March 28, 2006

Recovery CDs are EVIL

A friend of my mothers is having a problem with her computer. The SYSTEM hive keeps becoming corrupt. This has happened before, but it 'magically' recovered itself. This time, it didn't. She called me, the techie, and asked for my help. Ok, I said, let's start with the Recovery Console. Get your Windows XP CD out.

What do you mean you don't have one? Ugh - a recovery CD?! boot it, lets see what we got...reinstall OS or reinstall OS and backup current hard drive to a subdirectory...wonderful...

And you're 2 states away so I can't just drive over with the install CD...

Color me pissed off - to save $1.25 on a CD, the computer manufacturer takes away the ability of a user to fix their problems....evil, I tell you - absolutely evil.

March 26, 2006

Who's a sheep?

Me - I'm a sheep - Now, besides my LiveJournal (which I never update), my Yahoo 360 (which I use only for photos), my Blog (which you're reading), my Newsvine (fad of the day), I also have a MySpace Page.

March 25, 2006

New Tele-Converter

Yellow/Red TulipI purchased the Quantaray 2x tele-converter for my Canon EOS (Digital Rebel - older body). With my Tamron 70-300mm lens (f4-f5.6) that boosts me to 600mm view (conversion factor 1.6 - 960mm!!!!!). There are now two complications that I am going to have to learn to overcome.

One - manual focus at extreme focal lengths. The lens is not fast enough to keep up with the autofocus circuitry at the longest focal lengths unless you desensitize all the way to sports mode and use the auto-servo. I don't know if you've ever used the auto-servo, but it has a tendency to focus on whatever you're not shooting at the moment. Shooting wildlife is why I wanted the lens, and you're normally shooting through brush or intervening woods, so focusing on your target is too hard for the constant focus mode...

Two - camera shake - Oh my lord. If I was Kate Hepburn before, now I'm Kate Hepburn on methamphetamines. On a cloudy day, at full focal length, open all the way (f5.6 for this lens)at 400 ISO, I was getting about 1/200th of a second (shake, shake, shake your booty) and fuzzy pics. At ISO 800 the result was a still picture, with about the quality of a 110 film blown up to 8"x10".....

I'm going to want lots of sunlight, and I'm going to have to take my tripod with me when I want to shoot.

My hobby just got a bit more complicated, and all for less than $100. Will post pics as soon as I get a clear one (out of 30 shots so far, nothing good enough to be associated with).

March 20, 2006

Erotic Trees?

Am I the only weird one? If you look at this image with just the right mindset, do you find it strangely erotic? It amazes me the shapes that nature can take, and walking through the woods near home, I spotted this twisted tree trunk. It reminds me of a woman's hips, perhaps with her hand reaching down. Maybe I'm just over-sexed? You decide. You can see one of her fingers.

Now that spring is here, I'll be posting more pictures. I'm not one for the cold, so even though winter can bring some pretty pictures, I'm more of a warm-climate photographer. I dumped my camera memory today and this was the most interesting of the bunch.

March 18, 2006

Tests find DRM shortens player battery life by up to ~25% - CD

More reasons to avoid DRM! I just finished reading this article: Tests find DRM shortens player battery life by up to ~25% - CD Basically, the headline says it all. Because DRM requires additional circuitry and additional processing power, you could be giving up your precious battery life to feed the fears of the music industry. And 25% of your battery life can be pretty precious with smaller players rated at only a few hours. I've posted about why DRM is evil before, but this is yet another reason to avoid feeding the DRM world. Digital Rights Management doesn't manage YOUR rights, after all. Instead, it steals them. By buying DRM music, you're agreeing to have your rights taken away. Do yourself a favor and don't buy into it.

March 06, 2006

Op-Ed Piece on Abortion and Community Rule

I've put up an opinion piece on Newsvine that talks about the recent South Dakota anti-abortion law and the planned anti-abortion community planned by Tom Monaghan (of Domino's Pizza fame). If you have a chance, please stop by, read the piece and give it an uptic if you find it interesting. Newsvine has a ratings system for pushing items to the front of the news pages, and I don't think I've garnered enough readers yet to get enough press for the piece. However, it's an important issue and I think that my opinion piece brings some valid discussion points to the fore.