Category: Samsung

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Democracy Under Fire

Somebody sure seems set on changing up the Democrat and Republican candidates running for President. I am not one to peddle conspiracy theories, but, gosh, there are suspicious activities at work that shouldn’t be ignored when evaluated one against the other.

Early evening, Eastern Daylight Time, Donald Trump survived an assassination attempt by a whisker, as the saying goes, during a campaign rally in Butler, Pa. Watching local news coverage from a TV station in Pittsburgh, I listened to an expert explain that three inches left would have been Trump’s nose, rather than his ear. The gentleman explained that, from the shooting distance, the difference was the slightest shift in the wind.

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Sound Sentiment

Now that I am (cough, cough) sixty-five, shock and awe rankle me. I always thought of people this age as being old; ancient, really. Now, here I am—one of them. I don’t feel old, but age is apparent from my reflection in the mirror or when walking outside. What seems like a fast pace to me can’t keep up with that of the younger folks; not even close.

Sometime recently, Ron Howard-directed Cocoon came to be available on one of the streaming services. The film released in summer 1985, and I was 25 at the time. I easily identified with the Twenty- and Thirty-something aliens, and I chuckled at the absurdity of the elderly folks hoping to regain some youthful vitality. Gasp. Now I am their age, and that realization caused eerie, queasy emotions while rewatching Cocoon.

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Do you Feel…?

You may want to rethink that yes, if the answer. We have come to perilous times, where conspiracies make more sense than commonsense. Take, for example, Joseph Biden’s debate debacle with Donald Trump. An astute observer should have seen Biden’s cognitive decline years ago. I am no expert, and it was obvious to me—and plenty of other folks. Now, post-debate, Biden’s brain, and the continuation of his campaign, are the dominant topics seemingly everywhere. But something smells fishy here—and it ain’t good.

The Commission on Presidential Debates, a nonpartisan organization, is responsible for organizing the face-off between candidates, which typically starts some time following each respective political party’s convention. CPD had scheduled four debates, with the first slated for Sept. 16, 2024, at Texas State University in San Marcos. In a statement, the organization explains that it received a “letter dated May 15, 2024 from Jen O’Malley Dillon, Campaign Chair for the Biden-Harris Campaign, in which the Biden-Harris Campaign informed the Commission that President Biden will not agree to debate under the sponsorship of the Commission during the 2024 general election campaign”. The B-H campaign decided to organize its own debates, and Trump agreed to participate.

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The Cats of University Heights: Chippy

The month ends, and we close the first half of the year, with the one-hundred-second kitty seen along Alabama Street, somewhere between boundaries Adams and Lincoln, since the series‘ start in October 2016. My wife and I came upon this fine feline on June 15, 2024.

I used Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra to capture the Featured Image and companion. Vitals: f/3.4, ISO 50, 1/125 sec, (synthetic) 230mm (digital and optical zoom); 10:34 a.m. PDT. The other is same but ISO 40, one-minute earlier.

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Politics Stress Relief

As I write, the first Presidential debate, between presumptive candidates Joseph Biden and Donald Trump, is underway. For now, my intention is not to watch. Later, I will start with clips and possibly peek at a recorded version through which I can fast-forward and pause. The live event promises to be pure poison.

Or stated differently: Various manifestations of elder abuse. Seriously? You ask. Yes, Biden for his sheer presence and demand to stand and be mentally present for 90 minutes or so. Trump, for the abrasive handling by the hostile CNN moderators.

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To Whom Do These Belong?

For three days last week, we watched seemingly good personal belongings appear along an alley in my San Diego neighborhood of University Heights. The frequent deposits of stuff seemed like someone being evicted or the result of some relational breakup.

Night before, police cars filled the same alleyway, and a helicopter circled about with bullhorn blaring about the search for a five-foot, seven-inch white male. Could the events be connected? Unconfirmed local gossip put the gent inside a convenience store, where—armed—he was apprehended the following day, about when stuff started stacking up.

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Goodbye Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio, Hello Samsung Galaxy Book4 Edge

Neither I nor my wife looked back with much regret when we escaped the Apple socialist computing lifestyle and adopted Android smartphones and Windows PCs. Can you say freedom?

In December 2022, I bought Surface Laptop Studio for me. Config: 14.4-inch touchscreen (2400 x 1600 resolution); quad-core 11th-generation Intel Core H35 i7-11370H processor; 4GB Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics; 32GB RAM; 2TB SSD. She got Surface Laptop 5. Config: 13.5-inch touchscreen (2256 x 1504 resolution); 12th-generation Intel Core i7-1255U processor; 16GB RAM; 512GB SSD.

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The (Honorary) Cats of University Heights: Pussyfoot

Happy Caturday! We venture beyond boundaries of the neighborhood for yet another honorarian. This fine feline is the thirty-second member of this esteemed group, joining: AI, Boo, Buddies, Chill, Coal, Comber, Cotton, Envy, Esther, Fancy, Floofy, GuapoLibertyLonesomeJadeMonaMoophie, Mousy, NinjaOliver, Too, PromiseQueenie, RascalRavenSammyShakey, Tag and Tig, TimberTom and Jerry, and Tula.

For cautious, stealthy movement along an Arizona-Texas alley in North Park, the cat earns nickname Pussyfoot. I used Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra to capture the Featured Image, which is composed as shot. Vitals: f/3.4, ISO 32, 1/640 sec, (synthetic) 230mm (digital and optical zoom); 10:55 a.m. PDT, June 12, 2024.

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Bee Passionate

The crazy thing about San Diego is the way flowers, plants, and trees grow. Anywhere. Everywhere. Unexpected places. Along an alley across from fencing where grapes grow, I passed passion fruit today. That’s two different neighbors’ fence lines.

I initially whipped out Galaxy Samsung S24 Ultra for a shot of four fruits lined up. But busy bees brought my attention to the flowers, where luck delivered good-enough composition and a bee in flight. What’s not to like about that?

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Welcome to the Cutting (Galaxy Book4) Edge

I haven’t been on the bleeding edge of technology for a while, but here we are on the precipice ready to fall off. This afternoon, UPS delivered Samsung Galaxy Book4 Edge, which I ordered on May 20, 2024, when Microsoft and its OEM partners announced ARM-based Windows laptops packing Qualcomm chips.

Oh, I will review this beastie, and for a couple reasons: I am heavily invested in the Samsung ecosystem, and Qualcomm is a local company (here in San Diego). Out-of-box experience: Outstanding. Display: Superb. Keyboard: Tactile and responsive (contrary to reports from some professional reviewers). Performance: Sportscar, compared to my Surface Laptop Studio. Battery: Too soon to say. Trackpad (okay, so far, but needs more use). Applications: I will let you know about native vs non-native.

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The Cats of University Heights: Mr. Norris

From Yuki (left), we go to her housemate, Mr. Norris. I met both kitties, and their caretaker, on June 7, 2024. Penelope used to live at the same place, but she died last year at age 22.

The Featured Image comes from Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra. Vitals: f/3.4, ISO 32, 1/190 sec, (synthetic) 230mm (digital and optical zoom); 2:49 p.m. PDT.

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The Cats of University Heights: Yuki

Where once lived beautiful tortie Penelope, who passed away last year at age 22, two new residents can be found. Meet the first of them, Yuki—and, yes, that is her real name.

We will introduce you to her housemate, Mr. Norris, in a forthcoming profile. All three kitties’ home is about a block from our old apartment within the West side of the neighborhood.