars because F3 cars are not this powerful.  Seriously!

A series of "life events" involving, among other things, serious bodily injury and death, kept me away from my gift for over a year.  But earlier this week it came to pass.  I spent 3 whole days driving this astounding beast.

I was scheduled to take the class a month ago, but the cars were getting worked on, so the school gave me and a friend a karting class, as a thank you for being patient.  Karting scared the crap out of me (and my friend!).  I think its the rear-only brakes that make the car go nuts when you lock them up.  I thought, "good lord, the formula cars are going to be undrivable."  I'm here to report, they are not undrivable.  Far from it.

Not that its easy.  First I had to fit my generously proportioned 6'2" frame into the thing.  My shoulders were squished together.  The pedals were adjusted as far out as possible, and they were close.  They took out the "seat" and threw in a 1' thick foam pad.  I was unable to buckle my own seatbelt, because there was no place for my elbows to go.  There is a safety collar that is supposed to support your helmet in a crash--but we didn't need it because my shoulders were doing that.  I was the only one who came in after each session with his helmet covered in bugs and bits of tire.  It was because I was sticking out of the car about 8 inches higher than anyone else!
Then we drove.  The clutch has about 1/2" of engagement, and first gear is about the same ratio as 3rd in a street car.  So suffice to say, there was some stalling.  Ok, a lot of stalling.  The straight cut gears in the transmission do not require the clutch, just a firm hand and excellent timing.  "CLACK!!!" And the motor is insane!  In race trim its over 300hp.  In driving school trim, its about 225hp--the same as an F3 car.  Perfect for beginners!

One of the first things you discover as you drive a car that has the power to weight ratio of a Mini with a Dodge Viper motor in it is that you can spin it with the throttle.  I don't mean you can overcook a corner with the throttle.  I mean you can just about spin it in a straight line, at most any speed, by stomping on the gas.  But even more amazing are the brakes.  This thing goes from 120+ mph in the straights, down to 45 for a hairpin in a few car lengths.  Don't forget those downshifts!

I used to think I knew something about driving cars fast.  My Dad taught me to drive fast as a teenager.  We lived in the country, so there were plenty of twisty roads to practice on.  In fact, I had learned and developed all kinds of bad habits from driving cars far from their actual limits.  You drive the Jim Russel car badly near its limits, and it lets you know in no uncertain terms!  More specifically, I use way too much steering input, because I don't focus on my braking into the corner to set up the car.  Then I manhandle it with too much gas too early in the corner.  Or should I say I USED to do those things.  The last 3 days have taught me more about vehicle dynamics than the last 25 years.  Huge thanks to Nico and Jeff, our patient, methodical instructors.  By the end of the class, I was actually pushing the car safely, with a tolerable level of fear, and deep, transcendent, indescribable feeling of joy.  Driving in a street car now feels like traveling on a barge.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Because its there, I guess...

Why would someone want to break the world free-diving record?  Its an exercise in self abuse.   But I guess that's true of so many feats humans are tempted to undertake.  Riding the Tour de France, climbing Everest and sailing non-stop single-handed circumnavigations are all tough rows to hoe.  But there is something about free-diving that is so immediate.  You are choosing to just about kill yourself with asphyxiation.  Now that's commitment!

But when I watched this, I was mesmerized by the beauty of his form and rhythm.  He looks like a creature that has been molded into a super-swimmer by eons of steady evolutionary pressure, like a sea turtle or a seal.

And then when he reaches the surface--is he about to pass out?  Is he partially passed out already?  Look at how long it takes him to get the energy up to wave his fist in the air.  

Friday, May 1, 2009

Its absolutely impossible, unless you crochet...

Feminine handicraft, euclid and relativity.  Who would have guessed that these things reinforce, even explain one another?  I remember learning about hyperbolic geometry in high school.  But I didn't really understand it. I guess I shouldn't beat myself up about it because a century was spent trying to explain how it was impossible to model.  

Then in 1997 a mathematician at Cornell, Dr. Daina Taimina figured out how to model it by crochet.  And it turns out that models of hyperbolic structures were everywhere, from sea slugs to lettuce leaves.

"We live in a society that completely tends to valorize symbolic forms of representation, algebraic representations, equations, codes...but through this sort of modality...plastic forms of play, people can be engaged with the most abstract, high powered, theoretical ideas.  The kind of ideas that normally you have to go to university to study in higher mathematics...but you can do it through playing with material objects."

