Letters to the Power Plant #2 – Everything is Fast in Texas

Power Plant Men

9/7/2001 – Everything is fast in Texas – Dell Update

Hello everyone at Sooner Plant,

I miss you guys, when I find time to stop for a moment to get a drink of water, (from my sponge that I use to wipe the sweat from my brow).  I am finally receiving my computers and stuff for my cubicle.  I have been using a borrowed laptop from my manager up to now.  I have two computers with two keyboards and monitors.  I use both of them at the same time.  — They are made by Dell by the way.  — Since Compaq went out of business –  🙂  .   With two computers I am able to program in two computer languages at the same time.  On one computer I may be programming using C++ while on the other computer I am using JAVA, or composing an ASP page for the intranet. …

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The Expo Line Opening and the Way Forward


This is the crowd of people on the platform coming off the first passenger train into Santa Monica in 63 years on May 20th. Photo by Noel T. Braymer

Today is the day. While many were happy about the Gold Line Foothill Extension opening earlier this year, I think the level of excitement about today’s opening of the Expo Line extension to Santa Monica is several magnitudes greater. As Kathy Seal eloquently detailed in her recent post, this project was made possible by authentic grassroots activism, exemplifying the famous quote by anthropologist Margaret Mead: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

And I notice the one thing no one seems overly concerned about is ridership. From day one the new Expo rail extension will be used. In fact the chief concerns are crowded trains…

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Expo Extension To Santa Monica, Better Late Than Never. With Photos


By Noel T. Braymer

I’ve only been waiting for about 35 years to see Light Rail service come back to Santa Monica. Back in 1981 when the San Diego Trolley opened, I and a handful of others thought much the same could be done in Los Angeles County where I lived back then. San Diego was able for $87.5 million dollars to build in about 6 years 16 miles of Light Rail service. It was a bare bones service with single tracking limiting it to 3 trains an hour. But it was a success. Central to its low price and quick construction was the use of existing railroad rights of way. Los Angeles County had plenty of railroads, several from the old Pacific Electric in 1981 that could be used for rail transit. There was hope in 1981 that Light Rail service could be built in time for the 1984…

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