Daily Archive: November 9, 2012

Spirit and Opportunity

Posted by Lauren

Happy Friday!

Today was a really swell day. First, I packed. Nicole emailed me the sweetest packing list because she is awesome and organized and knows how last minute I get. Then, I went to work, and the first half of my day I hung out at a Cloud conference organized by (and for) employees. The breakfast bar drew me in…..


I selected a cup of yogurt with raspberries and granola, a blueberry scone, and some watermelon and cantaloupe and grapes…. and coffee, of course.


The morning sessions covered topics like innovation, protecting intellectual property, and the technology behind one of our new products. The afternoon breakout sessions I chose to attend focused on Big Data, machine learning, and an internal analytics engine I was unaware of. Cool stuff!

The main speaker was quite impressive! Steve Squyres, a Cornell University astronomy professor, acted as co-investigator of NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover (MER) space robotics mission. His hour long discussion right before lunch seemed like ten minutes! He was such a terrific storyteller – Squyres discussed the history, journey, challenges, and triumphs of two Mars rovers: Spirt and Opportunity (and briefly talked about the Curiosity rover, which landed on August 5th).


He joked about their team’s “sheer, dumb luck,” explained testing procedures, detailed engineering feats, and taught us how to replicate Martian soil: equal parts playground sand, clay, and diatomaceous earth (pool filters are made with it). There ya go.


Science is astounding.

Kyle gave me a ride to the airport (thank you!!) at 5:30 and I was lucky to find zero people in the security line. I <3 you SJ airport.


I finished up some spreadsheet work, the last of my quinoa and veggies, and snacked on Cheerios.


My flight departed and landed on time, so soon enough Nicole and I were reunited! And how did we spend our night? We went to the gym!


Week 6 – Thursday (my 12-week workout plan)

Scheduled: tempo run and ballet

Completed: I didn’t sign up for a ballet class tonight because I had an evening flight to LA. Nicole agreed to join me for a late gym visit so I could stick to my plan (thanks!). We went to her gym and I completed the tempo run:
– 8 minute warm up (7.4 mph, 8:06 pace)
– 16 minute tempo (8.4 mph, 7:09 pace)
– 8 minute cool down (7.4 mph, 8:06 pace)

Sweet Spot: I thought running 2+ miles at a 7:09 pace would be impossible, but I just concentrated on my stride and the fact that I’m training to be faster. That seemed to work? It was also ├╝ber helpful to listen to all of Nicole’s stories while running!

Sticky Spot: Nicole’s apartment’s gym is a sweat box!!! So effing hot. Sorry I doubted the bad workout conditions, sis.

Question: Are you a fan of the space program or do you think that $$ should be spent elsewhere?

My dream job growing up = astronaut.