Mobile Backup Choices: RavPower FileHub vs. Verbatim MediaShare Wireless

You may recall my quest for the perfect mobile backup strategy for photographs taken while on a long walk. 

First there was the Kingston MobileLite Wireless G2, a nice, compact, lightweight means of transferring image files from my SD cards to flash drives. Unfortunately, the backups have proven to be unreliable with the MobileLite often stalling or freezing mid-transfer. 

That led to the MediaShare Wireless by Verbatim (about CDN $32), also compact and lightweight and successful in backing up my camera cards to flash drives. My review was quite glowing. But I became frustrated with the software. First, it took far too long for Verbatim to upgrade the software to iOS 11. And once it did, I could not get the app to upload photos from my SD card to my iPad. That led to a two month long email debacle with Verbatim support that, in the end, provided no answer.                                                  

That frustration led me to the FileHub RP-WD03 by RavPower (about CDN $50). It’s very similar to the Verbatim unit. It has a slot for USB flash drives or hard drives and another for an SD card. It connects by wifi with an iPad, iPhone or Android device and a dedicated app. Verbatim has its MediaShare app and RavPower has the FileHub Plus app. Continue reading

What’s In My Camera Bag, Part Two (The Other Stuff)

My last post dug into the camera bag slung over my shoulder. Cameras. Lenses. Filters. My creative tools.

As I mentioned in that post, my kit is tailored to the needs of long distance walking where weight and volume are as important as image quality. 

But there is another collection of photographic ephemera, the less glamorous bag of technical bits and pieces required to keep my equipment working, to write blogs, to edit photos. It’s the stuff that gets tucked into my backpack, waiting for the day’s walk to be over and an evening of charging and editing and blogging to begin. Continue reading

What’s in my Camera Bag, 2018 Edition

It’s fair to say my technical approach to photography has shifted. Gone are the days of lugging eight pounds of Nikon bodies and lenses across Europe. Or backpacks loaded down with Cirkut panoramic cameras. Or car trunks filled with 4×5 view cameras, massive tripods and film holders.

No, my gear kit is decidedly minimal these days. With my new emphasis on photographing my walking experiences—let’s call it street photography with velocity—too much equipment simply gets in the way. And it kills my back. Continue reading

The 2017 WalkClickMake Holiday Gift Guide

This year’s selection of eclectic gifts offers something for everyone in the WalkClickMake sphere of influence. Continue reading

Picturing One Year on Foot

It starts with Moves, a smartphone app that tracks my every movement, second-by-second, day-by-day. How far I have walked. Where I have run or biked. My destinations and how many times I have visited them. My life in motion, quantified.

Frankly, I rarely open the Moves app. It just runs in the background, non-stop, collecting data and automatically sending it to the cloud. More on that later.

My focus is on Move-O-Scope, a ‘connected app’ that uses the data collected by Moves to create a visual representation of my journeys. In other words, a map with tracks. As of November 24, 2016, I have accumulated 52 weeks of data. The Move-O-Scope screenshots, below, show what that year of walking looks like. Remarkable!  Continue reading

Apps To Get Lost With: Trace

Trace is the third in a trio of walking apps that I’m putting to the test. And, yes, it involves a dog.

Compared to Drift or Likeways, Trace calls for a high degree of user interaction with the app and, optionally, collaboration with others using the app.

Developed at the Tactile and Tactical Design Lab (TAT Lab) at the University of Washington., the app was designed to explore the role of GIS (geographic information systems) technology in shifting our walking habits away from efficiency and towards communication and reflection.

It all starts with a sketch drawn on the screen of a smartphone, a simple line drawing that the app then transfers to a mapped route for the walker to follow.

Here’s how it works. Continue reading

Apps To Get Lost With: Likeways

The fledgling Likeways app takes a different approach to navigating on foot between point A and point B.

It uses the same map layer as Apple’s Maps application and, when a destination is entered, Likeways will plot the quickest way to get there, just like the Maps app would. This is shown as a grey track…appropriately enough. The real magic comes in the form of a more circuitous blue route and a forest of red push pins clustered along the way. This is the walker’s path of discovery. It’s an opportunity to avoid the drudgery of walking the straight-line, expedient route and, instead, slowing down to explore things of interest along the way. Continue reading

Apps To Get Lost With: Drift

Smartphones are very good at getting you from Point A to Point B in the most direct, efficient means possible. Navigation apps abound for this purpose.

But most are geared to those traveling by car. The needs of pedestrians are after-thoughts, if they are thought of at all. And recommended walking routes – on Google Maps, for example – generally follow car routes, albeit quieter streets where possible. Trails and paths are not a part of the navigation database and are are usually ignored.

The most significant downfall of these apps as pedestrian ‘navigational’ tools is that they favour efficiency over exploration.  Yet, the biggest benefit of walking is the ability to wander at will. Walkers can go where they want: take shortcuts through fields, change direction on a dime, follow eyes and noses. Look up and down. Stop. Anywhere.

In short, walkers have the luxury of getting lost. But that can be a hard concept to grasp in a car-culture governed by straight-line navigation between points. The value society places on wandering aimlessly is very low. We compare walk vs. car travel times when we ought to be thinking in terms of discovery and exploration.

Enter a set of smartphone navigation apps designed to get the walker lost. Continue reading