2012 October 17
Now, on with the continuing adventures of the California Trip. I’m kind of rushed this evening (it’s the last Friday of 2012… and the world didn’t end…) so I’m only covering 2 days.
Mountain View – Mikael Lubansky, PhD
O.k., let’s set the scene a little. It’s about 9pm on Wednesday night in Mountain View. Every bar and restaurant is packed with the young, (wealthy) and trendy folks of this Silicon Valley bedroom community. We’re two miles from NASA Ames Research Center, eight miles from Stanford University and nine miles from the epicenter of Venture Capital – Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park. Get the picture? It’s kind of busy, but busy with a certain kind of technoratti / digital elite / hacker / slacker / retired-young-and-looking-for-a-way-to-stop-being-bored.
In other words, this is not really my typical hang-out.
I’m here to meet a friend of a friend; and I know very little about him. I am unprepared.
He’s a former Soviet Union guy. And at times I can’t tell whether he’s a scientist, military, or secret police… or perhaps all three blur together in this man. I’m not kidding.
He’s fascinating. His bursts of anger and distain for all sorts of political systems is both endearing and a little unnerving. He did not fare well when the USSR collapsed – and he’s very bitter.
We are meeting because my friend tells me that he’s got a nanotechnology for batteries and super-capacitors. He describes it in very very broad terms, so that I cannot possibly copy it (but this also means that I cannot verify whether he is a crackpot or a genius). He claims that with his super-capacitor he could ‘fill-up’ in San Fanscico, drive to New York, and ‘run out of juice’ on the return trip… ‘somewhere around Kansas.’
What I’m left with is this – IF we could get a hazardous materials handling license, and develop a small laboratory for about $20k (he says he has most of the equipment in his garage already), then he guarantees me that he can develop the system…
He pays for dinner / drinks and I leave less enlightened than I was when I showed up… But it was an entertaining meeting.
I’m convinced that he is convinced that he has something real… but that’s not the same thing as me saying that I am convinced he has something real… I’m unconvinced. Needless to say, he did not pry the money from me. But I don’t want to dismiss him. My gut says that there is something here. I’m gonna dig a little more. I might pursue this once I have a little space cash. Right now, while I’m spending the money you have entrusted to me, there is no way I’ll part with that much cash on a hunch. No way.
2012 October 18 Mountain View – Hacker Dojo – Arman Papazian, PhD
I had a very fun event at Hacker Dojo. Hacker Dojo was one of the very early ‘maker spaces’ that have been popping up all over the place. Some of my friends are founding members. It’s a terrific environment for creativity and building. I was impressed.
The event that we held had almost a dozen people – about half were friends and the other half were fans of the project.
It was great because I had never met my friends in person. We’d talked on the phone and worked together on various space projects, one of them is on my Board of Advisors, but we had never met in person… That was great. Arman recently gave a very interesting talk in the Space Show, and years ago he helped create the stock exchange in Dubai (later bought by the NASDAQ).
As for the fans, I’m grateful that they came. It’s especially fun meeting some of the folks that backed this campaign.
We broke the evening up into parts. The first half we held ‘online’. We are testing a technology called StartMeeting that we are considering using for our Group Chats. (I am as-yet-unconvinced that this is the right tool for the job… but don’t yet have a better solution.) So we had another dozen on the ‘net and I gave a short presentation and answered questions.
Honestly, it wasn’t my best performance because I was torn between trying to connect with my face-to-face audience, and with my online community. I personally don’t think I did either very well. That said, folks seemed to like it.
Once the online version was over, it was time to relax and that gave me a chance to get to know the folks in a more personal and direct way. And we had beer… That was much better.
Take care, Mjl Michael Laine President, LiftPort Group
Good News – California Trip
As promised, I’ve got a lot of good news to share with you folks. But first a quick fulfillment update:
T-Shirts for Christmas / New Year’s
The first batch of about 40 shirts were delivered in time for Christmas. Consider the timing involved these shirts were only shipped in the US, but I got confirmation from several people that they were received in time and that people liked them. I’ve very pleased we were able to accommodate you folks! (I’m wearing mine right now as I type this.)
