Author Archives: matt

Powering An iPhone As A Backcountry GPS

I took advantage of two recent trips to test extending my iPhone 5 battery life to power the GPS function for all-day hikes.

One trip was a remote camping and hiking trip into Southeast Utah.  The other was a more civilized series of hikes in the Canadian Rockies.  Some hikes were longer than the ~3 hours my iPhone battery will last running the Motion X GPS software, even with wireless and data turned off to reduce the power drain of futile signal seeking in the backcountry. Continue reading

Visualization Tools, 17th-Century

for television
and e-media  More

This post is a little off-topic, but relevant to those interested in visualization tools.

Tim’s Vermeer is a fascinating movie that follows the 5+ year long quest by a maker of 20th century digital visualization tools – Tim Jenison of Video Toaster fame – to understand the 17th century analog visualization tools likely used by Johannes Vermeer.  The film is narrated by Penn and directed by Teller. Its trailer is below. Continue reading

Very-High-Definition Landscape Visualization

My photographer friend, Grant, creates art pieces that reveal both the abstract patterns inherent landscapes and  the man-made patterns we impose over them. His newest works involve the aesthetic selection and careful composition of satellite earth imagery into photos, each containing a quarter-billion pixels. These very-high-definition images make exquisitely detailed pictures when printed onto 4’x 6′ canvases, but how to experience them on a standard display screen? Continue reading

Wildland Fire: Location Visualization As Communications Tool

Free and low-cost geographic visualization systems can be powerful communications tools when understanding terrain is vital. Nineteen wildland firefighters died in the Yarnell Hill tragedy this summer.  This video report makes extensive use of geographic visualization to explain what is known — and what will never be known — about what happened that day. Watch it: Continue reading

Web Geolocation Test


This is a test of HTML5’s mobile web capabilities.
Click the button to get your coordinates:

(This worked for a while, but now appears not to work. We are clearly still in the early stages of this technology.)