B1-B Lancer video from Dubai Airshow 2005

I took my new Sony HDR-HC1 to the Dubai Airshow in November 2005 and filmed several aircraft during the flying display. Earlier I posted a video of an Airbus A380 in flight, but now I’ve stopped being lazy and posted another interesting video which is of an American B1-B Lancer supersonic bomber doing several high speed fly-bys. There were two B1’s at the show, one on static display and the other for the flying display.

The video is being posted in QuickTime 7 format (480p H.264) to save bandwidth, though it was originally filmed and edited in 1080i. Unfortunately, some interlacing is visible in the video and I still haven’t found an easy way to export a movie from iMovie HD to QuickTime H.264 with good de-interlacing.

B1-B Lancer @ Dubai 2005 (480p QuickTime H.264)

Dubai Macintosh Users Group

This is something I’ve wanted to start for twenty years, but I guess better late than never. I’m pleased to announce that a basic website for the Dubai Macintosh Users Group (DubaiMUG) is now up and running, though it’s currently woefully short on content. I’m hoping that this group will give Mac users in Dubai and the region an easy way to help each other and also work together to improve the selection and price of Apple products in the region.

Over the past few months I’ve noticed a big upswing in Mac users based in Dubai and in the region who are accessing my blog so I think the time is right for a MUG to be setup here (I believe there have been several failed attempts in the past) and try and get Apple directly involved and in touch with its customers here in the Middle East. I’ll go through the process of officially registering this new MUG with Apple once it gets a few members and is active.

I’m using Apple’s new .Mac Groups service and hope that it provides the right set of capabilities and ease-of-use to make this effort successful. Please check out the site and post your comments there or here.


Be careful where you fall!

From today’s Gulf News:

Hacksaw blade was “accidentally left behind’
By Kelly Crane, Staff Reporter

Dubai: An American family has vowed never to return to Ski Dubai after discovering a hacksaw blade on the slopes during a visit. The holiday-makers said they were “horrified” when they spotted the sharp, six-inch blade sticking up from out of the snow.

To make matters worse, it seems it is not the first time a blade has been found in the snow.


Gone skiing!

I finally made time today to go skiing with the boys and we had a great time. This was my first time inside Ski Dubai and it exceeded my expectations. Only the lower 2/3 of the slope was open, but the upper slope is beyond my capabilities (black diamond). We spent about three hours on the slope using rented clothes and equipment and it’s clear that this is going to become a very popular attraction for tourists and residents alike. I highly recommend it. The snow was real, the ski lift is real, and it’s cold! The only things I missed compared to a real mountain was the length of the run, scenic beauty of being outdoors, and sunshine.

The Lower Slope:
Ski Dubai lower slope

Me standing at the Cafe St. Moritz at the top of the lower slope:
Jimmy at Cafe St. Moritz in Ski Dubai

View of the upper slope, opening in ten days:
Ski Dubai upper slope

Iran earthquake rattles Dubai

The shockwave from a magnitude 6.1 earthquake in Southern Iran rattled buildings in Dubai and the Northern Emirates, and brought many people out onto the streets this afternoon. It was mostly a case of people overreacting but a warning nonetheless to the authorities to ensure that all of the tall buildings being constructed in Dubai are built to international standards for earthquake resistance.

More info on this earthquake is available from the US Geological Survey’s website: https://earthquake.usgs.gov/recenteqsww/Quakes/usfyag.htm

Some articles from the Gulf News:
UAE rocked by Iran quake
Dubai residents recount tremor

CNN.com map of earthquake location

Map of earthquake location

Video of Airbus A380 in flight

I managed to film the Airbus A380 which was at the Dubai Airshow going through its fly-by. The original video was filmed in HD (1080i), but to make it easier for me to post it online and for people to download, I have edited it and scaled it down to DVD quality.

UPDATE: Videos are no longer available for download as my host (Apple’s .Mac service) was unhappy with the large number of people downloading them. In April, more than 1.3 TB of videos was downloaded which is 5 times what Apple allows. I’ll update the links below when I find an alternate place to host these videos.

A380 – QuickTime 7 DVD Quality
A380 – Windows Media 9 DVD Quality
A380 – Windows Media 9 HDTV (1080p) Quality