I’ve gone for a bike ride on New Year’s Day for about 5 years now, and this year was no different – except this time I’ve got video to show, my first YouTube video!
Video in 720p format was captured by a Contour Roam2, a really nice HD-quality video Action Camera. Editing and rendering was done using Microsoft’s free Movie Maker 2012, a very satisfactory experience. The transitions and most of the titles were added automatically using a Smart Theme, and the Add music button conveniently linked to free content (legally free!). The edited project was rendered and uploaded to YouTube using the Movie Maker YouTube plugin. After uploading, YouTube suggested video stabilization – which I agreed to.
FWIW, Contour has an interesting back story. They unfortunately closed doors August 2013, and remind me a lot of IVL Technologies, a similar sized tech company I had the pleasure of working for 1993 to 1997. BloombergBusinessWeek had an interesting post mortem article on Contour , with a few tips for all tech entrepreneurs.
I lost rear braking on my Rocky Mountain Fusion last week. Biking pathways wasn’t bad, but I didn’t want to ride off-road with only a front brake, so the next day I biked downtown to The Bike Shop on my way home after work (not only did I buy my Fusion there, they also do great drop-in service so long as the job won’t take too long). Adding the 3 legs up in my head as I pedalled home, I was sure I would be close to 100Km. However, Google Maps calculated my route to be 55km, which I trust because my it was pretty straight, and I’ve found Google knows all about Calgary pathways (just make sure you select Bicycling for the navigation mode).
I really liked this route. On the way downtown, I was up and close with one of Calgary’s oldest industrial areas. After my rear brake pads were changed and brake fluid topped up, I left downtown and rode through one of Calgary’s oldest affluent residential areas. I also noticed an unfortunate casulty of this year’s flooding – a missing pedestrian suspension bridge over the Elbow River. I can sympathize with local users and commuters through the area; loosing the pedestrian bridges over the Bow River at both Mackenzie and Southland Park has meant changes to my own travel routes.
Marker “D” is my home, “B” is work, and “C” is The Bike Shop (I was travelling counter-clockwise).
If you follow any mass media news, you’ve probably heard about the flooding in Calgary caused by high water volumes in the Bow and Elbow rivers. The rivers join together in the downtown heart of Calgary, where most businesses were shuttered during the worst of the flooding. However, many residents along the rivers were also significantly impacted with lost homes and property. My family has been exceedingly fortunate, only my son’s and my bicycle routes to work have been affected.
In order to bicycle from our home (on the west side of the Bow) to our work (on the east side), there used to be a choice of five bridges – with commute times ranging from 50 minutes to 2 hours depending on the route and bridge. Today, only one of the bridges remains navigable, but the commute is still less than an hour and a half. The bridges themselves do not appear to have been significantly damaged, but the surrounding landscape and pathways leading to the bridges may be forever altered.
Here is the McKenzie Meadows golf course (close to the south end of Calgary), 5 days after the start of the flood. The photo was taken looking west, with the Bow River and Rocky Mountains in the background.