Post Yuletide

27 12 2008

Christmas was very good this year, albeit different! We bid a teary farewell to our freedom wagon, as I finally found a buyer for it, who was very keen to take it away before Christmas, I feel relieved for selling it, although life will no longer be so convenient!

Warm temperatures are reminiscent of being in Colombia having a warm Christmas, but lovely nonetheless. I stocked up on plenty of nice local wines which I chilled in an icebox, and our turkey and other trimmings turned out very well, I suspect I shall be eating turkey for the next fortnight!

Santa was also very generous, with numerous gifts including a tripod, some very cool t-shirts, chocolate and sweets, a hamper with some gourmet food and a few very good books and magazines.

We are enjoying our days off work after Christmas, with sweltering temperatures. Today we are going swimming in Albert Park with our flatmates, so bye for now…..

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Nearing Yuletide

19 12 2008

Well, seems like yesterday that we left the UK despite actually being more than 3 months ago! Time flies when you’re having fun. Work is winding down as we near christmas. I understand the printing industry tends to wind down at this time of year, hence why the ink industry follows suit. Outside of work, we have been busying ourselves with preparations and shopping for our australiana christmas celebration which will be with our current housemates. I am in charge of cooking the turkey, so meticulous preparation will be undertaken!

During my free time at work, I have been reading snippets about the auto industry recently (mainly from the BBC news) and I feel very sorry for the poor people that work Ford, GM or Chrystler, must be horrible not knowing the future of your job at a time like this. I guess its not only the auto industry, with Woolworths going up the spout and the millions of unemployed back in the UK, all I can say is that I am glad we managed to leave when we did.

In other news, I have been playing with an open-source software upggrade for my camera’s firmware called CHDK which allows extended use of some of my camera’s features. One of these is shooting in RAW mode which will allow greater control of the images in post-production, as well as increasing long exposure times as well as the use of scripts which is a really cool feature. CHDK allows users to write scripts (essentially small software programmes) which give users the option to program sequences of instructions for the camera to follow. One such script allows for timed-interval exposures which would allow me to take exposures several hours long for say astrophotography, or exposures every 10 seconds for time-lapse videos. Scripts are written in BASIC which would be fairly easy to learn with some reading up. CHDK basically turns my poin-and-shoot Canon G7 into a full-fledged DSLR (minus the SLR).

Anyway, enough tech-gushing. Last tuesday we had a lovely sunset, which I managed to capture for the first time in RAW, and made it into a pseudo-HDR for your pleasure. More next week.

Dave

gorgeous sunset over union street, Melbourne.

gorgeous sunset over union street, Melbourne.





The future of internal combustion?

10 12 2008


Unleaded E10 (10% ethanol) is down to 94 AUSD cents a litre here as of today. Pretty damn cheap. Diesel doesn’t seem to change all that much. Australia hasn’t followed the trends of europe and asia in producing small, economic cars to cope with escalating petrol prices and concerns about the impact of climate change.

Whats even more puzzling is that in the lead up to christmas, car companies are still pushing big car sales like theres no tomorrow (in spite of the doom and gloom of the impending economic crisis that is as yet to hit Australia).

The picture above for those curious is of a 6-cylinder engine block we found on the beach in Walkerville South in Wilson’s promontory, having been exposed to the elements for what I can only guess as a very long time…..





A wee taster

8 12 2008

As promised, I have been post-processing all of my pictures on a borrowed laptop. Progress is slow but steady. I have finished a few of my HDR pictures and  also my panoramics but upload times seem to be an issue. I have uploaded this panoramic onto Flickr for you to see. More to come soon.