Moving Photos to Picasa




I investigated a couple of days ago the possibility of moving my online photo collection to Picasaweb. This would work out real slick for me as I already use Picasa to organize the photos in my collection (which is just over 5000 photos now). It would also allow me a little more storage space on the web, although that's not an issue for me at this point anyway.

Right now I need to export the photos I want to upload to the website (and resize them at the same time), then upload them and caption each one when I upload it. Instead I can caption them inside Picasa and hit "upload".

Figuring out the Drupal module for Picasa has turned interesting though. The module comes with virtually no documentation and is still in development. I managed to get the module installed and authenticated with Google, but that's as far as I could figure out. So I guess the project sits on hold for now.

The author of the module has already stated that he's only doing bug fixes for the module under the Drupal 5 code tree as Drupal 6 is now out. I wanted to hold off upgrading my sites until the spring as I don't want to deal with downtime during the winter due to my other site.



News Tribune Attic




I came across this site:

News Tribune Attic

And I just wanted to share it with the rest of you. Hopefully the author will be able to continue posting to it on a regular basis - lots of neat stuff there so far...



February 9: Ride From Home to Jamie's to Marble (one way)




Left home this morning at 8am, headed down the Hermantown Trail, over to the Sunset, and then took the powerlines to the Martin Rd lot. The Hermantown Trail was in excellent shape, although the powerlines were terrible (not a surprise - they're never good). I haven't been on this stretch of powerlines this year, but it is pretty clear that the landowners aren't happy with the trail being there (especially between the Howard Gnesen and Arnold Rds). This will likely be my last trip through there until there is actually a trail established there (which we've heard rumors about but hasn't happened yet).

After I got to the Martin Rd lot, Jamie showed up. Instead of sitting there waiting for Pat we decided to head up the Duluth East Trail, and ended up turning around at the Jean Duluth Rd. The trail was in excellent shape as well, although the corners were a bit icy (that is pretty much the standard for all trails right now).

After we met up with Pat back at the parking lot we rode up to the Normanna Pit, then across the Reservoir Riders Trail to Canyon, then up to Alborn. On the way up the Alborn grade we stopped off at Meadowlands at Uncle Duane's house (just a couple of easy miles off the trail). Had a pop with him and headed back to the trail. Pat had to be home by 4pm so he turned back there while Jamie and I headed northwest on the grade.

We ended up in Marble when things went south. Jamie's sled stopped moving in the middle of a road crossing in Marble (right next to a sign that says "Welcome to Marble"). We tried towing it back to Rosa's Cafe (which Pat and I happened to have stopped by a few weeks ago), but the track was locked up. After a call to Brian for a pickup, Jamie and I headed down to Rosa's to wait for Brian and Uncle Cliff to show up and bring us home.

Jamie's problem turned out to be a sheared bolt that holds the gear in the chain case on the shaft driving the track. The bolt sheared off (inside the shaft), and then we're guessing that the bolt head bounced around a couple of times inside the case before getting between a gear and the chain, which caused the chain to split. Once that happened the chain fell to the bottom of the case which locked the gear driving the track in place so it couldn't turn. And there he sat. :(

I'm pretty sure that area is like a Bermuda Triangle for sleds. There are a number of us convinced now. We were within a couple of miles of where Pat's sled bit the dust a couple of years ago, also requiring a pickup.

Total trip mileage: 125
Total year mileage: 1264



Track Problems




I learned about a week and a half ago that the track on "The Beast" was in dire need of replacement. I knew that this had been coming for a while as it was getting more and more worn. When I pulled it off the trailer about a week and a half ago I noticed this:

I ended up picking up a used track early last week and am hoping to get the sled in the garage on Friday (just as soon as I'm done with the brakes on the S-10).

I've had the sled apart before and have had the track off while doing other work on it. It's not a fun project although it's not too difficult either. Being able to work in a heated garage is a plus.



Duluth, SMDC Reach Tentative Agreement on Parking Ramp




You may recall in mid-July last year, the mayor of Duluth calling for a boycott of SMDC over a parking ramp.

Thankfully for Duluth, the new mayor of Duluth, Don Ness, has been able to negotiate a contract for use of the ramp that will hopefully be agreeable to both sides (it's still pending city council approval). Now, rather than the city footing the bill for an empty lot, they'll be able to rent out the space and begin to recoup the costs.

It still baffles me why you would apparently build a parking ramp based on a 'handshake'...



Super Bowl TV Size Restrictions?!




Who knew this? It's illegal to watch the Super Bowl in public on a TV larger than 55". If you do, the NFL may send you a nasty letter as it affects their advertising revenue.

That must be because if the TV is larger than 55", not everyone in the room will pay attention to the ads?!? (Which for me are the highlight of the Super Bowl, which for many years now I haven't seen anyway.)



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