Archive for the 'day to day' Category

Mugshot

Here’s the real reason I signed up for I’m a scientist, I needed a new mug!

Mugshot

Grant wins!

Very fun event where UK school kids get to quiz scientists in real time. Crazy two weeks of intense chats!

M11

Frozen Cam

Chesterton

Snow

Snow

Floes on the Cam

Snow

Snow

Jesus Green

My old Olympus OM-2n is due for a service. The darkness at the right is apparently symptomatic of the shutter curtains moving across at different speeds, known to some as “shutter capping.”

Beer Festival

Beer Festival

Baked Alaska

Dinner Party

Dinner Party

Dinner

We decided it was time to take a little more time with our cooking when we get the chance. This is a (very) rare venison steak from our local butcher, potato and sweet potato chips, and grilled tomatoes and goats cheese on beet leaves and garlic.

Dinner

Dinner

Tomatoes, potatoes, and beets grown on our allotment. Yum.

British Museum

British Museum

British Museum

Cougars and Bears, oh my!

Going to Vancouver Island next week, hoping to do some camping so reading up…

“There is no guaranteed minimum safe distance from a bear – the further, the better”

“The cougar’s secretive habits and astounding predatory abilities – a cougar is capable of killing a 270 kg (600 lb) moose – have resulted in a wealth of misconceptions and irrational fears. If a cougar attacks, fight back! Many people have survived cougar attacks by fighting back with anything, including rocks, sticks, bare fists, and fishing poles.”

Stourbridge Common

Sunday walk

Sunday walk

Globe theatre

Globe Theatre

Globe Theatre

Restaurant 22

Cambridge

Cambridge

Tower Bridge

London

London

Sunday walk

Sunday Walk

Sunday Walk

Sunset

Sunset

Sunset

New lens

I’ve started playing with my 20mm f/2.8. I don’t think I’ve got the hang of how wide compared to my 50mm it is…

Fulbourn

Fulbourn

More snow

Dog photo

Dog photo

Me at the IoA

Me at the IoA

Jesus Green

Jesus Green

QuickLook plugins

Recently I’ve caught onto QuickLook plugins for my Mac. I went and got the QLColorCode one, which syntax highlights the languages I use that aren’t highlighted by default (i.e. IDL) and also the EPSQLPlugin.

Since the EPS plugin only works for .eps files by default, you can open the EPSQLPlugin.qlgenerator ‘file’ you copied into /Library/QuickLook or ~/Library/QuickLook and then edit the Info.plist file. Add a line below

<string>com.adobe.encapsulated-postscript</string>

which reads

<string>com.adobe.postscript</string>

Then you’ll get previews of both .eps and .ps files. Yay!

[Unfortunately the preview doesn’t seem to work for .ps files generated by everything. I can preview ones made by PGPLOT but not IDL]

CAMRA Beer festival calendar

[THIS CALENDAR NO LONGER EXISTS, sorry]

So I was looking for an online iCal/ics calendar for CAMRA beer festivals and couldn’t find one. Here is one I’ve put together with events grabbed straight from the CAMRA website, import it to whatever you use and hopefully I’ll remember to update it!

There are other lists which will likely be more comprehensive than mine, such as www.realalenet.co.uk and www.camra.org.uk though not in ics format.

National Geographic Your Shot

I have now reached the pinnale of my photographic career, a photo in the National Geographic’s Daily Dozen

NGM Daily Dozen (it's the fern)

NGM Daily Dozen (it's the fern)

Church

Here’s a church on Little St Mary’s lane in Cambridge, and here’s a link to the same thing in google maps.

Church

Church

Upgrading to 2.8

Oooh wordpress 2.8! Don’t forget to disable your plugins before you upgrade, or you’ll get a blank screen like I did (caused by K2 disable widgets plugin which I shouldn’t be using anyway). If you don’t and get the blank screen, go to your wp-content folder and rename the plugins directory to something else. Then the plugins will be disabled and you can go to the web interface (after restoring the plugins folder to its previous name) and re-enable them one by one until something breaks…

Also, I use svn to get my wordpress, and you might notice that the recommended address has moved. I first did the upgrade with the old address, and then changed it with the command

svn sw --relocate http://svn.automattic.com/wordpress/tags/2.8 http://core.svn.wordpress.org/tags/2.8

How to use the Olympus E3

We happened to be near Buckingham Palace around 11:30 yesterday, so went to see the Changing of the Guards. It was chaos and needless to say hard to get a clear shot of anything. This fortunate person owns the Olympus E3, I think the first digital SLR with a tiltable LCD. Here they are using the live view to take piccies of the guards…

Changing of the Guards

Changing of the Guards

Fair

Fair on Midsummer Common

Fair on Midsummer Common

London: Natural History Museum

We saw the Wildlife Photography exhibition today, wonderful photos. My favourite is the silhouetted polar bear.

I think there were THREE that used film, all others were digital cameras, with a perhaps surprising number of non-expensive pro Canon and Nikons used. The winner used one of those Canon Rebels. It seemed the photos could have been printed at a higher resolution, they were on some kind of backlit transparency and close inspection showed average print quality. However, this quality did not at all detract from the pleasure of seeing the exhibit!

We also wandered through the Dinosaur exhibit, total carnage with people everywhere. They should have fed some to the T-Rex…

T-Rex

T-Rex

Aliens fishing for dinosaurs, why they became extinct

Aliens fishing for dinosaurs, why they became extinct

Fen Ditton

The beauty of the UK is that everything is so close you can go for a walk to a nearby village. You might even have a pub lunch when you get there…

Fen Ditton thatched cottage

Fen Ditton thatched cottage

Friday

Jesus Green

Jesus Green

Cam and punts

Cam and punts

Kings staircase

Kings staircase

Grad bar

Grad bar

Typical Kings hall

Typical Kings hall

Cam late at night

Cam late at night

Wednesday at Hopbine

Go to the Hopbine on a Wednesday night, if you see these guys you’ll hear some hot blues to make up for the crappy selection of beer and half arsed Americana style decor. Totally worth it in my view.

