Monthly Archives: November 2006

DxO Optics Pro V4

 DXOUpon attending a session of my Wife's photography class, the professor, Chuck Delaney made reference to DxO Optics Pro being good software for processing images. It's available for Trial download and supports many different Camera/Lens combinations.

Unfortunately, it does not yet support my AF-S DX VR Zoom-Nikkor 18-200mm in combination with my Nikon D80. But it does support the Nikon D70s with that  lens, so I used an image I took in August as a test. It does support the D80 so the other functions worked very well, just not Automatic Lens correction.

Basically, I fired it up, loaded the image and let it go to work. The results are pretty good and took a lot less time if I were doing it via Photoshop.

I also used it to Batch process close to a hundred photos I took at a Birthday party. With the exception of three photographs where the Flash didn't fire, everything looked great. It automatically processed my NEF files (I shoot in RAW),  got the White Balance just about perfect and Skin tones looked good too. If I were shooting a wedding (several hundred images, easily) I'd want to use this software as it was very easy to set up.

Since it doesn't support my Camera/Lens combination yet, I'll hold off, but once it does I'm sure thinking about it. The price it's going for isn't bad and it worked fin with my Old Desktop PC (circa 2001) running a Pentium 4 and 1 GB of RAM.

Music I'm listening to right Now:

"Violet" by Seal from his "Seal" Album (1991).  

What a difference a day makes…

Ok, Lets Recap, At this writing:

  • The Democrat's hold the Majority in the house.
  • The Democrat's may hold the Majority in the Senate.
  • Rep. Nancy Pelosi will be the first Madam Speaker in US History.
  • Rep. Dennis Hastert is bowing out from the now minority leadership role (Too little too late?).
  • Donald Rumsfeld has resigned from his position as Secretary of Defense as announced by the President (Way Too late).

What a difference a day can make! I'm more than a little surprised that they did so well in the Senate. Calling a majority in the House was a "No Brainer", but the Senate? At this time, control of the Senate depends on how Virgina turns out. Either way, I think it's safe to say people have had enough of the Direction this country has been going.

Favorite Quote from Sen. Joseph Lieberman:
Thanks, Don, you've served the country but really we need somebody new there.

I wonder what other changes the Whitehouse will make? 

Music I'm listening to right Now:

"Gone Going" by Black Eyed Peas from "Monkey Business". 

Myspace and Hotlinking…

MySpaceIn General, I'm a patient person but the volume of hotlinking from has reached the point where I'm just not allowing it anymore. Just today, I have over 60 hits from images taken from my server and it's getting tired. 

Oddly enough, I'm also getting a couple of hits from Clay Aiken's site.
Maybe he's a Fan??

Music I'm listening to right Now:

"Pump It" by Black Eyed Peas from "Monkey Business". 

Gorillapod SLR Zoom

Gorillapod SLR Zoom

I pretty much carry my camera everywhere and occasionally come across a situation where I suddenly need a tripod but don't have one as my regular tripod was left at home.

An actual example: It suddenly rained and the streets were nice and reflective. The view from one of my managers office has a good angle on Park Avenue South, but to really get a good shot, I like to take a long exposure. Without a tripod, it's impossible for me to keep the camera that steady. 

While attending the 2006 Photo Plus Expo  this past Friday,  I came upon Joby demonstrating their new Gorillapod Pro (Since renamed the Gorillapod SLR-Zoom) and was impressed enough to buy one. 

Short Review
: I really like it. Will the Gorillapod replace my regular Tripod? Nope, but I'll keep it in my bag for those many times when I need steady base for my camera.

More details after the break.


Music I'm listening to right Now:
"Mushroom Hunting" by The Seatbelts from "Cowboy Bebop CD Box [BOX SET]". 


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Going to Photo Plus Expo

Photo Plus ExpoManaged to get the day off today (BTW I have a very Cool Boss!) so I'll be going to the Photo Plus Expo.

It's at the Jacob Javits center and should be interesting. They probably won't object to photos so I'll try to post some in my Flickr Site. Also, I got my Moo Cards (Positive review later) , so I'll actually be able to hand them out and get that email address Spamed like crazy.

Off Topic: Open a FREE Email account to put on your Moo Cards. It avoids lots of hassles and you could always print more with another Email address.   

Music I'm listening to right Now:

"Sheep Go To Heaven" by Cake from "Prolonging the Magic". 

Great Political advertisement with Colin Ferguson

One show I like to watch is Eureka on the Sci Fi channel staring, among other good actors, Colin Ferguson (The ACTOR, Not this guy!). So while viewing the Huffington Post website, I came across this Gem of a political advertisement starring Colin Ferguson and laughed out loud at the premise. It’s a list of Republicans that are under indictment or convicted. If you can say it in One Breath, you win $100. It’s very clever and effectively demonstrates why people might want to vote for anyone else other than the Republican Party on Election Day.
Music I’m listening to right Now:

Fall Down” by Toad the Wet Sprocket from “Dulcinea“.

Voting problems already…

DieboldThink we don't need Paper receipts or paper registers for vote for New Diebold Touch Screens? Think again

It amazes me that people can get a receipt for a piece of chewing gum, but not for a voting machine. Just about Every cash register in America has two rolls: One for the customer receipt, another for records for possible audit and confirmation.

This is exactly how elections will get stolen, by using these computers that have no proper auditing or any accountability to speak of. In the states that use these today, there is no accurate way to determine if the votes have been manipulated. I bet they don't even have procedures in place to recover data from smashed devices.

If New York State ever uses these machines, I'll insist on a Paper Ballot or absentee ballot.

Music I'm listening to right Now:

"I Write Sins Not Tragedies" by Panic! at the Disco from "A Fever You Can't Sweat Out".