I’ll ship the second batch tomorrow, and I think they will (mostly) arrive before New Year’s. It will be about 30 in the US and another 35 internationally. Naturally, if they are shipping beyond the US border, it’s going to take longer.
2012 October 15
So now I’ll begin to detail the grand tour that I went on. Before I start I want to thank all of you. It was a very very fun trip. No, I didn’t go on a world tour on your money for the fun of it. While it was a lot of fun, the reason and goal and the results of this trip were all focused around getting the Elevator built! I think you’ll be very pleased with what I accomplished.
Olympia – Bryan Laubscher, PhD.
The ‘California’ segment of the trip was by car. I live in Seattle and driving to San Francisco area doesn’t take all that much time, about a day. And we needed the car, because we had stops along the way and if we flew, then we’d just end up renting a car anyway, so this made more sense – economically.
First off, we start early in the morning because we’ve got stops to make along the way. So we leave the Seattle region about 630 so that we can be in Olympia by 8am and meet with Dr. Bryan Laubscher. Bryan is the ONLY person on the project that outdates me! I was the second ‘employee’ after Dr Edwards, but Bryan was a good friend of Edwards, and so he had been involved as a sounding-board before I came on as staff. Since Edwards has left the project (several years ago now) that makes Laubscher and I (depending on how you count it) the most senior of all Elevator people.
I like Bryan. But I didn’t always. He and I have had many many a disagreement and argument about how to proceed with the program. He has problems with how I run things. He is a physicist – looking for order in the universe, and I’m an entrepreneur – which means I’m always trying to profit from chaotic/imbalanced market forces. We are fundamentally different kinds of people; and for a long time these differences kept us from respecting the other person’s contributions. Over time that evolved. It’s a lot better now.
So I was looking forward to breakfast with him. It was great. We met at a roadside Denny’s (cheap and convenient to the freeway) and had a nice talk. Bryan is working on a Nanotech development that he thinks could solve a significant problem with the tangling problem of carbon nanotubes. He’s filed some patents, but they have not been approved yet; so I’m not going to say anything further on this. We talked about Kickstarter and building communities and how to get the KS folks more deeply involved with the overall effort.
Portland – Charles Radley, MSc.
We get a little further and it’s time to catch lunch with Charles Radley. Now Charles is an interesting guy. (Let’s face it, anyone that is seriously involved with building an Elevator in Space probably has an interesting back-story.) Some people don’t like Charles because he’s got a hot temper. I like him because of that trait – it shows passion and conviction.
Charles has a long-ago background in satellite communications, and is a pretty serious data and software tester. Charles and I crossed paths the first time about 6 years ago at a Science Fiction Convention here in Seattle. We quickly became friends (despite the occasional loud disagreement!) and even considered starting a business together. Ultimately that business never got started, but we were pretty serious about buying Jamesburg Station (more on that in a moment) about 5 years ago.
Charles and I had to hash out some details regarding the “1000 Questions Database”. Briefly the “1kQ” is one of the organizing tools we need in order to build the Elevator. It’s based off the concept that “we don’t even know all the questions, yet, let alone have all the answers…” So we need a tracking tool that can identify the questions, and then systematically allow people to ‘join’ a question, form a team, conduct literature reviews and experimental research and eventually develop conclusive ‘answers’ (with the appropriate trade studies) so that we can get this thing built. And once we did, it was time to get back on the road.
Salem – David Appell, PhD.
We were supposed to stop in Salem to meet with Dr. David Appell, but he was sick and asked us to postpone until our return. So we did… (but we didn’t get to meet him on our way home either, as it was 330am when we driving through his area almost 13 days later. So far, of a 17+ hour trip from Port Orchard Washington to Carmel Valley California, we’ve only been on the road for about 3 hour, and we’ve spend more time in coffee shops and cafes than actual road-time. We’ve got to turn up the speed.
