News and Views from Dave Wilson

Archive for August, 2009

Thanks

by on Aug.29, 2009, under Photography

Thanks to the 181 people who voted for my picture in the Scott Kelby World Wide Photo Walk People’s Choice Awards. It came in 7th out of 900+ city winners who, in turn, were narrowed down from a pool of 35000+ or so entries. Although I didn’t win a prize, I’m extremely proud to have a picture in the top 10 of one of the competitions, especially since it was voted higher than any of the main competition winners and runners up.

You can see the main winners here and the People’s Choice winners here.

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World Wide Photo Walk People’s Choice Voting

by on Aug.22, 2009, under Photography

Voting is open until Tuesday for the Scott Kelby World Wide Photo Walk 2009 People’s Choice Award. My winning picture from the Austin walk is one of those in the running so, if you like HDRs of tire sculptures, your vote would be greatly appreciated. You can find the picture 4th down on the left on this page. To vote, click the rating you think the photo deserves, from 1 to 5 stars.

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2009 Dragonfly Migration

by on Aug.22, 2009, under Photography

Delicate Wings

Delicate Wings, originally uploaded by David A G Wilson.

The annual southbound migration of our local dragonflies is in full swing this morning in Central Texas. Thousands of the insects are streaming past the windows of the house so it gives me another opportunity to post a picture I took a few weeks back at the Wildflower Center.

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Waiting on Congress Bridge

by on Aug.10, 2009, under Photography

Waiting on Congress Bridge

Waiting on Congress Bridge, originally uploaded by David A G Wilson.

I took this photo about a month ago while out with a couple of friends trying to get pictures of the bats leaving Congress Avenue bridge for the night. If you’ve not seen this, it’s a pretty spectacular sight – a ribbon of around 1 million Mexican Free Tail bats leave their perches and head east at sunset to spend the night putting a dent in the Central Texas mosquito population.

Unfortunately, on this particular night, the bats decided to leave early so when we arrived 20 minutes before sunset, the majority had already gone and we missed the spectacle. While hanging around, though, I got a few good pictures of the bridge. This is definitely my favourite of the night and is now high in my personal Top 10 images for the year. Apparently others like it too since it was voted Photo of the Month at last night’s meeting of the Austin Photography Group.

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Animusic

by on Aug.09, 2009, under Computer, Miscellaneous

When I was working in digital settop box software, one of the biggest problems we used to have was ensuring that the audio and video stayed synchronised with one another. Arguably there’s nothing worse in TV playback than having the audio run slightly ahead of the video – even a 10mS audio lead is really noticeable and really messes up your viewing experience. Interestingly enough, if the audio is significantly behind the video (up to 100mS or so), you don’t worry so much since your brain is used to compensating for the delay caused by the speed of sound being so slow. I digress, however…

This morning, my 6 year old son introduced me to some videos on YouTube that give a whole new meaning to audio/video synchronisation. These animations do a superb job of synchronising the animated video content with the soundtrack. They are completely mesmerising. Take a look at this one then head over to YouTube for various others. You can buy DVDs at www.animusic.com.



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Downtown Photo Walk

by on Aug.08, 2009, under Photography

I attended a rather interesting and fun event this part Thursday. Trey Ratcliff, of Stuck in Customs fame organised a photowalk in downtown Austin and 160 people showed up. It was a bit of a zoo – tripods everywhere – but we had a great time. I’m pretty sure the State Troopers at the Capitol thought some kind of invasion was underway!

One of the challenges Trey handed out was to take your best photo of the Capitol yet. While I’m pretty sure this isn’t my best (you can see others here and let me know if you agree), it is definitely my favourite monochrome shot of the interior of the rotunda.

One of the other great benefits of the get-together was a chance to meet several Flickr photographers who I have been in touch with online for quite a while but have never actually bumped into in person. Among the list were Alex Suarez and Brandon Watts not to mention Trey himself.

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