So, done with multi-day reports on things and I can get back to the ordinary stuff of everyday life. Here's something kind of a footnote to the Celebration of Imminent Babyness and visiting my brother and his girlfriend up in Boston: she asked if I could send some of the pictures of the day. In her recollection all the events of it were one fast-paced blur. I certainly understand that. Considering the due date (next Monday, though there are signs the child may be early) she's going to have a month that's a fast-paced blur. I poked around in iPhoto and looked at what I had photographed.
The pictures were horrible. I don't mean the compositions and subjects and such were; I'm a competent photographer and have a fair idea what to be pointing at when I click. It's the camera that failed me. The light is generally muddy with a few that are too bright, the shutter speed was off as there's blurs in pictures that shouldn't be, and a distressing number (corresponding to just after I changed the batteries) have weird pixellation artifacts, like they were on ancient film stock which had time to decay.
I was using my mother's camera. Obviously with somewhere around 27,000 pictures on my own 2003-dated camera I've got very, very good at it and its quirks and I just fumbled using a foreign model, right? Except my mother's camera was, pretty much, just the successor model to my 2003-dated digital camera. She looked on purpose for one as much like mine but better when she got it a couple years ago. If I can't transfer my skill on one camera to the version as near like it as possible --- and new cameras are even less like it, with menus that just irritate me in the Best Buy --- what's the fate of my picture-taking when I finally do need to replace this one?
Trivia: B F Skinner's early 1940s research in using pigeons to guide missiles was supported by the General Mills Company. (Vice President of Research Arthur Hyde took the project as a public service.) Source: Superdove: How The Pigeon Took Manhattan ... And The World, Courtney Humphries. And why does every piece of trivia about B F Skinner sound like an urban legend about B F Skinner?
Currently Reading: War Of Omission, Kevin O'Donnell, Jr. Here's one for james_nicoll's Everything Is Worse With Libertarians file. Using a mysterious device that blips (or, actually, 'tisses', in this case) stuff out of living memory, freedom fighters battling the oppressive Government blip out the federal, state, and local governments. After millions of people are killed in petty warlord fighting and the collapse of the economy going into winter, and the Soviet Union launches an invasion to restore order they do admit that maybe there were some good things about the old order after all, even if the big mean poopyheads of government cruelly and oppressively didn't let people run deceptive advertisements on TV and made folks get their homes inspected for building violations. (I don't assert any side of this debate to be O'Donnell's viewpoint based solely on the text. Just that the characters were a bunch of fathead idiots who had no business launching the Revolution.)