Skip to main content

Benjamin Oakes

Photo of Ben Oakes

Hi, I'm Ben Oakes and this is my geek blog. Currently, I'm a Ruby/JavaScript Developer at Liaison. Previously, I was a Developer at Continuity and Hedgeye, a Research Assistant in the Early Social Cognition Lab at Yale University and a student at the University of Iowa. I also organize TechCorridor.io, ICRuby, OpenHack Iowa City, and previously organized NewHaven.rb. I have an amazing wife named Danielle Oakes.

Tom Brokaw on his 50 years at NBC, donating his papers to the University of Iowa

by Ben

tdy_lauer_brokaw_161110__406841-today-vid-canonical-featured-desktop

As he celebrates a milestone 50 years at NBC, Tom Brokaw tells TODAY he’s planning to donate his papers and memorabilia to the library at the University of Iowa.

Source: Tom Brokaw on his 50 years at NBC, Donald Trump’s ‘unforeseen’ win – TODAY.com

Iowa City Press-Citizen on Public Measure C

by Ben

On the heels of its skewed coverage of Public Measure C, the Iowa City Press-Citizen comes out with an editorial board’s endorsement of the unprecedentedly suppressive status quo.

Source: Our View: Iowa City Press-Citizen predictably fails the voters

Related: Educate yourself on Measure C, Measure C deserves your support

Don’t forget to vote!

California issues more self-driving permits, Iowa creates testing corridor

by Ben

On Monday, HERE (the mapping company now owned by Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz) and the Iowa Department of Transportation announced their own project to develop an autonomous vehicle and freight movement corridor on I-380 between Iowa City and Cedar Rapids.

Source: California issues more self-driving permits, Iowa creates testing corridor

Belgium, USA dominate IC cyclocross World Cup

by Ben

Two American women and three Belgian men ended up on the victor’s podium for the Women’s and Men’s Telenet UCI Cyclocross World Cup races in Iowa City on Saturday.

Source: Belgium, USA dominate IC cyclocross World Cup

Johnson County triples its solar power production

by Ben

Johnson County is installing two new solar arrays at its Iowa City campus in a move that officials say will save taxpayers money and triple the county government’s production of clean energy.

Source: Johnson County triples its solar power production

We used Eagle Point as well.  Get in touch if you’d like a referral credit.  :)

Broadband internet as a public utility – Jason T. Lewis for Supervisor

by Ben

Broadband Internet connectivity is expensive and in Johnson county there is little to no competition and just a couple companies hold a virtual monopoly on access. Compared to other areas our size, the options and speeds are no competitive. Broadband Internet access drives economic growth. It’s time for Johnson County to lead. We need to partner with our community stakeholders and find a solution that will give everyone in Johnson County access to free or low-cost broadband Internet access.

Source: Broadband internet as a public utility – Jason T. Lewis for Supervisor

Draft – The Journal of Process

by Ben

Featuring stories, first drafts, and interviews with authors of note, draft is a unique print publication emphasizing the importance and diversity of the creative process. We’re interested in mechanics, techniques, approaches, triumphs, failures, concussive frustration — everything that goes into crafting a great piece of creative writing.

Source: Draft – The Journal of Process

Electric cars gaining ground in Iowa

by Ben

 Iowa license plate, 100% electric badge

CEDAR RAPIDS – When Gary Scott arrives for work each morning at Schneider Electric in Cedar Rapids, he plugs his 2012 Nissan Leaf into one of two charging stations in the company’s parking lot.

Source: Electric cars gaining ground in Iowa

A little strange that they don’t count the Chevy Volt or other plugins in the discussion, but this is still good news, nonetheless.

Longtime downtown Chait art gallery to close

by Ben

Chait Galleries owner Benjamin Chait said in his retirement he will spend more time on his own art and with his family.

Source: Longtime downtown Chait art gallery to close

I practically lived above this gallery for a year when Busy Coworking was still in existence. I hope someone fills the void they’re leaving.

Trump tomato tosser has no regrets

by Ben

“I’d like to live in a country where Donald Trump can’t go anywhere without worrying about being pelted by produce,” he said.

Source: Trump tomato tosser has no regrets