2015 Tour

Been kicking around another “epic” bicycle tour. First thought was flying to Oregon and riding back to Pueblo Colorado finishing the Transamerica route. But that has little appeal as I have almost always vacationed in the west. And I don’t know if I am up to a fully loaded tour, psychologically, for 2000 miles.

This past 12 months has been a bit hellish healthwise and finally have everything resolved it seems for now. Been riding stronger than ever and it just seems right to do another longish tour. Adventure Cycling has an Atlantic Coast van supported tour that seems very appealing. 61 days starting in Key West and riding to the Canadian border, some 2,800 miles. 13 riders, if they fill, and two “leaders.” Still kicking the tires on this one.

I have never been to the Keys but have been to most states and lived in a couple, North Carolina and New York. Have not been to Maine though. Lots of interesting history to travel though.

IBS Mappro

Just finished a large update to IBS Mappro centered around the marker icons. First to meet WordPress standards I needed to move the icons into the plugin space from their source at Google. That required more facilities to manage the resources. I originally wanted to not to serve up the icons since if I went away that could leave maps dangling without icons.

There is always the issue of which icons to provide the users with. There seems to be an endless number of map icons available and it is impractical to host all of them. What I decided to do is provide the Google kml icon sets, each as a library, and initialize the icon platte with the shape icon set from Google as the default. The icon palette can be manipulated as to adding icons from other libraries and also deleted others. The palette can also be ordered so the frequently used icons show up first on the palette.

Added was the ability to create new icon libraries and upload icons to them. This should allow everyone to have their own custom set of icons..

GPX files are always an issue as only the symbol name is carried and no image source supplied. So it is always a guess as what icon to use. Now a list of the Garmin symbol names is supplied and icons from the libraries can be assigned to the names so some meaningful icon can be used. Included in the icon libraries is a library of Garmin icons and an attempt is made to assign them to the corresponding Garmin symbol names.


New plugin developments

While I briefly sought to release a bare bones implementation of fullCalendar I found that I was premature stepping out into the WordPress world a bit naked. I’ve since concentrated on making the three plugins, IBS Calendar, IBS Mailbox, and finally IBS Mappro meet WordPress standards more fully. And doing more in depth testing along the way.

The end goal is to tie all three plugins together in such a way that they will provide a basis for the bicycle tourist to easily use WordPress for journaling.

IBS FullCalendar to WordPress (Flunked)

Yes the reviewer flunked me for mainly using CDN (code distribution network) sites for the FullCalendar source and jQuery Ui themes. To conform brought the size of the plugin up to 1,923 KB from 190 KB. A sizeable increase. I left the FullCalendar distribution intact with examples and the rest of the non essentials. Just easier to update down the line. Ditto for the jQuery ui themes.

I also had to implement a <iframe> showing the FullCalendar website for documentation instead of using a link.

Waiting for a new review.

UPDATE: I have withdrawn my submission request for a couple of reasons. I really want to use CDN’s as they make life much easier. Two there is some intellectual property issues I need to sort out.


IBS FullCalendar To WordPress

Just submitted IBS FullCalendar to WordPress for review and publication. Having written several plugins for my own use the IBS FullCalendar is the first I’ve been motivated to publish.

There are several WordPress calendar related plugins and some even use the jQuery FullCalendar code too. But mostly they implement the older versions while the version 2.0 is a greatly improved product. And a few also display Google Calendar feeds to some extent.

I tried to use the “kiss” principle while offering a good deal of flexibility too. You can define 1-10 different Google Calendar feeds and for each shortcode you can define 1 or more feeds to display on that calender. Each feed can have it’s own color scheme. With each shortcode you can reconfigure the calendar though the shortcode options.

I am hoping someone will take the code and expand it into a more robust calendaring system.

Utah Utopia Summary

Oren was an excellent tour guide and we visited some awesome places, Arches, Zion, Bryce, and Capitol Reef National Parks. In addition I was able to add Canyonlands NP and Dead Horse, and Goblin State Parks to my list. And we also did some hikes that were great too.

But as a sag driver I was only able to do sag duties two days as the weather made bike riding untolerable. The one opportunity we had to camp, with decent weather, at Goblin State Park the campground was booked and the few places left that were available was in the mud and the tent pads pools.

I have mixed emotions about having a sag on a bike tour. It seems to offer a too easy of a way out when the weather is bad, as we experienced. Without a sag you just have to tough out the weather and soldier on.

On this route riding fully loadable and camping would be rather difficult because there were some huge climbs and some smaller but rather sharp climbs most of the way. And none of us were exactly young either. The alternative is either a credit card tour or a longer loaded tour with shorter mileage.

This seemed be an anomaly with the weather we experienced as the end of September and the beginning of October are normally the prime time for southern Utah.

Long Canyon Slot

In Torrey, Utah at an art gallery I bought a framed photograph/media of this slot canyon. The photographer told me the location where he took the picture. This is the place where it was taken In Long Canyon. Actually this was taken looking out of the slot.