2012 October 16Carmel – Jamesburg Station (A fascinating article on it.)
Our destination for the first morning is the old Lunar communications relay system known as Jamesburg Station. Why? Because it’s for sale and I want to buy it. I realize when I’m going down there that I can’t buy it. The KS money is not nearly enough. But for what it is, it’s cheap. So what is Jamesburg? Ignore for a moment that this was the dish that allowed Neil Armstrong’s famous footprints to be beamed from the Moon to the Earth and an astounded human population. Ignore the fact that this Cold War era relic is near-miss-nuclear-bomb-proof. Ignore the economic reality that to build this asset from scratch would cost 10-15 times the current purchase price. Yup, ignore all that.
Instead focus on these facts: 1) LiftPort needs a home for her staff, 2) we need a remote region for high-alt robotics and balloon testing 3) we need to talk to the Moon if we’re really going to build our Elevator, 4) an asset like this is rarely sold, ever. So while I knew I couldn’t (personally) afford it, I wanted to kick the tires. I thought I might have a way of purchasing it, but it turns out that I don’t. If anyone would like to talk about Jamesburg, and has the capital or financing available, I’d like to chat. It’s a heck of an asset and LiftPort must have it, or something very very similar. And I like this communications station for many reasons – both economic and sentimental.
So we drove all night, and slept in the car under the stars. Because it is such a remote location, the stars were brilliant. The Milky Way was crystal clear and the moment I got out of the car and looked up – I saw a shooting star. At that particular moment, I felt pretty good.
San Jose – Wild Goose Chase
So after meeting with the realtor – who wasn’t very pleasant nor helpful – we had a meeting scheduled with the owner. So we scurry back up the highway to San Jose and meet with the seller. Turns out he was none-too-interested in making a deal. As I said, I’d been interested in Jamesburg for about 5 years. Charles and I drove down and met the owner back then and agreed to a price. Now, 5 years later, I spoke with the owner just 6 weeks prior and he quoted a price very similar to the price of 5 years ago… but now when I’m suddenly sitting in his office again, he’s unacceptably rude, overbearing and childish… and he’s raised the price an extra million dollars for no apparent reason. So ya, that was a pretty frustrating waste of time. Moving on…
2012 October 17
Monterey – Simon Chang, PhD.
Here’s where things start to get interesting – in a hurry.
I’d met Dr. Chang several times. He was interested in using our Tethered Towers system for high-altitude weather research during the LiftPort 1.0 days. But every time I’d ever come to him, I was always asking for research grants so that we could do our experiments… in essence I was always asking him for money and six times in a row he declined. But now, with the KS funds in hand, now I could talk to him about something else.
You see, the US Navy’s Research Lab has its Weather Directorate in Monterey. It is their job to oversee the world’s weather and give updates. They use a variety of tools to do this – ground sensors, balloons, and satellites being the most common. But our Tethered Tower is a new kind of tool. They recognized its significance right away. And now I think they are going to pay to use our altitude. In other words, I think we’ve got our first client!
So while I’m grateful for the 2nd chance that Kickstarter has given our program, I’m equally happy that after the Kickstarter funds run out; after we’ve completed our Tethered Tower robotics experiment of 7km – that we’ll have a paying customer that will allow us to continue with our research!
It’s not a huge contract, and like any good drug-dealer business model “the first one’s free”. But if they like the kind of data they receive, then they are already planning on buying more, later.
I want to stress – we have a handshake deal, and not a contract with a check… so a lot could go wrong. But assuming it goes right, then this client is enough to keep the staff paid while we continue our Robotics research. There were 9 people in the room for this meeting, Simon had brought in all of his department heads. Each one had a different use for our system. So this is an ongoing negotiation. But I’m very very happy with it.
