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Thursday
Mar032011

Is This Thing On?

I leave for a few days, weeks, months, years and this site goes INTO the Din. That's going to change as we get this place back into shape. It needs more than a remodel. We'll be taking it down to the foundation and bringing it up to code with a new look for our blog, Above the Din.

The Communications aspect is on permanent haiutus. It served us well and it provided a launching pad for our Marketing and Design business. A lot has changed and the Din will too. Stay tuned for Above the Din, v2.

Tuesday
Apr202010

Et cetera

It's been over a year since I've posted anything on ATDC. A lot has happened over that time. Due to all the changes and direction of this site. I'll be redesigning and publishing an all new version of ATD.

Sunday
Jan182009

Snowonder

Before it rained, it snowed. A lot!

We had over two feet of snow in Duvall. It was beautiful to look at and fun, until it wasn't. While we were prepared for it personally, the cities in the area were not and probably wouldn't be again if happened tomorrow due to lack of equipment to handle a storm of this magnitude. Once again, I'm grateful to have neighbors and friends that stuck (trying to get unstuck) together to make our way around it. I put together a small clip of what it looked like before it all melted.

View the Video

Wednesday
Jan142009

Rained Out

A few weeks ago, we experienced another "100 year" snow storm. It's similar to one we had 10 years ago. We received just over 2 feet of snow over two weeks. After that, it started raining and raining—over 12 inches in parts of our mountains. The video clip shows what happened to our valley once the snow melted. I'll be posting another clip soon from the snows we had as well. The video footage in the clip is from my latest tool - the Canon 5D Mark II (full 1080p reduced to 1/4 size). I'll be providing some updates about that as well.

View the Video

Saturday
Nov292008

Reading Between the Lines

http://blog.vincentlaforet.com - New York photographer/videographer.

http://www.ted.com/index.php - Ideas Worth Spreading.

http://wmbriggs.com/blog - Got stats?

http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com - Fun with clips and chains.

http://www.audioholics.com - I can stop anytime.

http://www.markmonitor.com - A superb company for domain management with kind people that go above and beyond.

Friday
Nov282008

No Comment

Comments are now off until I can rework the blog section of the site and do some upgrades and updates.

Saturday
Apr122008

A Second Chance

Are you in need of a cat or dog? Is your current tribe of fur balls running low? Please see our friends at Homeward Pet. They are a no-kill pet adoption center. They bring in more animals each year than they have room for. Two of our three cats are former members of the Homeward posse.

Homeward does a great job, are very professional and can hook you up with your own new best friend. There's no need to look at pet store with so many stray and abandoned animals in need of loving homes.

If you are full on your fur quotient, there are other ways you can support this great organization. Check them out today at http://www.homewardpet.org/

Friday
Feb292008

Happy Birthday, Leap Year and Leap Day

If the calendar is correct, she's only eleven today. Being a leaper has its benefits. Happy birthday Sis.

Thursday
Feb212008

The Earth's Shadow

The clouds parted long enough to view the total lunar eclipse. I captured this shortly after the full eclipse.
NASA's Eclipse page provides all the details.

eclipse.jpg

Tuesday
Jan012008

2008

The year has come and gone;
passed you by again.
A new year now to use.

Wednesday
Dec262007

Glass

[L]ong, white glass. If you're a photographer, you know of what I speak. Mrs. Claus was kind enough to bring a new Canon lens this Christmas. I often track photo equipment and electronics (for pricing, availability, etc.) through wish lists, but I wasn't planning on getting any of it this season. Christmas is full of surprises.
What did I receive? A 300mm f/4L with IS/USM. I was also fortunate enough to receive a 1.4x II extender, which will work well with the 300mm and also my 70-200mm f/2.8L.

The beauty of IS (Image Stabilization) on this lens is that it "allows the lens to sense movement from "shake" or vibrations, and instantly apply an optical correction by moving a group of lens elements"1. It reduces vibrations and blurring when shooting w/o a tripod, and can turn what would have been a ruined image into something usable.

Once the weather clears (probably in July), I hope to get out and shoot with it. "L" is my favorite letter this holiday season!

