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01 April 2010

Alles klar für Ostern

Gutes Wetter und freie Parkplätze
Blühende Bäume zu Ostern

Obwohl Ostern dieses Jahr auf einen frühen Termin fällt, spielt das Wetter freundlicherweise mit. Es ist warm, die Sonne scheint mehr oder weniger und hier in der Stadt blühen die Bäume. Das Photo habe ich auf dem Weg zur Arbeit noch schnell geknippst.

Wie immer zu Ostern leert sich die Stadt langsam. Deutlichstes Anzeichen: Die Zahl freier Parkplätze nimmt zu. Die Leute fragen sich gegenseitig wo sie hinfahren (d.h. auf sein oder ihr Dorf - ganz moderne fliegen ins Ausland um dem Trubel zu entgehen).

Hier im Büro lichten sich die Reihen auch schon, die einen sind gestern schon gefahren, die andern nur heute morgen noch kurz zur Arbeit erschienen und wir letzten werden wohl auch etwas früher gehen. Alles klar für Ostern also!

Posted by betabug at 13:50 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
05 April 2010

Extraship to Naxos

Easter holiday on the island

Easter holidays is on of the top occasions for all Greeks to return to their villages. Streets and boats are full. The ferry boat line that serves the island of Naxos put on an extra ship on Friday morning for Paros and Naxos. I took that ship and arrived midday of easter friday here.

The island is in full spring mode: Flowers everywhere, everything is green. The sun is shining. When you sit in the sun, it gets warm, but ifyou sit in the shade it gets a bit chilly with the wind.

This long weekend I used to relax and to take pictures. I'm taking little walks with the Arca strapped on my back, then I take pictures of flowery hillsides and paths, of white aegean houses under blue skies. There's the odd byzantine church and some venetian towers too. There are far more things to take nice pictures of, than I have time to take them. This camera is first of all slow.

Posted by betabug at 20:20 | Comments (1) | Trackbacks (0)
17 April 2010

Που κάνεις; Τι είσαι;

... οι σημαντικές ερωτήσεις στην ζωή

Χτες βράδυ έξω από τον σταυρό του Ταύρου, γυρίζοντας από μια έκθεση περάσαμε από μια άλλη παρέα. Μια κοπέλα από εκείνη την παρέα σήκωσε το κινητό της και μόλις είχε καταλάβει ποιος είναι από την άλλη είπε: "Που κάνεις; Τι είσαι;" Θεά η κοπέλα... μεγάλο γέλιο από μας και την άλλη παρέα βεβαίως και το κατάλαβε αμέσως και εννοείται που γέλασε και η ίδια.

Posted by betabug at 17:13 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
23 April 2010

Flickr Shoulder Slapping Evaluator

... an idea for a funny app

If you use Flickr (or, as some people lovingly call it, "Fuckr"), you might have noticed, that it's almost impossible to get real critique or even real comments on your pictures. All most people ever seem to get is shoulder slapping in the form of "Good shot", "wonderful capture", and "well taken" etc.. This might be feeling good for an average of 3 days when you start out, but it turns sour and empty fast. Well, being a geek and all, I thought about a technical solution or, failing that, at least messing with the stuff in a fun way.

To be honest, I haven't even looked at the flickr API, so no idea if this is possible, but here is what I propose: Write a bot that trawls the comments on your photos. Analyse the comments (maybe some bayesian playtime is needed, maybe not even) to see which comments are shoulder slaps. Have the bot check out the users who posted comments, analyse the comments they get vs. the comments they make. Find some magic pagerank style number to give a real value to the comments people give you.

What you want to know is if the comment "wow, great capture" on the picture of the red plastic bathtub in your backyard comes from a user with a firehose of such shoulder slappings or if it's the one-off comment from someone who usually does careful analysis. While you're at it, discard all the "please add this picture to the worlds-greatest-red-bathtubs group" group invitations. Then assign a score to your pictures. Something that tells you "people who care really cared for this picture". Or at least it tells you "the shoulder slappers will know I see through them". And if you didn't like it you can still look at all those "amazing picture" comments.

Update: Had a short look at the flickr API, this stuff should be well inside the realm of the possible.

Update 2: Just found this flickr comment generator - wonderful work!

Posted by betabug at 10:03 | Comments (2) | Trackbacks (0)
27 April 2010

Circular Rainbow

All around, up in the sky behind my hand
(part of) a circular rainbow, up in the sky behind my hand

On Sunday I went with a group from a mountain club to a place called Αχαρνές (Aharnes) to an educational rock climbing place. While we waited on a parking lot outside the village for people to dripple in, someone spotted this rainbow in the sky. The sky was slightly cloudy, slightly sunny. There was the sun behind some hazy clouds, throwing a perfect circular rainbow around.

I took some snaps with the mobile phone camera, covering the sun itself with my hand. This one is the best shot, slightly tweaked to correct a bit of the camera's color cast. I couldn't get all of the circle into the picture, too bad.

The day spent at the rocks was nice too. I didn't climb more than 2 meters, due to a small accident with my fingers beforehand. Seems you need all your fingers for this climbing business. Those borrowed climbing shoes that hurt like hell also didn't really help. I also took 2 pictures with the Arca, but ran into some technical problems... heck, this camera is pretty old. More on that another time though.

Posted by betabug at 14:11 | Comments (3) | Trackbacks (0)