Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Low level photography in Wales.

Hi All, I've been doing a lot of "flyLow" photography over the last week or two and I thought I'd take a few minutes to share some photos, ideas, technique and location information in case any of you fancied having a go!

Some Photos
Typically if your living in wales your going to see a hawk. These are used for training new pilots in fast-jet manauvering and control.

If you look closer you can see that its the instructor in the back of the jet is doing the flying on this pass

This is an Alphajet - Not used for training this time, this was one the QinetiQ jets from (I think) RAF Boscombe.
This pilot was obviously having fun as he tipped his wings towards the photographers, pushing it past the vertical so much that if you look at the high resolution version of this photo you can see the QinetiQ markings on the far side of the cockpit.

To get a good photo of a jet as it flies by you need to develop your panning technique this technique is used a lot in motorsports photography and in general, any photography where you wish to convey a sense of speed whilst keeping the main subject of the photo in sharp focus. For the shots in the mountains I use shutter speeds ranging from 1/400 to 1/3200 and ISO ranges from 200-1000 The main reason for the large ranges is the changes in light values from one end of the valley to the other. This is definitely not somewhere you can shoot in full manual.

The best place I have been for these photographs is a place called the Mach Loop in Mid Wales. It is at Corris, not far from Machyllneth.
There are fantastic location guides here

Low flying aircraft prove to be one of the most challenging  subjects to photograph. Typically you need a camera with a fast autofocus and some very decent quality glass* in front. Having a camera with virtually no shutter lag and a high rate of frames per second is pretty important too. I use a Canon 30D with a Battery Grip and a Canon 300 F/4L Lens. 

I'll end this post with a final shot of the alphajet - currently my favorite photo.

*Glass is how "cool" people refer to lenses

Thursday, 3 April 2008

50th Post ! Forkin Hell!

Well, I thought I'd have some forking fun. Its seems that my university computer doesn't have process quotas turned on...

int main(){
int i;

This lead to some interesting uptimes,
2:42pm up 45 day(s), 21:30, 2 users, load average: 0.18, 0.43, 0.39
2:42pm up 45 day(s), 21:30, 2 users, load average: 19.76, 1342.68, 1231.63

Again, I'd like to say "Whoops" I really did think process quota's were running. On the plus side, Solaris recovered pretty quickly :-)

Friday, 21 March 2008

Linux CF form factor SBC

Hmmm, WANT!


If I can shoehorn wifi in there I'll buy it!

Sunday, 16 March 2008

As odd is even

Many times since I started programming I have had to write some sort of functionality to test if a number is odd.

It is odd that I woke up thinking about this and all the different ways I have implemented this test as my programming skill and understanding improved, so here's a whistle stop tour. I think its interesting to see the way thought processes change...

Ok, so when I was 15, my good friend Tim was pondering the same question, my answer was to use a float and an int.

Say that we want to test if '5' is even.
int a = 5;
float b = 5;
a = a / 2;
b = b / 2;
if(b!=a) // If they are not equivalent then the number is ODD!

As you can see, this is rather in efficient but at the time, it worked.

A little while later we learned about the % operator, so we can do something like this:

int a = 5;
b = 5 % 2;
if(b>0) // If b is > 0 then the number is ODD!

Then I went to cern, worked for a while on some pretty high performance C and ended up writing this without thinking about it:

#define isEven(x) x&0x1

Learning is fun :-P

Tuesday, 26 February 2008

Scary Flaw in Modern Encryption Techniques

Hi all,

I just stumbled upon this link to a paper from the Center for Information technology at Princeton.

The flaw lies within the assumption that DRAM losses its contents on power off, this paper shows that this assumption is faulty, values can remain in ram for seconds and even minutes after power off. This is of critical importance as it means that in-memory encryption keys and other non-secured information is accessible to attackers / forensic experts.

I imagine there are a number of strategies that mitigate the problem but it again highlights the biggest problem in computer security, the human link.

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Tom and Lowri Sitting In a Tree, ........

Well sitting in Rummers Wine Bar anyway.

They were being all squishy so I got a quick snap. Click on the image to get the full hi-res version.... if you dare! :-)

Oh, for those that care...
Canon 30D
Canon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5
f/4.5 1/80 sec ISO 640
-1 Flash EV E-TTL II

[edit] Other than a little retouching, this image hasn't been played with. Tom wanted to know what quality the lens was so I haven't applied any sharpening etc...[/edit]

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

February Sunset

February Sunset
Originally uploaded by hyakuhei

Don't you just hate the weather in February ? Brrr.... :-D

Monday, 4 February 2008

Baby Giant Turtle

Baby Giant Turtle
Originally uploaded by hyakuhei

Its here again, better than before!

The new Baby Turtle Picture!

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Self Portrait

Self Portrait
Originally uploaded by hyakuhei

This is my first ever first portrait, produced in my room for a picturethis project.

You can read about picturethis at the channel 4 webpages... http://channel4.com/picturethis

Its a great show to watch for any buddy photographers out there. I recommend checking it out with 4OD if you missed it when it aired.