Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Point Lobos

Cypress Grove at Point Lobos State Park

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Misson Carmel III

Gate to the graveyard at Mission Carmel
Canon EOS 20D - ISO 100 - f/11 @ 1/6 sec - 17-40L

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Happy Holidays

Taking some time off from work over the holidays, so blogging may be a bit light over the next couple of weeks.

Thanks for your interest and I wish all of my visitors to Futurballa, a happy holiday season and all the best for the New Year.


The Futurballa Gnome wishes you a happy solstice
Mission Carmel II

Detail from Mission Door
Canon EOS 20D - ISO 100 - f/8 @ 1/40 sec - 17-40L

Monday, December 20, 2004

Mission Carmel

From inside the Chapel at Mission Carmel.
Elsewhere in Photography

Wired News reports on iPod fans getting their own iPod ad. For $20 you can have someone "ipodify" a digital snap, converting you into one of those duotone silhouettes that you see in the iPod ads.
IPod My Photo is a new web-based service that transforms any digital photo into a signature iPod silhouette-style ad.
Customers upload a digital snap, choose a background color and pay. In about five days, the "iPodified" image is e-mailed back to them. A white iPod and earbud wires will even be added to the picture, if so desired.

"It's mostly pets, a lot of children and tons of married couples," said iPod My Photo co-founder Kevin Muoio. "There's lots of new babies, too. Straight out of the womb -- bang, they've got an iPod on them."
My first response was to agree with other graphics types who think that $20 is a lot of money for something I could do in Photoshop in 5 minutes (even at my rates), but the creator of the site responds to these criticisms, "If you work in design, it's really friggin' easy," Muoio admitted. "But ask someone who is over 50 to do it, and it's not easy. It's not easy unless you've got the skills."

At Salon (daypass or subscription required), Katharine Mieszkowski reports on Flickr, a new (still in Beta) photo sharing site that has a novel way of organizing images. She calls it the Friendster of photo sharing sites. The concept being that images are organized by keywords, not galleries, so your cat images might get interspersed with other photographers cat images. Makes for an interesting community. She writes...
On most sites, you create your own album or page of photos, and invite your friends to look at them. But on Flickr, you can mingle all your photos with similar images, creating an endlessly beguiling cross-pollination of photos that spark a host of unique communities.
Personally, I participate in Dotphoto and Photoblogs.org, and as a somewhat more serious photographer, prefer to control my galleries, but for the avid catbloggers and their ilk, this sounds like a great idea.

Friday, December 17, 2004

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Mission Window

Window at Mission San Juan Bautista
Battle for Earthsea

Author, Ursula K. Le Guin speaks out at Slate on the shoddy treatment of her Earthsea books by the SciFi channel. She writes,
They then sent me several versions of the script—and told me that shooting had already begun. I had been cut out of the process. And just as quickly, race, which had been a crucial element, had been cut out of my stories. In the miniseries, Danny Glover is the only man of color among the main characters (although there are a few others among the spear-carriers). A far cry from the Earthsea I envisioned. When I looked over the script, I realized the producers had no understanding of what the books are about and no interest in finding out. All they intended was to use the name Earthsea, and some of the scenes from the books, in a generic McMagic movie with a meaningless plot based on sex and violence.
I loved these books as an adolescent, and it is a shame that they've been literally "whitewashed" for television consumption.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004


Changes at Futurballa

You may have noticed that I've adjusted the template. The purpose is to make a better home for larger pictures. Futurballa will be focusing more on Photoblogging in the coming time, and the 400 pixel columns just didn't cut it. There will still be text postings on photography, culture and links to other blogs. The focus though will be more on images and photography.

Futurballa has also joined photoblogs.org. Check them out to see some other great photoblogs. There is some amazing work going on out there.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Photoblogging @ Coyote Creek

The Coyote Creek trail runs near Monterey Highway in South San Jose, just a couple of miles from my home. The shots were taken around Parkway Lake, just north of the trailhead.

Friday, December 10, 2004

Spreading Chanukah Cheer

If you are looking for a great gift for Chanukah, Arthur Yorinks' The Flying Latke has been a festival of lights tradition in our household for a few years now. Wonderfully illustrated by the late William Steig, with appearances by children's book publisher David Saylor; famed artists Maurice Sendak and Vladimir Radunsky, William Steig, and the publisher Judith Rovenger, playing the roles of the family.
I've set my Tivo

The Screen Savers
is the last good show on what used to be Tech TV, since getting bought out by Comcast's G4TV, it is mostly a gaming network, instead of the channel for mature tech geeks that it used to be. But with a series of host changes, and some format tweaking, as well as a move to LA, the Screen Savers continues to offer some pretty cool interviews, gadget reviews, hacks, tweaks, and tips.

And to top it all off, assuming some things there are true, Tony Pierce will be making an appearance on the Screen Savers to talk about his book, How To Blog.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Have a Latke

Happy Hanukkah
Up on the Roof - Photoblogging

Taken from the roof of my office building, high above downtown San Jose.

a different view of Christmas in the Park

coming in to Mineta International

the HP Pavillion

suburban sprawl

roof object 1

roof object 2
Girls are Evil

A friend passed along this Craig's List posting. You can't argue with math.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Book Titles I'd Like to See

Ventriloquism for Dummies

Monday, December 06, 2004

Christmas in the Park

San Jose is celebrating 25 years of Christmas in the Park, a holiday tradition held each year at Cesar Chavez park in downtown San Jose. May I recommend the Mexican hot chocolate and the Churros. A tasty pair of cinaminny treats.

Send Me No Roses

There are few things that you can be certain of in life. Death, taxes, the corned beef at Canter's, but let me add a couple. It's hard being a Giant's fan or a Cal supporter.

After the Giants made it all the way to the series, only to choke against the Angels, and then fail to make the playoffs on the coattails of another NL MVP season by Barry (and don't talk to me about BALCO), now it is the turn of my Cal Bears to get the proverbial shaft.

Read about it here.

Good grief, Charlie Brown.

Thursday, December 02, 2004


The new sweatshops, it's in the game. Salon (subscription or daypass required) reports on EA Games and conditions in gaming software development. I, happily, am not in gaming development.

Salon also profiles the best cooking shows. My personal favorite, America's Test Kitchen, is one of the two that they rate as tops. Christopher Kimball is a rock star.

If you are considering a digital camera for the holidays, DPReview has a slew of reviews that they just posted.

At About Last Night, Our Girl in Chicago has a very amusing anecdote about a certain Chistmas with the Algonquin Round Table. Now that's my kind of Christmas Special.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

In the Village

Some older shots from a previous excursion to the town of San Juan Bautista.

Darn Useful, Indeed

This may only be of interest to a very limited number of my readers, but I had to share it because it is so handy, and a fairly nice use of JavaScript as well.

It's your very own Depth of Field Calculator!!!