Archive for October 31st, 2007

San Francisco Zoo, revisited

A much shorter edit of my San Francisco Zoo video at just 1/3 of the original length, re-made specifically for Vimeo’s HD channels. Shot with a Canon HV20, edited with Vegas Pro 8. Starring: bears, peacocks, penguins and tigers among others. Music and video are licensed under the Creative Commons “BY” license. You can view the video in 720p HD using your browser by clicking here instead of watching the low-res video below.

Regarding Vimeo, which I blogged about the other day: Sure the site has its problems (e.g. no de-interlacing during re-encoding, avatars used with wrong sizes throughout the site etc), but overall it looks great, and the HD ability is just top notch. It just feels much better than Stage6, the only other place that allows HD videos to be played. It feels much cleaner and more targeted towards videographers and artists rather than “one size fits all” youtube-style.

In fact, the site has been a hit in the HV20 community lately (a community that proved this year that there is a market for hobbyist artists), and its popularity is growing. For my, it seems that Vimeo will replace Revver and YouTube will only function as a platform for my video tests. Hopefully the last few issues will be fixed and the missing features will be added soon, but even as it is now it does the job if you know how to export vide properly out of your NLE. If you have an HD camera export and upload in 1280×720 at 4 mbps, and if not, use 800×440 at 2 mbps — just make sure you export in progressive mode.

Update: One more re-edit, this time for Stanford University’s campus. HD version here. I have one more video to re-edit (my Foster City video), but I will need additional footage to do so, so that would take time.

Update 2: And one last one, for the road. HD version here.

The Methuselah of fish

On August 10th 2004 we bought 12 Cerpae Tetra fish. When they entered our big fish tank, they caused the death of the rest of our Cardinals and Danios (possibly they brought a disease from the store).

Anyways, within a year, the Tetras started dying out too, naturally mostly. However, a single one survived, but at that point we had decided to not buy more fish. For two years that Tetra fish lived alone in a big tank, ate food only twice or thrice a week and listened to my music daily. These fish are not supposed to live that long, especially not alone. And yet this one did (and it would probably live even longer if we were cleaning up the tank more often). I only discovered it dead this evening, after 3.5+ years of life.

I am only sad because it didn’t mate as there were no other fish in the tank. It seems that this IS the kind of fish that could bring its species to the next level. Goodbye my little tiny friend.

JBQ goes to Google

Starting Monday, JBQ will be working for Google. A new chapter will start in our lives, and especially JBQ’s. Quite possibly, JBQ would have been working for Google for years now if our visa situation was not an obstacle. But finally we are over that now, they really liked him, they made him a very good offer, and so he will finally be there soon.

Which means that I won’t be reporting, blogging or commenting on Google and their related technologies from now on. While I know nothing about what they are working on — in fact JBQ does not know what he will be working on at Google either –, I will still not be blogging about stuff even if I knew. The only thing I know is that they have amazing food anyway.

So, congratulations my love! Good luck on keeping off the weight you lost last Spring too. 🙂

Squaw Valley revisited

A much shorter re-edit of my original Squaw Valley video, re-made specifically for Vimeo’s HD channel. You can view the video in 720p HD using your browser by clicking here instead of watching the SD video below. Shot with a Canon HV20, edited with Vegas Pro 8. Music and video are licensed under the Creative Commons “By” license. We are thinking with JBQ to go back to Squaw Village at the end of next month for a few days, we’ll see.

As for the HV20, it was voted the best consumer camera of the year via CamcorderInfo. It won the “Best HDV”, “Best High Definition” and “Best Under $1000” categories.