The Engineer's Notebook Blog

The Engineer's Notebook

The Engineer's Notebook is a shared blog for entries that don't fit into a specific CR4 blog. Topics may range from grammar to physics and could be research or or an individual's thoughts - like you'd jot down in a well-used notebook.

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CR4 Behind the Scenes

Posted August 23, 2007 6:00 AM by Sharkles

What comes to mind when you think about what happens behind the scenes at CR4? Do you envision robots? How about cyborgs? Grouchy moderators, perhaps? Unfortunately, if you were thinking of any of those things, you were wrong; GlobalSpec, the company that powers CR4, does not resemble a movie set from the Sci-Fi channel. As for those "grouchy moderators", did you really think that no one would notice the flame war in the latest global warming post?

Because "all work and no play" equals no fun, some of the GlobalSpec team took a day for themselves last Thursday. On August 17th, a small group of engineers and CR4 administrators headed to Adirondack Extreme, a tree-top obstacle course located in the Adirondacks, a mountainous region in northern New York. Since we spend so much time working with all types of equipment, why not have some fun doing it?

Adirondack Extreme is a high-ropes obstacle course that is built between 10 and 50 ft above ground, depending on the difficulty level. The facility has four color-coded courses that increase in difficulty: green, blue, red, and black. Each course is designed to test a person's agility, physical ability, and (I think, at times) mentality.

We were each equipped with a harness, two carabiners attached to ropes, and an additional carabiner holding a trolley. Adirondack Extreme also mandates some basic training and course safety instruction before starting. Because the courses place participants high above the ground, the general rule is to always be connected to something. That's what the carabiners are for. We each had 2 carabiners, each of which was attached to its own rope. Whether you were climbing, walking, or standing still, you had to be connected to a cable.

Red, coated-wire cables (approximately 3/8") ran all across the facility. They were used going up ladders, as part of each obstacle, and on platforms. The purpose of these cables is to have something to attach onto. As I mentioned before, the rule is to always be attached to something. Once attached to a red cable, even if someone were to fall or slip-off an obstacle, they would still be hanging safely. The cables were connected by a series of cable clamps (also approximately 3/8"). Additionally, the course and all of the obstacles included a strong, uncoated wire that was meant to be walked on, held onto, slid down, and to support.

The course we took included swinging bridges and walkways, climbing elements, monkey bars, zip-lines, and more. Although some obstacles were more challenging than others, the equipment and cables provided an overall feeling of safety as we traveled through the treetops.

Of the seven people who that started out that day, four completed all of the courses, (We're not telling who.) Still, I think that it's fair for me to say on the behalf of everyone that we all left with a sense of pride and accomplishment. Even better, we had fun!

So, there is something that you know about us.

We went.
We climbed.
We swung.
We survived.

To see what some of these adventurous GlobalSpec engineers and CR4 administrators do while they're in the office, check out the following blogs and user profiles.

Workbench Creations –frankd20
The (not so)-Daily Chris–Chris Leonard
Blogs by Sharkles–Sharkles
Common Purposes -MillMat



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Anonymous Poster

Re: CR4 Behind the Scenes

08/23/2007 6:11 AM

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: High Point,N.C. USA
Posts: 185
Good Answers: 1

Re: CR4 Behind the Scenes

08/24/2007 3:02 AM

Good article. James

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