February 5th, 2016

Akahna excited bunny

Momentary wins over the judges!

ZOMG. I've just learned the results of the 2016 Wanderlust Photo of the Year competition - and I was awarded second place! (Each category received a winner, a runner-up, and a highly commended entry)

I may not have won the first place, but still, this is tremendously exciting. ^_^ Indeed, it represents my first win as a wildlife photographer - and with it, public exhibition of the piece at the Destinations Show 2016, through this weekend, helping show there can be such wonder and beauty in the lives of a species often overlooked as a wildlife subject.

Apparently, The Danish Girl sees its digital release on Feb 16, and on physical media on Mar 1. ^_^ I admit, I'm torn - it's an excellent film, no doubt, but is it one I could really watch often?

So! The little Edinburgh break is arranged: Monday to Wednesday, Feb 15-17. ^_^ I'm so looking forward to this - I'd never really realised what a gem of culture in so many regards the city is. Staying in such a wonderful hotel certainly won't hurt, but I imagine we'll have plenty keeping us out of the room, between the many top notch restaurants, the castle, the museums, and the Whisky Tasting Experience, let alone a cheap day ticket on the buses, or a hop further on the train.

Saturday night was a bit of a collection of shorts, on the TV front: first, The Chickening (which I do hope you've seen =:), followed by another I only vaguely recalled downloading some time ago, The Leap - and which I'll make a point of recommending. It's not an especially fun short, but.. I shed some tears of happiness. Then, at long last, Prelude to Axanar, a fan-made TNG-era short, looking at the years before the Klingons began cooperating with the Federation. For the feature presentation, the roomie chose Lady Snowblood, a 1973 Japanese flick, being a Meiji era tale that could so easily have been a Western, a tale of a daughter's quest for revenge on the four assailants on her parents.

For anyone enjoying photography in the UK, I see Lenses for Hire are running their traditional 50% off February: all rentals are automatically half price until the end of Feb 2016, and can be booked months in advance, only chargeable immediately prior to the rental. If there's an exotic lens you've been wanting to try, now's the perfect opportunity to give it a shot for a lot less than usual. (And they've very good people to deal with, too)

You've probably read of the idea of paving roads with photovoltaic panels: and now, it's happening, in France, where the Minister of Ecology and Energy has announced that they intend to pave 1000km of road with such panels, in the next five years. "According to France’s Agency of Environment and Energy Management, 4m of solarised road is enough to supply one household’s electricity needs, apart from heating, and one kilometre will light a settlement with 5,000 inhabitants. So the maximum effect of the programme, if successful, could be to furnish 5 million people with electricity, or about 8% of the French population."

The only search engine you really need: the Frinkiac. Give it anything Simpsons-related, and it'll offer relevant screenshots.

Until Feb 14 2016, Final Fantasy II is free, if that's the kind of thing that rocks your world. ^_^ Launch the Final Fantasy Portal app (which acts as a container app for all of them), and you'll be able to purchase it for nothing. (If you get a somewhat unhelpful error about some elements of identity not matching, quit the app and relaunch it, and the next attempt should work fine)

Interesting times in aviation, with the Iranian sanctions finally lifted: Iran Air has already placed an order for 118 new Airbus craft, including a dozen A380s.

I really need to look into some gloves - Tuesday's rabbiteering was.. quite uncomfortable, with a strong, cold wind. Repeatedly, I had to hook the camera on the gate, and try defrosting the poor paws in the coat pockets, while the head remained somewhat protected by the hood. But.. it proved worthwhile. ^_^ Here's a touch of the seldom witnessed Bunny Conga.