In the meantime…

So I didn’t get a new laptop, which means I’ve saved some money that can be applied towards traveling, but it means I won’t be able to document/blog/vlog any trips as originally intended. The laptop had great specs at a great price (and as it was from Costco, no extended warranty plan was needed), a combination which looks to be impossible for the foreseeable future (for $1000, get a 1.83 GHz Centrino Duo T2400, 2GB RAM, 120GB Hard drive, those alone make it worth the price).

No new laptop means no new digital camcorder, no video editing software, and probably no travel for a while. And even worse, now there is a digital SLR that I like and is affordable. Have you heard about the Sony Alpha DSLR-A100? The camcorder I also like is the upcoming Sony HD HD camcorder. No that’s not a typo, that stands for Hard Drive High Definition camcorder, so I don’t have to worry about carrying extra tapes that can get lost.

You notice I like Sony products. No secret, my digital camera is a Sony Cybershot DSC-S85 from five years ago. Still works, but is larger than I would like for what it can do. Top of the line and expensive back then, I picked it because it looked more like a regular camera than the small and silver digital cameras at the time. I figured if thieves knew I had a digital, I would be more of a target, so the added bonus of my Cybershot is that it looked more like a conventional film camera. Nowadays, it doesn’t matter, and my camera fills my large pants pocket, making a large bulge. I have a shoulder bag to carry it around, which I used everywhere in Australia, but because it wasn’t a small, hide-in-your-pocket camera, I couldn’t go to a movie because they don’t let you in with a camera. In fact, I have many other Sony consumer electronic products and love their quality, but really dislike their gaming platforms. I bought the Playstation at original launch and ended up selling it to a friend who wanted it to be able to play the upcoming Final Fantasy VII and Super Puzzle Fighter Turbo. He even asked if he could buy it before I even considered selling it. So I actively avoided the PS2 and PSP.

I know, a DSLR will be even bigger, but the advanced features outweigh that inconvenience. To replace the Cybershot, I thought of a smaller, pocket digital that I can carry when I don’t want to haul the DSLR around. Or better yet, a mobile phone with a high megapixel camera. You may think the optics aren’t as good as a small digital, and you would likely be correct, but the all-in-one-ness functionality wins in this case. Besides, a small digital probably has a similar focal distance as a high MP cameraphone.

So, in the meantime, since travel won’t happen right away (I could be in Panama right now, but there is no one back at the laboratory to do what I do for them), I will attempt to tide you over with my gallery of pictures from my last research cruise. It took off from San Diego back in November 2004 (Monday after Thanksgiving), went down to the Equator, and ended up in Tahiti on January 2, 2005. So we all missed Christmas and New Year’s on a boat. After several days in Tahiti, I headed west to Australia for three weeks.

There are 985 photos in 8 albums, all captioned, which took a real long time. If you’re wondering, I took over 3000 photos in the entire 61-day trip. I chose Snapfish because it’s free, and you can upload multiple photos at once. Free Flickr allows only 20MB per month, which is about 13 photos at max resolution (which I always try to use). Webshots allows tracking on only 3 albums and 50 pictures per album and 10 albums maximum, for a total of 500 photos. Facebook is only good as long as I remain a student. Imageshack only lets you upload one at a time, completely unfeasible for near 1000 photos. So Snapfish it is, easy to upload and easy to caption. You can also get free credits to have some photos printed.

The only drawback is that you have to register to see albums. If you don’t want to register, you can go to www.bugmenot.com and look for a pre-registered name just to look at the photos. I have no idea that if you use the following link, you go direct to my album library, but if it doesn’t work that way, leave a comment with your email or send an email and I’ll send you the link through the Snapfish “invite” button, which I know works.

http://www1.snapfish.com/photolibrary/t_=15497906

Want a sample pic? Click here.

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