Moving along today toward something

Things are moving along today toward something. It feels like today I might get some things done. At the start of the day it is good to have a feeling that includes some type of forward momentum toward something. It could be the espresso talking or it could just be time to get some serious writing done today. My Warren Zevon station on Pandora is actually playing songs by Zevon. Summer is here for sure and the weather is getting warmer. All of the news about the pandemic is daunting right now. Things have moved westward and not in a good way. Maybe it is a bit of nervousness that has stirred my need to write. All things considered these are strange times indeed. 

At some point, I’m going to write a review about the new camera that arrived this week. It is a Sony ZV-1 camera and it should help making and creating videos. For some reason, I also purchased a Sony camera bag for it to keep all the accessories together. That is what I keep telling myself. The camera could fit in my front pocket. It probably did not need a new camera bag, but one was purchased and is here on the counter. Yesterday I walked around outside the house and took some pictures of nature. It was not about documenting my surroundings or making art. I was just really curious about how well the camera was going to work in practice. At the start of this weblog, a lot of the posts were digital pictures of things that I observed. My original Flickr account was mostly a photostream of things that happened along the way. It was a glimpse into my daily life and the things that I ran into from day to day. 

Over the years I have missed the community and networking that happened on the original Flickr and weblog communities. Sometimes at the start of the things the people who like to be on the bleeding edge of technology get together and maybe it is shared enthusiasm and interests that makes the experience powerful and memorable. It could have just been the right people at the right time coming together to create some things. Recently, I started using Flickr again, but it is not the same experience. With my free version of Flickr it clearly says when I go to post things, “You can upload 997 more photos and videos.” I’m pretty sure that hitting that limit will be easy enough, but deciding to move away from the free tier of the service will be the hard part. Sometimes I have wondered why Flickr as a company did not become what Instagram did given that it had a super passionate user base and was worldwide. Maybe the mobile aspect of the whole thing was the key differentiator in the products and the focus of how they were used. My perspective is a little different on the whole thing given that I don’t really engage in professional photography. Sometimes I make really large composited panoramic images, but that is more to see what happens vs. artistic expression. 

Interrupted. Work.         

Sharing a photo of a Denver sunrise

Earlier this morning I managed to snap a picture of the sunrise. It was fantastic and majestic (dare I say fanjestic?). The camera on my Google Pixel 3 XL does a pretty good job of capturing a moment, but it does not produce the type of depth and detail that a really amazing full size camera captures. Those amazing machine learning algorithms over at Google Photos did some magic to the base photograph. One of the photos shared below is stylized and the other is an enhancement. Both of the modifications look pretty darn good in my opinion. It is amazing to see what the machine learning algorithms are able to accomplish with a photograph. The real question is if the algorithm could be extended to make a decision about quality vs. numerically better. The algorithm that did the enhancement was designed to move the image from the original to something that would be considered enhanced. It was able to complete a transform that is numerically accepted as an improvement or at some level at least an acceptable alteration. None of that effort relates to a judgment of quality. None of it helps determine or explain why that transform improved the image.

Google stylized this photo of a sunrise in Denver
Google auto-enhanced this photo of a sunrise in Denver
The original photo of a sunrise in Denver