The Twilight Report

Your Home For Snappy Repartee

frame ~ 247

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fence on evening walk ~ 246

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source codes and foia requests

At the DC Perl Nerds Meeting last night discussion of releasing software as open source where appropriate. It was asserted that anybody “working for the government” writing software could have their source code “open sourced” by an appropriate FOIA request. I expressed skepticism based on my own personal experience, but I Am Not A Lawyer (IANAL). Briefly did some Internet research to work it out myself, and found this passage to be informative about how at least one government agency views FOIA and source code:

For example, NASA responded that "it is important to make a distinction between a computer program as a working tool, and a computer data base which may merely be a media for storage, electronically, of information that would otherwise be considered an 'agency record.'" It expressed the belief that "a computer program, per se, should be considered a 'working tool' and as such should be treated no differently than the computer in or with which it is used; that is, as an item of property and not an 'agency record.'" In NASA's view, even "documentation describing the use of a computer program" should be treated as a "tool" to the extent that it consists of "source code[s], algorithm[s], process formulae, flow charts, program listings, and the like." — www.justice.gov/oip/blog/foia-update-department-justice-report-electronic-record-foia-issues-part-ii

This document is quite old and I am sure that the issue has been contested from time to time, but my read of this and some additional brief Internet researching is that you would have to show that the source code was a record, rather than a tool. Depending on the context source code could be either, but I do not think it is open and shut to simply say if you want to see government written source code it is as simple as issuing the appropriate FOIA request. In addition, assuming that a piece of software were to be outed by a carefully worded FOIA, it is not clear to me (again IANAL) whether said software would be public domain or covered under a particular license, or indeed licensed for use as software at all.

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odds and ends ~ 245

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favorite photo apps

On the Kojo show's tech tuesday they had a rerun with photographers. They kept talking about apps that give them that “film look”. Here are my favorite apps that can help you achieve that difficult to obtain “film look”:

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tractor ~ 244

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Fujifilm GA645Zi Fuji Provia 100F (expired)


(and again)
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Nikon FE Ilford Pan F+ (expired)
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chinese transh cans

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So yeah, I am the strange sort of person who goes to a foreign country and takes photographs of the rubbish bins. But they are legitmately interesting in China. Well to me anyway. They mostly all follow the same sort of pattern, a twin design (frequently conjoined) for rubbish and recycle. The recycle bins have a familiar logo on, while the trash that goes into the ground to stay forever has a logo I've only seen in China. It definitely has the feel of something orchestrated by a distant central government., but despite that they all very considerably in style, and are frequently designed (sometimes laughably) to blend into the location.

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It may not be obvious from the photograph, but this one had a very plastic Disneyland (迪士尼樂園) feel to it. Found this one on top of a mountain (accessible by cable car) near Xian (西安).

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This last one is a triplet design, which differentiates between paper and bottles and cans.

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chinese trains and dinosaurs

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Two oddball things that you don't usually go to Beijing to see, but we saw when were there were the Beijing Museum of Natural History, and the Beijing Railway Museum. It was a great escape from all the temples that we had seen! (Not the temples weren't great too)! Anyway, as anyone who has known me for very long knows that I am a big fan of dinosaurs, and other things extinct and dusty and old. The rationale was to see dinosaurs that were discovered in China and are under represented in the western natural history museums that I'd been to. Like everything in China, it was also fascinating to see how another culture displayed these artifacts.

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This fossil reminded me of the biomechanical musings of HR Giger.

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Platybelodon danovi cheni (Skull)

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Bactrosaurus johnsoni

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This ramp to the underground near the museum was blocked by an old brick wall.

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One of our last days in Beijing we were wondering around Tianmem Square after taking a peek at pickled Mao without a clear purpose when we saw the Beijing Railway Museum. We decided to check it out and now we have a toy train and these photographs to remember it.

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Humans are weird. This is the train badge for a train named after the pickled Mao out in the courtyard. The sign wisely recommends not to touch.

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“Magneto Telephone for Guangzhong-Jiulong Railway”

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They had some pretty innovative displays in Chinese museums. This is a relief map showing a train route with a dynamic map details projected from above, and a panoramic dynamic vista displayed in the background.

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Chinese train equipment detail with Chinese writing.

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skylight ~ 243

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(in shades of grey)
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(cast on the floor)
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china detail

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Nikon D600 Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8

Some close up detail from our dwindling days in Beijing back in 2013.

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selfie with wild colours ~ 242

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Vivitar UWS clone Lomo Turquoise
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cherry blossom 2013

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Nikon D700 Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8


We were a little late for the cherry blossoms in 2013, but we had a good time around the tidal basin.

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surgical light ~ 241

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Expired Konica Centura 1600


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Ilford HP5+ at 800
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howard county fair

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August 9: Went to the Howard County Fair (the county just north of us) to see the animals, the smelly horses, the old cars and of course the rides! All photos taken on my Nikon D300s Tamron 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3.

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editorial on wishlist

Editorial note for the blogity blog: I'm adding links to my wishlists. You should see it at the top of the page between “media” and ‘tools’. Amazon and Adorama stuff is stuff that I specifically want in the long term but will not be getting for myself in the near term (ie before next christmas or birthday ;). Southwest gift cards benefits both Lena and myself, since we both travel together. The wedding registry is of course for both of us as well, but will of course probably go away some time after Event 15 on October 3rd.

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pickup ~ 240

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Fujifilm GA645Zi Velvia 50


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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Ilford Pan F+
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tunnel adventure

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Vivitar UWS Clone Ilford FP4+


August 8, 2015: Went with Lena and some fellow photo adventurers to the Henryton Tunnel.

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Nikon FE Nikkor 35mm f/1.4 FPP RetroChrome 320


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Vivitar UWS Clone Ilford FP4+


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Nikon Df Nikkor 35mm f/1.4


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Vivitar UWS Clone Ilford FP4+


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Nikon FE Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 Kodak Ektar 100


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Vivitar UWS Clone Ilford FP4+


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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Kodak Portra 400


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Nikon FE Nikkor 35mm f/1.4 Kodak Portra 400


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Nikon FE Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 Kodak Portra 400


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Nikon FE Nikkor 35mm f/1.4 Lomo 800


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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Kodak Portra 400


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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Kodak Ektar 100


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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Kodak Ektar 100


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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Kodak Ektar 100


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Nikon FE Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 Kodak Ektar 100


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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Kodak Ektar 100


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Nikon FE Nikkor 35mm f/1.4 Kodak Ektar 100


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Nikon FE Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 Kodak Ektar 100


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Nikon Df Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 at 17mm


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Nikon Df Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 at 17mm


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Nikon Df Nikkor 35mm f/1.4


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Nikon FE Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 Kodak Portra 400


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Nikon FE Nikkor 35mm f/1.4 Kodak Ektar 100


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Vivitar UWS Clone Ilford FP4+


See Also:

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montgomery county fair ~ 239

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Nikon FE Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 Kodak Portra 400

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building in beacon ~ 238

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window sill ~ 237

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Ilford FP4

(bonus)
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