Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Sausage heaven

I have been eating sausages from this butcher for a while. They have sausages that won the national and state championships. But I had never been to the butcher. So I took time on my day off to go and buy some. I can recommended them. While there I did not see the sausages I was after. But the man there sold me the ones I wanted even though I did not order them. I bought three types of sausages. Lamb, Chicken and Kangaroo.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Alicia receives a Young Citizen of the Year award

my niece receiving her award.

IMG_0740, originally uploaded by SPAK1971.

"aus nsw alicia dsc05086" by yewenyi [?]
aus nsw alicia dsc05086

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Pete becomes an Australian

We went around to Pete's place to celebrate his becoming and Australian. While driving there I thought, I need an Aboriginal flag to fly. Maybe next year. Though I prefer the Torres Strait Islander one. The only piece of clothing I have with a flag uses this one.

"Gosford Citizenship Ceremony 26 January 2008" by harrip [?]
Gosford Citizenship Ceremony 26 January 2008
"" by Auntie Billy [?]

"Australia Day 2008" by yewenyi [?]
Australia Day 2008

Thursday, January 24, 2008

N95 dramas

The other day when in Barrington Tops, my phone was playing up. First it was saying that it had 3G coverage, when clearly that was not possible and then it crashed. It would not even boot. So I turned it off. About an hour later, I had a thought. I took the flash card out. Now the phone would boot. But things were broken. So I put the flash card back in. Again the phone would boot. The problem now was that I cannot launch the email app from the image browser app.

Back at home I decided to look on the internet. I found the reset codes for the phone. I tried at first a soft reset. (Soft reset code *#7370# followed by 12345). This did not fix the problem. I went to the 3 site and saw that there was an OS upgrade to version 12. But first to back-up the phone. I had not done this in a while as the phone backup software runs under windows. I tried backing up over three days. It kept on crashing at the last step. In the end I was able to do a series of part backups without a crash.

Now to load the new OS. It did not work. The software says that it needs to update the OS, but then says that it does not recognize my phone. So time for a hard reset. The hard reset takes the phone back to the original factory settings. The code is *#7780#, but I cannot use this unless I go down to the basement. The phone connects to the network and then will not reset because it is connected. So I disconnect the phone, but I am not fast enough to enter the reset code before it connects again. So I do the following: Turn off the mobile device. Then press and hold “3?, the “Green button” and “*” - Turn on and keep holding the keys untill the mobile phone restarts and prompts you to enter details. It works on the second attempt. However the update software will still not recognize my phone. Sounds like i need to take it into the repair man.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

AGL3080 GPS Photo Tracker

A while back I decided that my Garmin GPS was not really useful as a data logger for coordinates for a few reasons, 1) it has limited battery life, 2) it is bulky to carry around, 3) it only holds 10,000 coordinates and then when you save them to the card it looses the time stamps and 4) it is very haphazard at recording points, even on record them all the time mode.
What I wanted was:
  1. A unit that can hold hundreds of thousands of points.
  2. A unit which is small and easily carried all the time.
  3. A unit which has good battery life.
  4. A unit which can record points very often say every 10 seconds.
So I went looking for a GPS. I headed off the Johnny Appleseed, where I bought my Garmin unit, they understood what I wanted, but they did not have any units such as I was after. But they did tell me I needed a data logger. This made searching the internet easier.
After this discussion I trawled the internet. There were a few units available in Australia, but they tended to be high end models and expensive or only work with Microsoft Windows. In the end I purchased a unit from the USA for $69. It is the AGL3080 GPS Photo Tracker.
I had trialled it on my balcony just to make sure it worked. I also tested getting the files and converting them from NMEA to GPX format. I am using GPS babel for the conversion and GPS photo linker for linking the data to the photos. The USB inteface makes the device look like a thumb drive which is an enormous improvement over the Garmin's arrangement.
So, last weekend I went away armed with the new unit. I took lots of photos. Over 2 days I went though about 1 and a half sets fo three AAA batteries. I had the unit turned on for 15 to 20 hours.
Back at home I was a little disappointed to discover that the unit had created about 8 files. converting them in GPS babel one at a time is slow because the interface is very clunky. I know I could probably write a Unix script to process them, but that would require a bit of learning. Maybe I will do that later.
I then loaded the files and camera raw images into the photo linker package. After a few manual tests, my worry that I would need to adjust the time turned out to be completely unjustified. So I just bulk added GPS coordinates to the images. Not only does it add the altitude, Long and Lat, but it also adds the location town, state and coutry names as well. Pretty cool, I think.
After processing my images through Adobe Bridge and Aperture, I uploaded them to Flickr and lo and behold they automatically appear on the map. I am very happy. If you click on it and then select map (near the bottom right of the page) you will see where it was taken.

"north coast railway" by yewenyi [?]
north coast railway
"warning- causeway" by yewenyi [?]
warning- causeway
"fog bank" by yewenyi [?]
fog bank by yewenyi

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

dishwasher drama

For some reason a man from telstra was concerned about me emailing reminders to myself to buy a dishwasher. I wonder how he knew?

And the drama goes on...

