VSCO and Hipstamatic: Too many preset options?

See that long screenshot off to the left there? That’s the full preset filter list (thanks Tailor!) for the VSCO camera app on iOS.

I’m a total camera app junkie. I have tons of them and generally buy most in-app purchases in them (think I have all of the films/lenses/flashes they’ve offered in Hipstamatic since it appeared on the app store). But at some point there is just too much to choose from. So while I love VSCO and all of the options available I’m starting to think they’ve got too much there.

To combat that I generally stick to the VSCO X-only film emulations (like Fuji Velvia 50). I simply don’t see any way to keep straight which preset to use for a given photo with all of those options. To be fair VSCO has created a “for this photo” option in the preset list that uses machine learning to suggest a group of presets that might be good for a given photo but honestly I’ve never found those suggestions useful.

Hipstamatic is even worse because it splits the filters into films, lenses, and flashes. Their business model is selling these (boy do I miss the old days of the freebies they’d release) and once a month, on the first Friday of the month, they release a new film/lens combo. Lately these have mostly been goofy, nearly useless options or just rehashes of old stuff. I stopped buying them for the most part and catch up during the holiday sales period when they deeply discount the Retropaks.

All that being said, after years and years of use my go-to lens in Hipstamatic is Jane. It is a never-fail choice when processing photos in Hipstamatic. If you’re a Hipstamatic user and haven’t looked at Hipstography do yourself a favor and check it out. The site really isn’t being updated anymore but there are a ton of good combos you can download and use in Hipstamatic.

Tour de France Stage 6 – 24% anyone?

Seriously? 24%?!? That would be hard to walk!

Holy cow what a stage! Inclines of 20% and 24% at the end of the course today in La Planche des Belles Filles. Not the first time the Tour has ended here but the old course ended after the 20% section. This year they added on some dirt road for good measure and that was a 24% climb. Absolutely brutal riding. I don’t know how these guys do this (and for fun the stage tomorrow is 230km/142 miles, thankfully mostly flat). Alaphilippe lost the yellow which went to one of the guys that started the day in the breakaway, Giulio Ciccone from Trek-Segafredo. The guy’s first TdF and he’s in yellow on day 6. Not bad work if you can get it.

Tour de France Stage 5 – Sagan got moving

Well, Peter Sagan won the stage today in a no-questions fashion by blowing everyone else out of the water in the final sprint. Other than that a pretty uneventful stage. The big one is tomorrow with the first mountain stage. Alaphilippe kept the yellow jersey today but not likely tomorrow.

Tour de France Stage 4 – Sagan better get moving

Tour day 4 wasn’t all that exciting. Sprint finish with Viviani winning and Quickstep keeping the yellow. Peter Sagan up at the front but not close enough. Green jersey is great and all but the guy needs to get some stage wins and there won’t be many opportunities for him this year.

The most amusing part today was the early commentary on the cyclingnews.com live blog.

While posting quotes from a Carlton Kirby book:

13:27:56 CEST

Rigoberto Uran is about to eat a banana.

That’s not from the book. That’s actually about to happen.

Some real funny stuff, especially when the riders hit the feed zone:

14:55:29 CEST

No lunch for Schar due to Offredo getting in the way. No hard feelings, however, as the Frenchman offers the Wanty rider a Coke. Schar will have to grab food from the team car

14:59:50 CEST

The peloton come through the feedzone. Bernal is at the front but he’s on the far side of road while Kwiatkowski does the dangerous work, and picks up the Colombian’s lunch and effectively drops it off. It’s a bit like watching Uber Eats, but live.

15:01:48 CEST

Schar then drop back to the team car and is read the menu by the DS. Today’s specials: energy bars, gels, and a bidon.

On pulling weeds

I spent 45 minutes after I got home today out in the garden area pulling weeds. It seems odd to say but there is a certain primal satisfaction for me pulling weeds. No music. No noise. It’s a calming thing to do. The odd thing was my reaction upon smelling someone’s dinner cooking on the grill. The smell of grilling meat was almost overpowering in that moment and I almost started to salivate. I was so mindless in the action of pulling weeds that I had this other primal reaction to the smell of food. It was an odd experience to be sure.

Tour de France – Stage 3

Alaphilippe. Wow. What a 15k at the end of that stage. The guy is scary on the descents. At one point he’s going 50. I can’t imagine going that fast on a bike on perfect roads let alone the crap he was traveling over. And to put 20+ seconds into everyone else to get the yellow jersey. Just a phenomenal stage. Sagan starts to extend his points lead already. Expect to see him in green in Paris.