Aspiration Digital Lifestyle Gear Google Living News Media

Virtual Reality in a cardboard box?

Leave a comment
Google Cardboard Unfolded

Today the New York Times spammed my inbox: “We’ve just launched an innovative virtual reality platform that will transform the way you experience stories. As one of our most loyal digital subscribers, you are entitled to a complimentary Google Cardboard virtual reality viewer for an enhanced viewing experience”.

I took advantage of the freebie, thinking that this thing, which literally is a cardboard box, should be an April Fool’s hoax. I kinda heard about it before but ignored. Cardboard boxes are for Amazon packages and cat play after they arrive. High-tech gadgetry, c`mon? What? Is this the newest thing in recyclable tech?  Read More

People Photo

Flickr a Day 329: ‘Streets of Italy’

Leave a comment
Woman Reading Magazine Italy

Sometimes simple is best: Black and white, single subject, and unambiguous setting. Self-titled “Streets of Italy” takes the Day for what isn’t making what it is. Thomas Renken used Nikon D7000 and 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 lens to capture the portrait on June 16, 2014.

“This is one of my street photos from my trip in Umbria”, he says. “I have made ​​a few corrections (e.g. crop) in Lightroom 5 and a black-and-white transfer and sharpening using Google Silverfx 2 and Dfine”. The recomposition gets me.

Thomas joined Flickr in September 2009, but you’ll want to visit his website, where is the wonderful “Streets of the World” collection. The consultant and project manager says: “I love to travel to foreign countries for capturing the special moments in the streets of the world”. From Bremen, Germany, he lives in Kelkheim, 450 km south.

Photo Credit: Thomas Renken

Gear Music

Painful Parting

Leave a comment
Sennheiser Momentum 2 Nexus 6P

Last night, I returned to Amazon the Sennheiser Momentum 2 wireless headphones received on Nov.8, 2015. The retailer promises full refund. My ears ache from using them, even with the volume low. The problem is bass response, which is too intense for my aged ears. At the same time, I removed the Grado Labs RS1e from Craigslist. I will keep the wired cans.

I let go the Bluetooth set reluctantly. I like the design, construction, materials, and controls. Wireless connects easily and provides ample volume. But bass booms, and the devices on which I listen have limited graphic equalizer or none at all.  Read More

Photo Uncategorized

Flickr a Day 328: ‘Big Blue saw It, Too

Leave a comment
Car Street New York

Our selection comes from Henk Sijgers, and the first post-production photo of its kind to appear in the series so far—a composite, shot in Times Square and Columbus Circle, New York City. He says: “Both images, Olympus E-M5 camera and Olympus 45/1.8 lens”. Vitals, incomplete: f/4, ISO 1000, 1/90 sec.

Henk shot self-titled “Big Blue saw It, Too” on Aug. 20, 2015. From The Hauge, Netherlands, the IT professional lives in “Odenton, Md., and wherever the company sends me”. He joined Flickr in February 2014.

Photo Credit: Henk Sijgers

Critters Photo

Flickr a Day 327: ‘Thieving Monkey’

Leave a comment
Monkey drinks from Water Bottle

My heart stopped thinking that bottlers are shameless in the quest to expand their market reach”. 😉 “Just outside the gates of Ubud Monkey Forest“, which is in Indoensia, “this monkey stole a water bottle from a passer’s-by backpack opened the lid and drank—all with such expertise”, says Gaye Launder.

Hence the self-title of our selection, which she captured on July 4, 2015, using Canon EOS 6D and EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM lens. Vitals: f/4, ISO 1250, 1/800 sec, 200mm.

From Brisbane, Australia, Gaye is a teacher by profession. She joined Flickr in July 2008, but her art is best appreciated at the site she keeps on creative community Redbubble.

Photo Credit: Gaye Launder

Editor’s Note: Image enlarged from the original.

Culture Ethics Health Living Responsibility Society Stupidity

The ‘Cesarean is Safer’ Lie

Leave a comment
Emergency Room Healthcare

So I’m sitting at McDonald’s with my 93 year-old father-in-law, who likes to eat from the all-day breakfast menu for lunch. Behind him, across the aisle, sit three elderly gents who don’t look to be quite as old but nevertheless it’s a 70-plus group. They gather daily apparently.

