Eric's Homemade Stuff

An infrequent blog of stuff I make, including music.

Fun With My Olloclip

When I was at the March 2012 Cocoaconf in Chicago, I won a gift card to the Apple Store. I couldn’t decide what to get until a few days ago. My choice was the olloclip. I love macro photography and the reviews I read say that this is the best. The fact that it also includes a wide-angle and a fisheye lens is bonus.

First Day With My olloclip
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My SG12

I gave my Chapman Stick SG12 a new coat of oil and while the strings are off I thought I’d take a few pictures.

My Chapman Stick
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Update on My Treadmill Desk

I made an addition to my treadmill desk. I got an inexpensive display for the top shelf and moved my laptop to the lower shelf. I also added a small speaker system. Here’s what it looks like now.

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I think this is an improvement, I was missing my big display at my sitting desk.

Important Note

We have had this treadmill for a long time. It’s track hasn’t been lubricated for years. A treadmill desk will get used for hours at a time. I was using it a few days ago and it overheated. It stopped, displayed an error code and smelled like burning rubber. I didn’t use it again until I got some treadmill lubrication. Everything is good now and it’s even quieter.

Eagles in Sauk City, Prairie Du Sac, WI Area

We took our annual trip to Sauk City and Prairie du Sac, WI to see the bald eagles. They come here from northern Wisconsin when their food sources freeze over in the winter. The Wisconsin River doesn’t freeze and they hang out in the trees along the shores and on the islands in the middle of the river. With this year’s mild winter they were late in coming, but they are here now at this location:

Eagles on the Wisconsin River
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I took my DSLR and I have a lens that zooms to 300mm. It’s not really good enough to do the majestic birds justice, but I wanted to have some record.

We saw seven birds at the Eagle observation post above the river with a great view of the tiny islands where the eagles hang out. Here’s a satellite view, (click on the thumbnail for a large view).

Our View
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We went down the road to the Alliant Energy dam and saw more eagles. Some of them were fishing in the river. While I had the binoculars trained on one it dove to the water and grabbed a fish. It is truly awe-inspiring to see these magnificent birds out in the world and not in a cage.

This trip is a family tradition. When came here one cold winter day in 1996 on the day that my wife’s father died. This was one of his favorite parts of the world and watching bald eagles soar seemed like a nice tribute to him. We come back every year to remember.

My LaMarche Desk

I’m typing this while walking. It might seem weird to try this but I’m intrigued with the idea of a treadmill desk. I’ve been trying to figure out how to get some exercise back into my life. This seems like a nice thing to try. It didn’t cost very much, just some 1×2s and some screws.

The Desk

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Small Maple Vase

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It was supposed to be an experiment. I was going to do something else with it and then Kelsey saw it. She immediately informed me that I was not to mess with it and it was hers. She loved it just the way it was and that was that.

I said, “OK.”

A Good HDR Day Out

We went up to the Ski Hi apple store the other day. We bought real apples, not the shiny metal and glass variety. We also got caramel apples. The sky that day was great and I thought maybe the lighting was right for some HDR shots with my iPhone 4. Here are the results.

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I Blame Steve Jobs

I performed on my Chapman Stick at the 2011 Interlochen Chapman Stick Workshop a few weeks ago. It was my fourth solo performance and it’s all Steve Jobs fault. That’s right, I’m blaming SJ for making me learn a new instrument and for making me face the terror of performing solo music in front of actual people.

Eric Knapp performing on Chapman Stick at the 2011 Interlochen Chapman Stick Workshop

The Day After Christmas 2010

The day after Christmas 2010, we went up to the Sauk City, WI area to look for bald eagles. We saw several, sitting in trees, flying, fishing, and maybe even starting a mating dance. When we were at the eagle spotting stand in Prairie Du Sac, I stuck my iPhone 4 up to the spotting scope to see what would happen.