TDroid: Whats in a Name?

A few years back when Android was on the horizon, I spent a little time writing a GPS tracking App for the Android OS. I used behind the project and even got around to submitting the app to the Android Developers Challenge. WIthout any prize money I grew weary of rewriting it with each Android platform update and instead grew more interested in other things especially the onslaught of Android devices peering over the horizon. Unlike the IPhone and IPad which limited hardware choices to a few variations of a few models, the number of distinct Android Devices are as numerous as your choice of sneaker at your local Foot Locker.

So I thought “Im done with my android tracking app, what to do with my tdroid domain..”. So this idea begins with the domain which I thought would be interesting to use in an SEO experiment. The idea being to build out a Android device and tablet compendium website, which would reference all the current Android Phones and Tablets. This should drive good traffic given the domain and if quality review content was organized behind thoughtful slug URLs. There is no way I could possible review all of these devices and compare them, there are just too many and life is too short to spend that much time unpacking and un-boxing. These reviews also are already being written. But here is something I could do that would be different. I could compile all of the reviews, linking back to the full review, and then add up the various scores and show which devices were , overall, the top rated etc.

The amount of time I put into this will be directly proportional to the amount of traffic it gets, we will see!
Check out the current Android Phone and Tablet Reviews on TDroid!

GoPro Helmet Cam: Eldora Salto Glades

Took out a GoPro cam for the first time at Eldora and was impressed. Pretty harsh environment and it performed well. Went down hard a couple of times and never popped off. The wide angle distorts a bit making the steeps flatter etc but gets in a big picture with is more than worth the trade off in distortion. Sound record quality is hampered by the waterproof case but the sounds can take a back seat to the video. Smaller and lighter than my waterproof digital still cam, I’m sure I will be bringing this along on many missions…

Web Portfolio: 2010

2012 2011 [2010] 2009 2008



PublicEarth Description

Embeddable Widgets
UI/UX Components

Designed and deployed embeddable widget templates. Designed for third party integration provided map/widget views and with supporting ajax controller methods.
Rails, JavaScript, JQuery, Google Maps API, HTML, CSS, Photoshop..


ArticleOnePartners Description

Complete Refactor and Redesign

Refactored and designed new interfaces from a suite of procedural php files into structured Zend MVC Architecture with Smarty templates and JQuery. Refactored and redesigned document / upload / highlighter UX Interface. Designed multiple Views, Layouts, and UX Components. Integrate with 3rd Party APIs; Google, Hubspot, ZenDesk.
PHP, Zend, HTLM, CSS, JQuery.


ArticleOnePartners Description

Article One Portal Design

Portal Platform

Refactored and designed new interfaces within a Zend MVC Architecture to provide site-feature sets by user-types and user features by specific user. Third Party Clients, Internal expert Admins, and Registered anonymous Users now had custom UI and UX components.
PHP, Zend, HTLM, CSS, JQuery.


On the Amazon

Some highlights from our 2010 trip to the Brazilian Amazon (right after the jump)

A little under two weeks in the Amazon. Flew in directly to Manaus which is right at the meeting of the waters. (The Rio Negro and the Rio Solomes). We went up river to the Anavilhanas jungle lodge which is right in Brazil’s largest freshwater archipelago of river islands. From there we explored on foot and in canoes, caught piranha, swam with piranha and ate piranha, learned about the jungle from local guides, met the pink Boto dolphins and the beautiful people who live there. Could spend a lifetime there and still only skim the surface. One of the most beautiful places I have ever been fortunate enough to visit.

Mt. Humboldt via the Rainbow South Colony Lakes Trail

The Crestones and Humboldt from the East

The Crestones and Humboldt from the East

I’ve been wanting to visit the Sangre de Cristo’s, especially the Crestones, for some time. I hadn’t yet climbed any of those 14ers though I had been through the area a few times and marveled at their beauty. I also read recently that they are thinking about closing or adding a fee to the South Colony Lakes road this year. The South Colony Lakes Trailhead is a point of departure for heading up to climb Crestone, Crestone Needle, Mount Humboldt, and even possibly Kit Carson and or Challenger Point. The Ranger station reported that there was “still a lot of snow up there’ and that snow would block the way after “just a mile or so”. I had also read a trip report from someone who climbed Humboldt the weekend before who said they had been able to drive to ‘1 mile short of the rainbow trail’. So, had more snow accumulated over the last week. I kinda doubted it.

My friend Jay was down for the trip, so we drove down on Tuesday and went as far as we could go toward South Colony Lake. Right were the snow blocked the road we saw signage for the Rainbow trail and some parking so we set the jeep there. After loading up some siege packs with a few days worth of gear for just about any kind of route we headed out on what we thought was the rainbow trail right as it started dumping snow. We heard some of the oddest sounds coming from the surrounding Aspen trees, the wind on old trees was making sounds like voices, and or music. It was truly surreal.

Suddenly snow

Suddenly snow

After about 45 minutes Jay looked at his GPS and announced we were in fact going the wrong way. Somehow we missed the sign in the snow and dark that pointed out that this was the Middle Colony Lakes Trail. We could not tell if we would even be able to hook it up Humboldt from there so we decided to head back and get on the right trail. On the way back Jay got nailed by a tree limb in the snow and dark that knocked him down and left a mark on his forehead that looked like he got hit with an ice-pick. Not only that but when he went down he landed on his ribs by his lower back. He shrugged all this off and we kept going. We took a break back in the jeep and laughed at our inauspicious start. So after our 2.5 mile warm-up we got on the right trail and headed up toward the South Colony Lakes.

