So They’re All Racists Then?

This is one of the key points of contention and misunderstanding that I see from both sides online. The majority of people believe that being called a racist is an extremely negative thing (though there are a small minority who clearly relish it), but these is no clear agreement on what it actually means to be racist. That lies at the heart of a lot of the communication problems when it comes to politics and social issues. On the right there is a feeling that the left just labels everyone as racists and are using it as a blanket insult. On the left there's a feeling that those on the …Read more  »

The How/Why/What of Trump’s Victory

My mind has been chewing away at this since Tuesday night. It was obviously to me relatively early in the night that the predictions were wrong and Trump was going to win. The question is why.   There have been a lot of articles (and many more to come) trying to answer this question and they're all wrong. Even the ones that are right are also wrong.   Because there isn't a single reason. The human brain likes simple answers, but that's not how the world works. Instead it is a confluence of people and events all meshing together. You can point to the FBI investigation, or economic worries or …Read more  »

As The Sky and Sea Burn Gold

I was a little later getting to the beach that morning but the delay was fortunate because this was the sight that greeted me as I reached the sand dunes. As pretty as sunrises are, they get very samey if you don't have something of interest in your foreground. The beaches at Ocean City Maryland are well tended but there's not much in the way of natural features left, which can result in a bland photo. The fencing here made for some ideal framing.  

Ocean City Pier at Dusk

This photo was taken around dusk and while the sun hadn't set it was getting dark. However, courtesy of an 8 second exposure it looks almost like full daylight. I think it captures the peaceful nature of the moment well. You can see a couple of smudges where people are moving but the long exposure has smoothed out the sea in a very satisfying way and all in all I find it very satisfying to look at.

Sunrise at the Beach

While I enjoy sitting on the beach at sunrise and taking photos, they can get a little samey after a while,  particularly in this case where there was literally nothing but beach and ocean in sight. So I tried something a little different, moving the focus to the sand and having the sun in the background. I think it worked rather well. f/1.7 - 1/125 - 25mm - ISO160


While my new lens isn't a macro lens in any traditional sense the narrow depth of field does make it very good for detail shots because you can isolate just a tiny part of something like this flower for example. I'm having a lot of fun with my new lens but I need to find some additional subject matter for it I think. Maybe try some landscape shots or something. f/2.8 - 1/2500 - 25mm - ISO160

A Rose By Any Other Name

Well it's a tea rose to be precise and you can't smell it at all because, you know, it's a photo, but quoting Shakespeare makes me sound clever and stuff. I'm still practicing with my new camera lens. The previous shots were mostly about taking advantage of the low light capability. Here though there was plenty of light and I wanted to work with depth of field. Once you get down to f1.7 it gets really tricky to get the right bits of the image in focus. I actually misjudged this slightly and the stamen are out of focus, but the petals are nice and sharp so I can live with …Read more  »

The History Of Science Fiction Special — Traveller

Traveller wasn't the first roleplaying game or even the first science fiction roleplaying game (that prize goes to either Empire of the Petal Throne (1975) if you count science fantasy or Metamorphosis Alpha (1976) both of which were published by TSR) but it does count as the first space opera roleplaying game, it's also the longest lived SF RPG and the most influential both on RPGs and on gaming in general. All of which makes it deserving of a History of Science Fiction special I think. Traveller was designed by Mark Miller and published by Games Designers Workshop in 1977.  The setting and style of the game was influenced by …Read more  »