Showing posts with label design. Show all posts
Showing posts with label design. Show all posts

Monday, May 31, 2021

Tri-County Students Selected as Finalists in NASA HUNCH Program

The Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School District is pleased to announce all six teams that participated in this year's NASA HUNCH Program were selected as semi-finalists. The NASA HUNCH Program asks vocational students to help solve problems facing astronauts. Each year a set of approximately ten issues are presented in September. Students select the issue they would like to work on and form teams. All juniors in the Engineering Program participate. (

The students in the NASA HUNCH Program work with mentors, college professors, national companies, engineers from NASA, and other organizations to help hone their ideas. In addition, each student is encouraged to include their work with NASA on their resume. The students' fresh perspective, time, and energy assists the Research and Integration Office out of the Johnson Space Center.

This year, the students worked to provide a preliminary design review in February. After this review, teams refine their ideas and have a critical design review. Critical Design Review typically takes place in New Jersey but was held remotely this year. The finalists are invited to the Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX, to present to NASA and anyone interested. 
This year the students will be presenting virtually but, Kristen Magas, an Engineering Teacher, hopes this will give them a wider audience of people who typically wouldn't be able to attend the presentation in person. "I wish these kids could have the experience of going to Houston to work with NASA, hopefully being recognized and having a chance to present virtually to anyone at Johnson Space Center will be memorable," says Kristen Magas, Engineering Technology Instructor.

The three teams of finalists include:
  • Matt Gorton (Seekonk), John Greener (North Attleboro), Rick Hamilton (North Attleboro), Emily Anne Matheson (Medway), Tyler Fiore (North Attleboro), Shriya Sivakumar (Seekonk), Kyle Hughes (North Attleboro) created a No Heat Shield, allowing a package to reenter the atmosphere without burning up safely. In addition, this team was able to work with a local fire department to drop test their prototypes from the top of a fire truck ladder and got licensed as HAM radio operators to test their radio transmitter.
  • Owen Fedele (Medway), Lucas Celeste (North Attleboro), Nolan Angliss (Franklin) designed a Lunar Food Bite Dispenser to allow astronauts to eat while on long spacewalks with ease. This trio was selected as finalists last year as well.
  • Anthony Botteri (Medway), Max Rounds (Franklin), James Gingras (Millis), Brian Belanger (Plainville), Tyler McKinnon (Franklin) (with help from Elijah DePaolo (North Attleboro) and Eric Conway (Millis) collaborated on the Lunar Dust Baffle to help keep lunar soil on habitats to protect astronauts from radiation and micrometeorites. This team pulled together their various strengths and made an incredible impact.
The teams presented their projects to NASA in late April. Next steps include one team developing their idea or blending ideas to create a solution. Through the HUNCH Program, Tri-County designed hardware for storage lockers used in space by the Advanced Manufacturing students.

Lunar Food Bite Dispenser
Lunar Food Bite Dispenser

Lunar Dust Baffle
Lunar Dust Baffle

No Heat Shield
No Heat Shield


Monday, February 15, 2021

What's with Complete Streets?

The memo to the Franklin, MA Town Council and the "Complete Streets" presentation document scheduled for discussion at the Feb 17, 2021 meeting.

Link to the doc on the Town of Franklin page

Full agenda for the Town Council meeting Feb 17, 2021

Monday, November 23, 2020

New York TImes: "Designed to Deceive: Do These People Look Real to You?"

 From the New York Times, an article of interest for Franklin:
"There are now businesses that sell fake people. On the website Generated.Photos, you can buy a “unique, worry-free” fake person for $2.99, or 1,000 people for $1,000. If you just need a couple of fake people — for characters in a video game, or to make your company website appear more diverse — you can get their photos for free on Adjust their likeness as needed; make them old or young or the ethnicity of your choosing. If you want your fake person animated, a company called Rosebud.AI can do that and can even make them talk.

These simulated people are starting to show up around the internet, used as masks by real people with nefarious intent: spies who don an attractive face in an effort to infiltrate the intelligence community; right-wing propagandists who hide behind fake profiles, photo and all; online harassers who troll their targets with a friendly visage." 