The snow let up a little which made the going a little easier. We made camp a mile or so short of the lower lake in the woods on the snow, made some hot food and called it for the night. As often the case we got up about 5am without an alarm. Which peak to bag and what route? We decided for a longer but lighter (no ropes & pro, crampons, or ice axe) route up Humboldt via its west ridge with the idea that if we wanted to add a Crestone climb after we still had that option.

Respects for Talus Monkey

Respects for Talus Monkey

The route went up past the Lakes where we paused to pay our respects to where David Worthington aka TalusMonkey lost his life in 2009 after a valiant search and rescue attempt following his glissade accident coming down Humboldt.

The Needle and some weather moving in

Moi in front of the Needle with some weather moving in

As some weather started to dramatically move in, we decided against going directly up the couloir and instead angled for the saddle between Humbolt and the Needle to take the west ridge to the top of Humboldt. The views across to the Crestones and the San Luis Valley beyond on the way up are beyond description. As we approached the saddle we noticed another climber moving among the snow, rock and ice.

It was a Mountain Goat who was also making its way, from the other direction, over the saddle. After it passed we saw some of its tracks coming up from the other steeper side.

Looking back East over Humboldt summit

Looking back East over Humboldt summit

On the west ridge the wind was howling and weather was coming in pretty fast. We pushed hard for the summit while awestruck with the views. Looking past the sunlit summit back East the plains below were still in full sun but a dark band of bad weather was bending down, lower than we were. We had to yell at each other just to be heard. We hung out on top long enough to take it all in and snap a few more photos. There is a rock wind screen shelter on the summit which affords some protection from the wind.
Summit shot with Crestones behind to the West

Summit shot with Crestones behind to the West

We knew it was a much more direct route back to camp down the south facing snow slopes, but we knew the Eastern side of those terminated in some cliff bands. Respecting that danger we angled back West as we decended the South slopes until we got on some 30 – 40 degree snow fields that reached all the way down to the South Colony Lakes. We glissaded carefully and avoided launching ourselves off or into some of the smaller rock bands we still encountered on our way down. Had to creep across under a smallish cornice, there were signs of older avvys but the snow was super solid and stable at that time.

Looking back up the glissade route down, amazing we covered a couple miles of slope in about 15 minutes. In no time we were back at camp. We decided to hang at camp leaving open an option to go up the Crestone if we wanted super early the next morning knowing we had to be back to Boulder the next afternoon. As it worked out we didn’t feel we had enough time to bag Crestone and hike all the way out in time, but we were still rewarded with more awesome views as we made our way home the next morning. Overall an awesome visit, I can’t wait to go back.

It’s North Pole Season!

Enroute to the North Pole at ABasin

Enroute to the North Pole at ABasin

Spring is showing in Boulder, daffodils in bloom and sandals and shorts all over the Perl Street Mall. Every ski resort in Colorado is closed, save one. And with the holiday season mostly past and snow starting to fade, children no longer dream of visiting the North Pole.
Oh but how I do dream of it, and here’s how it goes:
You see a landscape completely blanketed in snow, the air as well is full of white. The only dark shapes are the cliff bands and rock exposures that are too steep and sheer for the snow to stick. There is almost no-one else around, most would cringe at the idea of being out in weather like this. Then you hear the words uttered with reverence, “The North Pole is Open”.
Its usually closed most of the year. Conditions have to be just right, and at this time of year, that happens and hopefully happens often!
Ahhhh yes, thankfully this is not a dream, its ABasin, which has the peculiar aspect of being open longer and later than any other resort in CO with some of the steepest gnarliest runs being open only in late spring. The weather patterns change this time of year and upslope or North-East fronts run through and can leave massive amounts of snow on the East Face of ABasin where the North Pole can be found. Just the hike up is amazing. For those who know, its that time of year!

Web Portfolio: 2009

2012 20011 2010 [2009] 2008



PublicEarth Description

Map UI/UX for Location Based Search
Crowd-Sourced Maps

Designed and deployed models, views, and controllers to support the alpha release of Wrote Javascript library to integrate with third party APIs (Google Maps and Microsoft Virtual Earth).Ruby on Rails, PHP, Zend, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, PostGres, Photoshop.


IOS Mobile View Components
Crowd-Sourced Maps Data

Designed and deployed models, views, html, and css working with third party and internal resources. Wrote Javascript library to integrate with third party APIs (Google Maps and Microsoft Virtual Earth).Ruby on Rails, PHP, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, PostGres, Photoshop.


PublicEarth Description

Place Page UI/UX.

Designed, developed and deployed multiple layouts and views for PublicEarth. Extended map classes to provide an additional “mini map” and “widget” implementations. Ajax integration to minimize page loads and improve user experience.

Ruby on Rails, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, PostGres.



PublicEarth Description

Mobile IOS
Search/Browse Results

Designed, developed and deployed multiple layouts and views for PublicEarth including mobile specific components. Working with third party and internal resources.

Ruby on Rails, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, PostGres.