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Monday, February 11, 2008

Happy 35th Jenny Garth

Chismillionaire likes what he sees from Bozeman Watch Co.

Our Story...

The Bozeman Watch Company is one of the few companies designing exclusive timepieces in the United States, where, today, such precision design and manufacture is essentially non-existent. When Christopher Wardle set out to design and manufacture the "Montana Class Watch Collection", he knew his original American marvels necessitated the finest movements available coupled with meticulous manufacturing techniques to attain a watch collection of unique and rare proportion, and so the BWC set their sights on brining the standards of Old World watch making excellence together with the innovative spirit of America.

Over many months of meetings, vision became design as words were transformed into intricately worked sketches and the inaugural timepieces of the "Montana Class Watch Collection" – the SmokeJumper Chronograph, the Sidewinder and Schofield, and complimentary men’s and women’s Gallatin – began to take shape. Armed with a design portfolio and an overwhelming enthusiasm for the new venture, Mr. Wardle traveled to Germany and Switzerland, literally showing up on doorsteps to interview prospective componentry suppliers.

Persistence paid dividends as relationships born of mutual respect began to develop and the many moving parts began to work in tandem. The sketches soon became prototypes and the first watch design a real, tangible product; the SmokeJumper Chronograph. Endorsed by the Montana-based National Smokejumper Association, the very limited line launched the opening of the store in downtown Bozeman, Montana in December, 2005.

"The Bozeman Watch Company Commitment"

The Bozeman Watch Company is committed to manufacturing the most accurate and rare collection of automatic-mechanical timepieces available today. With models produced in collector's runs of no more than 100 individual pieces, each of the "Montana Class Watch Collection" is limited to only the most discerning clientele worldwide. Each watch model of the "Montana Class Watch Collection" is a certified Swiss chronometer - the highest level of distinction a mechanical timepiece can attain for accuracy in timekeeping, and the most coveted distinction a timepiece can ever earn.

  • Pre-assembly, each movement undergoes 15 days of continous testing, regulation and calibration by an independant, third-party control agency known as the Controle Officiel Suisse des Chronometres in the Valle' de Joux, Switzerland.
  • This process includes almost thirty individual ratings that are derived from a series of continous tests at a number of temperatures and angles
  • The certification process is only undertaken by and awarded to 3% of the entire Swiss mechanical movement market, and in the American market next to 0, a proportion that "underscores the exceptional nature of a chronometer. To earn chronometer certification, a movement must not only be made from the highest quality components, but also be the object of special care on part of the finest watchmakers and timers during assembly

Welcome to Cyberwar Country, USA

BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, Louisiana -- When a reporter enters the Air Force office of William Lord, a smile comes quickly to the two-star general's face as he darts from behind his immaculate desk to shake hands. Then, as an afterthought, he steps back and shuts his laptop as though holstering a sidearm.

Lord, boyish and enthusiastic, is a new kind of Air Force warrior -- the provisional chief of the service's first new major command since the early 1990s, the Cyber Command. With thousands of posts and enough bandwidth to choke a horse, the Cyber Command is dedicated to the proposition that the next war will be fought in the electromagnetic spectrum, and that computers are military weapons. In a windowless building across the base, Lord's cyber warriors are already perched 24 hours a day before banks of monitors, scanning Air Force networks for signs of hostile incursion.

"We have to change the way we think about warriors of the future," Lord enthuses, raising his jaw while a B-52 traces the sky outside his windows. "So if they can't run three miles with a pack on their backs but they can shut down a SCADA system, we need to have a culture where they fit in."

Maj. Gen. William Lord is provisional commander of the Air Force's new Cyber Command.

Courtesy U.S. Air Force

But before Lord and his geek warriors can settle in for the wars of the future, the general has to survive a battle of a decidedly different nature: a political and cultural tug of war over where the Cyber Command will set up its permanent headquarters. And that, for Lord and the Air Force, is where things get trickier than a Chinese Trojan horse.

With billions of dollars in contracts and millions in local spending on the line, 15 military towns from Hampton, Virginia, to Yuba City, California, are vying to win the Cyber Command, throwing in offers of land, academic and research tie-ins, and, in one case, an $11 million building with a moat. At a time when Cold War-era commands laden with aging aircraft are shriveling, the nascent Cyber Command is universally seen as a future-proof bet for expansion, in an era etched with portents of cyberwar.

Russian Hackers and Chinese Cyberspies

The news is everywhere. When Russian hackers were blamed for a wave of denial-of-service attacks against Estonian websites last spring, President Bush voiced concern that the United States would face the same risk. The national intelligence director, Michael McConnell, recently claimed a computer attack against a single U.S. bank could cause more economic harm than 9/11, and called for more National Security Agency surveillance of the internet. A CIA official followed up with a tale about cyber attackers causing multi-city power failures overseas. Some in the military believe Chinese cyberspies have already penetrated unclassified Pentagon computers.

Where buzz flows, money follows, and the investment in info-war comes as the Air Force cuts back personnel elsewhere to fund new aircraft: The service just finished phasing out 20,000 enlisted men and women, with plans to dump 20,000 more by 2011. The effect of military cutbacks on the surrounding communities can be devastating. "If you gain or lose a unit in a place where the military is already a major employer, it has a huge impact," says Chris Erickson, a New Mexico State University professor.

Unofficial estimates say 10,000 military and ancillary jobs could clump around the 500 posts at the Cyber Command's permanent headquarters. The governors of California, New Mexico and Louisiana are pitching their locales directly to the secretary of the Air Force. In December, Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal took advantage of a meeting with President Bush on Katrina recovery to lobby for the Cyber Command. A dozen congressional delegations have weighed in as well. Lord is feeling the heat.

Doctor's using Wii for Physical Therapy

Some call it "Wiihabilitation." Nintendo's Wii video game system, whose popularity already extends beyond the teen gaming set, is fast becoming a craze in rehab therapy for patients recovering from strokes, broken bones, surgery and even combat injuries.

The usual stretching and lifting exercises that help the sick or injured regain strength can be painful, repetitive and downright boring.

In fact, many patients say PT - physical therapy's nickname - really stands for "pain and torture," said James Osborn, who oversees rehabilitation services at Herrin Hospital in southern Illinois.

Using the game console's unique, motion-sensitive controller, Wii games require body movements similar to traditional therapy exercises. But patients become so engrossed mentally they're almost oblivious to the rigor, Osborn said.

"In the Wii system, because it's kind of a game format, it does create this kind of inner competitiveness. Even though you may be boxing or playing tennis against some figure on the screen, it's amazing how many of our patients want to beat their opponent," said Osborn of Southern Illinois Healthcare, which includes the hospital in Herrin. The hospital, about 100 miles southeast of St. Louis, bought a Wii system for rehab patients late last year.

"When people can refocus their attention from the tediousness of the physical task, oftentimes they do much better," Osborn said.

NetFlix opts to carry Blu-Ray

Netflix Inc., the online movie rental company, said Monday it is switching exclusively to the Blu-ray format for high-definition DVDs, following four major movie studios in selecting the Sony technology over one pushed by Toshiba Corp.

Toshiba and Sony have been vying to set the standard for high-definition DVDs for several years. The stakes are high because the winner will also get a boost in sales of DVD players needed to read the new format.