Olympus OM-D E-M10 review | The Newsprint →

September 24, 2014 |

Josh Ginter:

The first characteristic my wife and I were looking for was the ability to take a camera wherever without feeling like we were carrying an anchor around our necks. I purchased a Nikon D5100 and Nikkor 18-200mm travel lens a couple years back and we abhorred having to carry that camera around. Cameras have to be readily available when inspiration strikes and, if your camera is sitting on the shelf in the hotel room, it’s not going to do a very good job.

This is a fantastic review. I also own an E-M10 and can’t recommend it enough. For a small and light, but high-quality system, the E-M10 is hard to beat.

I only have two comments, regarding how I personally use the camera:

  • Unlike Josh, I don’t use the accessory grip, and never felt like I was missing out on any extra ergonomics. Then again, I have fairly small hands.

  • The supplied neck strap is not particularly great, but I always use it and couldn’t imagine not having it. I will probably upgrade to a fancier one soon, but for now I think it’s adequate.

A camera is a very personal item, and different people will of course have different preferences. Luckily, the E-M10 offers plenty of options to customize the experience, so you can always adapt it to suit your particular needs.

Which is to say, Josh’s review is pretty much spot on, and you can’t go wrong with the E-M10. Great work.

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Jacket and tie | Sanspoint →

September 24, 2014 |

Richard J. Anderson:

My outfit gives me super powers. Dressed up, I have the powers of confidence, of dependability and trust, of good first impressions. Plus, I look great. As long as I wear my jacket and tie, I feel like I can accomplish any task, surmount any hurdle, and deal with any unforeseen circumstance. Put a cup of hot coffee in my hand, and I become invincible. A set of clothes that look good and feel good have the power to change how you feel about yourself. Whatever misfortune, whatever woe has befallen you, you can look in any mirror and say, “at least I still look like I have it together.” For a lot of people out there, looking like you have it together is enough to make them think you really do.

Great article.

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iPhone 6 camera compared to all previous iPhones →

September 24, 2014 |

In the past seven years, each new advancement in iPhone camera technology has made dramatic improvements to image quality. The iPhone 6 is no different. Besides being faster to shoot and easier to focus, the images taken with the iPhone 6 camera show greater detail and are significantly better in low-light.

Interesting comparison. The iPhone 6 camera is vastly superior in several areas and is particularly amazing in low light. However, it also surprised me that in other examples, like daylight photography and portraits, the results between 4S, 5, 5S and 6 are almost indistinguishable from each other.

Via MacStories.

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Dr. Drang explains engineering language to the masses →

September 24, 2014 |

This hybrid heritage carries through into the language of engineering, where we use everyday words (tradesman) to express precisely defined concepts (scientist). This makes it difficult to communicate engineering principles to nonengineers because we use many words in ways that don’t match up with their colloquial meaning. I’m sure you can come up with examples of this in other professions—even science does it to some extent—but in engineering, many of our most fundamental ideas and properties use common words.

Excellent article. My favorite example of this dual-meaning conflict is the word “theory”, as in, scientific theory:

When used in non-scientific context, the word “theory” implies that something is unproven or speculative. As used in science, however, a theory is an explanation or model based on observation, experimentation, and reasoning, especially one that has been tested and confirmed as a general principle helping to explain and predict natural phenomena.

A scientific theory is far from speculative: it has been repeatedly confirmed by anecdotal and experimental evidence, and it has been thoroughly reviewed and tested by the rest of the scientific community. That’s why I find it so laughable when creationists attempt to deride Darwin’s theory of evolution by saying “it’s just a theory”.

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Steven Soderbergh releases black and white version of Raiders of the Lost Ark →

September 24, 2014 |

So I want you to watch this movie and think only about staging, how the shots are built and laid out, what the rules of movement are, what the cutting patterns are. See if you can reproduce the thought process that resulted in these choices by asking yourself: why was each shot—whether short or long—held for that exact length of time and placed in that order? Sounds like fun, right? It actually is. To me. Oh, and I’ve removed all sound and color from the film, apart from a score designed to aid you in your quest to just study the visual staging aspect. Wait, WHAT? HOW COULD YOU DO THIS? Well, I’m not saying I’m like, ALLOWED to do this, I’m just saying this is what I do when I try to learn about staging, and this filmmaker forgot more about staging by the time he made his first feature than I know to this day (for example, no matter how fast the cuts come, you always know exactly where you are—that’s high level visual math shit).

What a fascinating experiment. Though I have a lot of conflicting emotions about this, to be honest. Raiders of the Lost Ark is one of my all-time favorite films, and I usually don’t quite like it when people “reimagine” these classics.

That being said, Mr. Soderbergh is an amazing artist, and I’m terribly curious to see the result.

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Manual for iPhone →

September 24, 2014 |

What an awesome way to introduce an app:

Kidding aside, Manual is a very interesting app that lets you control all parameters of exposure when shooting with the iPhone’s camera.1 If you want to have more control over the pictures you take, this is a great way to do it.

  1. Well, all except aperture, because the iPhone’s camera lens is a fixed aperture design.

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iPhone 6 Plus prone to bending under high pressure →

September 24, 2014 |

In other shocking —and similarly outrageous— news, if the battery runs out, the device won’t even turn on. Also, being submerged in water for an extended period of time without air has been known to kill people. Who would have thought, right?

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How to be a good stranger →

September 23, 2014 |

David Cain:

If you live among strangers, chances are you are constantly becoming a private adversary to other people in ways you could never comprehend. Maybe somebody at the grocery store secretly hates you because of where you lock your bike up, or because you ride a bike at all. Or maybe you stand too close in the ATM line, or you use too many buzzwords, or you’re breaking some unwritten rule in a restaurant, or you’re in the way and have no idea. When you think of all of the petty things for which you’ve privately condemned someone at one time or another, it’s no stretch at all to imagine how often you are, in someone else’s eyes, clearly a bad person.

Excellent, thought-provoking piece.

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WTF happened to PG-13? →

September 22, 2014 |

Good Bad Flicks, on how the movie industry’s push for PG-13 ratings is hurting cinema as an art form. Many movies that are clearly meant to be rated R get watered down in order to achieve the less restrictive rating of PG-13. This is done to maximize their potential audience, but often results in a poor movie that ends up doing badly at the box office, because the original vision was destroyed in pursuit of a meaningless rating.

I couldn’t agree more, and I think it’s ridiculous that ratings can have such a big influence on a movie’s potential success. Our ratings system in Spain is merely informative and as far as I know, access to a movie theater is never restricted, no matter the rating of the movie.1 You could take your kid to watch The Wolf of Wall Street, and no one would stop you.

Of course, the fact that you can doesn’t mean that you should. After all, it is a parent’s responsibility to keep an eye on what her kid watches. But these decisions are the parents’ to make, not some random movie executive’s, and certainly not for the sole purpose of making a killing.

Via Connor McClure.

  1. Except for the X rating, which requires a movie to be shown exclusively at special, adults-only theaters.

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