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A Geek On Everest 125

Posted by kdawson
from the high-adventure dept.
mysterious_mark writes "Recently I was recruited by Altitude Films to be the IT geek for a filming expedition to the north side of Mount Everest. I have written an account of my experience. It is a tale of high latency, low bandwidth, blown hard drives, and frozen fingers. Summit day is June 14th. See the expedition's site for the overall picture (caution: total Flash site)."
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A Geek On Everest

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  • New RFC (Score:5, Funny)

    by LiquidCoooled (634315) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:07AM (#19436047) Homepage Journal
    ip over sherpa carriers with quality of service
  • by D-Cypell (446534) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:09AM (#19436065)
    "Half way up mount everest, you insensitive clod".
  • Man ... (Score:5, Funny)

    by iknowcss (937215) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:11AM (#19436081) Homepage
    If it was me, I wouldn't have filmed on the side of Mt. Everest. If I ever get the time and money, I'm going to climb to the top of The Mountain with a laptop and a monster of a directional wifi antenna, sit at its peak, come to slashdot, and comment "frist pots frum EVEREST."

    You will all envy me. Or mod me as troll. I'M THE MOUNTAIN TROLL.
  • by Luscious868 (679143) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:16AM (#19436141)

    From the article:

    .. I would join up with an elite crew of climbers, cameramen and production personnel ...

    ... we had both a production leader, Anthony Geffen, world renowned documentary producer, and elite climber, ...

    ... I teamed up with gadget guru and professional climber, Kevin Thaw (http://www.kevinthaw.com), often heralded as Britain's best all-round climber ...

    ... where we found our complimentary skills and synergy allowed us to produce top quality work ...

    ... We endured torrential downpours and hacked with machetes for days through triple canopy rain forest ...

    ... As for myself, I had a variety of skills that led to my recruitment for this project ...

    Apparently all he's missing a cape with a big fat S on his chest.

    • by packetmon (977047) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:25AM (#19436211) Homepage
      We should all know by now if he were truly a geek he would have at least spelled 31337 correctly.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        only on slashdot would people rate a post concerning the correct spelling of "31337" insightful.
      • by loconet (415875) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:52AM (#19436457) Homepage
        The primary mode of failure for laptops in this environment is hard drive failure since hard drives rely upon the viscosity of air to provide lubrication and damping among the moving parts, the same manner that oil provides lubrication and damping for moving machine or engine parts.

        To his credit, he did manage to slip in the car analogy..

    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Yet as an Elite IT expert, he forgets to buy Tough books that can handle the cold and conditions but tries to use regular laptops.

    • by Tell999 (874678)
      If it wasn't for this "elite crew", the geek would much likely face death up there. Once in a while, the elite is good for something...
    • ... We endured torrential downpours and hacked with machetes for days through triple canopy rain forest ...
      There isn't much need to hack through triple canopy jungle. Double canopy is actually thicker vegetation on the floor since sunlight actually reaches the jungle floor. In triple canopy the canopy is so thick very little sunlight reaches the floor, hence less vegetation to "hack through".
    • by NateTech (50881)
      He's just kissing ass to the people that paid for and allowed him to go. Nothing to see here, move along.
  • by neurovish (315867) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:17AM (#19436157)

    (caution: total Flash site)
    Because nothing says "high latency, low bandwidth" like flash!
  • So, how much for a helicopter ride straight to the top so I can snap a few pictures and say I was there? B)
    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      The altitude of Everest is too high for a helicopter. I think the highest a helicopter can go is around 20000 feet though I'm probably wrong. Everest is somewhere around 29000.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ed1park (100777)
        Alrighty, who wants to chip in for a helicopter ride!?!!

        2005 - Helicopter landing

        On 14 May 2005, pilot Didier Delsalle of France landed a Eurocopter AS 350 B3 Helicopter on the summit of Mount Everest[19] and remained there for two minutes. (His rotors were continually engaged; this is known as a "hover landing".) His subsequent take-off set the world record for highest take-off of a rotorcraft -- a record that of course cannot be beaten.[20] Delsalle had also performed a take-off two days earlier from the
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by ed1park (100777)
          "a record that of course cannot be beaten."

