Notes by Akhil Saji


Skiathos, Greece Trip

As some of you may know, I graduated from medical school recently and in a celebratory gesture one of my friends invited a whole group of us to visit his family home in Skiathos, Greece. It was my first time visiting the ancient country and I was absolutely amazed with both Athens and Skiathos. I spent a great deal of time shooting photos with my DJI Spark drone as well as my DSLR camera. Please let me know what you think!

Skiathos Trip 2018

DJI Care Refresh Experience

I recently became the proud owner of a DJI Spark drone with lofty goal of learning how to take great aerial photographs. For those of you who may be unfamiliar with DJI, they are the foremost maker of consumer and prosumer drones. They have a lineup of models ranging from the relatively inexpensive Spark to the filmmaker oriented Inspire series. All of their models come with an extended warranty service called DJI Care Refresh which covers water damage, crash damage and almost any kind of accidental damage possible. See here for details. The caveat for purchasing this coverage is that you only have 48h from when your drone is activated to make the purchase.

Initially hesitant to shell out an additional $59, my logical senses kicked in and I made the purchase for the coverage hoping to never have to use it. Well, about a week into ownership on my fourth flight, I ended up crashing the drone into a tree while attempting to land near a lake. My drone both hit the tree and fell into a shallow pool of water in the process. Suffice to say, my Spark would not even power on after that. I immediately went home and used the dji repair website to file my claim and shipped my drone out the same day (5/7). The service center is in California so it took about 4 days for it to arrive from New York (5/11). On 5/14 the service center tagged my drone as arrived and by 5/15 my replacement drone was shipped out. Much to my surprise, they even shipped the replacement using UPS 2 Day Air which enabled me to receive it by 5/17. DJI even called me on 5/17 to make sure I had received my drone and I was happy with the refresh service.

As you can see my experience with the Care Refresh service was excellent and I really appreciated the fast turn-around time. I would highly suggest purchasing this service with your drone unless you are extremely confident in your flying abilities.

My Zotero Sync Setup

Zotero is a free cross-platform research (journal articles, web pages, etc.) management tool. Click here to learn more if you're unfamiliar with how it works.

Zotero comes with a built-in file sync function which enables users to sync their Zotero libraries across platforms (such as iOS, android, Windows, etc.). Unfortunately, their "free" tier of sync service has a limit of 300Mb which can quickly get filled up if you archive lots of papers like myself. Lucky for us, Zotero comes with WebDAV support which can be utilized in place of their storage service. Most people including myself don't have a personal webDAV server; however, has a free tier of service with 5Gb of space that includes WebDAV support. Below are my sample settings to show you how to set this up for yourself.

  1. First navigate to the preferences menu and select the sync tab.
  2. Under the "Zotero Sync Server" section, enter your Zotero sync service username and password. Check off "sync full-context"
  3. Under "File Syncing" ensure that you check off the box for "Sync attachment files in My Library using" then select WebDAV.
  4. In the same section, for url select https:// from the dropdown and enter in the adjacent textbox.
  5. Finally, in the same section enter your username and password.
  6. Click verify server to ensure the box sync is properly working. Assuming all goes well, you'll now be able to store 5Gb of content for free.