eXtensions - Thursday 11 January 2018


Cassandra: Out of Town - Camera and Computer Preparations

By Graham K. Rogers


I am taking a trip to the province of Tak over the weekend, with the Year 4 students from the Department of Electrical Engineering where I work, and several other faculty members. I always take too much: clothes and equipment; but that is me.

As well as the DSLR and of course the iPhone X, which is producing some really good images, especially when I use its RAW capabilities, I am also dragging along my Hasselblad, which needs a totally different approach. I have three types of film, 125 and 400 ISO Ilford as I rather like black & white photography, but this time I also have 5 rolls of ISO 400 Kodak Portra, so I can play with color. I have not done this for a while. The shop I was using to have my color film developed did not do as well as I thought it should; and the last time, they gave one of my rolls to another customer. I never saw it again: the film or the shop.

In the meantime, I had some success with a private source, but when he moved, the water was not good enough, I was told, for the processing. Unlike the west, the heat here also causes problems. Recently, however, a student took some film into a lab in the Sukhumvit area of Bangkok and they did a good job with the 10 black & white rolls I had. They were just as good when I took another 3 rolls recently. I want to see if they are as good with color film. Once the films are developed, I then have the task of scanning the negatives: all part of the fun.

Bhumipol Dam

The last time I went to the Bhumipol Dam, there was adequate WiFi, so I do not expect this will have become worse. We went to a dam a couple of years ago where the accommodation had no WiFi and no carrier signal. It was a walk of 1KM to check the email. I am hoping for no problems this time, although I am using the iPhone X so much now that the battery is being drained too fast. This week, when I went to the center of Bangkok at lunchtime, I was using Twitter so much that I drained the battery: the usage showed that 51% of the problem was placed firmly at Twitter's door.

As well as the cameras I will take the 13" MacBook Pro and a Time Machine backup disk. I have two on hand here: a LaCie Porsche Design disk, which I use most; and a 4TB WD MyBook Thunderbolt Duo, which is too heavy for my backpack and needs a power source. I also have a CalDigit 2TB USB-C backup disk that copies data using SuperDuper. I do notice now that some files are no longer copied as they are stored on iCloud. I also have a recently acquired 512MB WD SSD drive. The small size of this makes it an attractive alternative.

As a temporary solution, at least, I have drafted the SSD drive as a Time Machine disk. I had already formatted it so all I had to do was connect it to the Mac using its USB-C cable and add the disk to the list in the Time Machine Preferences panel. The amount of data that will be copied for the first backup is shown as 377.87MB and that initial backup took between 1-2 hours. Later backups should be much shorter.

Time Machine

Over the weekend I expect to take many photographs with the 3 cameras and processing these - selecting, deleting, editing, uploading - should take up some of my weekend, although I often grab time on the bus between stops for some of the work: as long as there is a carrier signal (most main roads and towns are pretty good these days), I have internet access, although one of my colleagues has just dropped a paper in my mailbox: I am expected to fix this by next week.

Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs. After 3 years writing a column in the Life supplement, he is now no longer associated with the Bangkok Post. He can be followed on Twitter (@extensions_th)



Made on Mac

For further information, e-mail to

Back to eXtensions
Back to Home Page

All content copyright © G. K. Rogers 2018