          Btw, I don't like claims likes that. Who's to say that I couldn't fly up to the summit in my helicopter with a bunch of materials, build an elevated landing pad, then take off from that thus setting a new altitude record! Who's with me?! Any billionaires out there with cash burning a hole in their pocket, please contact me as I proclaim exclusive, patented, trademarked, and copyrighted rights to this idea!
        • by genner (694963)
          Can not be beaten?
          I thought K5 was higher than Everest.
          Hmm..someone want to loan me a helicopter
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        Too high for a regular helecopter, but you could easily design one that would get to Everest easily. You'd basically need the powerful jet engines driving a larger than usual rotor. Not difficult really.

        NASA is even looking at helecopters for Mars because the thin atmosphere makes fixed wing aircraft difficult to design. Flying fixed wing on Mars is easy, but the problem is that the speed of sound is very slow in the thin air. And, because the air is thin, you've got to fly fast to generate lift. This means
      • The first helicopter landing on the summit occurred in 2005. [nationalgeographic.com] So it's definitely possible.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by jsight (8987)
      It's been done before, but I can't imagine it being cheap. 29k is awfully high for a helicopter.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Everest [wikipedia.org]
    • by Doddman (953998)
      fuck a helicopter dude you should just noclip your way up
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:19AM (#19436181)
    I don't want to sound like an ass but they're only currently at an advanced base camp according to their flash site. They've traveled (vertically) 1,200m so far and they have another 2,400m to go. It only gets worse and steeper the higher up you climb too. So you've spent 30 days so far according to your clock & you want to hit that summit by June 14th? Good luck and may god (of your choice) be with you, hundreds of people have lost their lives due to stupidity & ill preparation.

    I can't say I've ever done anything like this, though I've read a lot of books about it. For public consumption, I heavily recommend "Into the Wild" by Jon Krakauer [wikipedia.org]. Read it before the movie comes out--movies are always so much worse than books.
    • by u-bend (1095729) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:32AM (#19436275) Homepage Journal
      I think his Everest book was "Into Thin Air" [wikipedia.org]. I haven't read either, but worked in a bookstore when they were popular, and they are supposed to be very readable.
      :)
    • by Otter (3800)
      I can't say I've ever done anything like this, though I've read a lot of books about it.

      No offense, but I'd trust Conrad Anker's judgment on this over yours...

      I'm not sure exactly what you think they're doing so wrong, so maybe this is obvious to you but: "1,200m so far" is counting from Everest base camp, which is already at 5200 meters.

    • The parent is not 'Informative'.

      Conrad Anker is one of the best mountaineers in the world. There's no chance he's ill-perpared for this trip. Of course, they _are_ doing this trip using only 1920s-style clothes and gear (their team is removing all the fixed ropes and ladders before they ascend). But, if anyone has the skills and experience to attempt this, it's Conrad. Leo Houlding, on the other hand, is an odd choice from an high-altitude experience perspective, but he's proven himself on a number of b
      • "their team is removing all the fixed ropes and ladders before they ascend"

        I hope he isn't removing all of the fixed ropes and ladders from the North Route. Other climbers expect those to be there and they can be lifesavers.

        • Yeah, I wondered about this, too. Their goal is to simulate the conditions faced by Mallory and Irvine as much as possible, so removing the fixed aid makes sense. I'm assuming (hoping) that their support team will remove them and then replace them once Conrad and Leo pass. It would be a little irresponsible to not replace them and risk the lives of other climbers.

          -Chris
    • by oudzeeman (684485)
      the climb to the summit only takes a couple days but it takes a month for a westerner to acclimatize. First they hike in to base camp and then hang out. then they do acclimatization trips up the mountaint, each time going higher, then back down to lower altitude to sleep. They would then return to advaced base camp or even base camp and rest, then make a summit push. Spending 30 days on the mountain and being in ABC isn't out of the ordinary. anyone making the summit has surely climed higher and back do
    • by metlin (258108)
      You're correct.

      They have a long way to go before they get to the top - from their route, it looks like they will be going through the Northeast ridge [wikipedia.org] route. This means that they have a long way before reaching the First, Second and Third Steps and finally, the summit.

