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2019/03/23 TFSF9 at Midway SF
π 2019-03-23 01:01 in Clubbing
It's been almost a year since TFSF8 for which I had built my matrix shirt.

It was time to try my new beta shirt with 6144 pixels instead of 768 pixels per side. That was a lot more work (months of work to get a new driver working and port my code). It's not perfect yet, but it's a good start:

This was last year, Shirt v3:


And this year with my Shirt v4:



Back to TFSF9, this year was only 2 rooms/DJs compared to the 4 rooms/DJs in TFSF7 and TFSF8 these last 2 years. There is a case to less is more, too many rooms makes it hard to enjoy much of anything, knowing that you're missing 3 other sets at the same time, but maybe 3 rooms would have been better, or at least using one of the indoors rooms instead of the somewhat chilly outside psytrance patio?

Anyway, I was there bright and early with my friend Triode to make sure I could enjoy the entire night, and got a few pictures during setup;


Kim checking out the VIP menu
Kim checking out the VIP menu

The 2 stages started going soon after 20:00 and the main room was more enjoyable than last year where it was overrun with smoke and a bit too packed at times:










Then, soon after 23:00, my I went to check out Triode's custom set he had been working on and telling me about during the week. As we jokingly said, I dedicated it as the "zero fucks given" set :) It was fun to see how it went all over and jumped from tune to tune just enough to tease you and then go in another direction. Quite fun and enjoyable:





After Triode, I went back to the main room for Ferry Corsten who went from midnight to 03:00.



In between, I went arond the rooms to mingle with the crowds and catch up with some friends:





Triode and Afik talking shop
Triode and Afik talking shop

And before long, it was 04:00, end of the evening. Thanks all for the great vibes and the music. See you next time!

See more images for TFSF9 at Midway SF
2019/03/17 Calgary's Hangar Flight Museum
π 2019-03-17 01:01 in Flying, Museums
During a very short trip in Calgary, I went to check out the Hangar Flight Museum on the way back to the airport to fly home. It wasn't a huge museum, but it was my first aviation museum in canada, so that was reason enough to go :)
A very nice volunteer gave me a tour. The whole museum can be done in 1H or so, but I spent a bit longer:




interesting ripoff of the Wright Flyers
interesting ripoff of the Wright Flyers


The Avro Arrow was supposed to be a Mach2+ fighter, but was sadly scrapped, dealing a big blow to Canadian aviation designs
The Avro Arrow was supposed to be a Mach2+ fighter, but was sadly scrapped, dealing a big blow to Canadian aviation designs



hard to believe that jet engine fits in the Havilland Vampire
hard to believe that jet engine fits in the Havilland Vampire


interesting twin boom design, jet exhaust was pointing down, so you couldn't do a static runup without melting the runway :)
interesting twin boom design, jet exhaust was pointing down, so you couldn't do a static runup without melting the runway :)

Havilland Vampire is definitely an interesting early jet
Havilland Vampire is definitely an interesting early jet








Also, nearby was the aviation section of the Military Museum:



Canada used CF104/starfighters are nuclear bombers
Canada used CF104/starfighters are nuclear bombers














See more images for Calgary's Hangar Flight Museum
2019/03/17 Calgary's Military Museums
π 2019-03-17 01:01 in Museums
Calgary's Military Museums were much bigger than planned, spent 3.5H there, and that was without reading a lot of things. Definitely a pretty thorough collection worth a visit, you can spend the whole day if you read everything:
















Nearby was the Hangar Flight Museum

See more images for Calgary's Military Museums
2019/03/12 5 Snow Days in Canada: Sunshine, Revelstoke, and Lake Louise
π 2019-03-12 01:01 in Snow

I flew to Calgary to go meet Arturo in Sunshine, 1.5h from Calgary. Day #1 was ok enough snow, but while looking for more snow, ended up some snow waves where I missed one and ended up scraping the slope down with my goggles and nose:







my snowboard goggles pressed hard on my nose and ripped out my skin
my snowboard goggles pressed hard on my nose and ripped out my skin

Arturo took us big hot tub :)


Day #2 was supposed to be Lake Louise, but they got no new snow while Sunshine got another 4" or so, so we went back there:






I ended up on top of this cornice, and couldn't quite see down, but ended up painfully hiking back up. Good choice I guess
I ended up on top of this cornice, and couldn't quite see down, but ended up painfully hiking back up. Good choice I guess




After that, we drove to Revelstoke for the next 2 days. No fresh snow on the first day, but the snow was cold and stayd in good shape:









open creek, sign me up
open creek, sign me up

nice pretty birdies
nice pretty birdies


we then went to hike up the top
we then went to hike up the top

took a little while to the top, and was only partially worth it
took a little while to the top, and was only partially worth it


Day #4, revelstoke got a small dusting of a few cm, which made things a bit better:


I did some nice side country and they had helpful signs making sure I didn't get too far off track
I did some nice side country and they had helpful signs making sure I didn't get too far off track



After day #4, I had to leave Arturo there, and drove back to Lake Louise for the next day:





No fresh snow the next day, but Lake Louise was still good:


long ass line for the bottom lifts, happy I never went back down
long ass line for the bottom lifts, happy I never went back down




a nice bra tree
a nice bra tree

a great run on the edge of the resort, except for the super flat section at the bottom. Thank got for poles.
a great run on the edge of the resort, except for the super flat section at the bottom. Thank got for poles.

by the end of the day, the crowds were a bit better
by the end of the day, the crowds were a bit better

looks like they air lifted someone
looks like they air lifted someone


After that, it was time to drive back to Calgary for a short city visit before flying home the next day.