I don't know what else there is to say.  Lets play.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Big Daddy Rides Again

Ed "Big Daddy" Roth is my hero.  He was the most outrageous, vulgar, extreme, ridiculous and unprecedented automobile designer of all time.  Harley Earl was inspired by the Jet Age.  Roth was all about monstrosity, in every sense of the word.  He wanted to shock and maybe even scare you. 

But what I always loved about Ed, was that he figured out how to make the most with what he had--and he never had much.  GM made history by building the first mass production fiberglass sports car, the Corvette, in 1953.  By 1957 Roth was building fiberglass cars in his paint shop in LA.  He would take a chassis, pile on plaster and shave it away until it was shaped like the car he wanted to make, and take molds for the fiberglass body off of that.  When he built his first bubble car, he made the plexiglas bubble in a pizza oven.  He invented metalic paint by grinding up fish scales, and mixing them in.  Roth was a visionary, but he only cared about craft as a means to an end.  He didn't fetishize the process of building.  And his cars often broke just from the wear and tear of getting them on and off the trailer on the show circuit.

The video above is a recent homage to Roth called the Atomic Punk.  It has all the stylistic earmarks of a Roth classic.  But it was lovingly crafted from vintage GM body parts and hand formed sheetmetal.  Its not thrown together by any stretch of the imagination.  It was built by someone who definitely has a fetish for craft.  And I like that too.

By the way, one of Roth's masterpieces was recently discovered in Tijauna. The Orbitron featured an array of red, green and blue headlights that were focused together to create white.  It was the kind of hair brained scheme that only he could turn into a car.  The recently discovered Orbitron had been used as a trash bin for an adult book store, before some devoted Roth-ite snatched it up.  I hope they have a friend with a pizza oven.

What ISN'T a series of tubes?

I remember going with my Mom to drive through banks in the '70s where you put your checks and other paperwork in them, and yelled at the teller through an intercom.  I remember in High School, my Dad used to take me clothes shopping at  Seafair, the former Georgia Pacific company store in Fort Bragg, California.  Seafair was a sort of department store that sold mostly western wear.  While I dreaded our visits from a fashion perspective, I was always fascinated by the awesome network of pneumatic tubes that sent cash and receipts from the various departments to the gilded cage in the center of the store, where they kept track of the money.

Here's a Pecha Kucha style slide show about the history of pneumatic tubes as a communication and delivery device.  In our world of instant media gratification and endless possibilities, its hard to imagine how remarkable and game changing this kind of technology must have been in the 19th century.  And I love the metaphor of the "desktop" pneumatic tube technology creating pneumatic tube intranets within companies and institutions.

What were the social implications of pneumatic tube technology?  Did people send each other LOL messages?  Was there pneumatic spam?  Did anyone get a pneumatic tube from a Nigerian prince who was happy to share his fortune if you could spot him a few bucks?

Monday, March 30, 2009

Uh, sure, I'd call that 126.

Wow.  That looks super fun.  126mph is the new worlds record for sailing on land.  And I thought I had the only proa land sailer!  And not only is theirs a proa, but it uses aerodynamic ballast!  To keep it from flipping over, the heeling force of the wing is counteracted by a horizontal foil shaped strut between the main body and the outer wheel, that's generating negative lift.  So as the wing is trying to tip it over, the foil shaped strut is trying to push the outer wheel into the ground.

If you watch closely while he's setting the record, the both the wing and the strut get all willowy and soft looking.  He's holding it right there, in that place before it explodes.  Beautiful!

Congratulations Ecotricity.  And as if it needs to be said, proas rule!

I guess I have to dig up my old Palindrome videos to celebrate!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Design Education in a Nutshell

I've been thinking a lot about design education lately. My friend Maria and I have been working on developing a prototype-centered class. Sort of a build-to-think kind of thing. In honor of this momentous occasion, I'm posting one of my all time favorite YouTube moments (other than this), Eric's Really Good Idea. The idealism! The obfuscation! The shattered dreams! The triumph of jargon!

"I don't have time to demoralize all of you individually, so lets just say I'm thoroughly disappointed in the lot of you...now who wants pudding?"

Those were the days...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Get Your Fix On

Dutch design collective Platform 21 has done something you don't see that much anymore--they wrote a manifesto.  Manifestos tend to be a bit petulant, and hence have a short life span (the communist one not withstanding).  But this one has legs.  Maybe its because it's good old fashioned stinginess repositioned as a mentality.  I love it.  I especially like #2, about designing for repair.  Its no secret that durability is a far more potent sustainable practice than recyclability or even being made from recyclable materials.

Herman Miller's decision to make the Eames shells out of recyclable, but also more scratchable, less luxurious feeling plastic always bothered me.  When was the last time you saw a fiberglass Eames shell in the garbage?  My orange rocker is on its second base and third set of rubber pucks.