      And like someone else mentioned, Jon Krakauer's Into Thin Air [amazon.com] is his book on Everest - he talks about Anatoli Boukreev (a Russian climber whom Jon criticizes) and he talks about Beck Weathers who was left for dead but despite being frostbitten,
    • by zummit (448138)
      > they're only currently at an advanced base camp according to their flash site. They've traveled (vertically) 1,200m so far and they have another 2,400m to go. It only gets worse and steeper the higher up you climb too. So you've spent 30 days so far according to your clock & you want to hit that summit by June 14th?

      FYI - when one climbs Everest, you go up, you come down, you go up higher, you come back down, rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat. It's called "acclimitazation".
  • Stay warm! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Billosaur (927319) * <wgrother&optonline,net> on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:24AM (#19436201) Journal

    Laptop computers provide most of the computer power we need on the mountain but they have to stay lower on the mountain, at or below advanced base camp at 21,000 feet. For redundancy we brought three laptops, all different brands, just in case one particular brand proved problematic. The primary mode of failure for laptops in this environment is hard drive failure since hard drives rely upon the viscosity of air to provide lubrication and damping among the moving parts, the same manner that oil provides lubrication and damping for moving machine or engine parts.

    And depending on the make and model, the second failure mode, the batteries bursting into flames, will keep you warm on those chilly Everest nights.

    It is safe to say that climbing Everest has no more significance now than parking your car. Every year, a cavalcade of people charge up the mountain, to the point there are actual people jams at the approach to the summit. Ho hum.

    • by dabadab (126782)

      It is safe to say that climbing Everest has no more significance now than parking your car


      Yeah, I agree. Every obese, untrained geek can do it. Ten times a day.

      I mean, de you really mean it? Of course, a trained, highly experienced, thoroughly prepared team nowadays has a good chance of actually reaching the top and not dying on the way (though many do) but it is still very far from being trivial.
      • Kind of like shagging Paris Hilton????

        I'm not saying everyone on the planet could pull it off (perhaps only a handful of Slashdot readers), but when it happens it's not exactly big news, is it????
    • The primary mode of failure for laptops in this environment is hard drive failure since hard drives rely upon the viscosity of air to provide lubrication and damping among the moving parts


      He should have sprung for one of the new flash memory drives. What's a couple hundred bucks when you're on top of the world?
  • by dfdashh (1060546) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:26AM (#19436225)
    I liked the article, but I really wanted to hear more about the particular problems he experienced with the equipment, and what (if any) type of workaround he used to get them back into shape. In such extreme weather, he HAD to have more failures or problems other than that one hard drive. On the other hand, he didn't go above a certain altitude, and maybe everything was fine and dandy. For that, I can think of the ads now: "ABC Corp's hard disks survived EVEREST - put them to work in your demanding data center today!"
    • My data center is COLDER than the summit of Everest.
      • > My data center is COLDER than the summit of Everest.

        A hilltop like that will both be cold and have thin air, but there's a difference between the two.

        When laptops were fairly new (early 90's), Toshiba made some headlines by having a laptop used by an arctic team. Low temperatures on an arctic scale do strange things to components (besides mild natural overclocking?), and keeping the LCD liquid was by itself a feat.

        However, as stated by others, temperatures are not the only, or greatest, problem. Low pr
        • My GPS alone couldn't handle a February climb up Mt Washington NH. The batteries struggled but the worst part was the LCD screen was so cold that it was just a mottled mess. Even keeping it next to my chest in my jacket couldn't keep it warm enough. Don't depend on handheld electronics in severe cold.
  • by XxtraLarGe (551297) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:27AM (#19436231) Journal
    Anybody else read that when they saw the headline? I was like "A Geek on Everquest? Tell me something I don't know!" :-D
  • by Vulcann (752521)
    I havent RTFA but I cant help thinking that when someone puts so much money and effort to climb everest why the hell dont they carry a "Flash" drive? Ran out of money?
    • by Vulcann (752521)
      Ok ... update. I read the article and apparently he did carry Flash drives to "backup" data onto. And carried 3 laptops for redundancy!!

      Why not save all the money from the several thumb drives and the 3 laptops and buy one nice big SSD. They might not be very commonplace but hey, neither is climbing everest!! Sure they're expensive but I bet they're cheaper than all the other hardware they bought "for redundancy".

  • by Otter (3800) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:31AM (#19436261) Journal
    The comments here are like a parody of IT Guy obnoxiousness. Mark Kahrl is hauling gear up to 21,000 feet and updating a website at sub-freezing temperatures and no oxygen. And summiting Mounrt Everest next week.

