A story for tomorrow

I saw this the other day on reddit and was really moved by it:

a story for tomorrow. from gnarly bay productions, Inc. on Vimeo.

This video was written and produced while traveling through Chile & Patagonia with my girlfriend. We spent 5 weeks exploring this amazing country, and this is how we chose to document it. Thanks so much for checking it out.

Special Thanks to:

LensProToGo, for helping us out with cameras and lenses. They are an awesome company, and the perfect place to rent DSLR’s and lenses.

website: www.lensprotogo.com

…Castulo Guerra for helping out with the voice over. He is an extremely talented man, who was great to work with…and I am so grateful he decided to take on this project…thank you very much Castulo.

…and also, to my girlfriend Nina for putting up with my nerdy ways, and for making this such an awesome trip…you’re the best.

Equipment used:
Canon 1D mark IV + full Canon lens package – 17 tilt shift, 24, 50, 70-200, polarizer, gradient filter, monopod, tripod.

Music:
Bowspirit by: Balmorhea
Skeletons by: Yeah Yeah Yeahs

“Hi I’m An Engineer”

I’ve blogged in the past about my difficulties in explaining my job as a Systems Administrator to my parents

Sadly, this also applies to most other people who don’t work in an internet related field… and even more frustratingly, I don’t have the time to explain it all to those who really want to understand.

I know I’m not the only one who suffers from blank looks and misconceptions when I talk about my day job, so this video really hit home.

For the first time in his life, Khai is about to attend a speed dating session. Not knowing what to expect, he is led through a journey of discovery and surprises.

“Hi I’m An Engineer” by CREATE Film Festival

via Dan Smith

Well done Laura Dekker!

Some of you may remember Laura Dekker – the plucky young dutch girl who, as a 14 year old, was involved in a massive legal battle with the dutch child protection agencies to allow her to sail round the world single handed.

Laura,  who has been sailing from a young age and was born on a yacht, has had a bumpy ride. After she was told she wouldn’t be allowed to go for another two years, she ran away. She didn’t run away to the next town, the next county or even the next country; this badass ran away to the Caribbean!

Anyway, eventually she prevailed in her legal wrangling and on the 21 August 2010, aged 15, she began her voyage which was predicted to take two years. I blogged about it at the time in fact, she showed great persistence in the face of legal, logistical and natural challenges simply by getting to the start line.

Laura Dekker, speaking at the Hiswa Boatshow, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Laura Dekker speaking at the Hiswa Boatshow, Amsterdam last year - CC-BY-SA - From Wikipedia

Whatever her critics said about her, her ambitions, her parents; don’t matter now.

As her website says:

January 21: at 3.00 pm local time Laura will reach the Island of Sint Maarten to complete her circumnavigation after her departure from Sint Maarten on January 20 2011.

Laura will become the youngest sailor ever who sailed around the globe!

…and she’s done it. Well done to her!

It’s been a long trip, but she showed that persistence and tenacity, no matter your age, can literally, take you round the world.

Sit down, shut up, grow up and watch this!

Inspiring things take all kinds of forms, people, paintings, theatre, poems, and, of course, songs.

I really liked this Photosynthesis by Frank Turner

and I feel I should explain which of the lyrics mean a lot to me.

Oh maturity’s a wrapped up package deal so it seems
And ditching teenage fantasy means ditching all your dreams

Ha. Well my teenage dreams, are certainly not over yet, and hopefully won’t be for years to come. I was lucky to have a very active imagination as a teenager. ;)

All your friends and peers and family solemnly tell you you will
Have to grow up be an adult yeah be bored and unfulfilled

They’re only saying this because they’re bored, unfilled and haven’t experienced life any other way. Fair enough. It’s not their fault. It’s up to you to take control. I’m much in awe of those who, at points in their lives where traditionally they go and get a super dull job and join the PTA at the local primary school (not that there’s anything wrong with PTAs!). I have so much respect for people who go out of their way to do exciting things they’re passionate about, whatever their situation.

Be that cycling to Australia, driving from China to Cape town, 28yro’s quitting their day jobs and taking a belated gap year, my paternal grandfather finally getting a degree in his late 80s, my maternal grandparents sailing into Poland behind the iron curtain on a 16 foot open dinghy.

If you’re bored and unfulfilled there’s only one person who can do something about that: you.

Oh when no ones yet explained to me exactly what’s so great
About slaving 50 years away on something that you hate

Get a job you love to do. Do it. If you love it, and then fall out of love, try something different. Paul Graham has more (via David Kendal)

Look I’m meekly shuffling down the path of mediocrity
Well if that’s your road then take it but it’s not the road for me

Shut up, sit down mediocrity, Let’s do this!.

A tribute to Richard Rothwell

Many reading my blog will not have heard the name Richard Rothwell and thus will have very little idea of his significance in the early days of DFEY.

I first encountered Richard, like many others, via the Schoolforge-uk (SF-UK) mailing list, with his posts on free software and LTSP related subjects.

Ben Webb and I, on hearing he would be speaking at Manchester Free Software group in May 2008 about Sustainable Education Solutions, went along to see what we could gather.

As probably one of the only Manchester Free Software talks that was not been videoed (release of the videos is a separate issue!), it was a talk that I vividly remember regretting it was not being recorded mid-talk. I regret this to this day.

Some may know that Richard was a important (I think Chief) Examiner for one of the exam boards in GCSE ICT (I think) and at the time, I was having a really hard time with my AS ICT Applied double courses.
I really enjoyed his talk which, whilst focusing on his deployment of LTSP in secondary schools, gave some very insightful ideas into what an school which fully embraced free software could turn out like.

He mentioned that the idea of running the network on LTSP came from two technologically adept 15 year olds.

He explained how they approached him with this distro that did basic LTSP, and so he took them out of lessons and got them to demonstrate how it worked to him on two old machines. Once the potential became clear, as I understand he deployed LTSP on a largish network with minimal resources, saving oodles of money and using recycled computers.

To me, a place where IT staff not only listened to the students, but interacted and were willing to look into ideas shared by the students is amazing, but for them build this system *around* free software is a utopia.

I think Richard persuaded me that there were better places out there, and it was worth working hard to work towards those.

I hope this is what I’m doing now.

A true legend, remembered well.

Richard sadly died on Friday 17th July.
There is a tribute website set up for him at http://tributestorichardrothwell.net, where you can leave your condolences.