Ignition blog roundup

OK well mostly Rich highlights.

* Tong Family Blog: iPod Backup — Rich points to a summary of ipod backup tools. L this is what you need.
* Brett on field water purification. We just had an instance of giardia in the family so this is timely
* Rich on home NASes. I’ve gone away from NASes as I always have an old PC around and it just easier to whack a bunch of usb drives on it and use it as a server.
* Rich on Seattle Dim Sum.. Rich you have to take me to lunch at Top Gun someday and show me what to order

More Stuff I Want But Don't Need

* Bell & Ross BR 01 Phantom — beautiful sparse design. Not sure I could ever justify 4-5K for such sparseness tho.
* The Teslaphonic Organ — I pretty much love anything involving a Tesla coil.
* Burning Rocks. They just look cool.
* Ultralight Pack. If/when I ever get serious about hiking I will have to go ultralight
* Electronic guitar tuner. Not sure that adding a bunch of electronics and a battery to the process really helps in guitar tuning…

Outdoors recos

* Martin on camping close to Seattle
* Top 10 waterproof tech items.  Really for divers but in our wet conditions, some good things in here to keep cameras and ipods dry
* Tips for ultralight backpacking.  Now if someone would just come up with ultralight water…
* Over the next couple years need to look at boats for daytrips around lopez island — corsairmarine, southpawboats, parkerboats, customweld all seem worth looking at.  Want zero maintenance and high durability.

Keeping up with Rich

As usual Rich has been a posting machine during the last month. Some of the highlights I’ve noted:

* Iceland travel. I hear they have some fantastic river rafting there. I’m ready to go. Just added to my 43places goals.
* Grilling resource — I can always use grilling tips.
* Rich’s small camera recos. I’m about due.
* Tips on HT PC setup — sounds like zoomplayer is essential.
* NTFS resizing tips. I am sure I will need these some day.
* Rich is playing FEAR. I think I need a new PC.
* Rich on Gaming PCs. Having bought 3 and bult 2 others, I am inclined to buy from Falcon Northwest for my next. Debugging the assembly of a high end machine with 2 SLI cards, 10K sata drives, raid arrays, fast dvd/cd drives — well it is just a lot easier to let the Falcon guys burn their time.

Mt Si

Went up Mt Si this week — first time ever. 4 miles one way, I think about 3200′ vertical gain. Gorgeous day and gorgeous spot. I think I still like Rattlesnake ledge better but this was beautiful.

Along the way, discovered my hiking boots weren’t all they could be. Upgraded to some asolos.

Tiger Mountain 6-19

Hit Tiger Mountain this morning for a hike. It is a nice area and incredibly convenient — maybe too convenient as it was quite crowded particularly at lower elevations, and the trails are pretty beat. But a gorgeous morning so I can’t complain.

Here’s my good morning video (3Meg), about 500 feet up from the trail head. And a little later on, on the backside of Tiger Mountain, walking and thinking about doughnuts (7Meg), the logical conclusion of any hike.

Cougar Mountain 6/17

OK I can’t leave well enough alone. I have to take every opportunity to turn everyday human experiences into geekfests.

So I got a Samsung SC-X105 Sports Camcorder, attached the remote lens with the provided straps to my head, and went out yesterday morning. You can see and hear what I saw — a little waterfall (1 Meg), a nice tree covered trail (2 Meg), griping about my ribs (2 Meg), and the Bagley Seam trail (6 Meg).

These videos are “sports videos” — you see it as I did it, handsfree video shooting, so very jerky and hopping all over the place. The camera is a great fun toy tho some serious aggravations as noted by other reviewers — you have to keep telling it to use the external remote lens every time you turn it on, it doesn’t remember this setting. But it is incredibly small, the camera comes with a caribiner clip instead of a belt loop which is great, and the remote lens is just way cool.

Oh the other problem is the video format — the doc all says “MPEG video” but it is using some Samsung-tweaked codec that nothing in the world understands. So you have to install the Samsung app, force it to convert the video to DVIX or DVI, and then you can use another app to play with — I used Windows Movie Maker as I had it lying around.

Hiking Progress

I’ve done a good job since rededicating myself to exercise — getting out on the trails 2 or 3 times a week. And I am still having fun.

On the downside, I fell and broke a rib Sunday. Ouch. Doesn’t prevent me from hiking but quite painful. Basically a rookie mistake — climbed onto a moss-covered fallen log and my feet flew out from under me. I have crappy instincts yet when it comes to the woodlands. As a kid I spent all my summers on the rocky shores of georgian bay, and to this day I am pretty good at scrambling along rocky, slippery shorelines — I have great instincts when it comes to mossy, slippery, unstable rocks. I have none of those instincts for woodlands terrain.

Hiking First Weekend of June

OK we had intended to hit Rattlesnake Ledge this morning but life got in the way. Perhaps next weekend. Instead I got back out to Cougar Mountain for the second time this week. Starting from the RedTown trailhead, i went out on the Wildside trail and then did a counterclockwise loop on the Marshall’s Hill/De Leo Wall circuit. A nice circuit, I strongly recommend the counterclockwise direction, or you face a killer trail up the De Leo Wall.

Also I love my new REI Summit Trekking Poles — first poles I’ve had and man they can really make a difference in stability and speed. Now I’m starting to think about getting anti-shock poles or ultralights . Thanks to Terry for turning me onto these (Hey Terry you need a blog).