There’s still 10 more days left in this trip, and I haven’t even gotten to the ‘really’ good stuff yet. So bear with me; I’ll let this story unfold over a couple days. I’d said that it was going to be 4 update; 1 of bad news and 3 of good news. But with the length of this update I can see this is going to stretch out a bit.
Take care Mjl
Michael Laine President, LiftPort Group
IMPORTANT – T-shirts
The first of the t-shirts arrived! If you really really need a shirt for Christmas - I can get SOME of them in the mail tomorrow. IF that happens, then there is a good chance (within the US) that the packages will arrive on Monday, Christmas Eve.
I have to prioritize somehow, and I’m gonna focus on the kids. Those will be the first I ship. Then it will be on a first-come-first-served basis and I’ll get as many of these shipped as I possibly can.
Here’s what I need you to do – Send me an email RIGHT AWAY ( Elsie@ you-know-our-company-website-name .com ) with the following info:
1) Your name/Kickstarter handle
2) Name & Address of where to deliver it
3) Shirt Size – Small, Medium, Large, X-Large
4) Male, Female or Youth
5) Design Style / Tagline
a. Unleashing Humanity from the Tyranny of Gravity
b. There is a profound difference between difficult, very very hard, and impossible.
Who does this apply to? If you bought a t-shirt directly for $35, or anyone $50 or over.
Reward update - $100 Get Involved
Somehow, I forgot to post this one yesterday. See notes for Art, Talk and T-shirt above. Are you ready to actually “get involved”? Because in January, that’s what I’ll expect (hope!). I’ll try to get most of our calls in during that month, and while we’re at it, I’ll attempt to figure out how you can participate (if you want to) in the biggest thing, ever. I’ve a set of questions I’ll pose, month after month through a detailed survey. This will be incorporated into the LiftPort newsletter, and I’ll post your results in the following month. I went to an event while I was traveling that really made me think… And I’ll tell you about it in tomorrow’s update. But my first question revolves around ‘open science/open source’ technology.
I was gonna post an update about the big trip I was on, but this reward stuff trumps that plan.
President, LiftPort Group
Bad News – Kickstarter Schwag Delayed – 2012, December 18 I have lots and lots of ‘good news’.
But first, we’re going to start with ‘bad news’. I really don’t try to sugar-coat things. So read through this. But please keep one thing in mind – that even though the fulfillment of your rewards is way behind schedule, I’ve made huge progress in other areas. I’ll detail that progress in the next few days.
One lesson I’ve recently learned is that I need to be MUCH more proactive in posting updates. So here goes – Update 1 of 4 this week.
Choices I Made I have an apology to make to you; I’m sorry. I’ve made a couple mistakes, and because they have compounded, I have not gotten your Rewards to you when I said I would. I know some of you were counting on these for Christmas or Hanukkah – I’m really sorry.
So how did I get in this predicament? Lots of reasons, really.
Ultimately, it comes down to choices. I looked at what was happening with the KS Rewards, I looked at the Kickstarter Math (below) and figured that I had a very very short window if I wanted to get – not just this specific experiment built and flying – but if I also wanted to actually build an Elevator on the Moon – I had to act quickly. So I made a choice. I would go on a ‘grand tour’ and respond to the people that most wanted to help with the big project. With me traveling, I chose to hire someone to oversee the Kickstarter fulfillment… It seemed like a good idea at the time. (I will write a LOT of details about this trip in the next 3 updates.)
So I hired Michelle – and she’s terrific. She started out as a volunteer 9 months ago and quickly got herself promoted to full-time staff (the ONLY one besides me)! I got her set up; and then I got into an airplane.
Not Her Fault
But she simply could not do the job. It was ‘impossible’ – and you know me well enough to know that I don’t use that word lightly or often. When I returned from my travels – 6 weeks later! – she and I had a long talk. We decided she’d slip back to what she was good at – a valuable and talented volunteer – and that I’d find someone who was better able to handle what she refers to as “Kickstarter Hell”.
