Category Archives: Travel

The Golden Hour Calculator | Sunrise and Sunset information for photographers

This is nice!

Discover when the Golden Hour is at your current location, explore visually how the golden hour changes with the seasons and where you are in the world…

The Golden Hour (sometimes referred to as the Magic Hour) is often defined as the first and last hour of sunlight in the day when the special quality of light yields particularly beautiful photographs.

For this Golden Hour calculator website, I have used a more precise definition of the Golden Hour. I have chosen to define the Golden Hour as that period when the sun lies between 6 degrees below the horizon and 6 degrees above. This definition of the Golden Hour more accurately accounts for the speed of the transition from day to night around the world at different times of year.

The (Mostly) True Story of Helvetica and the New York City Subway

“There is a commonly held belief that Helvetica is the signage typeface of the New York City subway system, a belief reinforced by Helvetica, Gary Hustwit\'s popular 2007 documentary about the typeface. But it is not true—or rather, it is only somewhat true. Helvetica is the official typeface of the MTA today, but it was not the typeface specified by Unimark International when it created a new signage system at the end of the 1960s.”

Stranded at the airport? Don’t forget Rule 240

“A few years ago, at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport, I noticed something strange on the departure boards. American Airlines had three flights scheduled that afternoon from ORD to Boston, and all were apparently operating on time. United, on the other hand, had three flights scheduled from ORD to Boston, but none were operating on time. In fact, all three United flights showed ‘canceled.’

I smelled a rat. I went to the United counter and asked the reason for the cancellations. ‘Weather.’”

Type Camp

“Most of us need to make the time to go out on walks, swim, collect little bits of things, take photos, get drunk (or not), talk to friends, etc. So, you have to wonder, who wouldn\'t want to spend 5 nights on an island while talking about and working with type? British Columbia in the summertime is heaven on earth—a place where most people would be happy to kick back and relax for a week, but if you\'re into typography you can relax your body and exercise your brain at the same time. Three typographers, Marian Bantjes, Shelley Gruendler and Ross Mills will offer differing and convergent approaches to type in a relaxed but structured program over five days. [Note: This session is over but more are planned, like the one below.]

Type Camp—INFO DESIGN: 10-15 August 2008 | We’ll bring a bit of the Bauhaus to Canada with the head Info Design instructor, Jay Rutherford. Jay is a Professor of Visual Communications at the Faculty of Art and Design at the Bauhaus University in Weimar, Germany.” (Thanks Chris Glass!)

The Road to Clarity

“‘So, what do you see?’ Martin Pietrucha I asked, turning around in the driver\'s seat of his mint green Ford Taurus. It was a cold day in January, and we were parked in the middle of a mock highway set on the campus of Pennsylvania State University in State College. Pietrucha is a jovial, 51-year-old professor of highway engineering. His tone was buoyant as he nodded toward the edge of the oval stretch of road where two green-and-white signs leaned against a concrete barrier.

What I saw, Pietrucha knew, was what we all may see soon enough as we rush along America\'s 46,871 miles of Interstate highways. What I saw was Clearview, the typeface that is poised to replace Highway Gothic, the standard that has been used on signs across the country for more than a half-century. Looking at a sign in Clearview after reading one in Highway Gothic is like putting on a new pair of reading glasses: there\'s a sudden lightness, a noticeable crispness to the letters.”

The tailrace tunnel of Niagara Falls

Holy crap! “Behind the raging horseshoe falls of Niagara there lurks a dormant monster, a century old redbrick tunnel painstakingly laid. There is no recorded tally of its human cost but in 1906 it would be the biggest tunnel of its type in the world. Like the secret hideout of a supervillain it defies belief and comprehension, a stronghold behind the crashing waterfall.”

List of faux pas

“Caveat: It has been noted on the discussion page that this list includes examples of common etiquette, superstitions, linguistic guidelines, preferences in terminology, cultural tendencies, local laws, regional customs and many other occurrences which are not correctly defined as faux pas. Nevertheless, the following list contains useful generalized information about ways that one might breach social expectations in various countries. Note that changing attitudes and multiculturalism within countries means that some entries listed here may apply to the social expectations of only a few individuals. To avoid giving offense, it is best to use a conservative and observant approach in any social situation where one is unfamiliar with cultural expectations.” (Thanks kottke.org!)