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Well, heck, it's looking like the three-day weekend may be more of a good thing than anticipated: the Windows Xp box I use for most of my photoblog work decided not to boot Friday night. No, no clue, other than it's beyond a 'first pass' evaluation. It hangs early enough in the boot cycle to make me think it may be the motherboard, and that would be a royal pain to replace since the box is a Shuttle. I'll give it another shot or two today to see what I can figure out, and then start looking at the parts bin...

The good news is the box I took out of service is pretty much updated with hardware and was coming back online to replace the secondary Windows box; that one will be slower, but it will get me by until I can afford the time and shekels to change out the mobo if that's what it takes. That does move my photo work to this Linux box (the bleeding edge one, not the 'stable' i386). ...and that means getting used to no Lightroom or Elements for a while. Then again, the Linux version of LightZone worked out well enough on the coast, and that's what I have installed here. ...and you've been seeing that since Saturday on the photoblog.

...and hey, a day off is a day off!


Today's shot on the photoblog shows the results of six months work getting the area to the immediate front of the house ready to start working on a patio and shade project. Up until Memorial Day, that agapanthus to the left (and the other two 300 pounders) were in the area just in front of the windows. ...and the lawn came up to within four feet of the house. No longer...

The issue for us is that west facing bay window (and the rest of that exposure): the heat against that area translates almost immediately into the house and makes the living room darned near unlivable. The plan is to have some overhangs with vines to block the sun from mid afternoon on. ...and I'm thinking two overlapping arbors would create a patio and allow us to extend our 'outside rooms' a bit.

Say, another six months? Yeah, given the weather...


It's always fun going back to work after a three-day weekend; you never quite know exactly where the latest bit of insanity will come from. Ah, well, it's never boring. Heck, maybe I'll take a day off next week just to enjoy coming back the next day.

Work on the Windows replacement box continues when there's time between homework and home work...

Onward, ever onward...


Okay, I have a temp windows box up with enough software installed to photoblog from there once again. ...but there is more to do. ...and more algebra. So, yeah...

Let's see how the weekend goes.


Hey, I got enough work done on the Windows temp box to be able to work on Shelley's Christmas cards photos. Good enough. I think it's time for some WoW!

Yes, on the Linux box...


Photo notes: just a rough, non-rigorous comparison of photo processing on the Linux box with LightZone 2.4 and an uncalibrated monitor and a Windows box with Lightroom 1.3 (and occasionally Lightzone 3.2)... While things worked out well enough at the coast on the laptop late in the summer, I'm not as pleased with the combo on this box versus what I have available on the Windows box. One aspect is certainly the monitor calibrartion (closer to Mac than PC), and another is my familiarity with Lightroom as my primary editing tool. That said, I perceive my photos to be more 'washed out' when LightZone is my primary workspace...

Granted, I use Lightroom over LightZone 10:1 simply because I've learned to use it to knock out quick prints. ...and since the mailing list brought up that the LZ 3.x jars will work under Linux (you lose the RAW conversion, but there are other tools for that until LightCrafts brings out 3.x for Linux), I'll likely set up for that as I could be using the same interface on both boxes. ...and LZ excels at tonal dymanics! ...and small area editing (if I don't want to fire up the Gimp or Photoshop Elements).

...but as a comparison, I took the RAW file of "Mixed message..." from Wednesday that was handled on this box in LightZone, ran it through the Adobe products and posted it as Friday's photo. ...and yes, I know a major part of it is my skill level with each program, but it's easier for me to get those deeper tones with Lightroom.

Back to yard work (Cecil, I still owe you a respones!)...


Okay, more yard redesign handled today, including the planting of the last of about 200 bulbs and such picked up on clearance at Costco. ...and one rock, planted where it looks to be very happy. Of course, that sets up another layer of redesign, but that's what whis entire project is about: allowing one section to dictate the feel and then carrying those basics over where they will also work.

Today's activity basically involved ripping the top off a mound, planting a passel of bulbs, covering things back up and planting flowers pulled from the lawn (some gazanias seeded there) over the top.

Yes, photos this week...

The Conjuror
Click image for larger version

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is
indistinguishable from magic."
Arthur C. Clarke, "Technology and the Future"

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