Archive for June, 2010

8 years later … I logged another 2.6 hours

Monday, June 28th, 2010

Well, it’s been 8 years, but I finally logged another 2.6 hours of time flying. On Saturday I got to do a little cross-country flight to Gaston’s White River Resort in Lakeview, AR. A few weeks back, I got an e-mail newsletter from CubCrafters listing that their network of dealers will be hosting “Demo Days” throughout the month of June. These are demo sessions across the country promoting LSA and CubCrafters’ Carbon Cub SS. I’ve not seen many LSA, and the Carbon Cub SS is a development I’ve followed, so I took a list of Demo Days events and looked where the closest one might be — it was in Lakeview, AR. That was just close enough to entice me, but still too far. It’s a 4.5 hour drive and at this point I’d have to do the visit in a day trip. That’s just not happening, so I decided to look into air-taxi as I’d seen one advertised before by Downtown Aviation. It wasn’t going to be cheap, so I actively recruited other aviation buffs to join me and help defray costs. I only had one taker, but every bit helps. Downtown Aviation was willing to structure the flight as a training flight to help save us some money. I really appreciate that. So, come Saturday, we loaded up in a Cessna 182 and made a cross-country training flight out to Lakeview and it was a blast.

Gaston's White River Resort


First post with the iPhone 4

Friday, June 25th, 2010

I waited in line to get the iPhone 4 today and came away successful. I don’t yet know if this is a great new phone, but it has an amazing screen. I am blown away by the clarity. It’s like going from an SDTV to an HDTV. Text looks like it’s back-lit print — just amazing.

The purchasing experience was great too. Note that today is the second day of their availability. My working theory was that there would be some reservations that weren’t picked up on day one and those go in the available-to-walk-ins pool. I was sure others would be thinking the same way. I’m not totally nuts, though, so I got in line at 7am (for a scheduled 8am early opening). I was about number 20 in line. I talked to the folks around me and it seems everyone had been there the day before. It sounds like that had been a real zoo. It took about 30 minutes for me to get inside once the doors opened. I spent another 30 minutes getting and activating the 2 I was after. Not too bad. Now what do I do with 2 iPhone 3GS?

Red Bull Air Race OTA on Fox in HD

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

I watched my first Red Bull Air Race in HD yesterday, and it was over the air (OTA) for free on Fox! It’s one of the few things I missed from having cable, but even there I didn’t get it in HD. I’d discovered that the World Cup was on ABC and was pulling it up on the big screen for Grandpa and I flipped past the air race. Whoa. I quickly pressed the record button. After the World Cup game was over (it was Brazil vs the Ivory Coast), I went back to the recording. Very cool. I hope there are more. It was truly awesome.

Half a day with iOS 4

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

So, after a half-day with iOS 4, I have some opinions. Note that I have an iPhone 3GS.

  • Threaded conversations is nicely done.
  • Multi-tasking seems well thought out.
  • Having a wallpaper throws me.
  • The change in animations is nice.
  • It ‘feels’ like the text on the home screen is clearer.
  • Rotation lock is great.
  • iBooks feels pointless on such a small screen.
  • Some animations weren’t smooth.
  • I don’t like the new calculator icon.
  • Folders are a welcome addition, but the auto-naming never picked a name that I thought appropriate.
  • Wifi staying on feels odd. We’ll see how it affects battery life.

Rumors of iPad wifi troubles greatly exaggerated?

Monday, June 21st, 2010

I’ve seen repeated over and over that the iPad has poor wifi reception, but our iPad 3G seems to defy this. I dare say that our iPad is the best wifi device we have. I haven’t seen it drop signal anywhere in our house (even the driveway). Our iPhones are a close second, but none of our notebooks are even in the same realm of reception. So far 3G reception has been great as well.

Grab the right lens

Monday, June 21st, 2010

It should go without saying — grab the right lens. We went to the Memphis Exotic Italian Car Show today and I just grabbed my camera on the way out. I only have 2 lenses and I figured that the one already installed would be “good enough”. Well, that was a big mistake. It wound up being my 50 – 200 lens, which is fine, but a bit too much zoom on an APS-C sized sensor like I’ve got. I kept finding myself trying to step back in places I couldn’t. It was really frustrating. Neat cars, nice show, a little small, especially for $10/person, but nice place to take Grandpa on Father’s Day. There are truely some cool cars in town.

It’s GMT for me

Friday, June 11th, 2010

I’m giving in. I’ve set my camera clock to GMT. The timestamps in the EXIF data on most of the pictures I take are only good for picking out what day it was taken, maybe even localizing to morning or afternoon. The problem is I almost never remember to change it’s setting when we have the DST transitions or travel to different timezones. If I never remembered I guess it wouldn’t be quite as bad. So, today is a flag day — all of my primary camera pictures after 6/11/2010 are stamped in GMT.

My Face Hurts

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

My face hurts, but it’s a good thing. I never remember laughing and smiling so much that my face was sore, but it’s happened. This current visit of family has just been wonderful and the last couple of days — a real hoot.