So now it’s back to being ‘just me’ for the time being. I am going to hire someone to help out; I need to. But that hasn’t happened yet.
Inadequate Resources I’ve examined a bunch of KS campaigns. Many (most!) of them don’t deliver on time – especially the ones that go way beyond the expectations of the campaign. I was determined that I’d not make the same mistakes the other campaigns do… and yet I did anyway. I think the kind of person that starts a KS project is naturally optimistic. Certainly anyone crazy enough to build an Elevator on the Moon must have huge reserves of optimism. And in both cases, that self-confidence compels the KS organizer to over-promise. I did. But there is something else at work, something I didn’t realize until I was in the daily grind of actually doing the fulfillment – that this stuff is hard! There is a reason I’m building robots and organizing research and not building a web store filled with t-shirts, art, jewelry and other stuff… because I don’t know how to do that stuff; I know how to build robots that climb into the sky! And every ‘successful’ KS campaign that brings in 14x its original goal must navigate these unknown and uncertain waters. I’m learning, but it’s a clumsy process.
These news articles are worth reading. I’m NOT using them as an excuse for what when wrong, but it does help to explain common Kickstarter problems. By CNN/Money standards we are “slightly tardy”. By my US Marine Corps standards “late is late”. I doesn’t matter if we’re just a little bit; that excuse doesn’t work for me.
Kickstarter Math and Time
The campaign started at the end of August, the campaign ran for three weeks (ending September 13) and then there is another (almost) three weeks before the money actually shows up in our checking account. So we didn’t really get started on your fulfillment until the beginning of October. You’d think two months to get the stuff designed, developed, ordered, packaged and shipped out – seems pretty reasonable right? It’s not. It’s ridiculously optimistic. But I had no way of knowing that when I launched the campaign. This is especially complicated if the so-called ‘leader’ (me) is traveling!
Rewards Status Report
So before I begin my status report, I look at the following list of rewards and shake my head. What was I thinking to have so many reward levels? So here goes!
$1 Friend of LiftPort (3,468 total) We’ve got the art finished for your badges, and now we just need to create the database of users and link the two. The “official” LiftPort newsletter will begin in January. I think that’s a good way to start the New Year. I’ve sent out the Kickstarter-only email address to everyone, already. (GetLF8D@ our company name .com) Please ensure that you use that – as it is the fastest way to reach me directly. And even though there are ~3500 of you – I want to ensure that I read and respond to you first! We have the list of names of all of you, and this will be inscribed on the robot, Neil, when it climbs!
$3 Greeting Card (3183 total) We have the first style complete, and we’re working on the 2nd and 3rd. Once that’s done, we’ll send a survey so you can choose which one you like. Important note: because Kickstarter only allows one survey, we’ll be going through a different service. Look for a message from PopSurvey next month.
$5 Ribbon and Greeting Card (3160 total) There was a huge problem with getting the string. Far more difficult than I anticipated. But that is solved now, and the string should arrive on Thursday or Friday this week. I’m relieved – we had to delay the robot design until we could get our hands on this stuff. So once the $3 Cards are finished, we’ll be able to attach the Ribbon and send these out.
$8 Card Carrying Supporter (3023 total) This remains my favorite reward item. I am so happy with this. I have the mock-up in my wallet right now and it’s terrific! We were going to give this laminated card that was kinda cheesy, but one of YOU – a fan – came through with a MUCH better idea. So we switched gears and raised the quality a lot. We’ve built an online tool that you will need to fill out. You will be able to customize this – your name, location, title – whatever you want. And you’ll be able to upload a photo/avatar of your choice. This upload tool MIGHT be available on Wednesday next week (but the holidays are jinxing my plans…) And the MYSTERY surprise starts in January along with the LiftPort newsletter.
