I loved the colors of this sunset – until I used the image as a desktop background. Oh my, what a painful way to get blind! Well, I still like the image, it’s just not usable for what I intended to use it for 🙂
I stood a while and took images of this guy. A few seconds later another bird came, they had a short fight and the other bird won. I only have one image of the fight and it’s been taken a second too early. The next already shows the other bird in a triumphant position with spread wings, but unfortunately the tip of one wing reaches out of the frame. I’ve tried it, but there’s no way to save that image.
Now that I think of it, the fight of the two birds is a situation where the E-M1 MkII’s “Pro Capture Mode” would have been helpful. It wouldn’t have saved the image with the cut-off wing, but it would have given me at least one good image of the fight. The only problem is, I wouldn’t have been able to set it up in a hurry.
It seems like I should set up a “Custom Mode” (that’s what the old “MySets” are called today). Switching between custom modes is easy as well. They finally have dedicated positions on the mode dial.
Every once in a while something important happens. One of those things was the introduction of USB 3.0. It happened shortly after we bought our last PC in Carinthia. In all that time since, I have endured a PC with painfully slow connections. It was OK for work, it was OK for image processing, but backing up Terabytes of data was beyond annoying. Still, you don’t throw away a new computer, and so I used and used it, until it had well grown old. Now, with that PC slowly dying, two disks already gone, I’ve decided to buy a new one.
Yes, of course, I have backups of everything important on a four disk RAID NAS, and the failed disks didn’t contain anything important, but anyway, it was about time.
My first impulse was to buy a custom PC with a super-fast 1 TB PCIe SSD (a Samsung 960 Pro or something like that), but in the end the convenience of buying a stock Lenovo PC won. Core i7 6700, 16 GB of memory, a 512 GB SSD (SATA only) and, just because it feels good, a super-expensive server hard drive, a 4 TB Western Digital Gold for my image data. What could possibly be wrong with that?
Not as lazy as this one, but, well, the perspective is very similar 🙂
On my short trip to Rovinj, a beautiful small coastal town in Croatia, I used one of my lightest travel kits: the 9-18/4.0-5.6, the 25/1.8 and the plasticky 40-150/4.0-5.6.
The latter is easily the most underestimated lens in my whole lineup. Stopped down to f8 it’s sharp, it’s incredibly lightweight, and it’s very cheap. I’ve bought it used “as new” for 150 Euros, but you often get it for less than 100. If you don’t have it, get it.
Imagine for a moment living a normal life in some medium-sized country. You are not rich, certainly not by first world standards, but you get along. Your dictator does not bother you, your kids go to school, your mother gets her insulin, war has been over for ten years, things seem to get better or at least not worse. It’s the only life you have and you have decided it’s good.
Then something strange happens. Some idiots fly planes into skyscrapers, somewhere in a city that you only know from TV. It has no connection to you or to anybody you know, even your dictator did not do it or support it, but for some insane reasons you get punished for it. Your country gets bombed, your dictator killed (good riddance at least), your country gets occupied, insulin (just like other medication) gets incredibly expensive. Your mother dies, your two surviving kids have no school any more and you hunger.
Would you feel justly treated? Or would you probably applaud an uprising, led by people from your own culture and religion, people who promise to throw out the occupants and their puppet regime?
Or, say you live in a country that for some years has experienced the worst drought in recorded history. For the last 42 years your country has been formally at war with a neighboring country, but at your age of 35 years you can’t remember anything but peace. Your dictator does not bother you, and although you are not rich, your country’s economy is rising.
Then one big super-power, a long-standing ally of that neighboring country, decides to bully every other country on this planet into grave economic sanctions against you. Additionally they support rebels against your government, incite a war in your country, all with the aim of forcing you to overthrow your own government.
Due to the sanctions your economy breaks down, your factories have to close because of a lack of raw materials and spare parts. The health system goes down the drain, hunger and poverty plague millions of internal refugees.
Who would you think is right? The super-power with its politics that you don’t understand, acting like an alien god without mercy? Your own government, increasingly brutal and desperate, trying to stay in power? Or maybe a new “State” that arises from the turmoil and seems to be surprisingly successful?
You can call this post “Support of a terrorist organization”, but it is not. It’s a challenge to think outside of your convenient place in a safe country and show a little empathy. How does it feel?
We’ve seen furious ad hominem attacks on Yanis Varoufakis, and of course he was unprepared for that.
Well, I wonder how the new leader of British Labour, Jeremy Corbyn, will and can do. I’ve seen an interview with him on Channel 4, and actually I was shocked about how aggressive the interviewer was and how obvious his agenda. It was pretty disgusting and reminded me of Nazi “judges” at the “Volksgerichtshof”. But then, nobody can say that Corbyn did not know what to expect.
Still, it is unclear if any person could withstand a concerted attack of the mainstream media. We’ve seen in Italy how mighty a media monopoly can be, and how an obvious criminal can use the media to attack political enemies and to thwart all attempts to bring him to justice.
Cameron is not Berlusconi and Corbyn is not opposed by a media monopoly, but still, the media are in the hands of rich people. There is no conspiracy, but then, no conspiracy is necessary either. A concerted action would arise simply out of common interest.
Could Corbyn survive even until 2020, the time of the next general elections in the UK? Can any political leader stay in power and still oppose the real powers in this world? Corbyn wants to reign in corporate tax evasion and he wants to get rid of the UK’s nuclear weapons. Neither will be in the interest of the US.
The question is, can any person have a completely clean browsing history? No inconvenient and exploitable secrets? And even if so, governments and secret services have all means necessary to plant false evidence on everybody’s computer. If they want to present Corbyn as a child pornography consumer, they can do that.
So again, in our current surveillance state, in our sick travesty of democracy, in this nightmare of uncontrolled and uncontrollable secret services, secret courts and secret laws, is it even thinkable that a politician makes real decisions based on real facts? Honestly, I admire those who still try.