I am a network engineer working for a Derby based ISP. When I’m not pushing packets around the internet, I dabble in web design and a little coding. When I’m not hunched over a keyboard, I like to get out into the countryside. I am a part time landscape and outdoor photographer, some of my work can be seen in the header above. My other hobby is field archery. Most weekends I can be found out in woodland honing my skill with a bow and arrow.
No, this isn’t a post about music. Although that is a great song. It’s actually a post about “Cloud Storage”.
Let’s get one thing straight from the outset. I hate the term “cloud”. It means nothing, cloud storage is simply storage attached to a server or servers somewhere on the internet that you have no visibility of.
Now you know what cloud storage is, you’ve probably realized that you’ve already used it in some form. Most of you will be familiar with Dropbox or maybe Google Drive. These services are great and I use both myself but you’ll probably find the amount of free storage you get a bit limiting. I know I do. When it comes to wanting to increase your storage space, it starts to cost. I’m lucky enough to have been given 50Gb of storage from Dropbox, mainly thanks to purchasing a particular brand of mobile phone. Unfortunately, I’ve only got that amount for 2 years at which point I will start having to pay for it. As I don’t like paying for stuff, I started looking for alternatives.
OwnCloud is free software that lets you run your own cloud storage. It runs on a variety of platforms including linux and windows and there are a variety clients available including clients for mobile devices. If you’re lucky enough to have a server sat in a data centre somewhere (which working for an ISP I do) then you can provision cloud storage on your own server. Again, removing the word cloud from that sentence….you can access your server storage from the internet and synchronize your data across several devices/platforms.
The install was pretty straightforward and the documentation is pretty good. Installation took me around an hour and the application works great. Administration is pretty simple using the web interface and the amouont of user control you have seems sufficient.
I’ve only been using the software for a couple of days, but so far this looks like a good alternative to the subscription services offered by the likes of Dropbox and GoogleDrive. When I’ve been using for some time, I’ll do a more in-depth review.
In case you missed Adobe’s announcement last week, Lightroom has gone mobile. Or more specifically there is now a Lightroom app for the iPad.
I’ve been waiting for this announcement for a while. I’ve used photosmith previously but I’ve found the sync process clunky at best, but up until now it’s been the best way available to take your workflow mobile. Adobe have changed all that with Lightroom mobile. I’ve only been using the app a short time so this isn’t a full review but so far, the functionality and usability looks good.
Unfortunately, to use lightroom mobile you need a creative cloud subscription. That’s not as expensive as it sounds. Light room is included with the Photoshp photography plan and is available in the UK for £8.78 per month in the UK.
The mobile app makes use of the smart previous introduced with lightroom 5. Once you have the desktop app and mobile app installed, simply sign in to your creative cloud account on both devices. On the desktop app, create a collection and add the images you’d like to sync to the ipad to it. From the library module simply click on the icon to sync the collection. Once the sync is complete your images will be available on your iPad and also on lightroom.adobe.com (which I only discovered today!)
Once the sync is complete you’re ready to organize, edit and share your images directly from the iPad. Any changes you make will automatically be sync’d back to your desktop catalog via the creative cloud.
A more details description of the setup can be found on Adobe’s website at https://helpx.adobe.com/creative-cloud/learn/start/tutorials/lightroom-mobile.html
I’ve already entered several NFAS competitions this year with varying results, but so far haven’t completed any EFAA rounds. Given that we’re off to France in June to compete in the European Bow Hunter Championships and the fact that there seems to be some confusion as to whether a classification shoot is required, I decided to do the Artemis Archers field round yesterday.
For those of you that haven’t shot EFAA rounds before, it’s a completely different discipline to NFAS field shooting. An NFAS course would typically consist of 36 or 40 targets, where as an EFAA course consists of 28 targets. Another major difference is that all EFAA courses for a particular round are the same. If you shoot a field round at any EFAA club in England, the round will be made up of exactly the same distance shots and same size target face. This means you can directly compare your scores from course to course.
The other massive difference is the number of arrows you shoot. As the NFAS have almost abandoned all of the official rounds other than Big Game, I usually shoot around 50 arrows on a typical shoot (you shoot each target until you hit it up to a maximum of 3 arrows). When you shoot an EFAA field round, you shoot 4 arrows at every target. This means by the end of the round you’ve shot 112 arrows.
EFAA rounds are great for finding problems with form or distances if you “gap” shoot. For me, yesterday highlighted quite a few problems. The main one being how unused I am to shooting distances over 40 yards. NFAS course setters very rarely put more than 1 or 2 shots out at more than 40 yards. EFAA courses have approximate 60% of the shots at 40 yards or longer.
On the whole I shot pretty poorly yesterday. I know in myself that I am capable of much more than I achieved yesterday. The two positives I took away from yesterday were that my shooting was straight for the most part. My line was almost perfect. The other that is I know for definite that I really need to practice my 40-80 yard shots and get some consistent gaps working before EBHC.
I also missed out on an A classification by 14 points. I’m hoping to get another EFAA classification shoot in prior to the EBHC competition but one thing is for sure, practice needs to move up a gear between now and June.
I’m not normally the type of person that makes new year resolutions and I guess these aren’t really resolutions but I figured I needed to make a list of things I wanted to achieve this year.
I’m going to need to recertify my CCDA this year anyway which means taking another professional level exam. I did the switching exam last time I needed to recertify so this time it’s the routing exam. I figure since this only leave the Troubleshoot exam and a CCNA that I might as well get the CCNP under my belt. The goal for this year then is to pass the CCNP-ROUTE, CCNP-TSHOOT and CCNA exams
Having attempted a 365 project on a couple of occasions in the past and watching an Episode of The Grid on Kellby TV I decided to stay away from that this year. I needed to come up with some goals that were realistic but still worthwhile. I’ve decided I want to get a decent portfolio together and try to start selling some prints online. To that end, the goal for this year is to get the website up and running with at least ten good images available to purchase.
One thing I learnt this year was my post processing skills are severely lacking. If I’m going to get any images together that are worthy of putting up for sale then my processing skills will need to improve. I’ve still not decided the best way to do this yet. I am currently considering a subscription to Kelby Training but I need to get some spare time together and give the one month trial a go.
I’m not sure if I am going to achieve all these goals but at least I have something to work towards. We’ll see how the year turns out in twelve months.