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Gearing up to Rally for Sanity



Finally, after more than a decade of living near Washington DC, someone’s holding a rally with a message I can get behind. Sure, I’ve attended rallies in the past, but that was primarily for the experience. This time I actually care, and I’m prepping my gear to show it.

The rally in question is the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear being held by The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. I’ll be there to support the call for rational discourse, not just in politics and elections, but in our online tech community as well. Be it in loaded polls or inane accusations of fanboyism, we’re not above the craziness.

Regardless, I’ll be deploying to the rally packed with mobile computers. I had considered making a sign, but signs are static and a too low-tech for me. Instead, I’ll be rolling a series of messages on my TEGA v2 with my Fujitsu Lifebook T900 as backup. I think one of those messages will need to be “This is not an iPad.”

That will be in addition to photos, videos, and my usual mobile blogging from my iPhone. I have a suction cup attachment for my Gorillapod, so I’ll be able to mount my iPhone on my sling pack strap, as I did with my camera at CES 2010 (and have done in recent videos). Suction cup isn’t as good as a camera mount, but good enough (at least until I can get a Glif). There’s also an official app for the rally, which may come in handy.

We’re making it an all-day event to avoid traffic, so I’ll be packing my trusty USB battery pack with my blend of NiMh and PowerGenix NiZn batteries. May also be handy if someone else in our group runs out of juice; that’s one of the reasons I chose a USB backup power solution. No extra juice for my tablets and I’m leaving the power cords at home, but that’s shouldn’t be an issue.

Generally, not a lot of extras in my gadget bag for this outing. My wife may bring our old digital camera, but she’s generally content with photos on her iPhone 3G. The T900 is a bit redundant, but my sling pack doesn’t fit right without some heft. Plus, I may need to improvise a legible, handwritten message, aside from one that reads “Handwritten Sign”. I’ll also be rocking my SCOTTEVEST to have an easy place to pocket my TEGA, Gorillapod, and battery pack at the event (all stored in my pack during travel).

If you’re interested, I’ll be blogging via my personal outlets at Sumocat’s Scribbles, all of which goes to my Twitter. No plans on posting anything else to GBM about this, but if Colbert starts tossing Macbook Airs into the crowd, I’ll be sure to let you know.

BTW, if you’ve been watching The Daily Show this week, I assure you the bits with Jason Jones getting lost in DC are not exaggerated. If you’re driving in for the rally and your GPS tells you to take three lefts to stay on the same street, it’s not malfunctioning. The city streets are that messed up.



  1. Citoyen

    10/29/2010 at 6:43 pm

    Well come on you american people, you have one of USA best president ever while we French have our worst ever.

    I hope and pray that our people won’t do the same mistake in 2012 as you did in 2004 ie reelect the worst president ever.

    George W Bush lied to you his people to wage an illegal war in Iraq, this is high treason, his case should be examined by a fair trial (along with Cheney Rumsfeld you name them).

    today you have at least one of your greatest president, we do not envision someone of his quality for our country for decades I’am afraid.

    Of course you choose who you want but the problem is when you vote for terrible people like W.

    And a terrible thing is that some people voted for Bush for “prolife” reasons, I am afraid to say it is pityfull why ? 4000 US people died in Iraq in an illegal war and even more Iraqis, the figure of 100 000 death Iraqi people have been published so how can people that have voted people can still think they are pro life ?

    I am giving no ready made answers but just try to answer honestly to these real question

    • ChrisRS

      10/30/2010 at 6:08 pm

      This commen is not gemane to the topic. This is a technology site and the post is regarding tech use at entertainment/political satire event. It would be better to present your opinons in a more appropriate, politically oriented site.

      “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
      attributed to Voltaire,

  2. GTaylor

    10/29/2010 at 9:59 pm

    I wish you all the best Somocat and remember- “Question reality, but don’t give it a lot of crap.” (GET)

  3. GTaylor

    10/29/2010 at 9:59 pm

    I wish you all the best Somocat and remember- “Question reality, but don’t give it a lot of crap.” (GET)

  4. Tomas Antila

    10/29/2010 at 11:00 pm

    I think that’s really a good tagline that also fits into the theme of the rally. (this is not an ipad)

  5. Gerry Segal

    10/30/2010 at 1:47 am


    I went to the 1963 March on Washington. When I saw the last summers “Restoring Honor” gathering abusing the memory of Martin Luther King I wrote the song “Bus Ride To Washington” You can view it by following this address.

    I hope that John Stewart’s “Rally For Sanity” will live up to its name..

  6. Rob

    10/30/2010 at 12:18 pm

    why oh why do politics of any kindhave to enter into tech blogs? that’s what i like about the tech world: it is an oasis from the poison of the political world. but hey, who cares about readers like me think?

    • DNel

      10/30/2010 at 5:29 pm

      My thoughts exactly. It’s one thing to talk about the tech you bring to a political event. It’s another to bring politics into a tech biog.

  7. JOE Houde

    10/31/2010 at 6:57 pm

    How was it, Sumocat? I arrived late due to crowded metro, and couldn’t get online because AT&T was saturated. I had visions of uploading photos and tweeting/Facebook posts for my friends. Now all I have is a pile of pictures to put online.
    I didn’t even get close enough to hear the thing. I only have crowd shots of the fringes. But hte fringes were where its the most fun

    • Anonymous

      10/31/2010 at 11:07 pm

      Oh, you were with the guys chanting “louder”. I got there early enough to be in the middle with a clear view of a screen. I could see the stage but the only folks I could clearly see were the puppet and Kareem Abdul Jabar. Liveblogging was pretty much out of the question by 9 am. Would be easy to blame AT&T, but even Verizon users nearby were unable to get a signal. Put 200k connected users in one place and expect the networks to crash. Between that and my battery pack failing (or iPhone deciding it didn’t like it yesterday), not a great day for mobile tech, but I had fun. Also, I didn’t get much chance to walk around with my sign once the crowd moved in. Need a giant e-ink sign next time.

  8. Chrisphickie

    11/01/2010 at 7:58 pm

    I never thought the discourse on here wasn’t rational. Are you talking other boards, Sumocat?

    • Anonymous

      11/01/2010 at 8:55 pm

      In the community as a whole. Things are far better in our corner compared to other blogs and forums, but we’re still part of that larger online tech community and comments like being a “slave to Steve Jobs” or a “puppet of Microsoft” do reach us.

      More importantly, I read comments as well as blog posts throughout the community, and having to skip through flames or big chunks of “this comment has been removed” to get to good insights eats up time and detracts from our ability to bring back all the facts.

      Another example was that brouhaha over the Ctrl-Alt-Del button on the HP Slate. A lot of noise over something that’s been standard on Windows tablets for nearly a decade. Yeah, it turned out for the best once Josh Einstein definitively explained the button, but I don’t think all that noise was necessary to extract that one insight.

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