Darryl's personal blog.

A Blazing Sunset That Cannot Be Captured

posted Sep 15, 2016, 11:15 PM by Darryl Giors

This was such a sight to behold in person I just had to grab the camera and try to freeze it forever. The orange emblazoned sky against the gray cast. The building shadows of the day's dying light turning a light chill in the breeze. The nearby ocean and shore looking cold against the Sun's last mighty gasp of the day. A lone distant sail traversing the space between the waning day and the waxing night. Surf sounds churning against the rocky Earth as the light receded to make their presence known only by their echoes. A splendor of mystery once the moon dappled their bodies with glistening cool.
Blazing sunset off the shore.

Our technology mighty it may be simply can't match the marvel of nature's beauty. Best we can do is emulate it to the point of emoting the presence felt. This photo was edited not to be accurate in it's rendering of the true colors, an impossibility at present. It's toned to emphasize the contrasting warm and cool that the scene presented. Shot with a Canon 30D and 200-300mm F5.6 lens.

Let me know in the comments if you've had success capturing the emotion of a sunset in your own photos. Share them please.

Spider Photo from the Archives

posted Sep 14, 2016, 6:14 PM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Sep 15, 2016, 7:46 PM ]

I'm learning Adobe's Lightroom application so I brought out one of my favorite photos captured right in my front yard in 2011.

My feeling is that it's a little over-processed but the original needed help. It was a flash photo which caused a lot of glare from the hair details. The depth of field is quite shallow so bringing out a bit more detail worked well. There was a prominent haze and very little separation between the color of the background and foreground subject. Atop all that it was a little underexposed making grain in the background a real issue. 8MP photo cropped doesn't leave as much detail as desired.

Over all it's an improvement on the original and better than any attempts so far to make it look nice in Google Photos online editor. Gotta say I'm pleased but I have much to learn too.

CD/DVD Burning Survey. Thank You James Burke

posted Jan 24, 2016, 5:55 PM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Jan 24, 2016, 6:10 PM ]

My mind works in strange ways wandering from topic to topic. I was watching a podcast in which a DJI Phantom drone was visible in the background and I started thinking about brushless motors, power to weight ratios and RPMs. How many RPM do those rotors rotate? That reminded me of stories of people disassembling old CD and DVD roms or burners to remove the brushless motors for using in drones. That made me wonder just how many thousands of RPMs those could spin up an optical disc. Then I thought about how shattering a CD in my hand once sent jagged pieces flying dozens of feet across a room. Then I wondered at how seldom discs seemed to have balance or rotational problems when spun to such high rates. Then how disastrous it could be if a disc blew apart at high rotational velocity inside a CPU case under a desk. Would a person risk fragments embedding their flesh? Finally it led me to think that I haven't burned a single piece of optical media in years. Glad I don't deal with that very often any more.

So here's the survey, how long has it been since you burned a CD/DVD/Bluray?

Would have loved to embed it but it seems G+ embedding is broken on this old site at the moment.

Wings Over Temple City California

posted Apr 22, 2015, 5:08 AM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Jan 24, 2016, 5:26 PM ]

A week ago I began using a quad copter drone with camera to take some aerial video.
See what you've been missing!

Update Jan. 2016 - Featured on I Grew Up In The San Gabriel Valley, CA Facebook group. Thank you for the exposure!

Phantom 2

Christmas Tree Lane

posted Dec 30, 2014, 4:22 AM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Dec 30, 2014, 4:28 AM ]

A time lapse drive through of the famous Christmas Tree Lane in Alta Dena California. 0.7 miles of festive Christmas lights. 2x video speed going ~20 MPH. Car mount action cam. Happy Holidays!

Fireworks for USC Conquest 2013. Photos and Video Inside.

posted Nov 26, 2013, 12:15 AM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Nov 26, 2013, 12:23 AM ]

It's been a few years since I helped set up the fireworks display for USC.  This year's Conquest rally was on November 25th.  It was a pretty nice display featuring 13 cakes of various sizes.

Photos and Video* below.

*The Video was a secondary priority and it shows. Soft focus and I didn't quite get the manual settings I wanted.

 <- Excuse my thumbnail, it's here to decorate the post.

Digital Currency, Bitcoin and Litecoin are Decentralizing Money on the Internet

posted Mar 31, 2013, 5:49 PM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Feb 5, 2014, 2:22 AM ]

Bitcoin and Litecoin emblems

New currencies operating on secure P2P platforms are creating opportunities for wealth, privacy and easy trading with low fees.

