Archive for Blogosphere

Fourteenth Blogaversary

fourteen.jpgThe Cap’n Bob & the Damsel blog is actually a little older than fourteen years; we had it on an earlier platform (BBLOG, I think) for a few months prior to converting to our self-hosted WordPress platform. The first post on the new blog was on September 22, 2005 regarding Feinstein’s NO vote on John Roberts’ confirmation to Chief Justice.

Since that first WordPress entry, we have blogged about politics from time to time, but not so much anymore. We’ve become mostly a diary of our travels and activities with the occasional politiblog thrown in for good measure. We still like to point out the idiocy of the climate changers and Democrats in general, not that it does any good (it keeps getting worse) but it gives us a chance to vent our disgust with the political system in the US and elsewhere.

So, here we are, fourteen plus years down the road, enjoying retirement (coming up on ten years now) in our little desert cottage and occasionally writing about “things,” Perhaps we may still be here fourteen years hence, doing just about the same thing, The Good Lord willing.

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New Glass for the Canon T6i and SL1 Cameras

Canon SL1 and EF-S 18-135 mm LensEarlier this month, Tam wrote about trying different glass to replace a zoom lens with not-so-great performance. That post gave us the idea that we too might benefit from lens upgrades for our two Canons - Damsel’s is an EOS Rebel T6i and mine (shown at right) is an EOS Rebel SL1 - both DSLR cameras.

Since the stock lens that came with both cameras was a zoom with a focal length range of 18 mm -55 mm, we decided in getting a better lens with the same starting focal length and stretching the maximum focal length out to 135 mm.

I took the above image of the SL1 with the EF-S 18-135 Lens attached with my little Kodak FZ152 Pocket Camera. Click on the image to enlarge.

Although we haven’t put the new optics through extensive evaluation, we see that the performance is pretty good. I went out this morning to get a few pictures to see how the performance was in general. The following two images of the RV and a hummingbird demonstrate the extreme wide and narrow focal length performance. Click on either image to enlarge.

18 mm zoom 135 mm zoom

As we put the new lenses into use we should get a feel for how the new optics performance will be. Just from today, I can generally see that the Image Stabilizer does an effective job of keeping the camera steady and I can’t readily detect a lot of chromatic aberration at maximum zoom.

We hope everyone had good St. Valentines and Presidents Days.

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Wandering Minstrel Eleventh Blogiversary

skull-punisher.gifIt’s been a couple of months and a few days since the Wandering Minstrel Site went down with some sort of WordPress file corruption. Troubleshooting with the website host was to no avail and I tried a complete reload of the WordPress files which also did not help. Unfortunately, we are going to have to terminate the internet hosting and the URLs associated with the old site.

Today would have been the eleventh year of being on the net with the Minstrel site. We originally started that blog to serve as our primary pro second amendment presence in the blogosphere. The pro 2A function will now be restored to Cap’n Bob & the Damsel.

As for the Minstrel site, we have been going through some of the old uploads accessible via FTP and downloading them to a safe place on our terabyte drive. The files being rescued are mostly images and a few other scripts and files we developed during the Minstrel days.

So, on this eleventh blogiversary, we will no longer be talking much about the Minstrel and that site now relegated to cyber history. If we discover some pertinent images or files of note, we may repost them here, if warranted. Adios to the Minstrel! SI VIS PACEM PARA BELLUM!

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Thirteenth Blogaversary

thirteen.gifWell, here we are at another year milestone for the Cap’n Bob & the Damsel Blog. Thirteen years ago in September, we began posting about our Perspectives on Life and Politics. I’m not sure about the exact date we started, since some early posts were lost, but the first day of fall should be close enough.

We started this back in 2005 prior to retirement. I seemed to have a lot more time to blog back then before becoming ‘busy’ in the after work life.

We might have slowed down in posting, but the world and it’s myriad of fake news, political asshattery, and steady stream Constitutional abuse has not. We may not post often about those things, but we notice and are otherwise politically active behind the scenes.

We will continue posting when we feel the need for it and because The Wandering Minstrel is now permanently offline, all the posts about classics, firearms, notions and otherwise will be posted here, probably resulting in more activity on this site. Stay tuned for the next thirteen years.

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Wandering Minstrel Problems

flame-punisher.gifOur other blog website, The Wandering Minstrel is currently experiencing problems. Something in the WordPress blog platform has become corrupted. I have asked for help from the server host, but they haven’t pointed me in any helpful direction. I intend to keep trying, but I won’t be able to devote a lot of time to the solution (life gets in the way).

In the meantime, I have put up a temporary page with a blurb explaining the difficulty and a link back to this site. None of the past blog content is available. If you have tried to access Minstrel over the past couple of days you may have seen an HTTP error 500 “Internal Server Error.”

