Recent activities

We went for a short walk again last Sunday, tho the area we decided upon wasn’t that good for walking – not enough shadow, too many bicyclists, things like that. Anyway, here’s a photo from our walk:


And while the cat was gone for almost 24 hours, she also returned short after that.

Then it started to rain again, and the plants and trees really needed it. Mitchie had brought the latest c’t special about photography, which is quite good and interesting this time. So I read a lot and tried darktable, which can do a lot more than both my Olympus Viewer 3 (on Windows) and RawTherapee (on Linux) combined. It has a bit of a learning curve tho, so it’s too early for judgements. Here’s a first result of just playing around with it for a few minutes:


What’s also really interesting in that c’t special magazine is an article about using telescopes, so I read a lot about that as well. Even Stephen Hawking has one now, years after he wrote his brief history of time. A report about his telescope, by the proud Chinese makers, is here if you’re interested.

And in case you’re interested is star photography, you can come up to speed and learn most of what you’d have to know if you look at three episodes from Forrest Tanaka, on youtube:

Part 1 (about which scope you’d like to have),
Part 2 (about the mount, which is even more important), and
Part 3 (about how to help your telescope with tracking those stars)

This is all explained so that you can even understand it, so it’s really recommended stuff for star gazers (and probably for people who are waiting for Patrick Stewart to turn up, and to talk about having the first contact soon). 😉 Oh, and by the way: Forrest Tanaka has a nice Flickr stream as well. He seems to be good in everything he does, not only when lecturing about how to choose and use telescopes.

He’s at least certainly better than me. I just took a photo of Arcturus, using my 40-150mm lens at the longest setting. The photo and the explanation in Stellarium look like this:



Anyway, Arcturus is a red giant, about 36 light years away, and roughly 25 times the diameter of our sun (and much brighter than it as well). And it’s even older than our complete solar system. Interesting to read, at least for trekkies like me.

Update, from 3:23am: another, darker picture of a star:


And its description in Stellarium:


Thanks for reading.