Monday, December 15, 2008

Monday, October 6, 2008

Monday, July 7, 2008

2008-07-07 Canada Line Photography - 500 Posts

As of today, there are now 500 posts on our Canada Line Photography blog.

(And, coincidentally, there are 50 posts on this blog!)

Enjoy! ^_^

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Friday, June 6, 2008

2008-06-06 Wow: 30 cents in a week!



Last weekend, I took a picture of the gas prices, since the local Arco station (locally known as "the cheapest gas in L.A.") just hit $4 per gallon. Today, the price was $4.30. Yikes! That is a $0.30 increase in five days!

It looks like they had to buy a new "4" for their sign.

Peak oil is really hitting home now.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Monday, April 28, 2008

2008-04-28 Yikes! Hotter in Whittier than Death (Valley)!

It was, just a bit ago, actually hotter in Whittier (91˚F/33˚C) than it was in Death Valley (87˚F/31˚C).

Of course, that didn't last long (it's now 88˚F/31˚C in Whittier, and 90˚F/32˚C in Death Valley), but for a bit, it was fun to brag about. ^_^


Death Valley:

It was so hot yesterday that I was worried that Tafyrn would completely melt, so we made sure we had plenty of cold water, and to stay in the shade as much as we could. He also got to try some of the orange-juice popsicles we had up in the freezer. You just make—or buy—some orange juice (whatever claws the furniture), pour some of it into popsicle trays, put these into the freezer for a bit and WOW—tasty popsicles! It works with home-made lemonade as well.

When he left for Vancouver this morning at 04:00, the temperature outside, here, was 71˚F/21˚C!

Anyway, we will continue to melt now...

Sunday, April 27, 2008

2008-04-27 Verizon is Still Evil

Verizon has been continuing to give us troubles, hijacking valid web addresses like to their "powered by Yahoo" search service. Over the last week, we were unable to get to many major sites on the Internet. Yet, all the time, connecting via IP worked without problems.

It is clear that the problem is in Verizon's network — their "DNS Assistance" service is mistakenly thinking that valid addresses do not exist. However, their support organization is sadly even more broken than their network...

We called front line support, and the lady that first helped us correctly narrowed down the problem to DNS resolution, and was starting to walk us through the procedure to "opt out" of "DNS Assistance". However, when she found out that we were using a Macintosh, she refused to provide further assistance, and indicated we had to talk to someone in their Macintosh support department. (Despite the steps being configuration changes to the modem, which had nothing to do with the operating system)

Ten minutes of holding later, we talked with another fellow, who first refused to acknowledge that the problem even existed, then said that the problem was the browser that we were using and told us that all he could recommend was to download Firefox, despite the fact that I walked him through the fact that you could see the problem just using telnet, and that the DNS resolution subsystem is independent from the browser.

So, time for a supervisor...

Ten minutes more holding, and the supervisor said that "nothing could be wrong with their network, and that the problem was with the modem." So I specifically asked if the DNS resolution code that redirects me to a different address when the requested address is not found was in the modem. He answered that it was, and said that the only thing he could do was to send me a new modem.


Of course, while on hold, I found forum postings on how to change the modem DNS configurations, the passwords for the modem, and the official Verizon support page that describes how to "opt-out".

Official Verizon DNS Assistance Opt-Out Instructions

We're going to take the screenshots of Verizon redirecting to a yahoo branded search service and send them to google, since this hijacking is completely unacceptable, even if it is the result of their system problems.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Sunday, March 23, 2008

2008-03-23 14π

14π cooking in the oven.

Vegetarian goodness!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

2008-03-02 Spring Flower Photos

We went walking through the hills in Hellman park, Whittier, and took some photographs of some blooming flowers along the trail. The hills were alive with green, and the mustard plants were almost as tall as we were.

2008-03-02 A Funny Bumper Sticker

Saturday, March 1, 2008

2008-03-01 The Tar Pits

We were originally planning to take the train up to to Santa Barbara for the day, but in our haste to depart, we forgot the discount tickets that would have made the trip affordable. So, given that we were already almost at Union Station, we just stayed on the 720 bus, and got off at the George C. Page Museum of La Brea Discoveries (a.k.a., the La Brea Tar Pits). ^_^

We've been there once before, and we very much enjoyed the experience. The last time we went, the pits were fairly active, with large amounts of tar and methane bubbling up to the surface. This time, the geology was a little more subdued, but we still had a wonderful time.

