Our Mission : Aviation pictures the world needs to see. And some other stuff too.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Experimental Modified 737 Photo

Aloha Airlines briefly operated this 737-76N with an advanced concept vertical stabilizer designed by Boeing in cooperation with Mooney. The engineering logic was that by reversing the tail, the aircraft would achieve less drag, and thereby increase speed and fuel efficiency. In route proving trials, pilots reported an increase in side-slip and a "tail wag" yaw that couldn't be easily solved by software updates.


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Monday, October 24, 2011

Testing the iPhone 4S on airplanes

We took some airplane pictures with an iPhone 4S. No post-editing except as noted.

United 777 with no zoom or crop.

Digital zoom at 2.5X get's grainy. No crop.  

Digital zoom at max 5X is real bad. No crop.

No zoom or crop on this 767. But notice how the camera picked up the spherical UFO in the upper right. It's shadowing is consistent with the sun angle at the time. 

Same picture as above, but cropped.

Another one with no zoom, but cropped.

Same picture as above with full compliment of post-editing tweaks.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Vintage LAX

A couple from when we used to prowl around with Ektachrome ...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Citation X N426CM

Congratulations to our Citation X of the week winner. Your valuable prize is a post on Airplane Life. Winner is responsible for any taxes.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Inside Delta Air Lines Customer Care

Part 2

In our last installment, Alice (our hypothetical disgruntled traveller), had written to Delta to (allegedly) claim that she had been totally screwed-over. 

We pick up the story ...

Her letter arrived in Atlanta. Alice visualized that her letter would be read by a perky, smiling brunette intern (named Peaches; she has pictures of her kitten and boyfriend on the walls of her cubicle .. drives a Camry), who would immediately recognize Delta's wrong-doing, and correct the error.

But the sheer size of Delta's operation prevents this. They are getting (an estimated) 125,000 complaints every day. So what happens is that one of 27 illegal aliens (unconfirmed) employed by Delta opens each letter and feeds it into a device called an "Optical Character Recognition Scanner." The process converts scanned images of machine-printed or handwritten text into a computer-processable format.

Alice's letter is then transmitted to India using a constellation of Iridium satellites such as this one :


Arriving in India, her letter is sent to the mainframe of Delta's Customer Care Global Data Center (that we think might be) located on the second floor of the building to the right in this picture :


The computer's custom software extracts the usual keywords such as, "rip-off," lied,"  "misleading," and "larceny," from Alice's letter, and matches it to one of 2 or 3 prefabricated "personal responses."

In our next episode, we'll introduce you to, "Diana P. Coster." She's a Delta Customer Care Coodinator that DOESN'T EXIST.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

1978 BMW R100S

First look at the stunning new retro-style livery on a friend's Beemer. Nice, eh?

N23BT Cessna 310 Seaplane

OK well, Sky King he's not. This chap was flying from Monterey, CA to Hilo, HI. He made it all the way except for the last 13 miles. Ran out of fuel. That crosswind component will getcha every time. Maybe he should have put some, "mileage enhancing pellets" in his tip tanks. Pilot is OK; discharged from hospital. As the saying goes, any landing you can swim away from is a good one. An ironic twist is that this guy once won United's "Halfway to Hawaii" game. USCG video that has no audio.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Thank You, Steve ...

We're sad about Steve. We're all Apple here. There is no Microsoft junk of any sort allowed in the 27 acre Airplane Life campus. They'll stop you at the gate.