Thursday, January 28, 2021

iPhone Night Mode

Night mode on iPhone cameras came out with the iPhone 11. I didn't own an 11 as I waited for the 12 to upgrade from my Xs. 

It was actually a bit more complicated than that. My Xs refused to boot in August. I needed a phone, so I bought the cheapest I could find: a refurbished iPhone 7. That got me through until I could buy a 12.

But I'm finding I really like night mode. Mostly (okay totally), I've used it to take pictures of my son's cat, Lily. In the evenings when it's dark, the family room gets gloomy and night mode works very well for taking pictures of Lily.

Lily likes to be next to me on the loveseat recliner. Usually she curls up and sleeps. But sometimes I can entice her with a snack to sit up and look cute, such as in this picture:

That was taken with night mode. Here's another one:

Here's one I really like:

And finally, here's where I caught her on the floor:

Her pupils are large in these photos because it's dim in the room but you can't tell because of the picture. 

I'm not sure how Night Mode works. It acts like it's taking a long exposure, but Lily has moved while I'm taking the picture and I don't get motion blur. So it must be something other than a long exposure. But whatever it is, it works.

If you want to see lots of cute pictures of Lily, follow me on Instagram.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Car Logo Ovals

The other day I was sitting behind a Subaru at a stoplight. I started looking at the logo on the back of the car. This is what it looks like;

The "star" shapes inside the logo honor the Pleiades star cluster.  But the logo itself is an oval. And I started thinking about car logos are are ovals. And there's a lot of them. For example, probably the oldest car logo in America, Ford:

But there's others, such as Toyota:

(I've never quite figured out what that's supposed to be. Reminds me of a sombrero.) And Lexus, which is owned by Toyota:

Scion (now defunct) was owned by Toyota. And its logo was designed to fit the same spaces on the cars as Toyota logos, I'm pretty sure:

Other car logs that are oval are Infiniti (owned by Nissan)...


And Kia (owned by Hyundai):

And Mazda is sort of a modified oval:

I'm not sure why automakers think ovals are good for logos. A lot of logos are also circles (BMW for example). 

(BMW, after 23 years, has changed their logo. I don't like the new one much.)

Other circular logos are Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen.


Volkswagen (new logo)

Then there's Audi, who sort of took circles to the extreme:

The four circles represent the four companies that came together to form Auto Union which later became Audi.

Probably the least circular logo is Jaguar.

Which is, in my opinion, a pretty cool logo.

Am I forgetting any other oval car logos (I'm only doing makes, not models)? What do you think of all these oval logos? Let me know in the comments below.

(All logos copyright their owners.)

Thursday, January 14, 2021


 I'm not an outdoors person. Short reason is that outdoors is "sunburn and allergies." I have type 1skin and sunburn very quickly. The alternative is to wear lots of clothes and then sunscreen on any exposed skin. And I hate sunscreen. It's all oily and gloopy. This is why I rarely go to the beach and if I do, I try to sit in the shade. If there is shade. I also wear hats a lot.

Allergies are another matter. Since doing seven(!) years of allergy shots, my allergies are much better. But I still sneeze and itch at times.

In the winter it's cold outside. I used to snow ski but now I don't even do that. Winter means putting on snow tires and not having fun driving.

So, not being an outdoors person, I don't like to hunt or fish or do any of those outdoors things. Fishing is boring, anyway. And wandering through the woods looking for game doesn't thrill me. If I'm going to shoot a gun, I want there to be a target to aim at (usually paper).

I know people who love to fish. My brother goes hunting every fall (and has yet to get anything). I just don't enjoy it.

I'm also into computers and television. And warm (or cool in the summer) and comfortable places to sit. And all of that is indoors.

How do you feel about outdoors? I know there are people who love the outdoors. Are you one of them?

Thursday, January 7, 2021

5G Speed Test

Welcome to 2021. Let's hope this year is better.

Now, on with the show.

 I was in the Portland, Oregon area recently, and I noticed my phone said I had 5G data service.

So I thought I'd test that out. I used Ookla's SpeedTest app on my phone. And I tested the speed at 5G. Here's the results:

(Download is the first number, upload is the second number. Units are in Mbps.)

The download number is similar to what I get on my WiFi at home (I have very fast broadband internet with fiber optics). 

The upload speed on 5G is awful. But, in reality, who really cares? It's download we want.

Later, I was on LTE (still in the Portland area) so I speed tested that:

Which had even worse upload speeds and, of course, download speeds did not match 5G.

Verizon has a "5G Ultra Wideband" in select areas of select cities. I want to try that when I can.

What is your experience with 5G. Have you tried it? Let me know in the comments below.