Thursday, 21 October 2021

Cambridge Half, Town and Gown 10k, Basingstoke Half and 10k and Clarendon Marathon Galleries live 2021

Beachy Head Half 2021 - the start is more of a climb than the entire Cambridge Half Marathon !

So only the ~380,000 images live on the day catalogued and distributed to the runners at the Cambridge half marathon last Sunday. The pic2go technology made the grade - we did have a very nice optical fibre cable internet courtesy of the University, and a *lot* of computing power (actually only three desktops, but well configured etc) in the back of our processing van. It looked a bit MI5 with loads of screens to be honest, but we had roughly 200,000 done through by 2pm and then wizzed back to the office to get the rest done ready for your evening gossip and chats about achievements.

Cambridge is very pretty - especially the Kings College and The Backs along the river.

If you want to see the publicly shared galleries - then have a look here  - count the likes and comments and then wonder how you can get us involved at your next favourite race ! The pic2go gallery really does get the conversation going - what you achieved and what the race was like - it's a brilliant way to share the day.

So Here's our table of free download galleries - if it was a pic2go event you can always get your free pic2go personalised RunPage gallery by registering here:

Date Event FREE DOWNLOAD and UPGRADE Gallery
Sun-03/10/2021 Clarendon Marathon
Sun-03/10/2021 Basingstoke Half
Sun-10/10/2021 aCR Islington 1 hour
Sat-16/10/2021 Cambridge Town and Gown 10k
Sun-17/10/2021 Beachy Head Half
Sun-17/10/2021 Cambridge Half Marathon
Date Event FREE DOWNLOAD and UPGRADE Galleries to be
Sat-23/10/2021 Beachy Head
Sun-24/10/2021 Beachy Head 10k
Sun-24/10/2021 Royal Borough of Kingston Half Marathon

For pre registration and after the race go here:

and the backup and upgrade gallery will be here later in the week

Doesn't the computers do the cataloguing automatically ? Nopey Nope.

and made me laugh because that's what you get with AI tagging - someone who looks a bit like you running slowly in a bus lane.

It's because I get told all the time that I *should* use AI and it's a lot faster than manual tagging and they quote me higher prices. But actually every time I look at an AI tagged gallery, along with the "selfie face recognition" capability that they have added to these - I just get error after error after error. My favourite test is to see how many race numbers I can surf before all the images are 100% correct for that runner. I usually start off with "1234" as a seed search, and then browse on sequential mistaken errors. You can get 10 to 20 runners surfing done before you find a race number with an entirely correct set of photo images. Quite apart from the fact if you do the selfie stuff you've probably put your personal face-data into some unknown database with goodness knows what privacy and GDPR permissions, which is probably cross-referenced to all your computer cookies and the websites google analytics. (I edited out a complete rant here about privacy, I'm sure you can ad-lib it yourselves as they sell your face-data and keyworded associated cookies).

Yeah - ok only a few out of lots are wrong you say, so what if AI is a bit wrong, it's mostly right ? well a) do you want to see other people, and what about those people seeing their photos which are tagged as you - how's that going to happen ? and do you want other people seeing you without you wanting them to randomly ? so it's a lose-lose and twice as bad as people think it is on the surface.

So that's one reason why we use the pic2go barcode system. We don't have to upload full resolution files to the cloud (wasting internet bandwidth and online storage), we don't have to turn on a zillion amazon servers to cope with the processing necessary (yes AI and face recognition is processing heavy and expensive), and if we can't see a pic2go barcode properly - it simply tells us to have a person look at it and make a decision, which we do, and we get it right, and if we can't we say "000" - so it's not confused with anyone else.

Yes it's fallible if the barcodes are not fully visible, or have pins in them (which obscures them), or they are rubbed off - but to be honest - that's the same problems as trying to read a race number. The numbers are usually a lot bigger and a little more tolerant to partial obscuring (you can read some digits  with only a partial bit of the number showing), but then that's why we usually have two barcodes on a race number - so the one your hand isn't hiding can be seen, and also put next to the number so it's displayed nice and cleanly. And then we can always fall back to the race numbers - if you've not covered those up too...

Beachy Head Marathon - with free downloads
So if you're lucky enough to be out at Beachy Head Marathon this saturday - follow the usual standard guidelines - numbers on the front, don't fold them, don't cover them, and don't put pins through the barcodes, [and if you *MUST* put them on your shorts - put them *VERTICALLY* (ok so the number is sideways) with the barcodes *ON THE FRONT* up your thigh - facing forwards. This way the number can be seen from either side of the path.]
Don't put them horizontally and wrap them around your thigh - because only the first or last digits can be read from the side - but not all of it, and don't pin them on the side - again - because it can't be read from the other side ! Just down the front - easy ! and if you're in any doubt at all - tri-belts don't work for anyone except someone selling tri-belts. frankly I don't think I ever can read a number pinned to a tri-belt. You'd be better off using a bit of bamboo as a flag stick with the number on it.

Actually that FREE DOWNLOADS - LIVE ON THE DAY also applies to the RBK Half Marathon on sunday - which I'm again pleased to announce the full pic2go services with bespoke shareable personal galleries - fully customisable, and you can pre-register to get notifications as soon as photos of you are available during the race - so once you've got your breath back - you can share and tell people of your time and achievements ! You can also add your own selfies and medal shots to the mix if you want to and really make the memories your own.
Pre-registration is here

Anyway I promised to keep this short - apologies for the lack of loads of images and witty captions - but I'm solid exhausted from last weekend and trying to build up myself for this long weekend coming...
So until next time when the dinosaurs once again rule the earth..

Until next time - fingers crossed for the weather forecast this weekend and we can work out what's going on with our leaking roof,

good luck if you're running too !