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

This is scary and realistic. As careful as I am, this is alarming how realistic these photos appear. Note: you do need to view this article on a large screen device to get all the interactive features of it. Simply amazing!

1 of a series of photos depicting a gender change
1 of a series of NY Times photos depicting a gender change

Sunday, October 11, 2020

Town Council Meeting Recap - Oct 7, 2020

Quick Recap:
  • CPA promoted during Citizens Comments
  • Two more sets of lot line clean ups approved by Council; sewer extension approved for single family residence
  • Citizen comment via landline phone added later as broadcast of number did not allow time to dial and address a comment. Question was effectively following up on a study of the DPW workforce and why there were so much turnover (and recently acknowledged 5 openings being filled). Study is being worked not received yet.
  • Presentation and discussion on Planning and Community Development Dept, which includes work by Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals, Design Review, Technical Review and Conservation Commission (see agenda doc for link to presentation)
  • Meeting broadcast was interrupted with loss of sound just as they moved into the Legislation for action section. Apparently, the laptop in the Chamber lost connection and no audio was broadcast either live stream or Zoom (it controlled the Zoom session). Did return approximately 20 minutes later with some disconnected audio, then it seemed to synch properly to close out the meeting
  • Light for intersection of Grove and Washington coming (yah!), plans for rework all along Grove St talked of, timeline TBD.
  • Study of South Meeting House received and to be posted to web site
  • Drought status is worsening
Photos captured during the meeting and shared via Twitter cen be found in the album
As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter during the meeting reporting in real-time via the virtual session.
The Twitter hashtag can be found online  #tc1007
  • Getting ready for the next meeting; Town Council up at 7 PM, agenda and connection info in doc here… #tc1007
  • Multiple options to watch/listen to meeting; Comcast channel 11 or Verizon channel 29, also live streamed from town of Franklin page… as well as the Zoom info in doc linked earlier #tc1007  oh, and you can call in via phone as well!
  • #tc1007 Meeting opens
  • Citizen comments used by two Franklin folks to talk about the Community Preservation Act on the November ballot as ballot question #3. Webinar coming Oct 15 at 7 PM send email to or visit for info #tc1007
  • Opening 2 hearings for lot line changes more in the series of clean up. #tc1007 parcels were in multiple zones and being moved to a single zone. No material impact to current owners (had my own lot line cleaned up previously)
  • Clarification questions on reading the map and which way the zone changes would go. One question was for a lot not part of this set of changes #tc1007 only changes the lots split, if lots weren't split not part of the change. Q on mixing changes, attorney approves this use case
  • #tc1007 single family house with failing septic, had been here previously (Sep) looking for a private extension for the one house; hearings closed
  • Reopening citizen comments for one who dialed via phone but couldn't do so fast enough to get into that section of the meeting. Comment on the study of the DPW mentioned previously: 5 open positions. Will the study be available?  #tc1007
  • Bryan Taberner of Planning and Community development here to do  presentation on their work #tc1007
  • Support conservation and planning issues, #tc1007 Planning Board elected positions
  • Lots of variety in applications submitted #tc1007
  • Q to clarify some of the categories
  • Q on who does the inspection of these plans and approvals, contracted with Beta to do so. #tc1007 Beta's report comes back thru channels for decision. Q on bond holding process re: enforcement for subdivision yes, site plan no
  • Attny Cerel comments on the covenant process for the subdivisions, various methods of surety (cash, etc) #tc1007 pros, cons and things change overtime with the market place
  • There are a few problem areas that remain unresolved. #tc1007 Jen Delmore, conservation agent takes this part of the presentation
  • #tc1007 clarification on types of work covered and required for ConCom
  • ConCom has an open position, looking for a volunteer. Design review commission support provided by dept. Covers all sign requirements. #tc1007 makes recommendations to Planning Board
  • #tc1007 Q when dealing with a franchise (Wendy's, etc) how do they handle them? Are their hands tied? Attny Cerel to weigh in on this in absence of others who may be out due to power outages around this evening
  • Comprehensive planning, zoning bylaws, master plan review should be started in 2023 for approval in 2025 or so. Hazardous plan in review with MA before going to FEMA, will ultimately require Town Council endorsement #tc1007
  • #tc1007 (just photos)
  • SNETT trail tunnel almost complete, 'complete streets' project coming #tc1007  use of TIFs is great, three used so far Hamilton, Cold chain, and Tegra Medical...
  • Detail doc on master plan updates
  • #tc1007
  • Oops, just lost audio from meeting on both live stream and Zoom session #tc1007  (08:15 PM)
  • Meeting continues so they are not aware of our no sound status #tc1007
  • FYI the chamber lost connection and are working on it. #tc1007 (08:25 PM)
  • 5 minutes recess called #tc1007
  • They're back albeit with gaps in the audio more than a normal voice pause, phrases being missed. Oh well. We'll do what we can #tc1007  (08:33 PM)
  • Picking up with the authorization for fixing the intersection at Grove/Washington Sts (yah!) #tc1007 revenue from the cannabis companies coming would help to pay for this work, check the details in memo
  • Did apply for MassWorks grant for repaving of Grove St up to Kenwood Circle, need to get this and other pieces together to do the work in 2021. #tc1007
  • Still in drought and additional measures coming to help conserve water supply. #tc1007 museum may open before election. Should get an update each meeting.
  • We are in a drought, it could get really serious, forecast doesn't show help coming soon. #tc1007
  • Could we talk with Nationalgrid again, power outages are becoming frequent? #tc1007
  • Comments DPW study is being worked coming shortly, been worked. Flag policy reached tonight for 9/11 .
  • Museum holiday Ornaments for sale this weekend, drive by purchase at museum. Fund raiser for museum #tc1007 3 families affected by the fire on Peck/Winter st a stubborn blaze to fight
  • Compliments for fire department and response from local community
  • FEF fund raising via many smaller events as the basketball game can't be played #tc1007 SAFE Coalition busy as addiction is increasing during covid-19
  • Executive session to be entered and not return to open session #tc1007 motion passed 8-0, redo vote via roll call. Still 8-0