I get the same error when trying to log in as administrator, so I am effectively locked out of my own blog. I have access via FTP protocol, so I am trying to solve things via a back door method. I have not worked with the internal structure of WordPress for several years, so it may be a slow learning process. Fortunately, I have this and a couple of other blogs still functioning that I may be able to compare the corrupted site to how things are supposed work.

Anything that we may have posted over there on Minstrel will get posted here instead. If things get too difficult and confusing, we may throw in the towel on that blog and confine our posting here. We shall see.

UPDATE: The Wandering Minstrel - Signing Off

From the minstrel site:

It has been a good run blogging here for the last Ten Plus years. I worked with the Blog Host to try and resolve the problems with the WordPress installation, but we were unsuccessful in determining the exact cause of the crash.

This page will remain here until I can fix all the links and references to this site that I have created elsewhere in the blogosphere and replace the email addresses with ones that do not use the reynosawatch url. After those are complete, I am going to terminate the host account.

We will continue to post stuff on our favorite topics on the Cap’n Bob website. Thanks to those folks that came here to read our stuff.

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Never Forget Tribute - Epilog

never_ani.gifThe Never Forget animated graphic first appeared in August of 2005 and ran for thirteen years until August 2018. The estimated final count aggregated by the hit counter over the years was 94,945,312 hits. The average statistics for the entire lifetime amounted to approximately 20,000 hits per day, 833 hits per hour and 14 hits per minute. It’s hard to know the exact numbers since I never kept much of a record, but the peak hit rate might have been upwards of 1400 hits per hour at the time the counter passed 50 million hits.

The animation was originally inspired by an anonymously-produced PowerPoint slideshow making the rounds on the Internet and via emails after 9/11/2001. I prepared the animation using a Flash® compatible tool and began distribution in 2005 using a Javascript embedded in PHP script. At the time, my Web Hosting Provider imposed limited bandwidth so I limited the distribution of the graphic until I was approached by a Canadian couple who offered to host the graphic citing its importance. Eventually, my Web Host went unlimited bandwidth and I began hosting the graphic locally. Thanks to those patriotic Canadians for their help in getting it going.

Every once in a while back in my pre-retirement days, I would notice a website displaying the graphic that rubbed me the wrong way, but I let it slide until in early 2007 we saw our graphic displayed on an Islamic terrorist sympathetic website. A Jihadi professor at Kent State embedded our graphic in with his terrorist bullsh*t. I was pissed. I eventually figured out a way to embed some creative JavaScript lines into the distribution script which redirected any visitors to the offending jihadi website to a pro-American military website (I bet his jihadi buddies were frustrated with that ;) ). Shortly after the redirection tactic, the jihadi website disappeared.

You might wonder why I did not wait until the hit counter passed 95 million. It was so close - only 54.688 more hits to go.Well, doing some quick estimates at the last known hit rate, it would have taken another eight months and probably more given the diminishing hit rate. It was just time to phase out the tribute.

We continue to be grateful for those patriotic sites who displayed the tribute. We hope that all patriotic Americans may NEVER FORGET!

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Announcement: Never Forget Tribute Going Away Gone

UPDATE 08/05/2018: As of today, the Never Forget Tribute distribution has been disabled. The final count appears in the right sidebar for the time being.


nfsmall.jpgLast week, I ran a check to evaluate the increment rate of the Never Forget Tribute hit counter. The observed rate seemed to be much lower than the hit statistics displayed in the right sidebar column.

The hit counter itself is accurate in that each time the tribute is served up remotely, the count increments. The hits per hour and hits per day figures, however, are an estimate based on extrapolation from a given date in the past where the number of hits was known. I had a back-burner plan to write a script that would keep a running estimation of the hit rate, but that never came to fruition. And, now, it seems, that won’t be necessary.

I updated the estimating script to more accurately extrapolate the hit rate from a known count from a week ago, and, as you can see, the hit rate is quite a bit lower than what it had been in the past. There are probably several reasons for the decline in the hit rate:

  • several browser platforms have discontinued or reduced support for Flash® animations (i.e. Firefox, Chrome)
  • the shift from computers to smart phone platforms which have minimal or no support for Flash®
  • a general decrease in bloggers displaying the tribute

At any rate, we have decided to discontinue distribution of the Never Forget Tribute. It’s not that we have forgotten the terrorist attacks on America on September 11, 2001, but that circumstances indicate that tribute hits are asymptotically approaching a zero hit rate.

We will NEVER FORGET 9/11!

The termination of support will be accomplished in a couple of stages:

  1. Initially, we will attach a notice to the tribute stating our intentions and a link to this post.
  2. Finally, we will disable the scripts that are activated with each remote link.

I expect the initial state to go into effect this week. Depending on responses in the comments here (if any), I will deactivate the distribution within a month.

OPTIONAL - For those displaying the tribute, you may remove the code from your website as follows:

<script language="JavaScript" type="text/javascript" src="http://capnbob.us/graphics/never.php"></script>

The ffile name may also be never118.php or never100.php.

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