Just stuff

There have been a couple of things I’ve been working on and trying to update, and I finally have them available, so this post is simply a short list of new things available on the site.

I mentioned earlier that I would include a tutorial on removing noise, and so I have: it can be found here. Bear in mind that this is limited to noise from bad sensor pixels, the kind that shows up in many images, especially low-light or long exposure shots. The other kind of noise, usually multi-colored speckling from low light or high ISO, is a very involved thing to remove, and the tutorial would be much longer, but I still may get to that someday.

I might have to start teaching my students directly about the next one, which is how to effectively resize an image. I’m still amazed at how few people understand this, and how many websites I see where the images load slowly because no one knows how to make their images web-sized. You can save a lot of download time and server load by making web and e-mail photos the right size, and get better results from your prints too.

Last year I provided instructions on making a year-long guide to rise and set times for the sun and moon, and I have updated it for 2012 (formatting and leap year stuff.) Call me optimistic, but I didn’t cut it off after December 21st, either. It’s admittedly a bit fussy, but you only have to do it once and then have a quick reference for the sun and moon for the year, which you’re going to use frequently to get those great landscapes and ‘golden hour‘ shots, right?

And I figure I’ll just mention this here, rather than make another post about it. You may recall my taking Cecil Adams of “The Straight Dope” to task on his wishy-washy answer to the question, “Does god Exist?“, and apparently I wasn’t the only one. Yesterday, he responded to one of his detractors in a disparaging way, claiming that he really was making the point of how weak the Cosmological Argument is. I’ll be blunt: bullshit. If you’ve ever read the details of some of his answers, you’ll know that he’s more than capable of getting past the appearance of importance to deal with the crucial details, and if anything, his advisory staff is even better. Even the Straight Dope Message Board handed him his ass over the reply, which is no doubt what prompted the revisit. That he couldn’t do so without both shameless backpedaling and several petty digs is just a lack of character.

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