Town Administrator Jamie Hellen with an update during the Town Council meeting
Town Administrator Jamie Hellen with an update during the Town Council meeting

Friday, July 17, 2020

In the News: MA State flag to be redesigned; Re-opening plans in other states being rolled back

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:

"In a moment that spoke to the political charge permeating throughout the state amid debate over racial justice and pandemic impacts, three distinct rallies entangled into a mass group of advocates on the State House steps Thursday with one group calling for a redesign of the state’s flag and motto out of respect for Native Americans. 
The movement to replace the state’s motto and images on the flag seems to be growing as conversations on policing have also engulfed Beacon Hill. Indigenous people, advocates, and lawmakers took to the steps of the capitol to urge the Legislature to consider three bills that would replace the state flag and motto, ban Native American mascots, and refine laws around repatriation and disposition of Native American human remains. 
United American Indians of New England and the North American Indian Center of Boston helped organize Thursday’s event where Sens. Jo Comerford (D-Northampton) and Jason Lewis (D-Winchester) and Rep. Lindsay Sabadosa (D-Northampton) paid tribute to the state’s Native American tribes and supported the bills. 
Lewis said Senate Democrats planned at a midday caucus to discuss bills “to replace the seal and flag and to prohibit [Native American] images and mascots in our high schools.”
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

"A week after the United States surpassed 3,000,000 coronavirus cases — around a quarter of the world’s cases and deaths — the coronavirus pandemic continues unabated. Nearly half of all states, per a USA TODAY study, are facing a more rapid spike in cases than in the spring. 
Governors and other leaders in states including California, Texas and Michigan continue to grapple with plans to reopen their economies – or slow them down again – amid this severe uptick in cases. Among measures on the table: shutting down high-capacity businesses such as bars and gyms, halting elective surgeries and requiring people to wear masks."
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Saturday, November 16, 2019