    Meanwhile, a bunch of IT dorks who a) have a 70% chance of developing a basic LAMP site correctly at sea level and b) a 15% chance of walking around the block without stopping for breath are sneering at him for -- using Flash.

    • by Billosaur (927319) *

      Admittedly, it's impressive, but then again climbing Everest is no longer a glamour thing. It's become pedestrian, with basically climbing "tourists" being led up the mountain by guides making big bucks while the Sherpas do most of the hard work of actually summiting. And there are plenty of people going up that mountain who have no business being up there. And every year people die because of stupidity, in a place which is unforgiving of mistakes [amazon.com].

      I admire the guy for doing it. God knows, my wife would li

      • Ah Everest, the Las Vegas of mountaineering. I think the hardest part of Everest nowadays is getting the ~$60,000 it costs to be guided up there. It isn't much cheaper for permits to do it youself via the Nepal side either.

        Let me know when they set up a network on top of K2 or Gasherbrum IV.
        • by metlin (258108)

          Ah Everest, the Las Vegas of mountaineering. I think the hardest part of Everest nowadays is getting the ~$60,000 it costs to be guided up there. It isn't much cheaper for permits to do it youself via the Nepal side either.

          Let me know when they set up a network on top of K2 or Gasherbrum IV.

          K2 or the Gasherbrums are hard because they are technical. But just because Everest is not very technical does not make it easy.

          At high altitudes, it is not just how hard it is technically, you have a million other facto

          • I was being sarcastic but I wasn't implying Everest was easy by any means. You don't have to be the ex-president of the US to express your opinion on him and you don't have to climb Everest to comment on that either. I've only climbed in the Western Hemisphere so I haven't been on 8000m peaks but I do understand what is involved. Next to your mental and physical state your biggest obstacles on a non technical peak are objective ones, weather and your ability to function at altitude. I do think (and many
            • by metlin (258108)
              Sorry, I wasn't trying to be acidic but it's just that a lot of people (and most of them non-climbers) just tend to think of Everest as some sort of breeze. I guess my point was that while I do concur that a lot more people have been climbing Everest than ever before, that by no means makes it an easy climb. But the fact that it's extremely expensive does suck, though.

              > Simply being the highest though doesn't make it the most interesting.

              I agree, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's easy, either. I mea
      • by NMerriam (15122)

        It's become pedestrian, with basically climbing "tourists" being led up the mountain by guides making big bucks while the Sherpas do most of the hard work of actually summiting.

        This is a popular meme, but it simply is not true. Everest is called a "walk-up" in the sense that it is not technically challenging, so you don't have to be a world-class CLIMBER to get to the summit, but to suggest that makes it either easy or safe is just wrong. It has a ridiculously high death rate, and most of the prime physic

    • It's how we roll. Check out the comment linked to in my sig for the best flame on this issue.
    • by Maelwryth (982896)
      Agreed. I have only climbed a small mountain in the French Alps ( Mont Aiguille [wikipedia.org]) and I would have been buggered carrying more than a small amount of gear. The man has my respect for even being able to type in those temperatures (By Christ those rocks get cold!) let alone keep a website together.

      To all those criticizing, please try coding after keeping your hands in ice for fifteen minutes, and with a bag over your head to simulate oxygen deprivation (You are allowed a small hole). My uncle has be
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by PMuse (320639)
      1. Those of us who've never climbed past 10,000 feet can STFU. There goes 90% of /.
      2. Those of us who've never climbed past 15,000 feet can put a lid on it. There goes another 8% and me.
      3. Those of us who've never climbed past 18,000 feet should please sit down. There goes another ~2%.
      4. Now, let's hear from the couple of dozen /.ers still standing.


      There is no ambiguity about climbing a mountain. He's doing it.
      • I can use my brain even if my ass is fat.

        Climbing mount Everest is not what it used to be.

        It is becoming a high risk holiday, perhaps similar to swimming with sharks or bungee jumping, or perhaps more dangerous than that, but the point is that we are not talking Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary here anymore, it gets so crowded up there that rubbish is becoming a real issue now.
        • by metlin (258108)

          I can use my brain even if my ass is fat.

          If there is a lot of your body to cover, the amount of blood going to your brain is going to be limited. Have a good workout and see how much better you can think.

