Construction siteConstruction site

March 10, 2024

I can’t count how many times in the past couple of years I’ve gone to the online Apple store to buy a new computer, but decided against it partway through as I configure it to have adequate RAM and storage.

A sample:

Model Pricing
MacMini M2 Pro: 10‑core CPU, 16-core GPU, 16‑core Neural Engine $1299
add 16 gigabytes of ram + $400
add 1.5 tb of storage + $600
Total cost $2299

This is just bananas. The 16 gigabytes of ram and 1.5 tb of storage add $1000 to the cost, which is only $299 less than the cost of the entire base computer.

I really love the Mac platform, have been using it for 40 years (what!?!), and have regularly upgraded my computers every couple of years (except for my Mac Pros, which always tended to last a good long time. But that was back in the good old days where you could upgrade RAM and storage yourself with perfectly good third-party components (which, yes, would sometimes cause kernel panics.) Now that everything is soldered to the motherboard those days are long gone and, frankly, I think Apple’s pricing for upgrades is an abuse of the their customers.

I’d love to continue using Macs, but for two years I have been unable to push the order button because of the sour taste in my mouth. Do better #apple.

March 9, 2024

iOS autocorrect woes I was pretty excited by the new, improved, AI-assisted autocorrect that was supposedly a part of the newest iOS, but it’s worse than ever. I type you” and it autocorrects to YouTube”. When responding to an email from Tony” it autocorrects to Toni”, which is by far the less common spelling (and why is there no context-awareness. That Apple hasn’t given us the ability to correct and fine-tune the suggestions is just plain dumb, but at least it now allows fuck” and doesn’t change it to duck”. Baby steps, I guess.

February 24, 2024

I was struggling with using flash on my mirrorless cameras. When using flash on non-TTL (through the lens) cameras my usual camera settings are:

  • set the exposure to manual
  • set the aperture to 5.6 (though this sometimes changes)
  • set the ISO to 200
  • set the shutter speed to 1/125 of a second (though this depends somewhat on flash sync speed for the camera)

I then set the flash to auto mode and set the flash aperture and ISO to match what is set on the camera.

The problem with this is that on mirrorless cameras the EVF is set to preview the exposure by default, so the EVF typically shows as nearly black with these settings. After much messing around I finally figured out the solution–turn off the EVF exposure preview. On my Leica SL that setting is called Exposure Preview, and it is possible to turn it so that the preview is only active in all modes except manual. Voilà–flash now works perfectly.

I’ve been taking photos for 45 years, mirrorless for 8 or 10, and I’m just now figuring this out, so I guess a) I don’t use a lot of flash, and b) this isn’t easy to find with a simple online search.

February 21, 2024

In the last couple of months Spotify’s algorithm seems to have lost its way. For years Release Radar was very good at discovering new music by artists in my library, as well as other similar artists. I have very eclectic music tastes, but recently Release Radar is filled with 90% bands I’ve never heard of, as well as styles of music that I don’t enjoy: metal, electronica, teen pop, etc.

Maybe they’re using too much AI?

January 26, 2024

Winter swimming at Reid State Park, GeorgetownWinter swimming at Reid State Park, Georgetown

January 23, 2024