snaq.net is the website of Giles Winstanley, comprising a mixture of content relating to underwater photography, SCUBA diving, software development, and anything else that I feel like posting here. This focus arises from a background in Java and web-based software development, along with experience as a diving instructor, as an underwater photographer, and from my training in tropical marine ecology.
DBPool: Database connection pooling for Java
Version 6.0 of my popular DBPool library has finally been released, including support for Java 1.7, JDBC 4.1, a number of bug fixes and stability improvements, and conversion to use SLF4J as a logging framework. It's highly recommended for all those either currently using a previous release, or those looking for a Java-based database connection pooling solution.
Last updated: 11th December 2013 (Version 6.0)
JCLAP: Java Comand-Line Argument Parser
JCLAP is a utility for Java developers to help provide a simple and robust command-line interface for software applications which don't require a graphical user interface (GUI).
Last updated: 9th November 2013 (Version 1.2)
Isla de la Plata, Ecuador
Proyecto Mantas Ecuador is a project whose aim is to research and help conserve the population of giant manta rays (Manta birostris) found off the coast of Ecuador. During 2012 I started work as research manager for the project. The main research location is a small island called Isla de la Plata off the coast of Manabí province, which provides the best location worldwide to reliably encounter these magnificent giants, and for around two months each year becomes the site of our field research trips.
Last updated: 19th September 2013
At the start of 2012 I started working for the Marine Megafauna Foundation based at Praia do Tofo, Mozambique. As a research assistant on the their Manta Ray Project, I'm helping with photo identification, laser photogrammetry, tissue sampling, and tagging of manta rays. Tofo is a unique location due to being visited by both the reef manta ray (Manta alfredi) and giant manta ray (Manta birostris) as they seek out cleaning stations to remove parasites and clean wounds inflicted by shark attacks. This gallery shows some of photographic highlights I encounter along way.
Last updated: 3rd July 2012
Sudoku is an excellent way to kick-start your brain in the morning before the caffeine has had a chance to start surging through the blood stream. This Java-based implementation helps to ease the hassle of games that result in lots of number tedious elimination. The latest version adds the ability to generate games at a variety of skill levels, and retains the previous ability to provide hints or even a full solution.
Last updated: 17th June 2012 (Version 2.0)
Panorama viewer for Flickr
FlickrPanoGen is an online service for users of the Flickr photo hosting/sharing website, which facilitates viewing panoramic photos. Flickr doesn't provide support for viewing panoramas, so this utility allows users to provide links in image descriptions to display interactive panoramas in a Java applet.
Last updated: 28th May 2013 (Version 1.1)
I've recently been experimenting more with creating panoramic images from multiple photos, and I decided to showcase a few here on the website. Initially I started with some basic two or three frame scenes, but I'm now experimenting with full spherical 360° immersive panoramas.
Sustainable Research Vessel
The Sustainable Research Vessel is an innovative project to design and build a state-of-the-art scientific research vessel capable of providing leading-edge mobile research facilities, while at the same time minimising the environmental impact of performing that research.
The ever-growing awareness of human-induced environmental changes, combined with the need to conduct ongoing and new marine research, has produced a need to conduct the research itself with similar environmental awareness. Research scientists have long seen research-related environmental impacts as a necessary by-product, yet this project aims to streamline research processes by providing facilities incorporating the latest environmentally low-impact technologies.
The project is currently seeking initial funding for the design and planning of the vessel; see the website for more details.
Pelagicon Underwater Imagery
As my portfolio of underwater photographs has expanded I've been looking for a more convenient solution to showcase them in a unified way, and provide an simple way for anyone to browse spectacular imagery and have the opportunity to purchase prints. The result is the Pelagicon Underwater Imagery website: www.pelagicon.com
Bite-Back is a unique organisation in the UK dedicated to the protection of sharks by reducing consumer demand for meat and fins. Working constructively with both suppliers and retailers to remove threatened species from menus and fish counters, it aims to effectively lower the global trade in such species. Many of those for sale fulfil significant biological roles in their normal ecosystems, and fishing at unsustainable rates can lead to potentially serious problems for the marine communities which depend on their presence.
By striving to prevent over-use of threatened species we all stand a better chance of maintaining our world in a state of balance between the resources we require and the decline of those we harvest. Take a look at the Bite-Back website to see how you can make a positive difference, in a surprisingly simple and effective way.
All images/videos displayed on this website are copyrighted material.