2019/03/11 Part of a Day in Calgary
π 2019-03-11 01:01 in Trips
While going to Banff and Revelstoke, I flew through Calgary and had a portion of the day there on the way back, so I looked around a bit.




I went up the tower for a few shots
I went up the tower for a few shots





The next morning, went for the peace bridge and a couple of museums:


found some michoko birds
found some michoko birds

they're supposed to be thieves, but they're pretty
they're supposed to be thieves, but they're pretty

I then went to the Military Museums first and then went to the Hangar Flight Museum before going back to the airport to fly home.

See more images for Part of a Day in Calgary
2019/03/11 Ten Years of Solar Panels
π 2019-03-11 01:01 in Solar
Well, it's been our 10 year anniversary for our solar panels. Time to add up the numbers. Again, due to our new electricity company that does not send true statements anymore, I don't have good numbers on how much we're paying, but it's pretty close to $0.

In 10 years:

  • we took 13,323 Kwh from the grid, which is pretty much what we use in a year
  • Our PV system generated 84,607 Kwh
  • Given that our panels made 84 Mwh, which at an average of 25c/Kwh would have cost $21,000, likely more due to time of use pricing and at this point, it seems pretty clear that we've more or less repaid the price of the panels while not adding CO2 to the world.

    Year #          PV Kwh  PG&E Kwh Used   House Kwh Used  Yearly Bill	EV (car)	
    2010 - #1	8503	1602		10105		-$39.87	
    2011 - #2	8813	1209		10022		-$38.80	
    2012 - #3	8402	674		9076		-$110.43	
    2013 - #4	8366	486		8852		-$134.06	
    2014 - #5	8840	-30		8810		-$210.74	
    2015 - #6	8665	1027		9692		-$41.38	
    2016 - #7	8437	1386		9823		?
    2017 - #8	8335	1910		10245		$26.21		613Kwh
    2018 - #9	8665	1922		10250		?		209Kwh
    2019 - #10	7918	3038		10956		?		865Kwh
    

    Total 84607 13323 97831 N/A 1687Kwh

    2019/03/09 Cosmic Gate @ SF Regency Ballroom
    π 2019-03-09 01:01 in Clubbing
    Cosmic Gate has been celebrating their 20 years with a tour that landed in San Francisco at the Regency Ballroom.

    Taj opened the evening:



    Then Cosmic Gate took over from 10:30 to 02:00 with lots of classics:


    Emma Hewitt came for a surprise visit to sing multiple of those classic tracks:




    After those tracks, they went on for the rest of the evening, great tracks and great night:



    See more images for Cosmic Gate @ SF Regency Ballroom
    2019/03/01 ATB at Mezzanine
    π 2019-03-01 01:01 in Clubbing
    Doors opened at 21:00 with Jonathan opening:


    Niko took over after that:




    After a long wait, ATB finally showed up at 00:30. Despite being close to the front, it was hard to take pictures due to lack of lighting and some bad apples in the crowd that were pushing and shoving to try and get closer. 2 out of control girls kept pushing violently and managed to damage my shirt. Too bad security guys were completely unreachable on that side of the room without losing the spot I had spent hours to get...

    ATB's set, while on the short side (just 90mn), was good. I did my best to enjoy it despite the crowd and shoving issues that Mezzanine was unable to see or address:





    After his set, he nicely came to shake people's hands, which is obviously not something you get at a big festival where you'd usually see him:




    Video summary:

    See more images for ATB at Mezzanine
    2019/02/25 Catching a 4 day Storm at Kirkwood and Heavenly
    π 2019-02-25 01:01 in Snow
    I got a new model 3 to replace last year's model S and it hadn't gone to the snow yet, so this week's storm was a great time to take it there. I drove monday in time to beat the storm rolling in and literally beat the chain control by 15 minutes. The road closed a few hours later and stayed closed for 3 days...
    I figured that the car might make it to kirkwood in one shot, but it wasn't too clear if it would and it would be pretty miserable if I started running short and had to drive back or ended up getting stuck, so I stopped at the Manteca supercharger for just 15mn, which gave me an extra 10% of battery and I arrived with 20% left, so in the end it wasn't needed:

    my car predicted it would arrive with 14% left, that was very close, I would have had 10% left if I hadn't stopped to recharge
    my car predicted it would arrive with 14% left, that was very close, I would have had 10% left if I hadn't stopped to recharge


