Brother's Death (2019)

Ray was notified on Sunday 7 April that his brother had unexpectedly passed away on Saturday 6 April.

Apparently he was out bicycle riding and suffered a heart attack and collapsed. A passer-by found the body and Ray's brother was pronounced dead at the hospital.

This was a tremendous shock since Ray's brother had always got a lot of exercise and just in the last 5-8 years had taken up cycling and loved it.

Read full obituary here.

More about Ray's brother can be read here.

 
Crime Prediction

Crime prediction is a difficult task frought with issues of racism, "garbage in, garbage out", and the limitations of a model one uses to predict the crime levels.

In this effort, city of Long Beach crime statistics were used to train a model from the past twelve months of data and then predict the future six months of crime levels. The model was a system of second order oscillatory equations that could capture the ups and downs of crime. The model was matched to the previous twelve months of data to capture seasonal variations of crimeas well as the geographic impacts on crime.

A more detailed description of this effort can be read here.

 
2019 Climathon

Ray attended the CSULB Climathon for the second year in a row. Recall that Ray's team won the event last year and went on to try and get venture capital funding.

This year's Climathon was related to food insecurity. Ray had ideas and his makeshift team worked on it for a while until they abandoned the project near 10 pm. Ray continued on and presentd at 10am on Saturday morning and was rewarded with a $200 prize.

Follow-up comments suggested that Ray's ideas had some prospects and heis now in contact with various non-profit agencies to reduce food waste and hunger.

 
Where Now?

Where is Ray off to now?. Nowhere.

Ray went to Los Angeles International airport to start his trip to the MotoGP/2/3 races in Buri Ram, Thailand and then continue on for a first visit to the Philippines. Unfortunately Ray was not allowed to board the airplane because his passport did not have enough blank pages. The airline emailed photos of available space that Ray had in his passport to Thai immigration. But they denied the request (though Thai visa stamps could easily fit in the space available).

Ray turned around and went home feeling sad, depressed, and disappointed at the loss of attending another MotoGP race.

Perhaps this a sign of some sort.

 
Dresden

Ray also attended the MotoGP/2/3 races at the Sachsenring outside of Dresden, Germany. Ray spent a few days wandering around Dresden before the races and admiring all of the beautiful old architecture.

It seemed that Dresden was more relaxed than Amsterdam. Though not warm and friendly, at least people were more cordial. And it seems the population was more diverse in Dresden.

 
Cathedral of Speed

Ray recently attended the MotoGP/2/3 races at The Cathderal of Speed in Assen, Netherlands. It was during a heat wave in Europe and it was everything that one could do to stay cool and not sunburn while spectating the races.

Ray also went walking around Amsterdam and visiting museums. It was a fun trip but it reminded me of how many people smoke in the European countries.

 
Recent Pitch

Ray pitched along with his teammates for the development of a carbon footprint app to help reduce climate change.

The pitch was part of CSULB's Business Innovation Incubator.

This effort came out of the 2018 Climathon back in October. Since the Climathon, Ray's team has put together the pitch, the business plan, and the financial projections for the Innovation competition.

We'll know at the end of March whether we have advanced to the finals of the competition.


 
Smart Cities Hackathon

Ray participated in the Smart Cities & Future of Work Hackathon at CSULB from 8 February through 10 February.

The hackathon dealt with civic engagement, smart transportation, community safety, and the future of work.

The event was sponsored by California State University Long Beach and the Long Beach office of Innovation.

More can be read about the event here.

Unfortunately after duplicating the mta.net transportation process, we got stuck as to delivering mental health services and alerting social workers and law enforcement about mental health issues on the transportaton corridors.

Thus we regretfully abandonded the project and tried to have "take away" lessons for future hackathons.

Overall it was a great experience as I met up with teammates from last year's Climathon as well as some of Ruby's other friends. And met a man from FEMA and we hit it off with great professional discussions and will try to stay in contact.

 
Crime Aggregation

Sometimes you need a Red Bull to get you going in the morning.

Here I am aggregating and mapping crime statistics as shown in the next panel over. I'm using Python and some other tools to process the data and generate the interactive map.

The crime mapping process can be viewed here.

 
Crime Mapping

Along with demographic studies, Ray has been looking at the crime reports and crime mapping effort for the city of Long Beach.

Utilizing open source data, Ray put together a nice crime map which allows users to determine the police reporting district that they reside in and to view the past five years of crime incidents in their districts (as well as all other districts).

The crime mapping process can be viewed here.

There are plans to enhance the capability that Ray is working on now.

 
Carbon Footprint App

Ray participated with a number of CSULB students and other interested parties in the 2018 ClimaThon.

Ray's team won the Climathon competition based upon an application that allows individuals to evaluate and improve their personal carbon footprints.

The app gives an immediate view of a user's carbon usage and also has a rules-based artificial engine to suggest ways to lower a user's carbon footprint.

The CSULB Office of Innovation has picked up the app and we are in the process of making a business case for the app (loosely based upon the popularity of the FitBit hardware and apps).

Stay tuned for progress on the abilitity of individuals to reduce their carbon footprints and improve the earth's climate change outlook.

