Boxing Day

Every year since I have lived in the USA I have been asked the question, “what is Boxing Day?” by at least one person during the Holiday Season.

This year I thought I’d use this blog to explain.

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In Britain, the day after Christmas, also known as St Stephen’s Day, is traditionally the time to extend the excesses of the previous day’s obligatory over consumption of rich food and alcohol, known collectively as “the festivities.”

Being the day after Christmas Day, and living in a society subject to the the law of supply and demand kicking in, it is also the time for the biggest sales of the year as shop keepers try to offload all those items they overstocked for Christmas gift sales that didn’t happen.

The ability to purchase products for 75% or 50% of the price you paid for them only 48 hours previously made hard working people angry and this would often result in a round of fisticuffs in the stores and brawling in the streets, leading to the creation of the term “Boxing Day” as people let of steam. This was often fueled by copious amounts of alcohol that was available at this time of year since 63% of the annual alcohol consumption in Britain occurs over the week between 5pm on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day.

So, there you have it – the true meaning of Boxing Day!

In the spirit of fairness I must point out that one conflicting theory still persists that “Boxing Day” refers to parental treatment of ungrateful children who were unhappy with not receiving worthy gifts being subject to a “cuff round the head,” or a “clip round the ear,” or having their “ears boxed,” which are all jovial references to a little seasonal parental abuse, but I don’t ascribe to this analysis.

Happy Holiday!

~Richard

Haiku: May the Fourth

~ Haiku: May the 4th ~

Distant galaxy

Where villains and lovers fight

Here, strong the Force is.
160504_GalaxyM81
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ESA/Harvard-Smithsonian CfA
~Richard
… someone had to do it 🙂

Latest Cameras from Nixon and Conan

Amid great fanfare the two flagship camera manufacturers today launched their latest and greatest DSLR products to an eagerly awaiting crowd of photographers at KameraTek 2016 in Berlin, Germany. The Conan CIII-p0 and the Nixon RII-d2 are similarly priced and are clearly aimed at the aspiring professional photographer, as well as those amateurs with bags of cash, who must have the latest gear. But how do they shape up in the field? Well, few have been able to get hold of the models yet as both manufacturers have kept them under tighter wraps than the details of a Donald Trump political plan, but we are able to report that novel technology is used in both models as we had pre-release models.

The Conan boasts a staggering new focus system, ADHD, with 1024 focal points being monitored to ensure that it’s almost impossible to get a blurry shot. Meanwhile Nixon has finally been able to launch its new OCD image stabilization system after more than 2 years in beta-testing.  Interestingly, both models now appear to follow the same algorithms of Sunny’s latest WTF image capture engine which users of the iPharce 6 may find similar to Abble’s Live Photo feature, that became so popular in the last year.

Not to be outdone by the big two, Olympix  also announced their latest m43 flagship model the Olympix OMG, which packs an astounding 26.8MP into this crop sensor, a 30 fps continuous burst mode and a new array of mouthwatering lenses to fit its rangefinder style body. Interestingly, although they have adopted a new RoFL mount system, it remains compatible with the old LoL system too, which is great news for those who committed to the much older technology introduced way back in 2015.

Cameras 9 ©2016, Richard Reeve

All these advancements of course will make very little difference to any photographer’s skill at being able to compose an artful composition, but then that isn’t part of the design. We consumers have an insatiable appetite for the latest changes, however incremental, and readily gobble them up on  a six-monthly schedule in the never-ending quest for the latest gear. And the manufacturers are simply feeding the beast.

Carry on clicking…

~Richard

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