Once upon a time, there was a magical lodge hidden away in the mysterious forest. Only a select few knew where it was or were even allowed in.
Err... not really. The Tourist Club is a beer pub/social club on the edge of Muir Woods, just north of San Francisco. They are a private club, but they're also open to visitors during weekends. I decided to take my LA friends there for a nice walk and a few beers. Then we went to a restaurant called Ad Hoc in Napa for dinner. Highly recommended, by the way, if you ever want to know what home cooking by a world class chef tastes like.
Oh yeah, I also happened to bring my handy GPS unit for tracking every step we took. You know, just in case other people wanted to know how to get there.
Here's a map of our trip that afternoon and evening:
And as always, I created a Picasa web album plotting the pictures on a map, which can be found here:
Maybe one of these days Google wil let people embed album maps into their websites... right now you have to pay for third-party services to do so. I also haven't had time to hack together my own code for generating photo maps. One of these days...
This photo probably sums up the Tourist Club experience:
Mmm... Belgian beer on tap and sausages while overlooking a gorgeous mountain landscape...
Just got done with a hectic two weeks. First was a week in Los Angeles to visit friends and my sister for Thanksgiving. Next was a week back in SF with some of my friends from LA coming along. Lots of food, drink, and fun, but not much time for much else...
Anyway, at the prompting of a friend, I decided to sketch a "still life" (a.k.a. my teacup) one day. I used to draw all the time, but it'd been years. And hey, doodling is still fun.
Then I decided to be extra "artsy" and take pictures of the materials associated with the sketch. I also played around with the color modes on the DSC-W80, which was also given to me by Sony. Here are the pictures in sepia, black and white, and color:
The graininess works decently well in sepia and black and white, but not so much in color. I must've used a somewhat high ISO setting, since it was indoors. I personally like the sepia photo best.
It's been in the shop for over 2 weeks now. Some part of the crank needs to be replaced, and since Cannondale loves to use proprietary components, we have to wait for the replacement from the dealer before anything can be done. On top of that, I can't really go surfing either, unless I want to sludge around in tanker oil from the spill last week...
Speaking of which, if anyone is in the SF bay area and would like to help clean up the oil spill, go to this link:
(picture below borrowed from the Kill The Spill site above)
On an unrelated note, I took my mountain bike for a spin last week and brought along the GPS unit and camera. I took a few pictures along the SF waterfront and across the bridge in the Marin Headlands. Once again, it was a foggy day out:
It's getting darker and colder in the bay area. However, that also means that winter surf is kicking in, which for me means several potential good days of surfing a week :o)
In fact, I went surfing the last three days in a row at Linda Mar in Pacifica. It's easily accessible from where I live and has plenty of parking and showers. Not necessarily the best or most exciting waves, but it's a decent, fun workout. Plus the sunsets over the water are just beautiful.
I brought my camera and GPS unit along yesterday in hopes of snapping some awesome sunset shots. Unfortunately, the sun was mostly obscured by the incoming fog. I still took some random shots of the surf, hills, and fog, and uploaded them to Picasa, which has a "map view" of the pictures:
As far my opinion of the GPS-CS1KA unit, I have to say it's more useful than I thought it would be. At first, I thought it was somewhat silly to have a GPS receiver that only took time and location stamps every 15 minutes, then required an external piece of software to match and geotag pictures with the stamps. But hey, it definitely gets the job done, and it is pretty cool to have a geospatial context in which to reference your photos.
I can also see lots of different ways to "hack" the GPS log files and pictures and produce some really cool stuff. Unfortunately, Sony's Picture Motion Browser software doesn't allow you to do much with the maps... for now. You can't save maps or manipulate them. However, there are outside resources, such as Picasa above, that allow you to create, edit, and save album maps. And maybe the geek in me will end up learning the Google Maps API and writing some code to do more stuff with the GPS unit...
I received a big brown box from Sony yesterday. In it, I found a DSC-W80 camera, a NSC0GC1 digital video camera, some accessories, and of course, the Sony GPS-CS1KA unit. I took the W80 and the GPS unit with me on my Halloween excursion and managed to snap a few shots of some buddies. Unfortunately we were mostly indoors so I couldn't get any GPS data that matched with the pictures. But here they are!!
This is my experience as a Sony brand ambassador for the GPS-CS1KA unit. I'll have the unit and my camera at races, vacations, and other events. My photos will then be uploaded and plotted on the world map for everyone to see!
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