Design for repairability is a huge opportunity that spans from materials and finishes to creating objects simple enough to fix.  For example, the heater broke in my 1999 BMW.  I had to buy a $500 computer to fix it (and its still glitchy!), and have an expert replace it.  When the heater broke in my 1969 Fiat, all it needed was a $15 piece of cable and 20 minutes of my labor.  Modern cars have added feature after feature, and we have paid for that in weight and complexity.  To help compensate for the cost of all that bloat, the car is designed to be snapped together once with a minimum of labor, without regard for the poor bastard who has to fix it.

We need repairability to become a mentality to get over our collective preference for shiny garbage over quality and character.  Myself included.

Revised Website Preview!

At long last my website has been updated to include some more recent work (or at least recent work that I can talk about publicly).  Thanks Ed!  So I'll preview one of the goodies from the site (click on "one offs" and then "hannes bridge" for more pix.

My friend and long time guitar tech Stephen White introduced me to Roland Hannes around 2002.  Roland had invented a very clever bridge for electric guitars that was revolutionary in a couple of ways.  For one, the individual saddles sit right on the wood top of the guitar—not a metal plate screwed to the top of the guitar.  And there are a lot of other cool, painstakingly thought out features.  I hooked him up with a machinist friend of mine, who helped him get a prototype built.

Roland licensed his invention to Schaller, an instrument hardware manufacturer in Germany.  And in January of 2008 I had a chance to play one of his bridges myself.  I was absolutely blown away.  Unplugged, the guitar had a resonant, ringing, quality that I had rarely heard in a guitar. I decided on the spot that I needed to build up a guitar around the bridge.  I had been jonesing for a telecaster anyway.

The only problem was, I didn’t like the aesthetics of the anchor block of the bridge.  It just didn’t look right to me.  The saddles and anchor don’t speak the same design language. The saddles are boxy and the anchor in Roland's version was blobby.  And there is NOTHING blobby about a telecaster. So I redesigned the anchor. The result is a bridge that looks A LOT better, and is more comfortable to play.  Too bad I didn’t have a chance to redesign it before it went into production.

But at least mine looks right.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Happy Birthday Italdesign

Giorgetto Giugiaro drew the 70's.  Along with Marcello Gandini, he was the master of the folded paper styling that defined the cars of that era.  Mr. Giugiaro drew the the original VW Golf and  Lotus Esprit--two wildly different cars which are almost re-proportioned versions of the same design.  And they've stayed relevant ever since with a slew of hits that include the Lancia Delta, Fiat Panda, Saab 9000, Isuzu Impulse, Subaru SVX and Alfa Brera.  That's a hell of a run!

Check out this fantastic (but flash based) video voyage through Italdesign's proud history.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

At least you can wiggle when you want to.

I have long been a proponent of perch/sit/stand workstations.  I have one here at Thing Tank World Headquarters.  Mine is hacked from a drafting table, some kitchen shelf stand offs from Ikea, a piece of plywood and a perch/sit chair.  The mighty Aeron Chair, and the "ergonomic" chairs that followed in its wake, told us that it would be ok to sit still for 8 hours a day, because they were so supportive.  The truth is support is great when you need to rest.  The rest of the time, support is a nice way to say "atrophy inducer."

Its not the position you are in, its the ability to change positions easily and frequently that makes a workstation comfortable.  And nowhere is that more important than in classrooms.  Teachers are always trying to find that middle ground between kids falling asleep and going nuts.  Maybe increasing the width of that middle ground is the answer.
“At a stand-up desk,” Ms. Seekel said, “I’ve never seen students with their heads down, ever. It helps with being awake, if they can stand, it seems. And for me as a teacher, I can stand at their level to help them. I’m not bent over. I can’t think of one reason why a classroom teacher wouldn’t want these.”
“We just know movement is good for kids,” Ms. Bormann said. “We can measure referrals to the office, sick days, whatever it might be. Teachers are seeing positive things.”And don't even get me started on kinesthetic learning.
Here's an awesome article in the New York Times about a school in Minnesota that is implementing these desks, and the academics that are studying them.  In the words of the director of Education Minnesota Foundation, a teacher's union arm;
“We’re talking about furniture here,” she said, “plain old furniture. If it’s that simple, if it turns out to have the positive impacts everyone hopes for, wouldn’t that be a wonderful thing?”
Design nerds have always thought that plain old furniture could have positive impacts.  Its nice to see some regular folks joining the fold.

Thanks to my loving wife, for pointing out this article.