Amazing Grace

for friday fictioneers 100-word challenge 19 December 2014

Note: I want to thank Mr. MacIlroy for giving me the opportunity to write a half true and half fiction story about my favorite hero, Grace M. Hopper (1906-1992), computer pioneer and U.S. Navy Real Admiral. <blush> <blush> I have her picture in my cube for inspiration.

Douglas M. MacIlroy
Photo Credit: Douglas M. MacIlroy

It was the dawn of the information age. Inside the research lab, Grace was stumped. The developmental machine she was working on wouldn’t power on.

It couldn’t have come at a worse time. She’d be making a presentation soon to prove to her bosses it was more than a glamorized calculator to continue funding for it.

Grace reviewed the specs and updates she had made to her code and found nothing wrong. Suddenly, in a bit of hindsight, she looked inside the machine and found the problem. It was a short circuit caused by a bug trapped on the relays.

Grace M. Hopper
Grace M. Hopper (Photo Source:

Grace Hopper Quotes:

A ship in port is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for.

It is often easier to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission.

The most dangerous phrase in the language is, “We’ve always done it this way.”

Humans are allergic to change. They love to say, “We’ve always done it this way.” I try to fight that. That’s why I have a clock on my wall that runs counter-clockwise.

You don’t manage people, you manage things. You lead people.

Leadership is a two-way street, loyalty up and loyalty down. Respect for one’s superiors; care for one’s crew.

One accurate measurement is worth a thousand expert opinions.

Some day, on the corporate balance sheet, there will be an entry which reads, “Information”; for in most cases, the information is more valuable than the hardware which processes it.

We’re flooding people with information. We need to feed it through a processor. A human must turn information into intelligence or knowledge. We’ve tended to forget that no computer will ever ask a new question.

December 17, 2014 at 8:10 pm 10 comments

wordless wednesday: lost in translation

Horní Bašta

location: prague, czech republic

December 16, 2014 at 11:36 am 10 comments

weekly photo challenge: twinkle

disneyland, usa

location: anaheim, california
every kid dreams of going to disneyland. and when they do get to go, the event is captured in pictures and videos for a lifetime of happy memories.

as far as i’m concerned, you can call me a late bloomer. it’s a place i’d never been until i was an adult. but it didn’t matter anyway. i felt the magic. it made me feel like a kid again.

click any picture to enlarge
my favorite event on that first visit was the electrical light parade held along main street featuring floats and live performers covered in thousands of electronically controlled lights. after hours of walking around the park on a hot summer day and standing in line at the rides, it was a welcomed treat. it provided a moment to unwind, relax, and gather one’s bearings before calling it a night.

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December 14, 2014 at 8:29 pm 10 comments

The Ball

for friday fictioneers 100-word challenge 12 December 2014

Sandra Cook
Photo Credit: Sandra Cook

Six-year old Jeremy was holding on to his ball as he and his mom and her newly found boyfriend were crossing the narrow bridge away from the homeless encampment the authorities had ordered them to evacuate.

“Mom!” he cried after he accidentally dropped it falling down the dead creek below.

The ball was his favorite toy. It was the only thing that he had left of his dad who died of drug overdose a year ago.

He wanted to retrieve the ball but his mom wouldn’t let go of her grip.

“Come on, son,” she said. “We’ve got to go.”

December 10, 2014 at 3:13 pm 19 comments

wordless wednesday: hooters abroad

interlaken, switzerland

location: interlaken, switzerland

December 9, 2014 at 8:56 am 2 comments

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