View Full Version : Intro

08-21-2007, 07:08 AM
Hello Board colleagues,

Welcome to our newest Message Board Forum. Perhaps a few words explaining how it came to be are in order:

As many of you know, I’m a very weight-conscious backpacker. For years our Maggie ( who describes herself as our “web-wrangler”) has been after me to take photos whilst on my testing Rambles. While it’s true that cameras have been coming down in weight, they still weigh several ounces—more than I’ve been willing to carry. There’s always an extra doo-dad I can test for that same weight.

I do, however, tote a cell phone. In most of the locations where I conduct regular testing rambles ( I tend to habituate many of the same places on tests—so that I can evaluate at given intervals the suspension system of brand X pack, say, or one of my own under development, with a memory of what other packs have felt like at the same point along the way) I’ve found sweet spots for cell phone use somewhere in the vicinity…usually involving a climb to the sweet spot. I can phone the Shop and have Janice make changes in the design, having them ready for me upon my return…so that I can head out again quickly. Very efficient; I have come to thoroughly appreciate the usefulness of these tools in my line of work. So. A cell phone earns its carry weight. Cameras, still or video (even worse for weight!), just haven’t made the packlist.

Those nutty cell phone designers at Nokia have come to the rescue. The brand new N-95 unit is a marvel of multifunction (always guaranteed to get my attention!). Let me see if I can list what this little instrument will do: cell phone, 5 megapixal still camera, using a Carl Zeiss lens (!!); unlimited video recording with the same lens, to include sound; wi-fi connectivity (there’s also a little four ounce keypad available); MP3 player; movie play capability (of course you can download books and other audio stuff into it too); hmmm…oh yes, GPS too (although so far this feature has proved inadequate compared to my beloved Foretrex 101). I’ll stop there. You get the idea. Weight: 4 ounces (!!!!!). I bought one when it came out, pronto. Took delivery in June. And promptly headed off for the first in a series of travels that comprised five trips in about six weeks. What a flurry of gearing up, down and sideways between these outings! Average back-at-home interval between launches was about two days. I figured out how to use my N-95 on the fly…and confess haltingly, by trial and error; no time to really study the manual—which I didn’t even take on the backpack outings…too heavy!

So. I’m back in the Shop. I have images—both still and video—from all these jaunts. There was no time to get them up here on the Board between journeys. Maggie and I discussed what to do with these images. They amount to the first ever ‘brought back alive” from your’s truly. Maggie thinks y’all might be interested in viewing ‘em. But, where to put them on the Board? All of them at once? Etc.

Hence the idea of this Blog format. Now that I have no excuse about weight I reckon Maggie will start to get her images from my rambles. Not just pretty pictures, but also some “how to” stuff, like feeding one of our stoves most efficiently, for example. Not only can I do that now, I can do it in video! I’ve even made a little tripod for such purposes. The upshot is that you can anticipate such information, “Tips” if you will, here on the Blog. And so forth. I can’t say where this will lead. Perhaps I’ll do a little old-fashioned “ruminating”. Who knows? This is a try-out format for us. I suppose I may even be induced someday to send communiqués “from the field”.

On the heels of that Introduction, let’s see what we can do with presenting The Five Trips. We’ll split them up into five Threads, for the benefit of you fellows on dial-up connections.

08-22-2007, 02:24 PM
I been a bit busy of late and missed the unveiling of this new blog...what a capital idea!

I'm looking forward to seeing some of the imagery that you liberate from your little Nokia "device".

10-04-2007, 10:46 AM
Are there any more blogs on the way?

10-04-2007, 11:06 AM
I have some footage of the Beach Demo. Been in the hills...and am heading back there tonight. When I light in town long enough we'll get that up. Thanks for asking!

10-04-2007, 11:31 AM
In the hills is certainly a good place to be! Unfortunately for me, I can't do it often enough, so I have to live vicariously through these forums in the offtime!

10-06-2007, 07:56 PM
Yup. You just eliminated the need for the I-Pod full of Dead songs.

10-07-2007, 10:25 AM

Precisely...he's got a whole bunch of music already loaded on it. I remember sitting in the six-man with him, back a few months, listening to ZZ Top I believe. The sound is quite good, considering the size (or lack of it) of the thing.

10-07-2007, 02:54 PM
Saw, Jeremiah Johnson (the old movie) is loaded in now. I've watched it from my bag. Nice way to pass the evening. Bring pop corn next time....

10-07-2007, 06:30 PM
Now THAT'S an idea! Popcorn cooked up on a Kifaru wood stove! I think it's do-able. The venerable 9" fish pan and some foil will do the trick. You've given me a good experiment for my Outdoor Lab. I'll let you know how it goes.

I'm glad you enjoyed the movie. The nights are getting longer, so tipi time is extended. Your little gizmo weighs less than a paperback book. :O)

10-07-2007, 07:10 PM

Were you remarking on the positive aspect of getting rid of the Ipod or the Dead songs on the Ipod? /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/grin.gif /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif


10-07-2007, 07:18 PM
Which gizmo is this? The camera phone, or a video Ipod?

10-08-2007, 10:52 AM
Kevin, you're right about that Ipod being surperfluous now. (Actually, it was an MP3 player.)

Saw, I've made popcorn on our stoves before. About the same wood routine as fish frying...which you have PLENTY of experience with.

PDX_DVX, as I said in the Intro, this new Nokia N95 device does multiple things. It's my cell phone AND still camera AND video camera AND tune player AND movie player. Pretty cool doo-hickey.

10-08-2007, 04:52 PM
Oh yeah, forgot about that. Pretty neat! The Ipod "shuffle" would be my choice if I wanted just an mp3 player- they weigh about as much as a pack of gum, and take up about as much space as a book of matches. Pretty neat.