One man announces that he can’t make lunch tomorrow. “My daughter is having a baby”. When, another geezer asks. “At 9:30 in the morning” is the answer. “How do you know?” I could answer that one, and the reason why. I lean forward and listen with greater focus. “She’s having a Cesarean”, the man answers. What he says next chills my bones and inflames my anger: The doctor says that the procedure is “safer” than natural childbirth.  Read More

People Photo

Flickr a Day 326: ‘City of Love’

Leave a comment
Couple Man Woman Love Cafe Bistro

Paris is known by many names, and surely “City of Love” is one of them—hence, today’s self-title. Reiner Girsch captured the sweet moment around April 9, 2015, when the photo uploaded to Flickr (he joined the same month). Camera data was stripped from the EXIF during editing. He typically shoots the Olympus E-M5 with LUMIX G 20/F1.7 lens.

From Cologne, Germany, where he lives, Reiner works as a heavy machining worker. His portrait concludes seven days of Paris street photography, in memoriam, as the city recovers from terrorist attacks on November 13th.

Photo Credit: Reiner Girsch


Flickr a Day 325: ‘Photoception’

Leave a comment
Eiffel Tower Smartphone

Last month, Alex Holyoake crossed the English Channel to explore Paris. “The sights and views the city has to offer are fantastic”, he says. “I don’t think I’ve ever been to a city that can offer such breathtaking views and shots. Unfortunately the constant travelling that we did and the infernal stairs we had to climb took our breath away too”.

During the exploration, Alex shot self-titled “Photoception” on Oct. 12, 2015, using Canon EOS 600D and EF 50mm f/1.8 II lens. Vitals: f/1.8, ISO 640, 1/50 sec, 50mm. The photo takes the Day for clever composition and beautiful bokeh.  Read More

bad news Blogging Ethics Journalism New Media News Media Responsibility Social Media

Reporting Accuracy Starts with Responsible Sourcing

Leave a comment
credit: Roger H. Goun

If you’re a blogger or journalist and read nothing else this week, make it New York Times story “Paris Attacks Give Rise to Fakes and Misinformation“. The Nov. 16, 2015 postmortem shows why, why, why I constantly harp about responsible sourcing. The Internet is not a reliable news source. You must corroborate and should, never, never, never second source anything you can’t confirm independently, or, in the case of breaking events, you can trust reliably.

I’ve been bitching on this blog since posting, in May 2010, “The Difference Between Blogging and Journalism“; September 2011 followup: “Single Sourcing is the Source of News Evil“. Or you can refer to the chapter on sourcing from my ebook Responsible Reporting: A Field Guide for Bloggers, Journalists, and Other Online News GatherersRead More

People Photo

Flickr a Day 324: ‘The Day After’

Leave a comment
Day After Paris Attacks

The world feels different today, which is November 17th when I prepare this post for you. Russia confirms that a terrorist bomb felled Flight 9268, while Western forces increase air strikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. That’s context for the street photograph captured by Bill Knock on Nov. 14, 2015, the day after terrorist attacks killed 129 people in Paris—hence the self-title. ISIS claims responsibility for both incidents.

Bill captured the moment using Sony Alpha a7 II. Vitals, incomplete perhaps because of manual lens: ISO 800, 1/13 sec. I can’t confirm that our self-described “non-professional photographer” uses his real name. Elsewhere, he goes by CBPhoto (Facebook, website). He joined Flickr in August 2010. Gotta say: His photostream looks professional enough to me. Do dive in.

Photo Credit: Bill Knock

People Photo

Flickr a Day 323: ‘L’accordéoniste’

Leave a comment
Organ Player Dog Paris

We continue seven days of Paris street photography, with the fourth, self-titled “L’accordéoniste”, or “Accordionist”. Sylvain Courant describes: “Joueur d’orgue de barbarie sur les grands boulevards” (“Barrel organ player on the big boulevards”.)

Sylvain shot our Day taker on Dec. 23, 2012, using Canon EOS 5D and EF 85mm f/1.8 USM lens. Vitals: f/2, ISO 400, 1/125 sec, 85mm.

Translated from French, “I consider myself an atypical photographer”, Sylvain says. “Photography allows me to showcase my artistic talent that it’s hard for me to explore my original business: Finance”. He is an avid street documentarion, a role he finds to be rewarding. Our shooter joined Flickr in March 2012. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, and his website.

Photo Credit: Sylvain Courant

Gear Photo

Fujinon XF35mmF2 R WR lens

Leave a comment
Fujinon XF35mmF2 R WR

I retract regrets stated two days ago about parting with the Fujifilm X100T. Today I had chance to use the Fujinon XF35mmF2 R WR lens attached to the X-T1. Wow, the 53mm film-equivalent glass swipes away my major complaints compared to using the smaller camera.

For starters: The aperture ring offers tactile response. You can feel the click between stops, which are unmistakably visible at a glance. When the San Diego sunlight is to too bright for me to easily see numbers in the electronic viewfinder, the ring reveals the aperture by touch. Click. Click.  Read More