Ken Colton reports that his region (Bethesda, Md.) emerged unscathed from Hurricane Sandy, “even though the wind bursts broke off branches and drove them stake-like into the ground. Friends in NJ were unable to let anyone know they were OK for several days. Then the winter storm!” Ken’s neighborhood packed several vans with supplies and donations for people in New York City. In October he heard from Professor Wayne Smith, who’s staying active in his retirement. * Michael Rieck, safely inland at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, reports that Drake will have its first ever “J-Term” this January (like Colby’s Jan Plan). Mike has been working with LEGO Mindstorms robots in the past year or two, and he will teach a Robot Programming and Control Theory course during J-Term: “Motivated by great memories of a couple of my Jan Plan experiences, I’m pretty excited about this robotics course. It will be crammed into three weeks, and the 22 enrolled students and I will be meeting for two and a half hours each morning.” Mike will program the robots using the graphical programming language NXT-G and the C-like language NXC. * My own news is that here in northeastern Connecticut we were spared by the storms, aside from the downing by Sandy of yet another massive limb from one of our ancient twin box elders (which appear in my “Autumn Sonnet 3”). My wife, Dale, and I work on beautifying our five-acre mini-kingdom with gardens, nature trails, and home improvements (a kind of retirement savings). Our son, Jesse, is completing his Ph.D. program in computer science (with a microbiology focus); our daughter, Kala, is in the studio working on her fourth album. I continue to work long hours programming and writing about programming (Dale works with me on the writing). And I’m studying poetry, rhetoric, physics, philosophy, ancient Greek, and Italian, as I slowly progress with writing the sonnets.