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Spring break is finally here (a shining beacon of light comes down from the heavens and a chorus sings “Hallelujah!”). The only thing separating us from the friends, family and sleep at the end of the tunnel is the San Francisco International Airport. Here is our report from the field:

7:00 p.m: Arrive at the BART station. Dragging our suitcases down the stairs at the station causes a lot of eyes to land on us. The embarrassment finally ends when we get to the bottom, but then we notice that the train has just arrived! Is this the one we want? Where do we transfer? We don’t have time to worry because we either get on here or wait for the next one, and we hate waiting, so we jump on.

7:15 p.m: We have the right train and we are on our way! Just transferred at MacArthur station and there are so many people on the train that a certain black suitcase keeps getting in people’s way, falling and causing them to trip (ok, it was our suitcase but the BART is shaky!). The world seems to move so fast when you are on BART. From the window, SF looks like an Impressionist painting, as we only catch a glimpse of the blurred city landscape. Looking at our watch, we see that we still have about 45 minutes till we reach the airport and our plane leaves at 9:25 p.m. We are not following the parent’s advise of getting there at LEAST two hours early. Hope there are no bumps along the way!

8:00 p.m: We have made it to the airport! Now we find our way to the futuristic tram with the soothing robot voice that takes us to our terminal. Maybe we have read too many science-fiction novels, but that’s how we see it.

8: 20 p.m: read more »

3910336227_4d519fa49bWhen we heard that Berkeley scientists were doing something for Burning Man — you know, that eight-day hippie debauchery festival that stews beneath the hot Nevada sun — we were shocked and, honestly, a little disappointed. Weren’t there other, more productive things for them to be doing, like working at Lawrence Berkeley Lab on an awesomely fast network for research scientists or continuing efforts toward creating sound zombies?

To be fair, we might be a little bitter because we’re not going (eight days off and $300 can be hard to come by) or maybe we were just a little taken aback since the science lab and Burning Man are not necessarily a match made in heaven. Either way, someone had some ‘splaining to do.

Well, it turns out the project, although it isn’t the most noble of undertakings, is read more »