Wednesday
Nov282007

The Evergreen State

Washington State is known for being green (and rainy), but it has a few other colors as well. View some of the state's beauty and outdoor diversity from the Sound to the mountains and beyond in the latest gallery.

Wednesday
Nov212007

Giving Thanks

Dog in Sound with stick

Take some time on this holiday to reflect and you may find that you have more than you thought.

A few things I'm thankful for:

Amy
Family
Friends and neighbors
Good Health
Freedom
Brave men and women who serve and protect us
A cozy bed
Hot and cold running water
Electricity
Great clients
A furnace
Four-legged friends
Drivers with insurance
Chocolate

On this Thanksgiving, let us be grateful for what we have and also for what we don't have.

Monday
Sep032007

Pioneer Inno XM2go

13.5 hours, 850 miles and an open road from Seattle to Park City, Utah. We've taken this trip many times, but this was the first time with our portable Pioneer Inno satellite radio.
On this long drive, we normally go through our CD collection a few times, run the FM scanner usually landing on one of those Super Stations playing Madonna, followed by Garth Brooks, Motley Crue and then The Beatles. We wanted to try XM, so we purchased a portable satellite radio - a Pioneer Inno XM2go.

The Pioneer can play XM content at home or in your car (with optional car kit) and can also be used to play recorded mp3's and/or XM content. It was easy to setup - plug in the antenna and power to the base, attach the player to it, turn it on and then sign up for the XM service. The service registers the player and then begins loading content to it.

Both kits come with an antenna and several feet of attached wire to locate the best reception. Like other satellite products, it works best with the antenna towards a south-facing window with few obstructions. Out on the road, it doesn't seem to matter as much. I put the antenna on the dashboard and it worked well. You can install the antenna outside the vehicle, but it's not necessary.

The best part about a portable player is being able to listen to the same station in your vehicle, driving through three different states with minimal loss of signal. If your vehicle has an "aux" line out, you can run a cable from it directly to the base without having to use the included FM receiver plug-in. You can also add your mp3's to the player and eliminate the need to travel with an extra player.

The UI is very intuitive and is easily navigated. The player also comes with a remote that includes the same buttons and functionality as the player.

One downside to XM in general is the quality of the sound. It's fine for news and talk radio, but for music, it's highly compressed and seems on the level of FM radio. That's a good trade-off for receiving a lot of content anywhere, anytime.

If you don't have an XM-ready receiver and want a portable solution to satellite radio, look no further than the high quality Pioneer Inno.

Monday
Sep032007

Summer is Falling

Where did July and August go? I'm looking at September and most folks wonder if we've already had our one week of summer, or if Autumn has already moved into second gear. Leaves are turning shades of red, it's been raining most of the day and The Who's, "Rain on Me" is playing in the background. We must be in Seattle.

Thursday
Jun212007

Happy Summer Solstice

Use that extra two seconds of daylight wisely.

Monday
May212007

Vote Early, Vote Often

No really, do it now. A website I worked on recently — NWsource People's Picks 2007 — is an annual contest that lets you vote on your favorite places to eat, shop, recreate and more. If you're a business owner, download a poster and have your patrons advertise for you. It's completely free!

Monday
May212007

Taking Care of Business

We frequently criticize businesses for their bad behavior and poor customer service, but we don't praise the ones that are honest, professional, customer driven and do excellent work.

Two business that deserve much praise are Campbell Nelson VW/Nissan and Bothell Ski and Bike. I highly recommend both.

I've used Campbell Nelson for many years and their staff is well-trained and friendly in both sales and service. They go out of their way to ensure you know what is happening on all levels with your wallet still intact.

Bothell Ski and Bike is a new find that has been a revelation. Too often in the bike biz, you find knowledge scant and service waning. The two owners, John and Greg, have invested in their customers with expert bike knowledge, experienced bike mechanics with a first-rate shop and an excellent bike fitting service.

Whether you're buying or servicing two wheels or four, these folks will take care of you.

Friday
Mar022007

Receding Snow Line

We had an unusual snow storm two days ago that dumped seven inches of new snow. In the Puget Sound, it doesn't usually last long.

All in a day...(watch the snow on the rocks)

Thursday
Mar012007

On this Day - March First

March First—turning the corner to Spring, renewal, hope for more sun, a new day, half way to a birthday, on this day.