“We create lifestyles for people”

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:
"Ever since they began as makers of woolen fabric during the mid-19th century, operators of the sprawling mill on Franklin’s Union Street have found little ways to reinvent the building’s purpose - from making woolen uniforms for Union forces during the Civil War, to selling woolen remnants in the 1940s, to stocking millions of yards of fabrics and yarns, threads and ribbons, and offering classes to turn it all into something useful and beautiful. 
For more than 150 years, the mill has become a proud Franklin fixture - like a beloved, if worn, heirloom passed from generation to generation - and has continued to draw people through its doors: First to create, and then to inspire creativity. 
Once again, there is reinvention taking place within the faded brick walls of The Franklin Mill Store. The vision builds upon the success of the fabric and sewing supplies store and spins forward the notion of the mill as a place of creation and artistry, with an eye toward making the mill into a suburban iteration of the types of interior design centers that usually require a trip into a big city. 
The third-generation family textile business recently celebrated a soft launch of its newly renovated design center, and unveiled a new partnership with local artists that exhibits their work and offers it for sale to those who come to the center in search of fresh interior touches or entirely new interior design ideas."
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

“We create lifestyles for people”
“We create lifestyles for people”

The Franklin Mill Store ( is well positioned in the "Crossing" section of Franklin which is also being planned for additional and appropriate economic development. If you have not yet answered the survey being conducted, please do so. You can find it on the Town’s Economic Development Site:

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Are they calling your name? - 7 Committee and Board vacancies waiting to be filled

While some folks are going to take out papers to run for election to one of the committees or boards that are elected, there are other volunteer spots available on committees or boards that are appointed.

When I checked Saturday morning, there were 7 spots open:

  • BOARD OF REGISTRARS (1 vacancies)
  • Design Review Commission (1 vacancies)
  • Finance Committee (2 vacancies)
  • Franklin Cultural Council (2 vacancies)
  • Historical Commission (1 vacancies)
Do you have an interest and talent in one of these areas?

Prepare a cover letter and resume and you can submit online or stop by the Town Administrator's office to do so in person.

The open positions are found online

Click on the board or committee name and a window will also to allow for an online application.

Committee - Board vacancies waiting to be filled -Are they calling your name?
Committee - Board vacancies waiting to be filled -Are they calling your name?

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Tri-County: New Community Website Promotes a Healthier Society

One of the greatest assets a community has are its schools. With the ever-increasing rising costs of healthcare, Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School Medical Careers and Dental Assisting students wanted to help the community to find and be aware of the many medical resources that are available to them. The students sought to foster participation in the community through a community-wide health promotion called, Tri-County Take Care, so members could educate themselves in finding the answers to concerns they may have regarding their health.

The students in the Dental Assisting and Medical Careers vocational programs were challenged with working in each of their individual vocation to create and research healthcare opportunities to educate the larger Tri-County Community. The goal of the initiative is to provide their Tri-County classmates, their families and the community with health information, tips, and resources to be better informed leading to a healthier community. The Computer Information Systems (CIS) career vocation was then brought in to create the website that would house the information.

Under the supervision of licensed vocational teachers, students acted as the project managers in order to ensure the website met certain specifications. "Tri-County students were really the driving force behind this project," said Ariel Dagan, Library Media Specialist at Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School. "We were there to provide support as needed, but they were able to use their prior knowledge, research skills, collaboration techniques, creative thinking and personal investment to come up with an informative website that the members in our community can benefit from basic health information."

To assess the community's health needs, knowledge and comfort level on the subject matter, the students began the project by conducting a community-wide survey. The assessment provided data on which topics to address health concerns. Through interpreting the data, Medical Careers focused on the topic of flu and prevention as well as heart health. Dental Assisting opted to look at how periodontal disease can affect the entire body and how some systemic diseases, such as diabetes, can impact the oral cavity.

