Posted by: Andrew Skelton | 26/04/2012

I’m going out for an Indian*

Indian Elephant, originally uploaded by

It’s hard to believe, with the rain lashing down at my office window incessantly, that not long ago I was standing outdoors, basking in the heat of a spring sun, taking photographs of Indian Elephants during a visit to a nearby Zoo. The rain should mean I get to spend time on planning my trip to Africa or updating my website with some obvious oversights but it’s also sapping all motivation plus I’m still playing with my new toy, the laptop. What I hadn’t mentioned when discussing the various merits of the machine was the in-built sub-woofer and two good quality speakers that renders any audio as if it were being played on something much more sophisticated than a laptop.

I’ve just been carrying out some much overdue housekeeping on my old desktop machine, deleting files where necessary, collating other, and transferring to the Filer if (mostly photos) they have not been uploaded already; whilst sorting, I happened upon a couple of directories of sound files, extracted from CDs I own but can’t seem to find at the moment. These aren’t your regular music CDs, there are enough of those already lining the wall of my office and the playroom, but instead are full of nature’s melodies, Bird Song. I made a concerted effort, a good while ago, to learn the various songs of European birds to allow me to both identify and determine the mood of birds when out and about. This skill has been useful in numerous situations, but I think I’ve found the best use for the audio tracks as I sit in my office with a warm mug of coffee, typing this blog to the beautiful tones of a Nightingale (sadly I don’t live on Berkeley Square).

With the various bits of web enabled technology I own, whether this be my smartphone, tablet, or PC I think I’m going to make a concerted effort to Embrace The Cloud (which is easier said than done if you’re following some Buddhist teachings). As a family we’re starting to use a co-ordinated web-based diary system (I purposefully avoided the “Solution” word) which all our phones use and which I can pick up via the tablet and PC. There are numerous other systems I will investigate but one that I did look at some time back and which has perked my interest again with this new laptop is Cloud Printing. The technology isn’t that revolutionary – I’m sure at some time or other you’ve all printed to a work’s print server, in fact you may well have one at home now, but what interests me is the ability to print from anywhere, whether on the home network or not. Guess what, there’s an app for that… well, sort of; I’m pretty tied in with Google’s offerings as I’ve mentioned before and as such it’s not a huge leap for me to embrace their Google Print offering which will allow me to hook up one of my printers via the PC to their Print solution, allowing me to connect from anywhere and print… now if only they offer a “Ensure there’s enough paper in the printer and the ink cartridges are all full” Cloud service, I’ll be laughing.

Speaking of my website,as I was at the beginning of what has turned out to be another marathon of a blog, I can’t believe when I finished it in January that I thought it was complete, there are a number of obvious omissions. I’m also amazed I’ve broken the major rule with the site, namely lack of updates since it went live, but with my blog, teaching, photo sessions etc. the months in between seem to have evapourated (unlike this rain). First of all I want to rework the portfolio section, re-classifying images allowing visitors to easily locate photos of the animal/bird/plant they’re interested in and at the same time adding in more and more images. I’ve also omitted, unintentionally, any details about courses I’m running as well as details about tuition plus I’m thinking of adding a members section where there is extra content. All this takes time, of course, which the rain should have provided but there always seems to be other distractions taking up my time… like my camera lenses, perhaps I should focus (boom, boom! I’m here all week).

*Actually that’s tomorrow when I will be going out for an Indian Meal with friends.


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