Took a number of photos with my new Leica DG Vario-Elmar 100-400mm f/4.0-6.3 today. And how about that, it really makes
a difference. To start with,
the black cockatoos
flew by, and I managed to get a number of photos that, while not good, were an order of
magnitude better than what I had got previously:
The zoom ring on the Vario-Elmar turns in the opposite direction to all my Olympus zooms.
This is the first Panasonic/Leica zoom lens I have, but I assume it's a general issue. I
wonder how long it will take me to get used to it.
So we blocked the entrance behind the musical instrument cabinet, so that Rani couldn't use the space behind as a toilet. We
also made sure she had continual access to the designated toilet in the laundry. What did
she do? She crapped in front of the cabinet!
Gradually she's convincing us that it's time for her to go. I don't like giving up on a
cat, but it's been over a year now, and she's still not tame.
Those look like two different organisms. How could that happen? The stuff has a “best
before” date of “10-06-17”, which I interpret to mean 10 June 2017, still long in the
future. And it wasn't treated badly since we had it: brought home in a cooler bag and put
straight into the fridge.
Yes, of course we can get our money back. But it very nearly spoilt the whole dinner
preparations. If we had gone back to get another pack, it would have cost us about $40 for
the car, not to mention the waste of an hour. As it was, we found enough substandard dried
lasagne to make do.
More to the point, though, Yvonne wanted to use it anyway. I wonder how many other people
would do that. No wonder substandard food processing is responsible for many cases of food
poisoning. I have a mind to report it to the authorities.
I had barely got up when Yvonne asked me to see what was
wrong with dischord, the Microsoft box we use for photo processing. Dead! I
discover I had connected it to an unprotected power outlet, and the power indicator showed
that it wasn't powered on: for reasons I didn't investigate in time, it didn't come back up
after the power outage. Connected it to the UPS and it came up
happily, and it shouldn't happen again.
Next thing: check what's going on on IRC.
Disconnected from the proxy. Can't reconnect. Off the net? No, a ping to www
worked. Did my bip process die? It seemed
so. But then I saw:
=== grog@www (/dev/pts/2) ~ 3 -> date; uptime Sat Apr 29 23:26:29 UTC 2017
11:26PM up 11:41, 4 users, load averages: 0.14, 0.21, 0.21
A crash! After only 2 years uptime! How did that happen? I wonder if I'll ever beat the
nearly 5 years I
had by September 2013.
I also wanted to process photos, so I used euroa, the Microsoft laptop. It told me
it wanted to reboot to complete something. OK, humour it. It came back up again, and I
started using it. Then it froze. I couldn't even ping it. But it worked locally.
After a lot of checking, discovered that Norton Security had been enabled, and it had set all kinds of default filtration
without telling me, including blocking ICMP
and (apparently) remote desktop.
No setup screen, no asking: it just did it.
It also told me that I had 21 days for my free trial, after which I would have to pay Real
Money for the privilege of being blocked. OK, that's clarified the matter. Totally remove
It still didn't work! As a parting shot, it had enabled the “Windows” firewall!
Yes, of course we need security. But it needs to be appropriate. In my case, the machines
are behind a real firewall running on eureka, and that's something I can control. I
don't need no steenking toy firewall behind the real one.
Put a focusing rail on that and I should be in much better shape.
But that's only half the issue. How do I compose the images? The viewfinder is too
difficult to use in that position, and the LCD display is too sensitive to sunlight. There
are two other possibilities: a clip-on viewfinder like the VF-2 that
I got a couple of months ago. That's designed to fit directly on the camera, not an
advantage in this case. But wouldn't it make so much sense to have it on a cable so that
you could mount it elsewhere? It's almost worth trying, but I suspect that cable impedances
will make it impractical.
So the remaining alternative is OI.Share, a broken mobile phone app which offers a remote viewfinder. I've tried it
several times over the years, and every time I have given up in disgust.
Today I tried again. Yes, it's just as broken. In fact, it seems to be even more broken:
on the Olympus OM-D
E-M1 Mark II the display “WiFi” that is supposed to be on the LCD display is missing.
Why? Some setting? It's present on the E-M1 Mark I. As usual, the “instructions” are no
help at all, and I wasn't able to fix it.
Connecting to the phone was, as ever, a pain. Start the app and it immediately claims that
there is no camera. I'm gradually finding out how to work around the bugs. Once the
initial setup (“Private”) has taken place,
Go to the “Settings/Wi-Fi” page, disable any connected network.
On the camera, select “WiFi”, either on the main screen if it works, otherwise
Menu/Playback/Connect to Smartphone”.
Wait 20 seconds. It takes the camera about 10 seconds to set up, and about another 8
seconds to connect to the phone. In my case it connected automatically, but it may need
Now start the app. Things should work about as well as they can.
Elsewhere I have seen
this advice, but I haven't investigated:
... on Android phones, I turned that Auto Switch/Smart Switch off. This prevent the phone
from switching to stronger signal, i.e. 3G/4G/4GLTE.
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