$9 Friendship Bracelet (356 + 73 +156 total 585) For the same reason the Ribbon was delayed getting to us, we’ve been delayed getting this started. We have some of the hardware for bracelets that are more feminine, but we don’t have everything. And the stuff for the guys isn’t even on order yet – because it hasn’t been designed yet. As for labor to actually build these things? I’m about to recruit some child from a developing nation… (kidding!) because every source I’ve turned to has declined. I’ll figure something out, but it’s gonna be a while. Sorry. I’m trying.
$12 Art Print (159 total) This got off to a slow and rocky start, but it’s starting to smooth out. I’m hoping these are in production soon. Expect surveys early-mid January. Because we had so many of these, we were able to increase the size from 5x7 to 8x10 – so I’m pleased with that.
$15 Group Talk (68 + 67 +31 + 289 + 9 + 12 + 10 + 4 + 6 + 9 total 505) This is going to be kind of insane!. Assume 10 people per talk, at 2 hours each is about 100 hours of just me talking… And I have to get all this other stuff done too! But honestly, I like talking, so this will be fun! About 70 of you pledged this directly, but the bulk of these were because they were included in other reward levels. I’m really looking forward to talking with you! Because of that, I’ll concentrate these talks in January and February. I’ll plan on 10-15 people per conversation, and stagger them so that we cover a variety of time-zones, and various communications technology. I’ll send you folks a private message to give you some options. I’ve created a webtool that will help us schedule these.
$20 Necklace & Bracelet (73 + 156 total 229) See Jewelry note above. Some of the parts are sitting in my office. I don’t have the labor to tackle this yet. Perhaps I’ll enlist my family over the holidays – “You can’t have any turkey until you finish at least 2 more necklaces…”
$25 Medium Art Print (230 + 31 + 289 + 9 + 12 + 10 + 4 + 6 +9 total 600) See Art note above. Because we’re getting a good rate on printing, expect a bonus – TWO prints! Give one to a friend, or give both to that person you owe a Christmas present to and tell them I’m sorry it was late!
$35 Necklace, Bracelet, & Earrings (156 total) See Jewelry note above. I don’t have any witty comments. I know some of you guys were counting on them for presents (one guy promised them to his wife for their anniversary!) and I know that some of you ladies were hoping to show off your geek-cred at parties. I’m sorry that these are late.
$35 T-shirt (341 + 67 + 31 + 289 + 9 + 12 + 10 + 4 + 6 + 9 total 778) This is one of the few bright points in this chaotic mess. The T-shirts are shipping. I have a tracking number and expect them on Thursday. There’s no way I can turn these around and get them shipped to ya before Christmas, but I want you to know that I honestly tried… So we have 400 shirts en route; which is not enough. That’s 200 each of 2 designs. We are going to create a third and fourth design. I really like these shirts and can’t wait to wear them!
$40 Meet-up (19 total) I’ve met with a few of you already – and that’s great! Thanks! Starting with the New Year I will systematically approach this and contact each of you. We’ll figure out, specifically, how and when we will hold our meet-up. I’ll be in Los Angeles in January, so that’s likely the first to cross off the list. I’m looking forward to this! But what happens at these Meet-ups does not stay there = expect us to tweet and post pictures. I’ve created a webtool that will help us schedule these.
$50 – T-shirt + Group Talk (67 total) See T-shirt and Talk notes above. P.s. besides the many guys’ shirts, we also have lots of gals’ and kids sizes and shapes too! $50 Street Team (7 total) I’ve met with one of these already, and had long conversations with some. But that’s a story for another day… (Actually, I plan to write about it in the 3rd update of this series, so be patient.) But there is still a lot we can do with the Street team, so expect a call!
$75 Shirt, Talk & Print (31 total) See notes for Art, Talk and T-shirt above. And you’ve honestly got my sincere thanks! $100 Get Involved (289 + 9 + 9 + 12 + 10 + 4 + 6 + 9 total 348) See notes for Art, Talk and T-shirt above. Are you ready to actually “get involved”? Because in January, that’s what I’ll expect (hope!). I’ll try to get most of our calls in during that month, and while we’re at it, I’ll attempt to figure out how you can participate (if you want to) in the biggest thing, ever. I’ve a set of questions I’ll pose, month after month through a detailed survey. This will be incorporated into the LiftPort newsletter, and I’ll post your results in the following month. I went to an event while I was traveling that really made me think… And I’ll tell you about it in tomorrow’s update. But my first question revolves around ‘open science/open source’ technology.