 
Checking Charities

Ray tends to look up charities and helping organizations when he travels.

Ray took the opportunity to visit the Destiny Cafe which is a part of Destiny Rescue, an organization fighting to stop child trafficking and sexual exploitation. Ray was not allowed to visit the main facility, of course, due to the need for anonymity in helping these victims.

Ray also visited the Good Shepherd Youth Center 40 kilometers outside of Chiang Rai, Thailand. This organization takes abused and trafficked women and provides them support and job opportunities to recover from their abuse (or trafficking). GSYC also supplies fair trade products for sale from the Fair Trade Long Beach organization.

 
F1 in Abu Dhabi

Ray followed his long time passion and attended the 2018 Formula One race in Abu Dhabi. It was the season ending race though all titles and championships had already been determined. The live experience reawakened in Ray the reasons for his addiction to F1 over many years: the sights, the sounds, the smells, the glowing red carbon fibre brake disks, and the insanely short braking distances.

 
Climathon Win!

Ray's team has just won the 2018 CSULB Climathon Hackathon. Ray proposed a personal carbon footprint app like a FitBit but for carbon footprint (rather than exercise). The diverse team took off and ran with it and the CSULB judges awarded us the first prize at the conclusion of the 24 hour hackathon. The event was a simultaneous global event occurring in more than 100 cities across the world.


 
Gerrymandering

Ray participated in a gerrymandering project that took place in San Francisco, California in the middle of March. The event brought together mathematicians and policy makers to study the application of geometry and computing to redistricting efforts in the United States.

 
Civic Summit

Ray recently attended the Long Beach Civic Innovation Summit meeting. There was a keynote speaker from Virgin Galactic as well as a diverse panel discussion on innovation trends and needs in Long Beach. Ray made some new contacts to try and work with.
Here Ray is shown with the mayor of Long Beach, Dr. Robert Garcia.

 
 
 
Technical

Dr. Raymund Manning was trained as an aerospace engineer and makes his living building environmental monitoring satellites for NASA and other governmental agencies. Ray worked on the EOS Aqua and Aura satellites that monitor the earth's environment and detect short and long term climatological changes in the earth's environment. These satellites support long-term global observations of the land surface, biosphere, solid Earth, atmosphere, and oceans. EOS Aqua collects information about Earth's water cycle, including evaporation from the oceans, water vapor in the atmosphere, clouds, precipitation, soil moisture, sea ice, land ice, and snow cover on the land and ice. Additional variables also being measured by Aqua include radiative energy fluxes, aerosols, vegetation cover on the land, phytoplankton and dissolved organic matter in the oceans, and air, land, and water temperatures.

Calling

Ray is working on applying technology tools to help the victims of domestic violence and human trafficking rebuild their lives. He works with Social Services Technology Solutions, a 501(c) corporation in the state of California, to use technology for the geographically-desireable distribution of resources to those in need. Ray has implemented a number of search/match algorithms that significantly improve the ability of domestic violence victims, victims of human trafficking, and childrens adoptions workers to locate resources and rebuild lives.
 
In 2008 Ray traveled with friends from Engineers Without Borders to build a preschool for orphans and refugees on the border of Thailand and Myanmar (formerly known as Burma). Ray considers it a life-changing experience and has since helped out Habit for Humanity in the local area and is trying to get a vocational training center built for Wat Opot outside of Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Wat Opot is a refuge for throw-away children affected by AIDS/HIV - whether they are HIV positive or have been given up because their HIV positive parents cannot care for themselves or their children anymore.

 
Fun

Ray maintains an interest in artificial life, evolutionary systems, emergence, and systems that behave at the liquid edge of chaos. The author of various genetic algorithms, self-training neural networks, evolving cellular automata and artificial societies, Dr. Manning is currently trying to bridge the gap between his "dry" artificial life and true, "wet" artificial life.
 
Ray loves to ride bicycles of any sort, anywhere. On some of his frequent trips he will rent a bicycle and ride to see sites and meet new people.
 
Ray also has an addiction to Formula One racing and MotoGP/Moto2/Moto3 motorcycle roadracing. He has watched races at Laguna Seca in California, in The Czech Republic, and in Malaysia.

 
About

Ray is almost always on a bicycle. It doesn't matter what bicycle or what country, Ray is going to try and ride.

There is no end of the diversity of life and culture and people that you can see when you are on a bicycle and riding out in the middle of nowhere - places where foreigners have never been seen before.

It's always the kids who want to say "Hello" and smile at the strange foreigner on the bicycle. And that gives one a glimpse into the local life.

 
Older News and Events

10/29/2018

Ray's team has just won the 2018 CSULB Climathon Hackathon. Ray proposed a personal carbon footprint app like a FitBit but for carbon footprint (rather than exercise). The diverse team took off and ran with it and the CSULB judges awarded us the first prize atthe conclusion of the 24 hour hackathon. The event was a simultaneous global event occurring in more than 100 cities across the world.

02/17/2018

Ray was just notified that he will be sponsored to participate in a gerrymandering project to take place on San Francisco, California in the middle of March. The event brings together mathematicians to study the application of geometry and computing to redistricting efforts in the United States.