    Carson Spur is looking interesting now, it closes almost as soon as snow starts falling
    Carson Spur is looking interesting now, it closes almost as soon as snow starts falling


    Got a nicely priced unit from Pyramid Peak properties and let the car charge slowly over the next 3 days
    Got a nicely priced unit from Pyramid Peak properties and let the car charge slowly over the next 3 days

    it was snowing nicely soon after I arrived
    it was snowing nicely soon after I arrived

    The next morning was sadly too windy, so as expected KW opened very late (11:30) and only a couple of boring lifts. I did do a few runs on chair5 until I got bored and confirmed chair6 was not going to open for the day, and went back to my condo to get some work done:




    sigh, no chair6 for us :(
    sigh, no chair6 for us :(

    Day #2 had another foot+ of new snow, and the roads were still closed. I was hopeful for a great day, but chair6 only opened close to noon (i.e. very late) and only a very narrow band of it (even access to chamoix was closed, and the drain on the other side was closed too of course):


    opening the door was interesting
    opening the door was interesting

    some other doors couldn't be open at all :)
    some other doors couldn't be open at all :)

    chair6 being readied, finally...
    chair6 being readied, finally...

    nice warning, I'd rather that they tell us that than stay closed because of limited medical help being available
    nice warning, I'd rather that they tell us that than stay closed because of limited medical help being available

    the runs I was able to do from chair6 didn't suck
    the runs I was able to do from chair6 didn't suck


    Day #3 sadly had the road open from Carson Pass, so people showed up :) More of chair6 got opened:


    more snow falling throughout the day
    more snow falling throughout the day

    I got to meet Ricky, the head of ski patrol of nicely gave me a tour and showed me the challenges they deal with
    I got to meet Ricky, the head of ski patrol of nicely gave me a tour and showed me the challenges they deal with



    eventually the wall opened and that was quite good, I lapped it for the rest of the day :)
    eventually the wall opened and that was quite good, I lapped it for the rest of the day :)


    Day #4, I stupidly slept at kirkwood due to poor planning on my part, but drove to heavenly to meet my friend Ovidiu to do some powder runs on firebreak and palisades:

    nice snow accumulation of the last days
    nice snow accumulation of the last days

    my car was all nice and clean and came out when the sun did :)
    my car was all nice and clean and came out when the sun did :)

    obligatory kirkwood sign picture
    obligatory kirkwood sign picture

    drove to harrah's parking and joined Ovidiu in the long friday morning gondola line
    drove to harrah's parking and joined Ovidiu in the long friday morning gondola line


    I noticed that, nice tires on that stretcher
    I noticed that, nice tires on that stretcher

    we walked to the first backcountry gate as the lifts weren't running yet (!)
    we walked to the first backcountry gate as the lifts weren't running yet (!)



    back down to the road
    back down to the road

    big easy was open, so we took it to the fire break gate to run palisades
    big easy was open, so we took it to the fire break gate to run palisades

    We got 3 nice runs on Palisades until heavenly closed the gondola for wind :(


    nice runs to burnt forest (2000ft vertical), the rest was more crappy snow
    nice runs to burnt forest (2000ft vertical), the rest was more crappy snow

    back up for more
    back up for more

    nice lenticular cloud that came from the pretty heavy wind
    nice lenticular cloud that came from the pretty heavy wind

    bridge back to firebreak and the bottom of the gondola
    bridge back to firebreak and the bottom of the gondola


    And after those 3 nice runs, sadly half of heavenly closed and despite it being barely 13:30, we decided that the rest of heavenly wasn't worth it, so we both went home. Thanks Ovidiu for being my guide for the half day :)

    2019/02/22 Infected Mushroom at Mezzanine
    π 2019-02-22 01:01 in Clubbing
    Opulent Temple has been rocking the playa for many years I was lucky enough to first find them back in 2005: http://marc.merlins.org/perso/clubbing/2005-09.html#DJ-Ti_sto-at-Opulent-Temple-Black-Rock-City-_Burning-Man_ and 2007: http://marc.merlins.org/perso/clubbing/post_2007-09-01_DJ-Dan-Paul-Oakenfold-Gabriel-Christopher-Lawrence-at-Burning-Man.html , and been enjoying them since then. Just last burning man in 2018, they had awesome shows. Thanks guys!

    Obviously, this costs money. I remember making donations to their funds back in the day, but as a more sustainable approach, they have been running fundraiser events like this one, and apparently with enough of them, it's been able to more or less fund Opulent Temple at Burning Man. Well done guys.

    Infected Mushroom definitely puts on a show. It's kind of hard to describe, but Syd Gris wrote "their electric live shows" which sounds like a good description. The event was sold out a month in advance and so packed that I couldn't quite take decent videos, so I stuck to pictures, and even those were tough (ok, I was also enjoying an experience appropriate to the evening).




















    Big thanks to the OT crew for bringing us this show, it was definitely one for the books.

    See more images for Infected Mushroom at Mezzanine

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