In the main water-filled pit, near the front entrance, a statue was erected to depict a wooly mammoth caught in the tar, slowing sinking to her death. This time, we noticed a subtle detail that had escaped us on our first visit: The statue actually moves back and forth over time. It's a neat effect, one that makes you wonder until you look closely and line everything up to prove to yourself that it is indeed moving.

Despite the lack of activity, the tar slicks on the surface of the water were beautiful, and we took many photographs of the diffraction patterns. Quantum Physics in Action!

Inside the museum, there was a very cute statue of a dire wolf. ^_^

A tree in the inner courtyard at the museum is beginning to seed.

While walking across the grass, we noticed a fair number of tar seeps. One has to be quite careful walking around the grounds and surrounding neighbourhood to avoid sticky shoes.

Finally, we visited Pit 91, and were able to see some of the palaeontologists working on preparing the excavation for the 2008 working year. Wow — That's a dirty job.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

2008-02-26 Squirrel Nest!

While I was walking to work, I noticed this little critter in a tree near our home. She was quite unafraid of my presence, and let me get fairly close to take pictures.

She spent most of the time gathering up leaves in her paws, which she took up into the tree to add to her nest. The nest is quite visible now, made of woven leaves, branches and other tree matter. I'm sure it's quite cozy inside. ^_^

2008-02-26 Canada Line Photography - 350 Posts

As of today, there are now 350 posts on our Canada Line Photography blog.

Enjoy! ^_^

Monday, February 18, 2008

2008-02-18 So Cute!

I saw these in the supermarket, and they are so cute!

Of course, there is something really wrong with importing food all the way from South Africa. Just think of all the fuel that was consumed to ship them all that way to Canada, almost on the other side of the world.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

2008-02-17 Seagulls

Seamora and I were admiring the seagulls as they were gliding along beside the ferry, and they gave us plenty of opportunities to take many very nice pictures.

2008-02-17 iMac Cat Bed, Part 1

What do you do with a broken iMac?

You make a Cat Bed with it, of course!

Seamora and I were given a broken iMac, so we just had to make our own, even though we don't (yet) have any cats. It took around an hour to gut the iMac, which sadly did not yield many re-usable parts, and here is the result:

All we need to do to finish this project is glue the pieces together, add a blanket, and get a cat (or five). ^_^

Monday, February 11, 2008

2008-02-11 Ouch!

I've the results of a car colliding with a wooden power pole, but this one must have really hurt...

Thursday, February 7, 2008

2008-02-07 Winter Sunrise

A lovely sunrise seen from outside Joyce Skytrain station.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

2008-01-29 Flying with SA7AN!

How's this for an booking code...

Sunday, January 27, 2008

2008-01-27 Seattle Sunset from the Air

Upon flying into Seattle, I was rewarded with a spectacular set of views of the evening sunset reflecting from the downtown skyline across the water.

The sunset was spectacular through the clouds.

2008-01-27 There's always a way...

Seamora and I were waiting for Seamora's flight back to L.A., and we heard an announcement that the flight to Phoenix at the gate next to ours was delayed. Upon looking closer, we noticed something interesting: It appears that the gate agents were unable to convince the computer that the flight was delayed, so it was displaying that that flight was "Final Boarding", despite the absence of an aircraft.

Of course, when things digital go wrong, there always is an analogue fix, so with a little tape and some baggage tags, they soon had worked around the problem.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

2008-01-24 Winter's Frost

These delicate ice crystals are over five centimetres long, and have pushed up the surface of the ground as they grow. These often form on exposed dirt in the shade when it is above freezing during the day, and below freezing during the night. If you walk across dirt that has these crystals underneath them, you leave white footprints.

Does anyone know what the technical name for this type of frost is? I've been told that it is hoar frost, but this frost forms under the surface of the ground, and thus is unlikely to be the product of sublimation.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

2008-01-22 Crater Lake from the Air

Our flight path crossed just to the east of Crater Lake, Oregon.

A zoom of Wizard Island can be seen in the rightmost photograph.