Sunday, 28 September 2008

New camera!

During my recent trip to California I picked up a Canon PowerShot G9, a compact camera with many of the functionalities of an SLR (aperture and shutter priority + a couple of other things). Having found that the 350D can be a bit of a mission to carry around all day, the G9 makes a good compromise between a tiny (and often useless) compact, and the big dawg.  The limitation is obviously that it doesn't have tons of lenses you can stick on the front, however you can buy a wide angle and a telephoto (link), although frankly you would be hard pushed to need more than the optical + digital zoom already provided. I will definitely be investing in the wide angle though as have got used to having the 17mm on the DSLR which is great for landscape shots. 

I heard they took the G9 out of production which means it is likely that the G10 is on the way (in October as it happens) - 

typical (i bought my wife an ipod nano in LA too, new one came out 3 days later....). Although they have boosted it to 14.7mp, it will also weigh in at an extra 30g, totally 350g, not an inconsiderable weight....

Anyway, here's a few examples of the images that it can churn out - the whole lot can be found on my Flickr site though, so go visit that too.

I've also recently discovered Blurb, a publishing service that allows you to make books (not just photo books, but actual books too if you want).. They are a recently added AxiCom client so I have to put my hand up to a bit of a plug but I am genuinely creating a book at the moment using the service. The nearest equivalent in terms of quality would be Bob Books, however they STILL don't have a Mac client which is ridiculous really. The Blurb client is pretty thin (approx 40mb) and downloads so you can do everything offline before ordering it up... so far it is great but painstaking. The book I am making is of our Honeymoon trip to Nepal and I took a LOADS of photos so it might take me a little while.  However I can definitely see Blurb being used for many xmas presents this year - prices start at about £15 I think. Check it out!

Watch out for them others...

Friday, 5 September 2008

Hot hot hot

S'been a while, so much has happened!

Firstly kitesurfing - awesome fun, but totally destroyed me. The upper body strength required to actually keep the thing in the air was immense - learnt on a 7m then switched to a 12m for the day trying to get on the board.  Got serious unintentional air on the second day. Seriously dude, it was like totally gnarly - I was here, then I was there (12ft in the air) then I was dumped - whiplash ahoy. Definitely recommended for anyone with 1) a house nr the sea or 2) good at windsurfing/snowboarding/wake boarding. We went with these guys (FC Watersports Academy) - site seems to be down but they were v professional and definitely worth the money.

Now, anyone else totally disagree with this??? - how can the FA (or NFC) justify allowing Joey Barton to continue playing football. RANT BEGINS: footballers, although many don't act like it, are in an incredibly privileged position - they earn a packet, they are idolised by today's yoof and yet they can get away with beating people unconscious. He's hardly served his time?!?! He knocked a fellow player out - not that it would be an excuse but they guy wasn't even on an opposing team!! WTF!? This ridiculous "respect" campaign is going to go nowhere if the FA don't eject thugs (CONVICTED thugs) like Barton from the football profession. If I walked into work and beat a colleague unconscious, I think I'd be facing a little more than a 6 day ban from work on full pay (approx £80K upwards a week for Barton I would think).  Not only that, I very much doubt I would receive the support of my boss as Keegan has done for Barton. It's a disgrace. No wonder our country is in such a mess - when convicts, bullies and thugs are effectively rewarded for their actions it is no wonder that kids today think they can get away with a beating here or a shanking there.  Someone in the FA please stand up and sort this out - he's got to go, if not to prison then certainly to some kind of institution, stories like this will become more common place unless examples are made. RANT OVER

This week I have had the pleasure of attending the Quova sales conference in sunny Cupertino, California. It's down the road from San Francisco and San Jose (at which airport I am writing this entry from) - we stayed in the hotel that the conference was in, The Cypress - recommended for the leopard print robes and excellent service if you are in the bay area. Also good access to the rest of the valley. 

My first time to the valley and it has been quite weird.  Where you expect high rise glass you get lots of single story blocks - and I mean lots, like millions.  Anyway, there were loads of v interesting people talking at the conference about the importance of location. Whilst I don't want to straight pitch my client in my blog, there are some genuinely useful things you can do when you know where your web visitors come from.  Advertising online for instance has been (and will be further) revolutionised by being able to target specific geographic areas. Where once the internet was a facless, geo-less void, it is now a trace-able and (if it is a word) monetisable world. Ever wondered how the world's biggest search engines return localised results to you? Quova! Go have a look...

Off to the LAX shortly to meet an ex-Bromley boy recruiter - funny how it all works out :)

Watch out for them others (especially if you are in San Jose airport - there's freaks everywhere!!!!)

PS - go check out Navizon and download their mobile app - wifi and cell triangulation - GPS without the GPS - cunning eh?

PPS - shout out to Kris K and Catherine and Nicole from SF, thanks for taking us out!!!