June 25, 2008

More Ski Hut Fun

The Mt. San Antonio Ski Hut crew are back to work this weekend and coming weeks, and still looking for volunteers to assist in carrying loads up to the hut, as well as extra hands while they’re repairing the hut. I believe people who help out earn credits toward host usage, which means you get to stay in the hut in winter and use it as a backcountry skiing basecamp, so if you’ve got some free time and energy, RSVP to Gil and get your hands dirty. :)

Posted in News | 1 Comment

June 23, 2008

Forvik Citizenship – Apply Now!

The Island of Forvik is now accepting applications for citizenship. Qualifications? Apparently all you have to do is pony up one Forvik Gulde (approx. £60 pounds sterling). Never heard of Forvik? It’s a small island off Scotland owned by Stuart Hill, who recently declared independence from the UK. Mr. Hill (who also happens to be Forvik’s only resident) wants the island to be a crown dependency ala the Chanel Islands or the Island of Man (more…)

Posted in Politics | 0 Comments

June 11, 2008

A Spot Rescue Call

As I continue to use my Spot, I continue to learn more about the device’s pros and cons. A lot of people are reporting difficulty sending messages, for example. In my experience, Spot does not do well transmitting while in motion. It seems to need to stay in one place (motionless is best), with a clear view of the sky, for up to 20 or 30 minutes to send out a message. That makes the tracking function nearly (but not completely) useless, as the tracking pings are supposed to go out every ten minutes automatically (more…)

Posted in Gear | 1 Comment

June 4, 2008

March, April, May: ‘Driest Ever’

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that March, April, and May 2008 were the driest winter months on record for California and the Sierra Nevada mountains. I suppose that shouldn’t be surprising, given that (A) these three months traditionally see heavy snowfall in the Sierra and (B) this year these same months were essentially bone dry (except for the Memorial Day storm). Still, it is a strange and alarming ending for a winter that featured both unusually intense storms and an unusual absence of storms (more…)

Posted in Current Conditions | 0 Comments

June 4, 2008

Google Updates Publisher Guidelines

Those of you who publish small websites know we live or die at Google’s whim, so it’s always news when Google releases new information regarding publisher best-practices.

The problem in the past has always been Google’s ambiguity. Google doesn’t want to give so-called Black Hat publishers information they can use to trick Google and game the system. But that same ambiguity makes it much harder for those who play by the rules to stay in compliance. After all, if you don’t know what the rules are, it’s awfully hard to obey them.

Google Anti-Spam Guru Matt Cutts talks about the new documentation on his blog: Improved SEO Documentation Galore! The info is thankfully quite explicit (at least for Google), and offers numerous useful tips for publishers. If you’re got a website, it’s must-read stuff. Even if you’re not a web publisher, if you’ve even been curious as to some of the workings behind the curtain at the massive Google machine, I think you’ll find it interesting.

Posted in Technology | 0 Comments