National currencies have always been subject to regulation, inflation and counterfeit.  Organizations on the internet have made moves to provide currencies that are inherently decentralized.  Bitcoin and Litecoin have been dubbed the "Gold" and "Silver" of the internet respectively.

Security of the currency is complex as it involves miners running software on computer hardware generating encryption hashes at high speed.  The combined computational and electrical power exerted by the miners is at such a level that a so called 51% attack, in which the security of the coin network could be broken would be cost-prohibitive to achieve by any one entity or pool of miners.  In fact if any entity ever achieved such a position they would arguably be shooting themselves in the foot if they broke the confidence users have in the currency when they would be able to mine over 50% of the coins remaining.

Due to the very high security and decentralization, regulation and counterfeit are of very little concern.

What about inflation?  Bitcoin and Litecoin were built from the start to have a pre-determined number of coins in circulation.  The coins are being introduced at a decreasing rate over time until over a period of years all of the BTC and LTC will be in circulation.  BTC is limited to 21 million units - ever. LTC is limited to 84 million.

Other advantages over using credit cards are increased privacyinstant signup, and much lower fees.  For merchants there is another advantage, no chargebacks.  Buyers may need to be a little more wary as they are on their own if there is a dispute with a merchant, whereas credit cards always favor the buyer.  That said the transaction fees of digital coin are far below the common 2%-5% required of credit card transactions.

It's a brave new idea and there are enough users out there that the technology is entrenched.  Being a peer network it's unlikely to go away.  The question remains if BTC and LTC will remain relevant in the future.  BTC currently trades at roughly $90 per coin.  Speculators say these coins could some day be worth $1000 or more. How much more?  Some say the sky's the limit because there will only be so many million coins in existence.  If they remain popular and more merchants and individuals accept them as tender then they could be worth hundreds or thousands of times more in the future.  But what if acceptance dwindles?  So too will demand and the coins will fade into obscurity as a neat experiment that never made it to greatness.


CAPTCHA Uses Expanding at Google

posted Feb 10, 2013, 3:25 AM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Feb 10, 2013, 3:59 AM ]

I noticed yesterday that after posting a few comments on Google's Blogger platform that there was an interesting trend in the CAPTCHA served to me.

I've known for some time that CAPTCHA can perform double duty by having users decipher difficult to read text such as from old books.  People are much better at identifying letters and numbers than computers running OCR software.  The surprise I saw was what appeared to be address markers on curbs and home facades alike.

CAPTCHA picture

I can only assume that this is an effort to enlist the aid of humans to improve the accuracy of identifying address markers visible in Google Street View.

CAPTCHA is often a necessary evil to prevent abuse of web resources.  I'm happy to see that it can be put to productive use to improve the accuracy of our online data.

World Premiere of my New Podcast: Incoherent Ramblings

posted Feb 3, 2013, 4:55 AM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Feb 5, 2014, 2:29 AM ]

Incoherent Ramblings Logo
It's not just my podcast.  Good friends Joey Shamel and Kail Andersen began recording this new weekly podcast with me earlier this Month.  Additionally, Kail and I recorded original music for the program and Joey belted out some great voiceover.

"A Weekly Podcast where critical thinking meets pop culture in a collision of mindbending proportions! Show regulars Joey Shamel, Kail Andersen and Darryl Giors grind a weekly topic into submission, with irreverent humor, and interesting insights."

All you need to know about the podcast is on our newly launched site

Incoherent Ramblings Podcast

↑ Grab this Headline Animator

Follow @iamramblingnow on Twitter
Rate us on iTunes

Enjoy listening!

TPBSD Kickstarter was Funded!

posted Jan 4, 2013, 3:02 AM by Darryl Giors   [ updated Jan 4, 2013, 3:09 AM ]

Kail Andersen's kickstarter to flesh out the production of his book, The Plastic Bathtub Soapdish has exceeded it's goal of $5,000.  I'm proud to say that in addition to aiding in the production of the promotional video I'm slated to engineer the recording of the audio book.  This is an exciting opportunity for me.  The book will be brought to publication in the coming months.  I'll post behind the scenes updates and links to products when they reach the market.  With any luck the book will be successful enough to become a series.  Many thanks to everybody who pitched in. We think you're neat!

Here's the pitch video in glamorous, never-before-available HD.  Enjoy!

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