Issue 20: Reader Feedback

We enjoy hearing what our readers think, good or bad. Please let us know how we are doing!

Hi Mike G. and Mike W. –

Great article (Visual Eye, Nov. 2000 issue)…… How ’bout one on Digital Video Cameras?


Jim Byrne

Great suggestion, we’ll see what we can come up with.

Thoughtful piece by Adena Schutzberg on ballet judging. Not sure I deserve any credit for “washing the car” but it’s very much to the point.

Related to Adena’s comments on music choice and opportunities is “program”. A clear beginning, middle, and end does more for me than just a string of moves, even if they’re to the music. And a good short program beats just filling up the maximum time. (A good long program can be a knock-out, of course.)

Thanks for a good article.

Joel Brown

Thanks for writing, Joel. We’ll try to get more of Adena’s thoughts for future issues.

Hello Mike

Just a brief note to let you know how much I enjoyed the articles by Ajay and Graeme in the November issue. Well done mate , keep up the great work. We really appreciate kitelife here in Tasmania. Keeps us in touch with the WHOLE kiting world. Regards from the kite flying devil

Malcolm Dick

Glad you enjoy it.

Hello Barbara, hello Mike!

I want to thank you for the very nice report of the 1st kite festival of Wittenberg (“A dream becomes reality”). It is the first time to see me in a kite magazine for something like that. But I think, I wasnt the real actor of this festival, I’ve just given all the kitefliers a place to fly together 😉 and make them welcome. It was a very good atmosphere and the weather was on our side. We had 4 bft all over the weekend by day and night. And always a blue sky. With the help of everyone we had a lot of action all the time, anybody was there with a helping hand and a lot of kites. By the way I will thanks to all the kitefliers, who comes to this spectacle, the people of my hometown want to thank you too. It was the first time they saw kites in this Sizes and Colours and they were very impressed, the feedback was 100% positive. Lots of kitefliers who were there tell me, that I should fix a next kite festival in my hometown next year. If it’s possible for me, I want make this. It’s a lot to do, but I’ll try my best to make a good event for all (like this year). Maybe then are more kiters there, but the place is big enough for a lot…. Any kiteflier is welcome to make the sky coloured in the East Part of Germany. The date for the 2nd Kitefestival in Wittenberg should be on the last weekend of August 2001. For further information mail me or have a look at my homepage.

Best regards, Thomas Friebe

Wish I could have been there! Thanks for writing, Thomas. Best of luck with this year’s fest.

Mike –

A very informative article, that has de-confused me, particularly in the area of memory formats. Some comments:

1) A TIFF (and also a GIF) file is compressed by default (using LZW compression). The compression method allows exact reconstruction of the original data and is not “lossy”, which the JPEG compression method is. And when you go to higher quality image settings in the JPEG mode to reduce the lossiness, you also lose the ability to compress.

2) Picking the storage mode is very critical. What is the max available capacity? What will become the standard (as the price per unit of the standard will drop due to competition)? What is not so proprietary as to preclude competition? What will also fit into my MP3 player, and perhaps my PDA? What is the current price comparison (it’s sort of like giving away razors to promote the continuing razor blade business)? How many images at various resolutions and JPEG quality settings will fit on a card?

3) I have done quite a bit of film photography, but only last week was introduced to the world of digital photography. I had access to a model of the Mavica that used a floppy for storage. I would not have one of these things for my own:

a) No optical viewfinder. Viewing the LED screen requires holding the camera out in front of you, in a way that reduces steadiness and control of the image.

b) Takes several seconds from pressing the shutter release to taking the picture. Action shots, or even candid shots of people who may move, are out of the question.

c) Requires perhaps 15 seconds or more to record the image on the floppy, during which the camera is “hors de combat”.

d) No indication of shutter speed, aperture, focus, depth of field or exposure quality.

e) Terminally anemic flash (and didn’t see a connector for an external flash unit).

f) Zoom adjustment that is slow and that over-shoots.

Caveat emptor!

The neat thing was that I was able to dump the JPEG’s from the pictures I took to a small VB program I wrote, and project them on the wall immediately, in a screen saver like cycle, during the breaks in the meeting. Everyone likes to see themselves on-screen.