Wednesday night at Hopbine

Wednesday night at Hopbine

Night out in Cambridge

[svgallery name=”070309-cambridge”]

More photos here.

Bird flock shapes

Further to my single photo the other day, I went out and stalked a flock of birds that tend to hang out around dusk near Jesus Green, Cambridge. They make all sorts of crazy shapes as they go around. They were still going when I left tonight, and that was long after my hands had gone numb from standing around.

birds and moon

birds and moon

birds and tree

birds and tree

a pear shape?

a pear shape?

random squiggle? genie emerging from a tree?

random squiggle? genie emerging from a tree?

lower half of someone kneeling?

lower half of someone kneeling?

a person doing sit-ups (facing venus)

a person doing sit-ups (facing venus)

cloud

cloud

flying pan? bottle fallen over and spilling?

flying pan? bottle fallen over and spilling?

feet? ''

feet? ''

>

>

Cambridge street

So here’s a street just over from where I now live. I snapped it on the way to school this morning. The original is somewhat disappointing…

street near my new home

street near my new home

This is adjusted a bit to cut back the sky at the end of the street and make it a bit more colourful.

nicer version

nicer version

And this one has had its levels fiddled to make it look like old cross processed film!

cross process version

cross process version

Ah, the possibilities…

D700!

I’m the super-proud owner of a brand spanking Nikon D700. How stoked?

ear to ear stoked in f/1.4 glory

ear to ear stoked in f/1.4 glory

Velvet Burger

Go to Velvet Burger in Dunedin, NZ for a good burger. They have connect four!

burger + beer

burger + beer

connect four!

connect four!

sticker

sticker

Dunedin Harbour

I spent yesterday sightseeing along the west side of Dunedin’s beautiful harbour. We started the day looking down from Mt Cargill.

Port Chalmers, Quarantine and Goat Is., and Portobello

Port Chalmers, Quarantine and Goat Is., and Portobello

Then I went out to Aramoana with my cousin for a walk along the breakwater. There were shags and seals.

Shag at Aramoana

Shag at Aramoana

We then went to Hayward’s Point, starting above Port Chalmers. To me the containers look painted in…

Port Chalmers

Port Chalmers

Out at the end of the harbour we had a nice view over the beach.

Aramoana beach

Aramoana beach

Canoeing the Taieri

Today we paddled from Outram to Allenton along the Taieri River. I was the perfect day to be so close to so much cool water!

it turned out I missed a wee patch for sunscreen

it turned out I missed a wee patch for sunscreen

our trusty old open Candian

our trusty old open Candian

More canoeing photos here.

Otago Museum Tropical Forest

I visited the Otago Museum‘s Tropical Forest today. It’s full of butterflies.

butterfly on a frond

butterfly on a frond

butterfly

butterfly

Spearfishing

I went spearfishing for the first time this morning. As you can tell from his face my brother was stoked!

my bro in the cold Dunedin water

my bro in the cold Dunedin water

Polarising filter example

Here are two photos, the first without, and the second with a polarizing filter

without polarizing filter

without polarizing filter

There is quite a difference…

with polarizing filter

with polarizing filter

Tunnel Beach

We went out to Tunnel Beach today. Very cool place so close to Dunedin.

Tunnel beach

Tunnel beach

Tunnel beach

Tunnel beach

A few more photos here.

Orokonui Sanctuary

A few days before Christmas we took a trip to see the Orokonui Sanctuary, a new sanctuary near Dunedin modeled on the Karori one in Wellington. Though in its infancy, the sanctuary has some friendly Kaka.

Kaka at Orokonui Sanctuary

Kaka at Orokonui Sanctuary

More photos here.

Busy busy

It’s been a crazy month. Car is sold, junk is sold or gone, house is clean, skateboard is gone, stuff is shipped, most people are said goodbye to…

garage sale

garage sale

mt painter

mt painter

sushi train

sushi train

Smiley moon

Go out and look at the moon tonight. Venus and Jupiter are nearby making a smiley face. Maybe it will cheer the world up some…

smiley face moon

smiley face moon

Thinking ahead

“It is clear, however, that there are a lot of open questions but we believe that we have disclosed a thinkable strategy how to survive the Red Giant catastrophe of our Sun without violating known laws of Nature. To our best knowledge this is the first time that somebody speculated about such a kind of Planetary Engineering.”-  Taube & Seifritz (2008)

Now that’s thinking ahead… though given the mess we’ve made in 150 years of industrialisation, perhaps ensuring our planet is habitable in 100 years would be more of a priority, rather than problems that will arise in 1,000,000,000 years.

Selling my car

The time has finally come to sell my trusty old Magna Wagon. Here are a few more pics…

my car

my car

my car again

my car again

once more...

once more...

My day

Having printed my thesis, this view pretty sums up the last few days. Staring out the window and deciding whether to get a better camera, inspired by a check for USD$1800 and the exchange rate, and the much better viewfinders on full frame dslr’s.

doing nothing

doing nothing

Yes, life is tough…

House

This is a house.

house

house

Telescope pier

This is part of one of the old burnt out telescopes at Mt Stromlo.

old telescope

old telescope

From the country that brought you “Strictly Ballroom”

strictly...

strictly...