Feb
18
2009
1

Road Warrior Checklist – Bad Weather

A Road Warrior is prepared for bad weather

A Road Warrior is prepared for bad weather

Here’s what my fortune cookie on Saturday night said:

My fortune

I rather enjoy putting my imaginative skills to work with these little doodles.  ANYhow, now that that’s out of the way…

The last few days I’ve had several appearances in less than ideal weather.  With no further ado, my Road Warrior Checklist for traveling in bad weather:

  • Timing. My rule of thumb is to leave 15 minutes earlier for every hour of a planned trip in bad weather.
  • Speed. Speeding will make you feel good about your pace, but will never save you a significant amount of time.
  • Pick the correct lane. There are a lot of factors involved in choosing the correct traveling lane.  Driving in the path of other vehicles ensures your tires are touching more of the road and less of the water.  Stay out of the fast lane if possible.  Get out of other people’s way when they want to pass.
  • Stay in the correct lane. Try not to change lanes.   There is a lot more water between lanes and more chances to hydroplane.
  • No Cruise Control! There is an urban myth that if your car is on cruise control and you start to hydroplane your vehicle will accelerate to make up for the loss in traction.  The reason the highway patrol recommends against the use of cruise control in wet weather is that you only have moments to react to hydroplaning by reducing speed and maintaining control of your vehicle.  Cruise control in these situations will deprive you of a few moments of a potential speed decrease (where you would take your foot off the gas) by maintaining your current speed.
  • Following distance. Other people are going to be driving like maniacs.  Always make sure you have plenty of following distance.
  • Brakes. If your brakes are squeaking, they’re already in bad shape.  Get them checked out and replaced regularly.
  • Tires. Get your tires rotated regularly, make sure they have plenty of tread, and make sure they are properly inflated.  Remember the penny test: if you stick a penny into the tread and can see the top of Lincoln’s head you need to replace your tires.
  • Windshield wiper blades. Worn blades will just smudge.  Just plan on replacing your windshield blades every year.  Don’t forget your rear windshield wipers!

Prior “Road Warrior Checklists

Feb
17
2009
1

Website updates and other random things

Refresh for updates

Refresh for updates

In no particular order:[1]

  • I often refer to myself as a Workers’ Compensation nerd.  The other day I realized that would be a GREAT website name!  Unfortunately, WCNerd.com is already taken by “white collar nerd.”  Bummer, no?  What a great e-mail address that would have been, too!
  • With well over a 100 posts and counting I thought it was time to include a “tag cloud.”  Its on the bottom of the right sidebar of this website.  Its basically a grouping of the common words I use to tag various posts.  The more common a word is the larger it appears.  The top contenders are pretty telling
  • To help with the website navigation and use of the “tag cloud” I’ve started being more liberal with how I tag my various posts.  Its actually kinda fun.
  • I’m  using a new e-mail contact form.  I was using “Contact Form 7,” which has a truly impressive feature list. While effective, I didn’t much care for this plugin because of its complexity.  What I really wanted was a quick and easy way for website visitors to send me e-mail.  Recently I found “Tiny Contact Form” by Tom Braider to be exactly what I needed.  It is small, simple to configure, and easy to include.  I’m actually using a modified version of the really fantastic “Tiny Contact Form” plugin.  I’m rather proud of my modification on this plugin and even sent Tom Braider my changes which he ended up incorporating into the next version!
  • Google recently swallowed up Feedburner.  I was using Feedburner to manage the RSS feeds for this website.  The only problem was that it was causing all kinds of problems.  My RSS reader wasn’t picking up the new posts from my own blog!  So, I scrapped the Feedburner management of my RSS feed and went back to the native WordPress support for RSS (which is pretty damn good).
  1. Photo courtesy of RandomChu []
Feb
16
2009
1

Combined Values Chart

Combined Values Chart for the 2005 PDRS

Combined Values Chart for the 2005 PDRS

A few weeks ago I posted about the Multiple Disabilities Table for combining disabilities with injuries prior to 2005.

For injuries after 2005 we must turn to the 2005 Permanent Disability Rating Schedule.  When combining disabilities for injuries after 2005 there are several possible alternatives.  You can:

  1. In case you’re wondering, the chart on the right is a super-condensed version of the Combined Values Chart on pages 8-2 through 8-4. []
  2. Honestly, I don’t recommend this.  It wasn’t fun. []
Feb
13
2009
0

400 Registered Users!

1955 Packard 400

1955 Packard 400

February has been a wacky month.  And, on Friday February 13th the 400th user registered for this website. [1] Since the 300th registered user, quite a lot has happened:

  1. Photo courtesy of atxbill []
  2. Trust me, its easier than it sounds… []
  3. I have several more of these planned []
Feb
12
2009
0

WordPress Upgrade! Version 2.7.1!

Wordpress Upgrade

Wordpress Upgrade

I upgraded to WordPress v2.7.1 as soon as it came out (after testing on another website, of course).  I can honestly say WordPress is the only software I use that I actually look forward to upgrading.

Since version 2.7 RC 1, upgrading to the next version of WordPress has been this easy:

How to Upgrade WordPress

How to Upgrade WordPress

You click “Upgrade Automatically” and wait about 5 seconds.

You’re done.

Not entirely off topic: a friend of mine asked me yesterday about the best way to put up a new website.  She had thought about using Yahoo Site Builder or some such.  Yahoo and its like are great at building free, quick, and ugly websites.  If you’re going to publish on the internets, why not just opt for something just as easy and that has hundreds, if not thousands of possible totally free themes to choose from?  I say, go with WordPress.

I used to code sites by hand – that’s a chump’s game.  Just install WordPress and call it a day.

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