          Climbing mount Everest is not what it used to be.

          Really? Climbed it before and after, have we?

          It is becoming a high risk holiday, perhaps similar to swimming with sharks or bungee jumping, or perhaps more dangerous than that, but the point is that we are not talking Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary here

      • by NateTech (50881)
        Climb? Screw that...

        http://www.pikespeakcolorado.com/ [pikespeakcolorado.com] - 14,110 in the comfort of your car.

    • I don't care how much equipment this guy totes up the side of a mountain while being passed by the couple of thousand other tourists heading up to the summit.

      If you use Flash for your website, you lose your geek credentials. You aren't a geek-- you're a graphic artist who knows enough about computers to be dangerous.

      End of fucking story.
    • by DaveCar (189300)

      Well, I'd like to see his site but I'm running Linux on x86_64, so I'm SOL.

      Maybe if he (they?) had had the foresight to just stick up a bunch of text files and pictures as well as the Flash monstrocity I'd be able to take a look, but as it is, hey, nothing to see here, move along.

      Flash is great for your 3D panoramic views, embedded movie players, games and all, but using it for the *whole* of your site is a case of "I've got a hammer so everything is a nail".
    • by metlin (258108)
      Well said.

      Arm-chair mountaineering, anyone? :)
  • hey (Score:1, Redundant)

    by jgarra23 (1109651)
    That's wonderful!! Be safe & careful. I hope you're taking lots of pics.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:44AM (#19436389)
    A geek on Everest??? Why is his moms basement all the way up there?!
  • we want to see you update ya wiki from the point - mofo
  • by peter303 (12292) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:57AM (#19436499)
    Beats previous 2006 record of 480 summits. Gets pretty crowded on top when the 1-2 week weather window opens in late May. This year the window was unusally long, so more peole had second chances. Theres a second, much smaller season in October for a handful of remaining summits.

    The factor that greater increased climbers was the entry of cut-rate Chinese climbing companies from the north. Nepal permits cost about $10K per climber, total expedition is $20K - $60K. China cost be below $10K, thus attracting hordes. 2006 had the second highest death total (8), mostly blamed on the shortcuts and inexperience of Chinese companies. I saw (6) so far in 2007.
    • For the cost of getting up Everest I could do a handful of other equally or more interesting mountains. Hell, I could do Cho Oyu in the Himalaya and the Vinson Massif in Antartica for less than a guided trip up the Nepal side.
  • by edremy (36408) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:57AM (#19436505) Journal
    Since their HD failure rate is so high due to the thin, cold air, why are they even using them? You can buy fully solid state flash hard drives these days. The capacity is limited and they are expensive, but it's nothing compared to a trip up Everest. Buy a bunch of the 64GB ones, spend some time cutting down a copy of Windows to the absolute mininmum that you can work with and you'll still have space for Photoshop, some video editing stuff and the content.
    • by viper66 (412839)
      I agree, using hard drives is stupid. He can't be much of a geek if SSD wasn't the first thing that came to mind when planning this trip.
  • by Mystery00 (1100379) on Friday June 08, 2007 @09:59AM (#19436527)
    Flamebait: People who have such a strong negative attitude towards all things flash and refuse to look at well made flash websites are just misinformed assholes, same goes for the people that mod them up.

    Non-Flamebait: A lot of interesting information in the website, and the photographs are excellent, good luck with the expedition!

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Tony (765)
      Flash is an abomination unto God. The eleventh commandment was, "Thou shalt not be a complete ignoramus, for Flash is not a true standard."

      Alas, while lost in the desert, the chosen worshiped golden idols, and all things shiny, and did hold presentation more dear than God or standards or content. And so the internet did become a desert also, bereft of intelligence and littered with the bones of broken websites and pages inaccessible to those not of the tribes of Adobe.

      In his wrath, God sent down a plague of
    • by DaveCar (189300)

      Well, I simply can't view flash on 64bit Linux and I really cannot be arsed going to the bother of installing a separate 32bit browser just to view what mostly amounts to annoying epilepsy-inducing adverts and assholes singing along to a song that some other asshole sang along to.

