Galaxy S7 X-ray

Radiograph of my Galaxy S7.  80 kVp, 2.8 mAs, Canon Aero DR detector.

Galaxy S7 x-ray
Galaxy S7 x-ray

The large rectangular gray block is the battery.  Superimposed on the battery, the NFC and wireless charging coils are easily seen.  Volume buttons are on the upper left side, and the power button is on the right side. The rear camera is the square object in the upper middle.  The selfie camera is the white donut shaped object just above and to the right of the rear camera.  There’s the micro-USB port at the bottom middle, and the headphone jack to the left of the USB port.

Cicadas are big

Leaving work one day, I heard a really loud buzzing sound coming from one of the (relatively) newly planted trees by the bus stop. Walking closer to find the source, I came across this monster of a bug, which I later learned was a cicada.
Cicada
I hear them quite a bit around the house and the ponds, but this is the first time I’ve seen one up close and in person.
Cicada
It was pretty large, about the size of the palm of my hand. Had no idea they got this large. It’s pretty intimidating looking, with the camo colouring. I’m sure I wouldn’t want one flying at me or landing on me.
Cicada

Inexpensive camera monopod

Monopod01.JPGEvery now and then you’ll see a photographer walking around with a monopod for their camera, instead of or in addition to their tripod. There are even some tripods that turn into monopods, or where you can remove the central pole to use as a monopod. You can even find collapsible monopods that are light and easy to carry around. There are inexpensive monopods and some more pricey monopods around.
Monopods don’t give you as stable a platform as tripods do, but they do come in handy when your regular tripod is too heavy or bulky to carry around, or you’re just out walking around and don’t want or need to have a super solid platform. They’re easy to carry around and quick to set up. Monopods can also be used to get some pretty neat shots from high up because you can hold it up in the air and give the camera some extra elevation for your shot.
Volume 31 of Make Magazine has super simple project for making your own monopod for really cheap, or free if you already have the components.
All you need is a wooden broomstick (around $7 from Lowe’s if you don’t already have an old broom you can cannibalize), a 1/4″x20 bolt, a couple of nuts for the bolt and a drill. The project calls for a hanger bolt, which I couldn’t find so I just used a 3″ bolt. I used a 7/32″ bit to drill a hole in one end of the broomstick for the bolt, put the two nuts on the bolt and tightened them against each other and then screwed the bolt into the hole. Make sure to leave enough room so that you can mount your camera.
Monopod03.JPG
The bolt is a little off center because the drill bit walked a little when I started drilling. It doesn’t affect the use of the monopod though.
The project also suggests a spike for the other end so that you can stick it into the ground but I figured with the way I am, the probability of accidentally impaling myself (or someone else) was too high. Instead I got one of those rubber chair leg caps to fit on the end. This also lets my camera monopod double as a walking stick.
Monopod04.JPG
My little Sony camera mounted on the monopod. It holds my Rebel XT pretty well too.
Monopod05.JPG
Total cost was less than $9 including sales tax.

Saturn V Immensity

I’ve mentioned it before. The Saturn V is a big big rocket. Until you see it in person though, it’s really hard to imagine just how big it is. Then, when you do see it, your mind is boggled that they actually worked and sent people into Earth/lunar orbit and to land on the moon.
Eleven times.
And then you wonder why we haven’t kept doing it.
SaturnVEngines.JPG
SaturnV.JPG