What you need as glass (Part VI - Tele Zoom)

July 19th, 2011

This is part VI of a series of what glass you will need. Each part will discuss a certain lens type and its applications.

Tele zooms cover the range 70/5omm+. Candid shots, sports, wildlife are typical applications (adding a close-up lens makes most of them as well capable macros).

Almost all tele zooms are actually too short for wildlife. You need at minimum 300mm here + some feature like AF lock are handy.

It is fair to categorize in three groups

  • Consumer tele
  • Pro tele
  • Long tele

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Java, no rebel as there’s no cause?

May 23rd, 2007

I came across a 10-year old presentation on Java - less interestering, I flicked quickly over the pages, but this slide made me stop:

Object-Oriented Benefits
• Better software design
– different way of thinking about software
– software can more closely models real world problem being
– domain experts can more easily participate in initial software design
• Easier to maintain
– problems are easier to isolate
– changes are more localized
• Easier to extend
– easy to make extensions to existing functionality
• Less code to write
– more likely to reuse code from other applications
– more likely to find commercial code (class libraries) that can be
used for portions of an application 

I think this is a good writeup of the alleged advantages and capabilities of OO from the time where OO was not yet 100% mainstream.  Did this live up in reality? I doubt that. The tend towards (or back to) more functional languages seems to be an indication. The more I hit the limits in Java the more I find myself imitating functional programming techniques in Java code - rarely pretty code you get by doing that. Irony or just the prove that be all keep learning: The author from the presentation cited above is now touring whith some JRuby slides

This is genuine Microsoft

May 20th, 2006

I started playing with Google Web Toolkit beta- actually I didn’t really start. Because I had to uninstall IE7 (which I don’t use at all), but hey I’d been curious.

The screenshot above is a ‘warning’ from the uninstall. I think they inserted it to deter people from stopping using it (interesting though how this compares to trailware).

But at the end the best one:

It is always more confusing to offer a negated phrase (”Are you not sure if you don’t want not all files lost on harddrive not being formatted [Y/N]”), instead of defaulting a reasonable choice.

The alert reader might have spotted that I use a french edition of XP (with the Vista L&F) - but everything comes in english?!

BTW: I think IE7 sucks. It is IE6 with tabbed-browsing, a terrible layout of controls and all known bugs. Worst of all: The anti-aliasing. Looks like s**t - if you happen to use Office 2003 you know this reading-layout - just like this, just a tad worse.

They should steal the anti-aliasing from Mustang, that works and looks really good.

PS: I now believe Microsoft invented the browser: It just took them longer than Netscape to come out with it:-) If the big battleship Microsoft is in hurry, some things might go over board

Const methods are evil?

April 9th, 2006

The C++ folks complain about a feature Java is lacking, the “constness”.

For the younger readers: The keyword const can be added to a method to make it promise not to modify the status of the object, as the same keyword for a variable means that you are only allowed to call const-methods on it.

Thus a const-type is a supertype of the type. Some types in Java are actually const: Number and String are immutable that is even stronger (they never change at all, while a const-object restricts only the reference holder to modify its state).

The Problem with Java is simple to explain: Imagine you had MutableString extends String. When implementing an interface do(String) just implementing do(MutableString) is not sufficient because there are MutableStrings that are not mutable - being plain Strings. When you design the interface of your class carefully, you can have constness: Create a const-interface and extend it by an interface defining all other methods. This is cumbersome and really hard to maintain. The implementation of a getter - see below - can call some non-const method; slicing the class creates problems down the road because of Java’s restriction to single inheritance.

My point here is that I argue that the concept of constness is of any good use in OOD at all.

Let aside the documentary benefit of a const method ( you should be concious about what a method does when you plan to use it), the const is used mainly for return-values of functions and one could view the need of const methods just a by-product of this modifier since otherwise the object at hand would be 100% useless (there are some subtleties with operator overloading, but this doesn’t apply to Java and the C++ syntax is questionable there anyway).

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March 27th, 2006

Just read over Kimchy’s Blog that pointed to an article by Martin Fowler which dates back to the end of 2003…
Oh my god this was definitely ahead of my time. As I started my current project I had been well aware of it (I am not sure anymore - I think I even read it shortly after it had been originally published). In fact we moved a system having an anemic domain model to a more object-oriented system (very sucessful by the way - perhaps the thing I am most proud of in my whole career).

Well I had been aware of it. Or I had been occupied by to many things at the “outer rim” to notice: Now we have “Assistants”, “BusinessProcesses” and “Calculator” that stripped out functionality from the business (or domain) objects. They now became more an more a bogus layer between the procedural code and the database*.

*Please note:

…which typically results in a whole layer of O/R mapping. This is worthwhile iff you use the powerful OO techniques to organize complex logic

“Iff” means “if and only if” - so you should employ OO-techniques to do the mapping and not only for the sake of having a mapping layer. In a non-trivial application you will have the need for it so plan for, do not take it too lightly

… the last sentence is perhaps the obligatory detail where I disagree with Martin:-)

De-I18N: Google doesn’t work for me any more

February 18th, 2006

Once upon a time the was a search engine called Google. It had been a friendly search-machine and everyone liked it - not everyone of course , there was this nasty Giant of Redmond that was feared by everyone but also disliked by everyone.

End of the fairy-tale.

Google wants to make more money and “the next big thing” is localized services - if one believes the web to-point-”Ohh!” evangelist - formerly knows as the guys who didn’t get a word a Starbuck’s right and used them as brand names instead - who needs vowels, especially the ‘e’ is largely overrated (See G. Perec La disparition /A Void).
No google.de etc. are fully localized (to target you with more adspam). Also they provide more top-listed sites (It depends which google you talk about)… If I had the choice, they can do so, but what really bothers me is that it ignores whenI search with english or french terms: I still get only german pages… unless NO pages exists in german on the topic. Even if there is a single hit in german all other 200.000.000 hits are ignored…

Don’t say that I have to change my language preferences - they don’t have any effect on that: If you search you have to know now the language domain you want to investigate. My girl-friend is completly fucked: She mainly works translating french texts and when I say french I mean texts in french from France. Sadly Google now prefers Canada (Blame Canada!)…
Well perhaps they’ll improve on that, but actually it is a loss. All google sites looked the same because they were merely portals to the world’s information. The “global village” was too “.” O tied to Google to keep it connected. Now we go back to some regions (and some white(?) spots).
I have nothing against translations and reasonably ranked content, but I don’t like to revise all the weeks if I can still trust my dictionary. The rules must be transparent. The google-quirk can be circumvented (when using english) by querying google.com, but IBM and (guess who?) Microsoft made it worse: They use your IP-address to redirected you to localized content. This is very useful when you are in France and french is your third language (or 5th, 6th if computer languages count). At Microsoft it is just a bit annoying, but there is always the link to the translation (and the (english) original) on the same page and when you navigated a local site you won’t be dispatched without any notice while browsing it (I don’t except nobody to translate any bit of information immediately). IBM nows better: The transferred their mainframe-attitude to the 21st century. You can change your preferences, but you have to navigate away from the current page and you’ll never find the desired content…