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The Littlest SLR Camera!

Posted 2011.08.19 22.30 in Hobbies, Photography by Stephanie

During some recent internet roaming, I stumbled across some information about this camera and it was an instant had-to-have response. The smallest SLR camera system ever? Who could resist that?

Back in 1978/1979 when the Pocket Instamatic format was already losing popularity, Pentax came out with their first (and only) 110-format camera. They only made one, but they made it count! This is no simple one-speed one-aperture point-and-click plastic job. No way. This is a complete camera system.

Single Lens Reflex body, interchangable lenses, filters, dedicated electronic flash units, and motorized power winders… the Pentax Auto 110 was a full-fledged system camera, for a sub-miniature plastic cartridge format.

How small is it? In the image above, you can see the camera along with two spare lenses, a film cartridge, and for a sense of scale, a quarter. The camera and a couple lenses can fit in a jacket pocket. The camera and a couple lenses are smaller than most 35mm SLR bodies. Amazing.

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Zipit Webserver

Posted 2010.10.22 11.31 in Computers/Internet/Technology by Stephanie

Please note – my Zipit! Webserver has been retired, the tech is old, the info is old, and it’s all just here for archival purposes now. Thanks for looking.

ZipIt! Family

A ZipIt! is a small handheld device that was marketted to teens and pre-teens as a way for them to keep in touch via services like AIM, MSN-Messenger, etc. without requiring a full-powered computer or laptop. The ZipIt! was a handheld ‘clamshell’ device with a small monochrome screen, small keyboard, and a built-in WiFi card. It was ‘hardwired’ to just run its own special software and from the point of view of a hardware / software hacker geek, it was very interesting.

It turned out that the ZipIt! used fairly standard hardware components, and the custom software was running on a Linux operating system! And then the hacking began in earnest.

When I got my hands on a ZipIt! or three, I had hours of fun taking them apart, poking at their brains, reprogramming them, making them do wierd and interesting things.

Update: Well the ZipServe had a good run. December 2005 – October 2010. Nearly 5 solid years. It still works too – It’s just that I’ve finally upgraded my wireless network (it’s all 802.11n and fast and stuff) and the Zipit, with it’s antique 802.11b wifi, and the old kernel in there can’t handle WPA and all that jazz… so yeah. The ZipServe still works but it doesn’t connect to my network any more. 🙁

zipit_red

Bunch o Babies

Posted 2010.06.28 22.59 in Aquaria by Stephanie

I hatched out a new clutch of snail babies on the weekend. Looks like more ivories and goldens. Right now they’re all roaring around a little 1-gallon mini tank I sat on my desk so I could keep an eye on them. They’re cute, zooming around like wee little bumper cars, all in a rush to get somewhere, but they’re all going in different directions. At least, until I put some food in. A bit of algae wafer and it’s all down to business.

Baby Picture

Posted 2009.11.21 9.27 in Aquaria by Stephanie

It’s been a few days since the snail babies all hatched out into the aquarium. While it seemed like a good idea at the time, releasing them into the ‘wild’ of my 38gal tank, I quickly recognized the downside to this…

They’re all gone! I mean, they’re so small, they instantly vanished into the substrate and decor, and I might not see them again for weeks, when they’ve grown. Assuming they live that long.

I think the next clutch will be hatched into a breeder net, so I can keep an eye on them. Not that they need my help in any particular way, I’m just nosey and want to watch them.

Anyhow this morning I was scanning the gravel and spotted two babies. They’re still so tiny and as luck would have it, they’re almost exactly the right colour to blend in with the gravel. Even after I spotted them, it took a few minutes of watching – are they tiny bits of gravel? Are they moving?

Yeah, they are moving! So small though that getting photos is next to impossible. Here’s the best I could get.

Baby Snail

(By the way, incase it wasn’t clear, there’s only one baby in this pic – I couldn’t get a shot of the other one. After rereading the text I realized it might have seemed that I meant there were two babies in one pic.)

Pixie Willow

Posted 2002.06.30 11.21 in Cats by Stephanie

Pixie kitten
Like Misha, Pixie is a Memphis kitty. Another stray off the streets near Graceland, rescued by my friend Athena. No thousand-mile-drive for me this time, Pixie was hand delivered by our mutual friend Jason. Her arrival was partially unexpected, and the timing a little stressful, but after a few days, the rest of the team accepted her in, and she has made a place for herself among them.

She is Pixie because, well, look at her. She’s just the cutest little pixie.
And the Willow is, well, just because. Go look it up and figure it out for yourself.
pixie kitten

 

 

 

 

While she usually is just the perfect little picture of innocence, she is a tough little scrapper. She takes no &#!% from anybody, and she does not pull any punches. Although she looks very purry and cuddly, she doesn’t like being held or touched, except on her terms.

 

 

 

 
pixie cat

 
All growed-up now, Pixie is still mostly a skittish scaredy-cat. If visitors come, or someone knocks on the door, or she hears the door, or if I come home from work, she goes into hiding for a while. Fifteen or twenty minutes. Then, when she knows it’s safe, she creeps on out to see what’s up.

When I’m working in my home office, she likes to curl around my ankles, doing figure-eights from one leg to the other. She even lets me pet her sometimes! She’s still not big on hugs though.