Colgan 3407 – Air Traffic Control audio and details

IMG_2185.JPG by iamtimmo.

Photo by iamtimmo

Last night my friend Marc dropped me an email with the pilot’s and ATC’s view of 3407, including the MP3 archive of the fateful flight. Here’s his email:

If you’re interested – Callsign – Colgan 3407

Approach plate KBUF ILS 23:
Clarance Center, NY would be slightly SW of the TRAVA intersection.

A little after 12:00 – cleared to 2300ft, for intersecting the glideslope.
Little after 15:00 – cleared for ILS, 3 N of KLUMP.
Little after 16:00 – handed off to KBUF tower.
17:21 – first sign of uh oh

20:30 – When they are pretty sure somethings wrong
24:00 – Notification to aircraft of a plane down

It was interesting to get this in email first and see/hear the information before getting any other news (I’ve still only briefly scanned the CNN article).


UPDATE: Colgan Air has a link about flight 3407

Flying Cars and Creative Commons

I came across this fun post on CNET News because my photos on Flickr are licensed Creative Commons Attribution and the page came up in a Google Search on my name. Chris Matyszczyk wrote an article on why people are the gating factor to the release of a decent flying car (or any flying car for that matter). It’s a fun read, more on a fear of road-rage-in-the-sky than anything else, but successfully points out one of the reasons we don’t have flying cars.

Flying Car

I love to read anything on aviation, and am in agreement with Chris that most of human-kind isn’t capable of flying. That’s why we have flight schools and a vast amount of training, and why there are ~400,000 pilots out of the entire United States. In order to have flying cars, we can’t have human control.

When I think flying car, I think robotically controlled aerial taxi cab.

Anyway, that’s not the point of this post. The point is Create Commons and offering to share one’s work. I use plain Attribution because I want people to use my content. I don’t care how. Trackbacks and notification of use isn’t ubiquitous or standardized, so planting one’s name makes it easy to see where things are used.

And again, I don’t care where or how my stuff is used, I just want to be able to find the fun stuff that builds upon it. I came across Chris’s post through a Google Alert on my name. There wasn’t a trackback. If there hadn’t been attribution, I wouldn’t have known and wouldn’t have read his post.

Maybe we’ll get to a trackback standard for content usage. It’ll probably get here around the time we have those flying cars.

The Landing Light – 172 at Denver International

On September 23rd, 2003 I rented a plane with friends in Colorado Springs (COS) to fly to Denver (DEN). It was a calm, warm, clear, evening and made for a great night to fly. It was the typical $100 hamburger flight (in to a major International).

The pre-flight was fast and we fired up the engine, but moments later the taxi/landing light blew. Getting a new bulb was out of the question, so we called up AOPA‘s member services – closed for the night – and proceeded to whip out the laptop and look up FARs. A landing light was required for commercial flight, but not private VFR-night flight (pilots, remember your TOMATO FLAMES+FLAPS).

Why am I re-telling this story more than five years later? The Beast, of course! A $4,160 flashlight. Yes, four thousand one hundred and sixty dollars (thanks @AgentM for the link).

At only a foot and a half long, no lamp filaments to break, and a weatherproof body made of rugged anodized aerospace-grade aluminum, the Beast Rechargeable makes a perfect backup landing light.

During taxi and landing we used a Lightwave mounted firmly in the co-pilot’s hand, arm extended out the passenger window. This wasn’t necessary since we had ample runway lights, but it made us feel safer prior to the runway and was bright enough to illuminate the threshold before the numbers.

Google in my pocket during Bond Quantum of Solace (the Bolivian Desert)

Besides an absolutely killer Aston Martin opening chase and an even better dog-fight and parachute scene later, two things stuck in my mind from the latest Bond movie, Quantum of Solace.

First, James Bond driving hybrids. Ford got lots of hybrid vehicle product placement (listen for the electric motor during takeoff and stopping).

Second, the Bolivian desert. I didn’t know there was a desert in Bolivia. That ignorance induced the whip-phone-from-pocket reflex to load up some Bolivian geography (sociological pressure kept me from lighting a bright screen in a theater). It wasn’t the movie’s doing, but the ability to supplement one’s experience with personalized metadata is finally here. I’ll remember this when future grandkids ask when we finally started wearing computers.

The movie was good. Not as good as Casino Royale, but I’m liking this style of Bond more than any of the others.

For those stumbling upon this post looking for more on the Bolivian desert try these blogs, photos, and maps:

View Larger Map

Mobile phone GPS a security risk? Only to those who follow you

Steven Hodson, in a post over on Mashable, describes security risks and the waste of information that mobile phone GPS use brings (when pinpointing and announcing our locations). He poses some extremely valid points in regards to announcing one’s geolocation via Twitter, Brightkite, or FriendFeed being useless noise.

Telling people via a highly conversational medium such as instant messaging or an SMS text that you are currently at 13th St and Ash Lane is nothing more than noise. It’s a waste of precious conversation. To a few of your closer friends it may be relevant, such as a buddy that would meet you for coffee. But for the masses, it is unimportant and you’re guilty for wasting their time.

I’m guilty of this lately. I’ve been trying various mobile phone GPS services. It’s been fun and interesting, but I’m in agreement with Steven about this announcement being a waste (at least if it’s without background information). Steven doesn’t mention it, but my thought on optimal geolocation announcement is in a widget placed on one’s blog. It’s there for interested followers, but not intrusive or annoying.

But that’s where we agree. He describes broadcasting one’s geolocation as a security risk and I strongly disagree. Yes, there are some situations where it is. US soldiers in Iraq will not benefit from this feature. Folks in witness protection programs, runaways, victims of domestic violence, those being stalked, cheating spouses, and those in organized crime probably won’t either.

The typical citizen without conflict is not at risk. It’s easy to figure out when someone is normally at work, so knowing an optimal time to break in to someone’s home is already simple. It’s easy to find a person in a public place, so it’s already easy to find the optimal time to commit physical harm.

Note: If one is being stalked or believes him or herself to be in a situation where announcing location is dangerous, it’s simple to turn the feature off.

As I’ve said before, people are inherently good. They don’t go around looking for someone to damage or rob. There are some people who commit these crimes. These people use crow-bars instead of Facebook, and are stopped by alarm systems and deadbolts rather than a lack of geolocation data.