Thursday, 23 September 2021

Winchester Half, REP Adur Swim, REP National Aquathlon, and the Wye Valley Mighty Hike 2021 - now live

If you do all the Mighty Hikes - you get headline placing !
An absolutely fantastic achievement for the charity !

That's the back to work weeks done after August holidays then - we have the following galleries all live and online - and importantly - ALL FREE DOWNLOADS, but you can upgrade your favourites so they're perfect for printing !

Date Event Free Download Gallery
Sat-28/08/2021 Mighty Hike - Rob Roy
Sun-29/08/2021 Arundel 10k
Sat-04/09/2021 Mighty Hike - Lake District
Sat-04/09/2021 Mighty Hike - Jurassic Coast
Sat-04/09/2021 UltraX Summer Trail Series
Sun-05/09/2021 Southampton Marathon
Sun-05/09/2021 Mighty Hike - Jurassic Coast
Sat-11/09/2021 REP Adur swim
Sat-11/09/2021 Mighty Hike - Wye Valley
Tue-14/09/2021 Big Ride For Africa - Lessons For Life
Sun-19/09/2021 REP Worthing Aquathlon
Sun-19/09/2021 Winchester Half Marathon

And if you're wondering what the next races are - again all with free downloads booked in  - they're here:

Just one thing - if you're entered - please turn up ! -  we don't know why (ok we can *guess* why) but turnout has been hitting historical lows as a percentage of entries sold. 

Events are gearing up for you to turn up at the normal rate (usually around 80-85%) - and you are not. Now - come on everyone ! It's a collosal waste of resources to prepare for 200-500 people who don't turn up - the amount of toilets, tshirts, medals, race numbers, metal pins, marshals, medics, barriers, chips for timing - EVERYTHING is budgeted on you turning up on the day !! We're all very tight for budgets having not had any events for so so long - and it would make a massive difference to organisers if they didn't have to pay out for things you're literally not rocking up to use - and we would all rather you did turn up and make the events the great things that they are supposed to be !

So far there have been only four recorded cases of Covid attributed to mass participation running events - (according to Mass Participation World) - I personally think you're at most risk supporting - because who knows who you're standing next to for extended periods of time next to a barrier ! 
SO please - if you have an entry - USE IT !

see you and any of the following OK !

Date Event Event Website
Sat-25/09/2021 Oxfam Trailwalker
Sun-03/10/2021 Clarendon Marathon - pic2go technology
Sun-03/10/2021 Basingstoke Half and 10k - pic2go technology
Sun-10/10/2021 aCR Islington 1 hour
Sat-16/10/2021 Cambridge Town and Gown 10k - for muscular Dystrophy - pic2go technology
Sun-17/10/2021 Cambridge Half Marathon - pic2go technology
Sun-24/10/2021 Royal Borough of Kingston Half Marathon
- pic2go technology

At the RIver Adur swim we had a bit of fun at the start on the pontoon -
Here's a little video we took at the start of the event with our spare hand...

or enjoy the full interactive moment video below

There's always a proud Dad moment when you get your rapidly growing child to do a quick start video, edit it down to 20 seconds and then watch it smash all the best views and engagement stats we have ever had out of the ground. I say beginners luck but there we go...

So that was the Raw Energy Pursuits (REP) Adur 5k swim sponsored by Protein Ball. A well marshalled out and back swim, on the tide turn so if you're tired after 2.5k you can just about bob your way back and still be home in time for tea before the marshals go sea fishing, or can't stand in the ever increasing current to catch you as you zip past off to the channel...Mark I'm assured could catch up with you eventually in his kyak, but only if you promise him coffee as he comes up alongside you.

You too can look strong and fast - if you enter a National Aquathlon Championships !

The National Aquathlon Championships (that's a swim and a run if you didn't know) was down at Worthing as well - far too much enthusiasm for open water swimming in the sea and then smashing about near the local parkrun - just as well it was a sunday morning, and the sea was relatively warm and calm. Very unlike Worthing when there's anything competitive on in the water - but that's how it rolls these days ! Mick and the trusted team put on another fantastic events and as ever it's always a bit of a shame when we get to the end of the season.
Sometimes I photograph this more for the deep anticipation of failure than for the joy of watching people start their challenges ! I'm becoming a bad person.

The 2021 Winchester Half Marathon also went off without a hitch - the road closed bollards and pedestrian zone narrowly escaped two disasters - firstly the race lead car could fit out through all the road closed checkpoints (with some elbow grease), and secondly the market trader who set up in the underpass at the first turn was sensible enough to move before the runners returned ! 

Fortunately the rain managed to stay away in any major way, although it did necessitate protection - and exposure compensation - both annoyingly fiddly after a summer of mostly worrying about sunburn and exhaustion.

Always good to win !

He lost his little shoes !

This is how I'd pose for photos to be honest. It's the best way.

So without putting in too many images and having a rant about CO2 shortages (did you know I was once an Industrial Gases engineer - what I can't tell you about this country collapsing to North Korean levels of subsistence in under a week won't be remotely interesting if you don't understand the industrial gases logistics)- but all I can say is my Solar panels are over 10 years old and going strong thanks !.

In summary PLEASE TURN UP TO YOUR EVENTS, keep training, keep safe, and enjoy it whilst it lasts - and it won't if you don't turn up and run !

Until next time. Assuming there is a next time.


PS next week, how to play the AI tagged photo gallery surfing game. Find a race gallery tagged using  AI and face recognition tagging (aka selfie upload) - that's the clue. Start off with a random number (1234?), and then when you see a mismatched number, search on that instead. You'll be enjoying it for hours - trust will keep you busy for hours.