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Posted on Thursday, August 18th, 2005

Dave!I've just spent an obscene amount of time trying to figure out where the photo I posted in my previous entry was taken. I started by searching for the filename on all three of my computers, but all the hits were wrong. After that I searched for filenames around the image name, but no dice.

Then I went through every image I have digitized on my PowerBook. This is fairly easy because they're indexed in iPhoto... all 5432 of them. But nothing matches and nothing looks close. Since the date on the file is January of 2005, that doesn't help, because I know it's not a photo of Barcelona or Cologne. In February I was in Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, and the Florida panhandle... which is much more likely, but it doesn't fit anywhere.

Next I went through my digital photo archives, which is an additional 3100 photos. Nothing.

Finally, in a last-ditch effort, I work backwards through all my travels and try to match the skyline with a Google image search through all the likely cities it could be. Nothing. Not-so-likely cities? Nothing. Unlikely cities? Nothing. It's at this point I am ready to give up. I have no clue where the photo was taken.

But then I get a little bit smarter. This time I don't try to match the skyline, but buildings IN the skyline. I get lucky on my fifth try...

It's Tampa!

The reason I had such difficulty in recognizing the skyline is that the photo was taken at a bizarre angle... not the "typical" shot that is customarily shown. But the buildings do match when the photos are flipped and you look carefully enough.

It's Tampa, Florida... seen from my hotel room at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino just outside the city. I was there in May of 2004, and even blogged about it. I believe that I took the photo to accompany a comment in my blog entry about the "Tampa skyline" but the photo didn't turn out very well, so I ditched the idea.

Little did I realize how insane it would make me a year and two months later, or I would have never pressed that shutter button.

Now I think I can go to sleep.

Movie Quotable of the Day: "Those who do evil to others... the killers, the rapists, psychos, sadists... you will come to know me well."
Day-Before-Yesterday's Answer: Rock Star (2001) with Mark Wahlberg and Jennifer Aniston.

Categories: Travel 2005Click To It: Permalink


  1. Michelle says:

    Well done! Did you figure out why the date on it was different?

  2. SJ says:

    I look forward to the day when EXIF data embedded in our photos includes WHERE the photo was taken. I’m betting that will happen right after some company starts producing digital cameras with built-in GPS. Each image will have the longitude and lattitude embedded in it along with the exposure data. How cool that will be!

  3. Kevin says:

    The shutter makes you shudder, eh? Sorry, bad pun.

    That GPS idea would be cool. What is EXIF?

  4. Dave2 says:

    EXIF is a bunch of information that cameras add to an image file… it contains shutter speed, aperture, and all that other good stuff. I’m sure it saves the date as well, but with my photo I had re-saved it as a “JPG for web” so the information was stripped away.

    I had read where GPS camera phones are already being developed which will tag the EXIF with the location, so that would be cool indeed.

  5. Andy says:

    You can already get decent (non phone) cameras with gps’s in them. The alternative is to load the photos with gps information into them as soon as you’ve taken them. That is what I do now with all my photo’s – I tag them with location using wwmx (.org).
    Load a photo up to flickr and then look at more information for all the details that exif contains – its quite amazing. Alternatively exifer ( is not bad at displaying exif data (but i’ve yet to work out how to get it to edit gps information.

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