I decided to order my dishwasher online as it was very significantly cheaper and I though I would try out this new method.
  • LG Dishwasher LD1403W1
  • LG Microwave MS2647GR
Here is the drama so far, I will update this post with new info as it evolves.
  • Sunday 13 Jan, Mr Dishwasher (the office's term for phil) calls to advise that I will recive my dishwasher on Monday 14 Jan at 2-3 PM.
  • Monday 14 Jan, Mr Dishwasher calls to say he could not pick up the dishwasher as the paper work was not ready. He advised that I called the office.
  • I called the office. And arranged a new time, for Thursday 17 Jan.
  • Late Monday 14 Jan. Mr Dishwashe calls to adise he can install it at 7AM Tuesday 15 Jan. I agree.
  • Tuesday 15 Jan. Mr Dishwasher called from the warehouse. They do not have any dishwashers of this model in stock. Nor do they have my new microwave. Suggests I call the office again.
  • Spoke with the office again. they are very pleasant and helpful. He checked. There is an delivery from LG due tomorrow. He went away and checked and confirmed it contains my two ordered items.
  • Wednesday 16, the new Mr Dishwasher, Lou, called. He is coming around tomorrow at 11 AM. Will call if there is trouble again by 8AM.
  • Thursday 17 Jan. It's 8AM. I started my mobile doing a backup to the PC at about midnight last night. It is about 10% complete. Blast. Log onto the web. No message from Lou. This is a good sign. Waiting for 11 AM.
  • Thurdsay 17 Jan. 12:00 PM. Well he was meant to be here between 11 and 12. So I called at 12. He is leaving Bondi. So I pop down to the monger of fish and get some fish, chips and salad.
  • 1:00 PM, He is here. Like all, he does not like the curvey stairs. He groans when he sees the arrangement. It takes him 1 hour and 45 minutes to install the dishwasher. He drills 2 hoes in the cupboard. Takes off the lid of the dishwasher to make it fit. it still sticks out at the front. And the man I asked when looking to select the model, said that they are all the same size. I think he lied. He also installed about 1 foot of copper pipe. But now it works and after this I will put in the first load.
  • On the down side, they did not have the Microwave. I will speak to them about this. As the warehouse is in Botany, I can probably pick it up directly from the warehouse.
  • The first load worked fine. No problems. :-)
  • Fri 18 Jan. I am at work, just after 8AM. A man calls from appliances on line and says he will be at my place in half an hour. Well, it's a bit sad that I am not there. So we rearrange the delivery. Monday, anytime to my work.
  • Mon 21 Jan. 7:15 AM The microwave delivery man calls, says he will be at my work at 8AM, it is raining. At 9AM I call him. He says he could not find the address. I confirm it with him again. He will come tomorrow.
  • Tue 22 Jan: 12:56 PM. Well I have received the microwave. I was beginning to wonder where they were. But the man called 15 minutes before and then still cold not find the place. But it's sorted and I have received my box. Well the box is a little water damaged. Hopefully the microwave is in working order.
  • Tue 22 Jan: 8ish PM Installed the microwave. it slides around a bit in it's hole. Put a cup of water in and pressed the go button. It became warm. Good so far.

Video thumbnail. Click to play
Click To Play

the aftermath: Well I have used both the utensils now. I am happy with both. The microwave is so much smaller than the previous one that I am worried if things will fit in, but they do and it fits in the hole. The dishwasher is working well. I am happy because it has a hidden heating element. This means I can put top shelf only stuff on the bottom shelf. Good for the big bits of plastic.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Mount Annan Botanic Gardens

I have been trying to visit the Mount Annan Botanic Gardens for quite a while. I drive past it all the time on the way to Melbourne. I tried once before, but there was a queue about 1 km long to get in. It was only then that I remembered it was mother's day. So this was the next attempt. The day was ferociously hot. But we wandered around for the afternoon and then had dinner at the restaurant in the gardens.

"the blue tree" by yewenyi [?]
the blue tree
"treefern.JPG" by Wystii Arleon [?]

I had the duck, but I do not have a photo as they put prawns in it, so we had to send it back. I did not remember to take the photo when it came back.
"roast pork" by yewenyi [?]
roast pork

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

NYE 2007

Well, I had an opportunity to get a free ticket to stand on the Cahill expressway, but instead I decided to spend the evening at home and take photos from the balcony. I almost missed the 9:30 fireworks as they started at about 9:00. But luckily I managed to take some photos and then remembered to process the images before the midnight fireworks started. This was good because every single image was blurry or out of focus. They were even worse than my previous attempts. I had time to fix my settings and the photos of the main fireworks are my best so far. To take these shots I had to run the camera in manual mode as automatic mode always overexposes and I can only turn it down two stops. Initially I ran at about 1/4 of a second. Later I change this up to about 6 seconds and even later still I reduced it back to 2.5 seconds.

The panorama shots are best viewed in large version. Click on the image and then on the resulting page select all sizes.

"Fireworks in Darling Harbour" by yewenyi [?]
Fireworks in Darling Harbour
"splash" by yewenyi [?]
"Fireworks over Enmore, Sydney" by yewenyi [?]
Fireworks over Enmore, Sydney