Once all the information was compiled, CIS coded/designed the Tri-County Take Care website that provides interactive information to the community. The website also contains demonstration videos and fact sheets with the relevant health topics. To access the website go to
Tri-County Take Care
Tri-County Take Care

"The support and nurture of the students by the Tri-County instructors provides these types of initiatives to come together and help our students understand how the education they are getting directly impacts the people within their community," said Dagan. "In addition, a project like this provides the students a window to see the opportunities that have a direct relationship on future careers that serve the people who live in our greater Tri County community and beyond (through online impact)".

The students are excited about the possibility of influencing the community with their knowledge. In fact, this year Dental Assisting students are engaged with Early Education preschoolers and their families to train them on oral health. Forthcoming, a brochure is being designed that will be distributed throughout the school and in the community to spread awareness.

Opportunities presented by communities offer Tri-County students valuable real-world experience that plays a part in their career-focused technical education. Students are able to see the relevance of their academic and career skills that they learn in school and use these skills throughout their career.
Tri-County RVTHS, located at 147 Pond Street in Franklin, is a recipient of the High Schools That Work Gold Achievement Award and serves the communities of Franklin, Medfield, Medway, Millis, Norfolk, North Attleborough, Plainville, Seekonk, Sherborn, Walpole, and Wrentham.
Tri-County: New Community Website Promotes a Healthier Society
Tri-County: New Community Website Promotes a Healthier Society

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Tri-County NASA-HUNCH Team Designs Device to Travel to Space

Three students in the Engineering Technology Program and their instructor at Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School traveled to Houston, TX last week from April 15 through April 17, 2019 to present a device they designed to NASA engineers and astronauts as part of the HUNCH program.

High School Students United with NASA to Create Hardware or HUNCH is an innovative school-based program that partners NASA at Johnson Space Center, Marshall Space Flight Center, Langley Research Center, Goddard Space Flight Center, Glenn Research Center, Kennedy Space Center, and AMES Research Center with high schools in states across the nation. The partnership involves students fabricating real-world products for NASA as they apply their Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) skills as well as learning to collaborate and administer a project in teams and think creatively.

Five juniors Averi Ayre of North Attleboro; Katie Dion of North Attleboro; Colin Donoghue of Walpole; Eric Kugler of North Attleboro; and Jacob Lipson of Franklin designed, The Tool Pouch, an organized tool storage box that they hope will be used to solve a tool storage problem on the International Space Station. The project has made it to the Final Design and Prototyping Review scheduled at NASA’s Johnson Space Center at Rocket Park in Houston. If selected, their designs will likely be used by NASA astronauts in Space. This is the fourth year Tri-County’s team attended the event.

NASA began HUNCH 13 years ago with schools in Texas, and later expanded to some schools in the Midwest. In 2011, they added a school from the Northeast. NASA enlisted the help of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to identify the school, and they recommended Tri-County.

The Design and Prototyping HUNCH Program is a way for students of all skill levels to develop innovative solutions to problems posed by life on the International Space Station. Many of the projects are items personally requested by the International Space Station crew to help ease living conditions aboard the station, giving students the opportunity to really make an impact on the lives of astronauts. Other projects come from Flight Crew Systems and Operational groups at NASA that need more idea development.

Tri-County RVTHS, located at 147 Pond Street in Franklin, is a recipient of the High Schools That Work Gold Achievement Award and serves the communities of Franklin, Medfield, Medway, Millis, Norfolk, North Attleboro, Plainville, Seekonk, Sherborn, Walpole, and Wrentham.
In photo from l-r are: Eric Kugler, Jacob Lipson, Katie Dion, Averi Ayre, Colin Donoghue, and Mrs. Magas
In photo from l-r are: Eric Kugler, Jacob Lipson, Katie Dion, Averi Ayre, Colin Donoghue, and Mrs. Magas

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Interested in Volunteering in the Community? The Design Review Commission has an opening

Interested in Volunteering in the Community? The Design Review Commission is seeking an Associate Member!

Please visit to fill out a volunteer application.