Also, the power of imaging programs to rescue bad exposure and composition with minimal effort is truly extraordinary.

Keep up the great work.

Ken Meyer

Thanks for the observations, Ken. A quick note on the Mavica, other models in the Mavica line do not have many of the limitations that you noted.

The article that Adena Schutzberg did was Awesome. Keep up the good work !!!

Thanks for writing, I’m sure Adena appreciates your comment.

Hello Mr. Gillard,

First time sending comments………here goes. Once again I enjoyed reading Kitelife. What prompted me to write was the reader feedback article from the Bethall family. I just wanted to say that I also like hearing of Ray’s Adventures. This months article was no exception. For an “old dude” he sure knows how to get around. I live about 40 miles west of Wildwood. I became hooked on kite flying Memorial Day weekend of 1998. My fiancee saw how much I was into watching the stunt competitions, so she bought me a dual line, as a gift, a month later. I have been to Wildwood every Memorial Day since. One year, I may even get the guts to compete myself. I walk around each year and put the faces to names of folks I read about in Kitelife. The one face I remember is Mr. Bethall’s. Last year, at Wildwood, I remember watching Mr. Bethall as he was flying kites off his belt, his legs, and I even think I saw him using his hands. As a beginner this mystifies me. Well keep up the good work, and I’ll see all your flying enthusist friends, Memorial Day weekend, 2001.


Jim Connor

Yup, Wildwood is a festival that’ll hook you. It worked that way for me, also! Thanks for writing.

RE: AKA Article

I may just print out the article and keep a couple copies with me for the next time I go fly a kite. I joined about a year ago, and know of most of the benefits, and the Insurance alone is a bargain, but the Magazine, member list and discounts are great too. I found at least 6 members within an hours drive, which is half the distance to the nearest kite club.

Good Winds to ya <>~~

Will Smoot
Waynesboro, VA

Thanks, Will. I agree that AKA membership is a great value, even for those that don’t live in the USA.

Mike Again, thank you for your help with my website problem.

GOMAID! What a heart warming outpouring of true kite flyer charity at its best :) As soon as I can stop laughing and wipe the tears from my eyes I’ll send David & Susan a box of almonds.

Keep It Up
Jim Strealy

You’re welcome, Jim. That Gomaid piece was truly spontaneous, and a lot of fun. Glad you enjoyed it.

Hello all. I know this might be a long road trip for a lot of you, but I still wanted to let you know, that Fly Pittsburgh is having an indoor fun fly on Saturday, March 10, 2001, from noon till 4. I will post a reminder about it closer to the date also. The gym is at the Slippery Rock University, and is the size of 4, 3/4 basketball courts. Can you say lots of room?? This will be our 5th indoor fly. There will be music and some fun competitions. If anyone is interested, you can contact me for more information and directions. The donation per flyer is not set yet, but should be no more than $10.00. (This MUST be called a donation, or the cost of the rental doubles!! YIKES!!) Spectators are free. The facility will be open, and for a $5.00 charge, paid to the university, you can have a day pass to use the pool and track, ect…. Another thing to think about. This is only 7 miles from the Grove City Factory Shops. There are 3 motels right near the mall, but they fill up fast. You could come for the weekend and do some shopping AND get some good indoor flying in. Doesn’t that sound like fun?? If you are interested, or just want more information, write to me, or call 724-794-4913.

Hope you all have a very Happy New Year!
Boop Baumgardner or

Mike: I’d like to invite you to view a new web site on KITES and Kite Aerial Photography. Here is the url for the section on kites…

And here is the url for the entire web site…

Please go to the site, view it and give feedback if you would. Also, here is a Club on YAHOO! devoted to Kites and more.

Please pass the site url on to as many people as you can. Thank you for your time and enjoy.

Ray Bayer

Great! Consider it done.

That Broder guy is funny as a crutch, I enjoy his writing.

Bob from Arkansas

ps- Any of you guys fish?

Nope, still human.


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Author:Mike Gillard (RIP)

A lover of all things kiting, Mike Gillard saw extensive time in team sport kite competition, judging, organization, publishing and more... Utilizing his collective experiences from the kiting community, he created Kitelife Magazine in April of 1998 and eventually went on to become the Editor of the AKA's Kiting magazine before his passing in February of 2006.

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