Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thoughts on Greenbuild 2012 and San Francisco

Welcome to my post Greenbuild 2012 blog entry!  Scroll on down for the typecast...

This is probably the most touristy thing I took a photo of other than looking back on the Ferry Building from an adjacent pier.
This hybrid Fisker Karma is about 3,000 times cooler than my hybrid Prius.  Maybe I should buy a lottery ticket.

This is USGBC Founder and CEO Rick Fedrizzi delivering a message to the anti-LEED lobby during the Opening Plenary session.  I work for a construction product company, but I also help write and maintain LEED.  Politics is a complicated beast.

Fast forward from Tuesday to Friday for the Closing Plenary.  That statistic on the screen is accurate: the entire number of volunteer hours that have gone into building and curating Wikipedia are equal to three weeks of Angry Birds play.  This statistic makes me a bit more prone to be focused on life and learning.
The Closing Plenary was a bit more dynamic than last year's, but they all tend to seem long after several days and nights of sessions and receptions.  The speaker, Jane McGonigal, is a TED favorite.  She presented a variation of her TED talk on harnessing the problem solving and creativity of gamers to crowd source solutions to difficult problems.

The next speaker is a prominent architect and proponent of regenerative design, William McDonough. Among others, his most widely known project is the redesign of the Ford Rouge Truck Plant.  From the perspective of moving towards a Net Zero future, he raised the fundamental question of "What's Next?"

William McDonough has very strong opinions on materials in design.  His consulting group has worked with a number of Fortune 500 companies.  His TED talk tracks many of the concepts brought forth at Greenbuild.

This cursive typeface is unique to Royal portables from the 1960s.  Mine is a grey on grey Futura 800/

And the last Greenbuild related photo below is the view from the Google Green Team lair.  The food was fabulous as well.

Here are a few scenes from around San Francisco.  For anyone who is curious, all shots were taken with a Sony NEX-3 with the kit lens or 16mm f2.8 pancake lens.  Many of the street photos were taken by pointing the camera in the right direction without looking at the view screen.  The auto-focus is quick enough to shoot from the hip and capture casual scenes.

Public skating rink at Union Square.  The sight of palm trees and a giant Christmas tree together was only a little disconcerting.

The homeless fleet massing across from the Ferry Building.  In my limited experience, I found the panhandlers to be far less aggressive here than in Atlanta, Chicago or Washington, D.C.

Public protest is a way of life in San Francisco.  This is across from the cordoned off entrance to the Federal Reserve building.

Again, public protest is a common event.  However, this guy was angry, loud and semi-intelligible.  Even the locals were giving him wide berth.

This much vacant sidewalk at midday is a rarity.
At the very end of Greenbuild week, I found myself with no meetings or working meals.  I hopped the bus to find the Super7 Store.  The fact that it is located in Haight-Ashbury was a happy coincidence.  The food was great and cheap.  The stores were great for browsing and I was able to bring home some Super7 merch straight from the source!

Yeah, it was sunny all week while I was in the convention center (sigh).  This gives a little bit of the flavor of the area.

One of the cool specialty stores.  Well, cool if you enjoy irony.  They even had an Underwood 3-bank portable for sale!

But the main reason I took the bus to Haight-Asbury is the one and only Super 7 Store!  Imagine, a store full of giant robot, Star Wars, giant monster and urban vinyl paraphernalia.  Nerd heaven!

Unexpected bonus:  the first Kid Robot store was just up the street!

And with one last awesome storefront, we shall bid the fair city of San Francisco adieu.

 Hmmm...let us see if I can think of something creatively snarky to say about my Copyright to the text and images contained herein this little blog of mine.  Well, I own it all!  Bwa, ha, ha.  Yes, so greedy of me in this open-source world; but that is just the way it is.  Images may be used for non-commercial purposes with attribution pointing back to this blog or to my Picasa collection.  They may not be utilized for commercial purposes without express permission from the owner - that being Dwayne F.  I know:  that which can be published digitally can be hacked.  Go ahead.  Just see what happens.  I happen to have a fleet of giant robots and monsters at my command.  Remember what happened to poor San Francisco in my last post.  I repeat:  bwa, ha, ha.


  1. Nice post.

    Looks like you had a very enjoyable trip. Makes me want to visit San Francisco sometime.

  2. "We Are Right." ::shudder:: Bold Font CAPS no less.

    Much enjoyed your Twitter updates - and this one is neat to read summing it all up. San Francisco is one of my all time favorite cities - was good to see the pics. (And I never knew about Super 7! A goal for next time I get out there!)

    p.s. The wee rhino is settling in nicely, thank you very much. ;-)

  3. This looks exciting and it looks like a very Bay Area event. (I grew up in Oakland before Silicon Valley changed the culture and sent home prices up the wazoo, but I go back frequently.)

    Nice typecast, that is a beautiful script typeface.

  4. San Francisco is indeed very noisy. So are the suburbs, really -- but then again, EVERYWHERE is noisy compared to where I live in The Woods.

    When I have gigs in the Bay Area, I often stay with my friend Rae Ann in Lafayette, in the East Bay. It is upper middle-class suburbia. The sound of leaf-blowers wakes me early every morning. The sound of cars whizzing by. Neighbors screaming out "Good morning!" to each other. Joggers talking loudly to each other as they amble past. The sound of utility trucks beeping their insistent "I'm backing up!" litany.

    The entire Bay area is very INTENSE. Lots of good qualities, but too many people packed closely together for my tastes. Then again, I'm unusual!

  5. It looks like you had an amazing time in San Francisco. I love your writing style, it is both informative yet entertaining. I always get a few good laughs from what I read of yours.

    And I agree with Richard P, that really is some beautiful script typeface.


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