11/14/2017

Ray recently attended the Long Beach Civic Innovation Summit meeting. There was a keynote speaker from Virgin Galactic as well as a diverse panel discussion on innovation trends and needs in Long Beach. Ray made some new contacts to try and work with.

 
Really Old News and Events

9/14/2017

Ray is participating in the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Women in Tech hackathon in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday. Why participate in a Women in Tech hackathon? Because I was asked to participate and spread the word about the fun jobs that can be had in tech and possibly to get involved in some coding also.

3/16/2017

Ray particpated in the Google/Manos hackathon for foster care. We spent Friday from 9 am until Saturday at 3 pm continuously coding away at finding resources for children/youth in foster care. (I did manage a 90 minute nap sometime near 4 am on Saturday morning. The final presentation and video was well received and we turned a few heads with what we managed to accomplish over the 40 odd hours.

11/21/2016

Ray participated in a largely-attended community forum on the homeless issue at the Bay Shore Congregational Church in Long Beach. Ray had fruitfull discussions with the Long Beach Police Department, the Long Beach Outreach Officers, the Long Beach Fire Department and other organizations that are trying to provide a better life for homeless individuals and families. Ray's solutions were well received and there will be pilot programs and ongoing discussions beginning soon.

11/21/2016

Ray recently finished a short term assignment at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory near Pasadena. He was called in to duplicate a vibration test of the cryocooler that will go on the James Webb Space Telescope. Ray had performed this test in a previous life and was called in by JPL for continuity of testing on the second unit. It was a good diversion for Ray and a chance to see his friends up at JPL.

10/29/2016

Ray has been quietly working away on various non-profits websites and processes as well as this website. Ray finally updated the sports statistics pages to update automatically and display user-selected sets of team statistics. Both the National Hockey League page and the national Football League page update daily to provide the latest mid-season statistics.

10/06/2016

In addition to attending the Long Beach Innovation Team civic summit at the Long Beach Convention center, Ray received word that he has been asked to sit on the California State University at Los Angeles Industrial Advisory Board. This board maps out the direction that the college of engineering will take in generating curriculum and other activities for students. The goal is to make sure that students are prepared to enter industry upon graduation and hit the ground running in their new careers.

08/10/2016

Ray recently passed birthday number 59. According to his tradition, Ray rode 59 miles on the road bicycle to celebrate his 59th birthday. Ray has also been regularly participating in Habitat for Humanity builds as well as working on web programming and outreach for non-profits to provide shelter/resources to victims of human trafficking, domestic violence, and homelessness. Ray attended a silent art auction in Long Beach to benefit the End Child Prostituion in Asian Tourism (ecpat.org) intern program in Thailand. Ray is hoping to meet up with the ECPAT people on a future trip.

06/25/2016

Ray has had a busy few weeks. He participated in collaborations to help the homeless in Long Beach, to implement new child abuse prevention/tracking tools in hospitals, and to release data to the public via Long Beach's Innovation Team (iTeam). He continues to develop new technology tools and processes for web and mobile devices to help those in need. Along the way there was also a Habitat for Humanity build day, though Ray is a bit disappointed that he is almost one month into his retirement and has only participated in one Habitat for Humanity build thus far. (And has not even used the new safety boots that he bought with an Amazon gift card from co-workers.)

05/31/2016

Ray is retiring from his aerospace job on 31 May 2016. Ray feels that the time has come to work hard at other issues, such as helping victims of human trafficking and domestic violence and mis-placed adoptions, as well as spending more time on bicycles and more time traveling the world. Ray already has a number of activites lined up with the Long Beach Human Rights Commission, The Long Beach Human Trafficking Task Force, and Habitat for Humanity. And Ray is looking forward to a trip to Ecuador sometime late in the summer.

04/16/2016

Ray will be attending the Basic Income Create-A-Thon being held in the Wilshire district of Los Angeles sponsored by GOOD magazine. Writers, artists, developers, researchers, and geeks will come together to create projects around the theme of a Universal Basic Income in the United States. The idea is to help those lower down the economic ladder to create opportunity and better income equity in the United States.

04/06/2016

Ray attended the Long Beach Human Trafficking Task Force meeting. In subcommittee, Ray provided an outline of the Social Services Technology Solutions (SSTS) technology that can benefit the victims of human trafficking and domestic violence. Ray pointed out that a number of organizations had tried to make the technology work before, but the SSTS discriminator is the real-time bed/facility availability feature. Many people instantly saw the impact this could have and will be in negotiations soon.

03/03/2016

The Long Beach Human Trafficking Task Force was the sight of another meeting that Ray attended to pitch the use of technology to help those in need.

02/23/2016

Ray recently pitched at Work Evolution Labs (aka WE Labs) for web and mobile based technology to address the homeless issue. The technology provides geolocated, realtime shelter and resource availability.

01/22/2016

Ray just returned from a five week trip to Thailand, Myanmar, and Cambodia. It was a fun trip of bicycle riding, meeting up with friends, and seeing sights.