What is the Design Review Commission?
"The purpose of Design Review is to promote safe, functional and attractive development of business and commercial areas; to preserve and enhance the New England character of the Town’s commercial centers and thoroughfares as a valid general welfare concern; to unify commercial properties, both visually and physically, with surrounding land uses; to facilitate a more healthful urban atmosphere; to protect and preserve the unique and cultural features within the Town; and to protect commercial property values by enhancing the Town’s appearance. 
The Design Review Commission (DRC) is a committee of Citizen Volunteers that has approval authority on signage and recommendation input to the Planning Board on Site Plans as to landscaping and lighting and Building Plans as to exterior design, colors and materials."

Want to know more about the Design Review Commission please visit their page here

The Design Review Commission has an opening
The Design Review Commission has an opening

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Be aware of dark patterns - Video

To be good consumers of information on the internet, we need to be aware of dark patterns: 

"Dark Patterns are tricks used in websites and apps that make you buy or sign up for things that you didn't mean to. The purpose of this site is to spread awareness and to shame companies that use them."
Quote shared from the home page of Dark Patterns

Nerdwriter posted this recent 7 minute video explanation of dark patterns (note he does do a promo at the end as he supports himself via ads and donations via Patreon. His videos are really good so going all the way until the ad sell is worth it!): 

Check out the types of dark patterns:

If you have found a dark pattern and want to share, you can add it to the dark pattern website listing:

Harry Brignull provides a 30 minute version on dark patterns:

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Economic Development Committee (EDC) - Agenda - Feb 21, 2018

Economic Development Committee (EDC) Meeting

Wednesday February 21, 2018

6:00 PM

Municipal Building 355 East Central Street 
Room 205


1. Temporary Signs
2. Parking surrounding the downtown
3. Commercial I Parking Regulations
4. Commercial I Dimensional Regulations
5. Multi-Family Housing in General Residential V and Commercial I
6. Review of R7 - Generally
7. Review of over 55- Generally

Additional details on these topics can be found in the document for the Jan 31 meeting agenda

Who are the members of the EDC?

  • Thomas Mercer - Chair
  • Eamon McCarthy Earls
  • Glenn Jones
  • Melanie Hamblen

More on the Town Council subcommittee can be found here

example of temporary signs frequently seen at King and Summer Sts
example of temporary signs frequently seen at King and Summer Sts

Sunday, March 12, 2017

"she believes the post office actually created the United States of America"

One of the podcasts I listen to recently covered the book by Winifred Gallagher who "believes the post office actually created the United States of America". Ben Franklin is referenced as a significant contributor to the Post Office.

"For thousands of years, governments have devised ways of sending communications. But for most of history, these systems were used only by a small elite. The postal system of colonial America was much the same. The Crown’s post was established by the English monarchy and used primarily for communications between the colonies and England. 
For a while, the colonies themselves weren’t that interested in communicating with each other. They were, like fractious siblings, only seeking the attention of Mother England. And if you were a commoner in the colonies you also didn’t use the Crown’s post, you handed your message to a traveler and asked them to take it as far as they could and then pass it on. 
Benjamin Franklin, one of the early postmasters for the Crown, traveled to every colony to make improvements in the system. As he did so, he began to see the colonies differently. In 1754, at a meeting of colonial representatives in Albany, New York, Franklin proposed a plan for uniting the colonies and electing their own representatives rather than having them appointed by the Crown. Franklin’s idea didn’t go anywhere at the time.

Continue reading the article online

Listen to the podcast via iTunes

1847 United States postage stamp of Benjamin Franklin denominated 5 cents
1847 United States postage stamp of Benjamin Franklin denominated 5 cents
The link to Winifred's book on Amazon

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

How does Franklin consider itself?

The downtown traffic flow has been redesigned. Before we go and create another charter commission to review how we operate as a government, let's spend some time designing our flag. 

Yes, Franklin does not have a flag, or if we do, I have not seen it. We have a seal, which is prominently used where we could use the principles of design from a flag.

What are the design principles of a flag?