      I'll file it for later when Adobe get their fingers out and release a 64 bit plugin, or gnash gets halfway usable. Filed in /dev/null.
  • *Yawn* (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Mockylock (1087585)
    Over 500 people have climbed Everest THIS YEAR. Not only that, but they pay over $40,000 to do so. Basically, if you've got money.. they'll make sure you get there. If you want to be stupid and fuck around with a computer while you're up there, don't act like you're cool because you did.

    If he wants to be impressive and tell a story about something that people haven't heard before, he should try to climb the East face of K2, THEN get back to us.
  • The expedition just found a yeti with a laptop playing a game that involved a human being whacking pigeons down a shopping mall...

  • I personally would recommend using 'noclip', and 'iddqd' (just incase!).

    Spawning at the top could lead to all sorts of clipping problems if he gets the coords wrong...
  • You misspelled Everquest.
  • They did a story in the kcstar.com about it. Story mentioned a highschool girl and also playboy playmate climbing it. The prices have come down and that has opened the flood gates. Another point of the article is that there are like 70 dead bodies up there and no one will help you if you get into trouble, instead just ignore you until you die.
  • My favorite windows system info utility. Everest Ultimate Edition. http://www.lavalys.com/ [lavalys.com]
  • lp0 frozen over!
  • by Anonymous Bullard (62082) on Friday June 08, 2007 @02:03PM (#19440969) Homepage
    In late April five Americans (one of them an exiled Tibetan) held a daring protest against the Chinese occupation of Tibet in the Everest Base Camp [realitysandwich.com] on the Tibetan side.

    Using inexpensive off-the-shelf gear they managed to broadcast a live video of the protest before the Chinese "People's Armed Police" caught wind of the "evil Freedom banner" they were holding and quickly grabbed them into custody. But the video had already been streamed into safety and in near real-time uploaded to various video-streaming sites.

    "Jeff's wireless received the video from Shannon's camera transmission, and sent the signal through an analog-digital converter that output firewire into his MacBook computer...not much different from using a WII or Playstation or Final Cut. Quicktime Broadcaster downsized and compressed the video to a data rate the satellite connection could handle (220kbps at 15 frams/sec, compressed eventually to 100 kbps), and sent it via satellite (Inmarsat system using a BGAN Java program) to a Students for a Free Tibet computer, which was also running Quicktime Broadcaster. They immediately uploaded the three minute video to YouTube. As a backup, Flickr, YouTube, Pando and other accounts were set up on the computer to upload images and video in the event Quicktime Broadcaster failed to send video, but an Internet connection was still live".

    Being protected by foreign passports the protesters had to only endure verbal threats, separation from fellow protesters, sleep depravation etc. for less then three days before being deported from the Chinese-occupied Tibet. However for the exiled Tibetan member of the crew the price of taking part in the protest was far heavier since he would now be banned from returning to his homeland... until Tibet regains it freedom, or at least until the Chinese people change their criminal and expansionist CCP regime to one which doesn't commit systematic genocide against China's historical neighbours.

    For indigenous Tibetans living under Chinese oppression any action calling for freedom in Tibet will without exception result in far more horrifying treatment involving unimaginable forms of torture and years, even decades of imprisonment in one of the many Chinese concentration camps like Drapchi outside Lhasa. More than a few Tibetans - often young buddhist nuns or monks - have died in the Chinese gulags and this horror show has continued for several decades. Even people like the visiting EU Commissioner for Human Rights is denied access to these Tibetan prisoners of conscience.

    More information about this Base Camp protest and the Tibetan struggle in general can be found from the Students For A Free Tibet [studentsfo...etibet.org] and Phayul [phayul.com] websites.

  • He starts the article with "As an IT professional, I rarely get out of the office." Then a wee bit further down says "...Ive gotten above 10,000 feet in the Sierra almost weekly for the past seven years." Still, I enjoyed the read. That's some good company leading the way.
  • However, Sticktion was not a problem.
  • iPods at altitude (Score:1, Interesting)

    by harrythefish (1028136)
    From personal experience, my 3rd gen iPod had hard drive failure at 4500m on my first trip in that area. Which was disappointing. I did however manage to get it working again back at home as long as I only half filled the drive. On a trip to get to Everest via the 1922 reconnaisance route, I decided to take it again. Managed to have it working at 5100m with power from a solar panel. 'Voodoo Chile' in the lower Kharta valley was quite an experience. Result - iPod developed a few more glitches. Altitude relat

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