"An era can be said to end when its basic illusions are exhausted." - Arthur Miller

Monday, May 04, 2009

Links of the Day

NBC Upfronts - The last place channel has announced most of its schedule as the goal is to cut costs and no worry about viewers. The result is only a few new shows and emphasis on reality. Cancelled shows include Life, Knight Rider, and Kath & Kim. On the bubble and undecided is Chuck (but prospects are good), Medium (ditto), and Law & Order (50/50, costs being the issue). Now that NBC has ceded the 10pm slot to the competition (it should just follow the Fox model and let the individual stations use 10pm how they see fit), the new shows include Parenthood (yep based on the movie about an oversized family a la Brothers and Sisters), Trauma (think ER only following paramedics), Mercy (Grey's Anatomy from the nurse's perspective), Day One (consequences of everyone one earth seeing their future) and two comedies.

Olympic Cover-Up - Turns out the Beijing Opening Ceremony was going to have a dance from a single girl but an accident involving the floor opening too quickly and prematurely resulted in her getting paralyzed from the waist down. Which the Chinese government quickly covered up as to avoid any bad press. The end result is the girl can't dance and is being used as a figurehead for whatever propaganda they need. Considering the Chinese consider the handicap as nothing more than a drain on resources, she has a tough life ahead of her.

Lego Star Wars Minifigs Gallery - Click the link to view a gallery of all the Lego Star Wars figures created in the last 10 or so years. Pretty cool what they put together for those tiny figures.

Digital Camera Recommendations - A nice tool that helps you choose a digital camera based on basic criteria like use, size, and price. If you’re like me who only wants it to work, it’s a useful way to get pointed in the right direction of a purchase. Still do your research, mainly because not all cameras are reflected in the choices and not sure what criteria are used in making the recommendations.

Denise Richards' Fun Bags - An amusing video with a willing Richards that highlight her "fun bags". Yep, she is fake but still gorgeous and with a sense of humor too.

1 comment:

  1. Outstanding blog. My personal favorite camera is the Canon PowerShot SD1100IS. I wrote a review for it, please let me know what you think:

    UPDATE: This camera is currently on sale at Amazon. You can find the link here:

    http://tinyurl.com/canonpowershot1100

    If you need a solid, reliable, and stylish point-and-shoot ultracompact digital camera that produces high-quality images, then the new Canon PowerShot SD1100IS may be right for you.

    I am an advanced amateur photographer and own 2 Canon digital cameras (G2 and 20D). Both have served me well over the years but recently I have found myself needing a decent ultracompact camera that I can easily carry with me at all times for unexpected photo-ops.

    Other current Canon models that I also researched before my purchase of the "bohemian brown" SD1100IS included the SD950IS and the SD1000.

    Here is my take on the SD1100IS:

    Strengths:
    - 8MP CCD sensor with DigicIII processor (excellent resolution images with good dynamic range)
    - Solid construction (most of body made of anodized aluminum)
    - Feels sturdy and well-balanced in the hands
    - Easy to use (logical user-interface) with minimal need to consult owner's manual for basic operation
    - Multiple shooting modes to fit variety of situations (action/sports mode is a glaring omission but read section below to see possibly why)
    - Advanced metering system with accurately exposed pics in even "tricky" situations (great balance of highlights and shadows)
    - Tack-sharp images (much more so with sufficient lighting and use of built-in flash)
    - Macro mode can result in stunning close-ups with outstanding level of detail
    - Optical IS feature helpful when shooting in either low-light conditions with flash off or at telephoto lengths
    - Fast start-up with acceptable shutter-lag (when not using flash)
    - Bright 2.5" LCD monitor (100% coverage, 230k pixels) made of polycrystalline silicon; fairly scratch-resistant (can't vouch if this applies to keys and coins)
    - Optical viewfinder (though only a tiny peephole, it is essential when LCD glare and washout become an issue shooting in bright sunlight or when LCD cannot be used as battery power is nearly depleted)
    - Camera made in Japan (at least those from the 1st shipment; this easily may be subject to change)

    Limitations:
    - Lack of manual control over aperture, shutter speed, and focusing (for the obssessive control-freaks)
    - Noise is noticeable beginning at ISO 400 (ISO 800 still useable but probably for only 4x6 images; ISO 1600 mostly unuseable)
    - Fastest shutter speed is 1/1500 sec (not fast enough to stop action for some sporting activities)
    - Auto-focus speed inadequate to follow fast-moving subjects
    - Shutter-lag accentuated with flash on (precious Canon moments lost while waiting for flash to recharge)
    - Cannot adjust focus or optical zoom while shooting in movie mode (focus is fixed for distance selected at first frame, and digital zoom is permitted instead, resulting in significant image quality deterioration)
    - Battery/memory card cover and hinge made of plastic (no safety latch that needs to be de-activated first before sliding cover out, in order to prevent accidental opening)
    - Minor vignetting and chromatic aberration (albeit, difficult not to expect from compact p&s)
    - Pincushion and barrel distortion at the extremes of the focal lengths
    - No RAW shooting mode

    Battery power in camera mode with LCD monitor on is mostly as advertised, allowing for approximately 240 images. If your budget permits, I recommend investing in a few spare batteries as backups and replacing the supplied 32MB memory card with a pair of 4GB SDHC memory cards--vital purchases if you plan to use the movie mode frequently.

    Overall Impression:
    Even with some serious limitations inherent to virtually all digital cameras in this class, I am recommending the Canon PowerShot SD1100IS. It does what it's supposed to do. This camera allows one to take beautiful photographs in an ultracompact, reliable, and elegant device that is both easy and fun to use.

    http://tinyurl.com/canonpowershot1100

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