I am glad you asked, there are five:

  1. Keep It Simple (The flag should be so simple that a child can draw it from memory)
  2. Use Meaningful Symbolism (The flag’s images, colors, or patterns should relate to what it symbolizes)
  3. Use 2 to 3 Basic Colors (Limit the number of colors on the flag to three, which contrast well and come from the standard color set)
  4. No Lettering or Seals (Never use writing of any kind or an organization’s seal)
  5. Be Distinctive or Be Related (Avoid duplicating other flags, but use similarities to show connections)

And from the TED Talk below:

"As we move more and more into cities, the city flag will become not just a symbol of that city as a place, but also it could become a symbol of how that city considers design itself, especially today, as the populace is becoming more design-aware. And I think design awareness is at an all-time high. A well-designed flag could be seen as an indicator of how a city considers all of its design systems: its public transit, its parks, its signage. It might seem frivolous, but it's not. 
16:08 - TK: Often when city leaders say, "We have more important things to do than worry about a city flag," my response is, "If you had a great city flag, you would have a banner for people to rally under to face those more important things."

Where did the flag idea come from? 
A relisten of this TED talk:
"Roman Mars is obsessed with flags — and after you watch this talk, you might be, too. These ubiquitous symbols of civic pride are often designed, well, pretty terribly. But they don't have to be. In this surprising and hilarious talk about vexillology — the study of flags — Mars reveals the five basic principles of flag design and shows why he believes they can be applied to just about anything."

Who is Roman Mars?

more on flag design
more on flag design
For more on flag design

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Are you confused by the shared lane markings (SLM) or 'sharrows" now appearing on Franklin roads?

Get used to recognizing these, we are likely to see more of them.

"Shared Lane Markings (SLMs), or “sharrows,” are road markings used to indicate a shared lane environment for bicycles and automobiles. Among other benefits shared lane markings reinforce the legitimacy of bicycle traffic on the street, recommend proper bicyclist positioning, and may be configured to offer directional and wayfinding guidance. 
the bicycle markings seem to be causing some confusion for drivers
the bicycle markings seem to be causing some confusion for drivers

The shared lane marking is a pavement marking with a variety of uses to support a complete bikeway network; it is not a facility type and should not be considered a substitute for bike lanes, cycle tracks, or other separation treatments where these types of facilities are otherwise warranted or space permits. The MUTCD outlines guidance for shared lane markings in section 9C.07."

  • Continue reading the article

"On November 7, 2015, the 80th birthday of the MUTCD, and throughout the year when you see an easy-to-read sign, a bright edgeline marking on a foggy night, the countdown timer at a crosswalk, or a well-placed bike lane, take a moment to reflect on the eighty years of progress and innovation that the MUTCD embodies. This progress has resulted in safer, more efficient travel on our Nation's roads. 
Over the years, the MUTCD has unknowingly become the traveler's best friend and silent companion, guiding us on our way along the streets, bikeways, back roads, and highways. As the direct means of communication with the traveler, traffic control devices speak to us softly, yet effectively and authoritatively. From glass “cat’s-eye” reflectors to glass beads to microprismatic sheeting, nighttime sign visibility has advanced significantly. Active devices at rail crossings save lives by giving us a positive message about train traffic. And countdown timers on pedestrian signals help us cross a busy street. 
So the next time you hit the pavement, the path, or the pedals, you can be sure that the MUTCD, through our dedicated professionals who make complex decisions on what devices to install, will help you get where you want to go safely, efficiently, and comfortably! The MUTCD…it's all about you!"

Sunday, March 27, 2016

RIP - Thomas Moseley

Thomas was the founder of the Moseley Group operating in Franklin since 1989.
Thomas passed away on Wednesday, March 16, 2016. Thomas was a resident of Weston, Massachusetts at the time of his passing. He was married to Suzanne. 
Visiting hours at the George F Doherty Sons Funeral Home 477 Washington St Rt.16 Wellesley Ma on Friday March 25th from 3-7pm and a Memorial service will be held on Saturday March 26th at 3pm in the funeral home. 
In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Tom√Ęs memory to the Westminster School at 995 Hop Meadow Street Simsbury Ct 06070.