$100 Advertise (12 + 9 + 12 + 10 + 4 + 6 + 9 total 62) Some of this has already happened. I’ll follow up with the rest as we finalize our new website this month.
$150 Exclusive Chat (9 total) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, and Involved above. I apologize, but I’ve not really tackled this yet. I hope when you read the next 3 updates this week, that you’ll appreciate that I’ve been busy. And I appreciate that the only reason I was able to be ‘busy’ was because our community of supporters committed the capital to allow me to do this stuff. I’ll make you folks a priority with the New Year! Like with the Group Chat above, I’ve created webtool that will help us schedule these.
$250 Walk on Part (9 total) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, and Involved above. I’ve communicated with many of you, but not all. Some of you are joining my Board of Advisors, and some have joined as part of the volunteer corps! I’m grateful – thanks! As for the rest, we are targeting March for the robotic experiment, and probably later in the Spring Summer for the “jumpers”. So you should have a choice of two different opportunities to be a part of history! There are far too many variables for me to pin down dates yet, so don’t buy a plane ticket yet. But I’ll keep you posted. As for locations, we considering the Oregon coast or in the deep wilderness/desert behind San Diego. We want to start at ‘sea level’, if possible. The FAA will help guide this choice. A lot.
$250 Video Channel (12 + 10 + 4 + 6 + 9 total 41) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, Involved, and Advertise above. This might be the ONLY reward that comes in on time! January was the initial plan and I think that’s still on target. I’ve taken some classes (amateur, through friends) and think I’ve got a few ideas on how this will work. Initially, I’ll incorporate this in with a book club, and over time I’ll include interviews with ‘space elevator people’. So stay tuned! $300 Educations Kits (3x) (10 total) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, Involved, and Advertise above. Lots to tell about this reward. But I’ll save this until the 4th of this series of updates.
$500 Speaker (4 total) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, Involved, and Advertise above. No activity on this yet. I’ve dates for 2 of them, and still need to connect with some folks. The events that I do have booked, I’ll post about when the dates come around.
$500 Jump! (6 total) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, Involved, and Advertise above. I’ve spoken to two jump-masters and have the beginnings of what we’ll need for you folks. But don’t buy your plane tickets just yet. We’ve talked it over, and we don’t think that it’s safe to have you folks jumping on the same system that our robot is climbing. Instead, we’ll do this as two separate adventures – first the robot in the Spring, and then you folks when the weather is better in the summer. You won’t get to jump until after the robot test is successful.
$750 Carbon Nanotube Wedding Rings (9 total) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, Involved, and Advertise above. I’ve only spoken to two of you, so I need better communications with the rest. What I really need from you is deadlines – when is the wedding? I can plan my workload around that. It takes me about 3 days to complete a design – but I might need weeks to clear those 3 days, so we need to talk.
$1000 Custom Art (3 total) See notes for Art, Talk, T-shirt, Involved, Chat, and Advertise above. I’ve spoken to 1 of the 3. So this needs to change. Expect me to hound you in January until this is resolved to your satisfaction! We’ve had several (7) original items created, but we still have not satisfied this requirement.
Good News – Coming
So with all this stuff, what’s up with the robot? What about the trip that I took? What’s on the schedule for the spring and summer? And what about the company of LiftPort – what’s happening there? For answers to these questions and more, stay tuned. I’ll post some of this stuff tomorrow. And the next day and the day after that. I know a lot of you don’t want updates like this – in bursts, but I’ve not posted anything in two months, and there has been a lot going on. Take care, And thanks for your support (and patience)! Mjl Michael Laine President, LiftPort Group