Monday, September 29, 2014

Testing the FujiFilm HS25EXR, Part 1

Or a complete amateur’s fooling about with a new used camera in hopes of replacing his well out of date travel camera.

After failing to make a decent video of a once in a lifetime swarm of tens of thousands of dragonflies flitting around the property, I came to the reluctant conclusion my trusty Canon S1 IS was truly out of date. A newer used camera with HD recording was needed – hopefully one that took good stills as well. Hunting on eBay netted me a steal in the form of a FujiFilm FinePix HS25EXR 16 megapixel “bridge” camera capable of true 1080P video at 30 FPS.

Rave reviews online of this intermediate between snapshot and DSLR classes convinced me this would be a massive upgrade in capability. However, first snapshots had me wondering if I’d taken a step backward. Equipped with a bewildering array of settings, the HS25EXR was far more exotic than anything I’d used before. Of course that didn’t stop me from trying on my own.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Frayed or Fried?

Since I’m not getting anything done in the way of reviews, a report on why is in order. Simply put, things have needed doing and they have exhausted all my energy while absconding with my brainwaves. The trigger was having to mow the lawn, which is not good due to depleting my limited stamina along with the fact I’m allergic to grass. Not just grass pollen, but the plant itself.

A week later and the itching is finally gone, but the sinuses still hate me. Can’t say I blame them.

Dad may finally making some small progress. For the first time since March there are indications of fluids (water in this case) making its way from the stomach to the intestine. Cheap no calorie drink mix with very potent red dye revealed this when his feeding tube in the small intestines became tinted pink. Having spilled this stuff on white clothing, I can say it was a positive match.

Also, he has been measuring oral intake in milliliters in comparison with what he drains from the relief tube in the stomach. In the past few days, more than one hundred milliliters of water has gone missing with the implication that they have passed through the gastric outlet.

Too early to get really excited, but hey this is something that hasn’t happened before.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidora (2001) Review

Giant Monsters All-Out Attack aka Godzilla: GMK

A darker take than usual in the Godzilla series of movies that adds a spiritual aspect to Japan’s battles with the giant lizard. While highly flawed, this is my second favorite Godzilla movie and only eclipsed by the original Gojira. It is the only other Godzilla movie in my collection other than the original and I purchased it from Hong Kong it was unavailable in the US at the time . That has since changed.  It also can be watched online at UPDATED: April 2012. UPDATED again September 2014 with Blu-ray details and HD screen captures.

Godzilla GMK HD Title

Toho Studios gave Shusuke Kaneko, the director of the competing rebooted Gamera trilogy, a shot at reinterpreting Godzilla and this production hit Japanese theaters in late 2001.  Domestically it was the most successful of the Millennium series of Godzilla movies. Yes, there have been so many films of the big ‘G’ that they are actually broken into subsets by era. GMK is a direct sequel to the 1954 movie and ignores all the others.

Godzilla GMK HD Admiral TachibanaGodzilla GMK HD Yuri Tachibana

The movie begins with the most boring of settings, a classroom. This one is filled with Japanese naval officers being lectured by Admiral Tachibana (Ryudo Uzaki) about the only battle fought by the Japanese Self Defense Force.  That battle was in 1954 against the giant monster Godzilla and was a great victory for the JSDF.  Huh?  Wasn’t the radioactive menace killed by the Oxygen Destroyer? Something’s fishy here.

As the lecture goes on, mention of a giant monster attacking New York and possibly being identified as Godzilla occurs. This leads to a humorous slam against the 1998 American Godzilla movie during a discussion by two junior officers. One asks if it really was Godzilla. The other replies: “Experts in America say it was, but Japanese ones disagree.”

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Working on Posts and Getting Old

The last couple of weeks have been difficult, so none of the reviews I’m working on have progressed very far. Dad simply isn’t showing any signs of getting better or a willingness to work at it, so I’m trying to push him to do things. That’s been difficult, not to mention time consuming.

As I’m typing, U2’s new album, Songs of Innocence, is playing in the background. A free download until the middle of October, it is proof that the music industry is in trouble. CD sales have dwindled to nearly nothing and now digital download sales are in free fall. Streaming from Pandora and Spotify are being blamed, however the quality of product is more to blame in my opinion.

Songs of Innocence illustrates this well -- for you get what you paid for it. It isn’t even mediocre. Only The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone) is interesting at all, the rest is banal. In fact, the album sounds like a band trying to sound like U2.

Monday, September 01, 2014

Experimenting with Ads

Though I have too little traffic to ever make money off of ads run on the blog, I’m doing a test run to see if they negatively impact my organic traffic from Google. There will only be one on the sidebar since I’m looking to see if all the animal named algorithms G likes to unleash penalize the site.

Purely mad scientist stuff inspired by the fact that as time goes by there is less and less traffic from organic searches. In other words, I’ve got nothing to lose and curiosity about what destroyed my blog’s rise in late 2012 really was has taken over. Like before, I’ll be using Google’s own AdSense service, though I might toy with other services later on if nothing happens.