You can view his full obituary

He did not get to see the new signs put up recently at Mosley Mills

Moseley Mill sign on Hayward St
Moseley Mill sign on Hayward St

Moseley Mill sign along RT 140
Moseley Mill sign along RT 140

For more about the Moseley Group check their webpage

Monday, December 28, 2015

Annual Report - 2015: Design Review Commission

The Design Review Commission (DRC) is a Committee comprised of 5 regular members and 2 alternate members. All are residents and volunteers who are appointed by the Town. The Committee represents Citizen interests and strives to ensure new developments and sign installations enhance the appearance of the Town while meeting Town codes and bylaws. This Committee has approval authority on signage and recommendation input to the Planning Board on Site Plans as to landscaping and lighting and Building Plans as to exterior design, colors and materials.

The Commission meets twice monthly and has addressed numerous projects and sign applications this past fiscal year. The Commission is currently composed of Mark Fitzgerald, Chair, Chris Baryluk, Nancy Coleman, Anna Moses, and Claudine Silverman, as well as associate members, Doug Newton and Kate Harrington.

This past fiscal year, the Commission reviewed and addressed several Site Plans as to landscaping and lighting and exterior Building Plans as to elevations, design, colors and materials. Reviews included projects such as the Midas Store site on West Central, Planet Chrysler-Jeep-DodgeRam renovations and expansion, and Oteri Funeral Home, as well as several other, smaller projects. In addition sign applications were received, hearings held and decisions issued for 50 signs during the past fiscal year.

Meetings are held at the Franklin Municipal Building, 355 East Central Street, Room 205, at 7:00 p.m., on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month. Meeting times, dates and agendas are posted at the Town Clerk’s Office.

Respectfully submitted,
Mark Fitzgerald, Chair

  • For additional info on the Design Review Commission, the page can be found

  • Definitions applicable to the sign bylaw

  • The sign bylaw

The new FHS sign includes a digital sign that is off as it does not conform with the current bylaws
The new FHS sign includes a digital sign that is off as it does not conform with the current bylaws


"Prior to November 1 of each year, the Town Clerk shall cause to be prepared and made available to the inhabitants of the Town an annual report for the preceding fiscal year which shall include: the annual Town budget, the reports of all Town officers, the records of all Town Council bylaw amendments and resolutions, an abstract of births, marriages and deaths, and the wages, salaries, or other compensation of all Town employees." [Added 5-2-2012 by Bylaw Amendment 12-681]

Shared from the full and complete PDF version of the Town of Franklin Annual Report for 2015

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Creating a Haven: Capturing the Spirit of Nature to Enhance your Home Design

Creating a Haven
Capturing the Spirit of Nature to Enhance your Home Design

A Presentation by Elizabeth Randall, Elizabeth Randall Interior Designs

Nature is all around us, but too often we don’t invite it in to our homes. Learn how to incorporate natural elements in your home to create a more soothing and pleasant space. Really looking at nature up close makes you stop and see a little more clearly, and provides times of rest and meditation. 
This presentation will present many images showing easy and inexpensive ways to create oases. Whether incorporating plants, sunlight, colors, water features or food displays, there are wonderful opportunities to welcome nature in. Please join us for an hour of creative ideas, guaranteed to have you stopping to smell the roses (and lilacs) just a little bit more!

Weds, Dec 2  -   7:00 PM
Weds, Dec 2  -   7:00 PM

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

What you should know about design! (video)

"Roman Mars is obsessed with flags — and after you watch this talk, you might be, too. These ubiquitous symbols of civic pride are often designed, well, pretty terribly. But they don't have to be. In this surprising and hilarious talk about vexillology — the study of flags — Mars reveals the five basic principles of flag design and shows why he believes they can be applied to just about anything."

For more about "Good Flags, Bad Flags",_bad_flags

For more about 99% Invincible, Roman Mars podcast on design

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Molloy's new sign

The smiley face sign has gone to wherever those old signs may go.

Franklin: Where am I? #3

A smaller version of the smile remains on the Molloy's Service Center sign.

All the gas pumps were replaced and are not yet operational.