This is Vince Needham's personal page.
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Recent Biking

We're deep into Summer, with the big Cottonwood and BAK rides behind us. The Linear Trail is reopening, though, so there are more route options here at home. If you're curious, all my fitness adventures are logged at Garmin Connect. The Cottonwood 200 was held over the Memorial Day weekend and Biking Across Kansas in early June. The weather was reasonably kind, the road miles long and the hills long and tall.

My photo gallery for Bike Across Kansas 2024 is now up, though I still need to write more captions. I should have a gallery up for the Cottonwood 200 soon, too.

My rides are recorded, of course, in excessive, modern, technical detail. See my Ride With GPS, Garmin Connect or Strava pages for more number-crunching from slightly different points-of-view.

Recent Running

Being a glutton for punishment, I occasionally run, too. Not very well, but I do run. My Zwift indoor run training seems to be paying off in more consistent outdoor running (when I get around to actually doing it). Hot on the heels of the Tour de Zwift comes the Zwift Duathlon League, guaranteeing me suffering on both the bike and the treadmill.

Like my rides, I record my runs in excessive, modern, technical detail (even when they're not already virtual). See Garmin Connect or Strava again.

Cricket Still Jacobs Tubbs


The Needham genealogy and most of the maternal lines associated with it can now be traced back to the immigrant ancestor, if not further. For this line of Needhams, the American progenitor is John Needham, who emigrated to Massachusetts around 1660.

The Simmons family tree traces back to Benjamin Wilkes Simmons, born around 1780. He appears to have been born in Virginia, but the family migrated to Kentucky in about 1815. I suspect, but cannot yet prove, that the family originally was part of the Catholic migration to Maryland.

I promise that I really am working on a comprehensive update to the genealogy site. I've designed a new look for the web pages, and I'm rewriting the program that automatically creates those pages. That's more tedious than complicated. Your patience will be soon rewarded.

Other Stuff, Rants & Raves

  • "We’ll check inertial dampers / And see if they’re hampered"
    - ST:SNW "Subspace Rhapsody"
  • Noir comme le diable
    Chaud comme l’enfer
    Pur comme un ange,
    Doux comme l’amour
  • "I am very poorly today and very stupid and hate everybody and everything."
    - Charles Darwin, in an 1861 letter
  • “It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.”
    - Sherlock Holmes, "A Scandal in Bohemia", Arthur Conan Doyle, 1891

What I'm Reading

"The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." - Jane Austen, "Northanger Abbey"

  • Babel, R. F. Kuang, 2022
  • Cryoburn, Lois McMAster Bujold, 2010
  • The Wright Brothers, David McCullough 2015
  • Quantum Computation & Quantum Information, Nielsen & Chuang, 2016


Memorable Passage

"Ivan started the coffee, sat at his secured comconsole, grimaced, and fired it up to find out what all had arrived in the admiral’s inbox since last shift.

Ivan had developed a personal metaphor for this first task (after the coffee) of the day. It was like opening one’s door to find that an overnight delivery service had left a large pile of boxes on one’s porch, all marked “miscellaneous.” In reality, they were all marked “Urgent!” but if everything was urgent, in Ivan’s view they might as well all be labeled miscellaneous.

Each box contained one of the following: live, venomous, agitated snakes on the verge of escape; quiescent venomous snakes; non-venomous garden snakes; dead snakes; or things that looked like snakes but weren’t, such as large, sluggish worms. It was Ivan’s morning duty to open each box, identify the species, vigor, mood, and fang-count of the writhing things inside, and sort them by genuine urgency."

Captain Vorpatril's Alliance
Lois McMaster Bujold
November 2012

Last updated on Tuesday, 02-Jul-2024