This website has four purposes, around three cross country skiing
- Techniques of cross country skiing.
- Places to ski, and styles of exploring and traveling.
- Ways to have fun and play games and appreciate the beauty of cross country skiing.
- identify helpful or interesting questions about those topics
And sometimes identify useful categories of
perspectives and goals of skiers asking or bumping into those
- identify resources publicly available in English on
the web that address those questions.
And to describe those resources in ways that skiers can quickly
jump to the
kind of information that is more helpful to them and their current
perspective and goals.
Where there are multiple perspectives or conflicting
views to a question, provide access to sources that express and debate
those different opinions.
- to fill in gaps in the information publicly available for those
topics and questions on the web.
- to provide analysis and raise questions about skiing techniques
from a perspective of basic physics.
where "basic physics" here means old-time Newtonian
mechanics of force and velocity, not quarks and quantum levels.
My perspective is that someday all the information and interesting
viewpoints will be richly available on the web.
Right now we're
a long way from that on some topics, so this website has a role in
describing and assessing the limited current resources, and in trying to
fill in some of the gaps. Search engines provide long lists of
matches, but they do not assess the quality of those matches, or which
ones are more helpful to a skiing-specific perspective or goal.
In the future the other existing resources will be expanded and new
resources will appear on the web. In response to that, some of the
detailed content on this website will be replaced by links to other
websites, together with brief comments describing, interpreting and
appreciating those other resources.
Example: This website's page on Dryland
Learning and Training for Classic techniques provides a framework
and perspective for "uphill ski walking". But it offers
little detail about how to do it. Instead it gives a link to the
NENSA Classic Dryland drills page, and describes briefly why it is
such a helpful resource for this detail.
I hope that in some cases, the creators of the new content will have
been stimulated by my gap-filling attempts -- with the confidence that
even though their work would have flaws, at least it will fix the
deficiencies and errors in my attempts, while carrying forward the
(few?) good ideas.
Then for some topics, even the framework
of interesting and helpful questions on this website might be replaced
by a link to another resource that offered a superior framework.
For others, my framework might outlive that, and continue alongside as
helpful for a minority of persons in a minority of situations.
Right now the useful information out there on the Web is pretty "thin"
- cross country skiing techniques
- identifying questions about fun and beauty
- "games" other than racing
But the Web is already fairly "rich" on:
- normal places for normal kinds of cross-country skiing
"games" at normal seasons of the year.
- the racing game.
Techniques: This website currently has a lot of detailed
content about Classic techniques, because I think they are tricky and
interesting and not much in depth is available about them in English --
not even in print books, let alone the web. And because I was very
interested in classic-technique racing last year. And because my
background in research with multi-joint robots and robotic perception
gave me a special fascination with applying a "robotic"
approach to analyze that tricky technique.
technique is more straightforward, and the key questions have been
clearly raised and addressed in English, so my focus there is more on
definitions and links.
Places: Here it is easy to
provide links to general websites that already do a good job of
providing a framework and links to place-specific resources. I've
only filled in "gaps" with an odd topic that connects with me
(out-of-season snow), and with a website about a region (the Hudson
river valley) that I love but which is not well known for skiing.
Fun, Games, Beauty: I've only started getting into
questions of fun and beauty and games -- by way of concern about how
to learn techniques -- which in turn led me to what the motivations
of learning and practicing new techniques might be. But it's a
topic I'm interested to explore further.