lens – Are all kit lenses poor? (And if so, why?)

There are lots of lenses that are better than kit lenses such as the typical AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR, for example.

That’s not to say that the current 18-55mm “kit” lenses from Nikon and others are bad. Everything on the market from the major camera manufacturers is pretty good these days. It’s just that some lenses, to borrow a phrase from Cajun cook and humorist Justin Wilson, are “more better” than others.

We could list a wide variety of different lenses at a wide variety of price points, but we still wouldn’t know what lens(es) are better for the specific kind of shots you wish to create, much less which ones fall within or outside of your budget.

  • Some are better for outdoor family portraits. Different ones may be better than others, depending on the number of family members involved, the time of day and weather conditions, etc.
  • Some are better for senior pictures. Different ones may be better than others for different types of senior pictures. Indoors in a studio with fully controlled lighting? Outdoors in a variety of settings with a variety of natural lighting conditions? Head shots? Full body? Environmental?
  • Some are better for newborn sessions. Different ones may be better than others for different types of newborn sessions. Cramped surroundings or plenty of room? WHat kind of lighting? Elaborate props or basic set with the newborn filling most of the frame?

In general, prime lenses perform better optically than zoom lenses do. This is particularly the case when a prime lens is at roughly the same price point as the zoom lens to which it is being compared. Normal┬╣ prime lenses costing only a few hundred dollars can often perform as well optically as zoom lenses costing thousands.

What one gives up with prime lenses is the flexibility of being able to alter focal length without changing lenses. This can be important when there are issues such as space constraints, or when one is shooting subjects that tire easily and may not tolerate the time required to swap lenses frequently during the shoot. It’s also important with prime lenses to be sure and select an appropriate focal length for the task at hand. There’s no “wiggle room” to get the framing right from a specific distance for a specific perspective like there is with a zoom! Even with the same focal length, different lens designs can make the resulting photos look very different. A 90-105mm Macro lens optimized for close focusing and flat field performance from edge to edge of the frame won’t be as suitable for portraits as another 90-105mm lens optimized for longer focus distances and smooth out of focus areas.

Among zoom lenses, those with a lower ratio between their widest and longest focal lengths generally tend to be better optically than those with a wider range of focal lengths when both are in the same price range. A 17-50mm or 17-55mm zoom lens doesn’t have to make as many design compromises as an 18-200mm lens does.

This answer to a slightly different question covers the differences between different types of lenses and why a lens specifically designed for a particular task can be better for that task at the expense of being less suitable for other tasks.

There are also many other things that can improve one’s results with the same lens and camera.

  • A good tripod and sturdy head with a remote cable, infrared, or radio release is one such thing, for instance.
  • Good lighting and modifiers are another. Putting the right light on a subject reduces the demands placed on the camera and lens to pull something out of what is sometimes very little to work with.
  • Good post-processing skills that draw the best results out of the combination of any particular gear and lighting.

Part of what it means to be a capable photographer is the ability to recognize what one needs and what one does not need in a particular piece of equipment to get a particular kind of shot. Part of that comes with experience and playing around with different bits and pieces to see what works. But a good portion of that can also come from studying others who have taken similar types of photos to what one wishes to create and learning how they got the results they did: not only what gear they used but even more so what techniques they used, how they lit the scene, etc.

The key for most of us to getting cleaner, crisper pictures is usually technique.

Determining exactly what is making one’s photos blurrier than one would like is covered in this question: How do I diagnose the source of focus problem in a camera? The accepted answer has a lot of links to other questions here that cover many of the various reasons why images may not be as sharp as we’d like them to be. Most of the links deal with issues involving shooting practices and technique. Once issues with technique are eliminated, only then can we begin to consider that we may be pushing up against the limits of a particular lens or camera or other piece of gear.

When one reaches that point, it is really up to the individual photographer to select what is most appropriate for the kinds of photos one wishes to produce.

┬╣ A normal lens is one that is roughly the same focal length as the the diagonal of the camera’s format size. For instance, the diagonal of a 36×24 mm full frame/35mm film camera is about 43.5 mm. Lenses from about 40mm to 55mm are considered normal for the 135 format.

Why are websites so poor in terms of transition & animation compared to native apps?

It’s 2020 and web standards allow for really powerfull animations. Compatibility is barely an issue since most browsers are evergreen and most devices are powerfull enough. On top of that, it’s easy to just offer pregressive enhancement in this domain.

It’s not new, we have been knowing for a long time that good transitions help improve context switching. It has been explained in lengths by renowned specialists, see:

That being said, I’m wondering why so few websites offer the kind of experience that is so common in mobile apps. I’m a developper, I know that following a link to another page triggers a full page reload, that’s the default behaviour of the web.

On one hand, not all websites deserve a complex system to handle pages/views transitions. On the other hand, many smaller interactions that happen on page could use animations but don’t. It often looks like they have been overlooked.

All this has obviously a cost, but some companies that can undoubtedly afford it don’t always use them.

  • Amazon barely animates their menu, and interactions on product pages are horrible (screen).
  • Brands like Sephora and Assos don’t even bother animating their menu (screen).
  • Apple animates some stuffs, their menu for instance, but clicking the shopping cart, the pop-under appears out of the blue. Yet when they decide to animate, they go all-in, for instance the new iPhone SE showcase page is incredible (screen). They also offer a very decent experience when animations can’t be done (screen).

I sometimes stumble upon amazing designs on Dribbble and see developers bringing them to life but it rarely reaches production on real websites. Yet, designers are very creative and real use cases are plentiful.

Think e-commerce shopping experience, this design would probably make me buy just because I’d get super familiar with the product taking time to configure it for my needs.

I can’t help wondering why the web is lagging behind? Is there a real reason or is it just inertia due to old habits?

Hivelocity Review – Poor Experiencie

I few months ago I moved from LiquidWeb to Hivelocity trying to reduce some costs. In the beginning Hivelocity seemed to be a good company, but now I am thinking something different. My server has been down more than 4 times in less than 24 hours. I contacted support, and they told me the CPU was overheating, and they needed some time to fix it. During the repairs my server was down for almost 45 minutes. 6 hours later after the repairs, the server failed again. It was down for almost 30 minutes. I contacted support, and they told me my server was running out of memory that I needed to upgrade it to more RAM. So I went ahead and requested the upgrade, that was another 45-60 minutes with the server down. 8-10 hours later after the RAM upgrade the server failed again. It was down for almost one hour. I contacted support again, and they told me they don’t know what is causing the server to fail, that they need to turn the server off for around one hour to see in deep what is happening.

At this point, most of my customer who have been with me for a while are upset, and they are notifying me they are moving to a different Web hosting company because the continues server failings. I feel very frustrated because I was not used to this. That never happened to me when I was with Liquidweb.

Now I need some advice about what would you do in my case? Would you move to a different company of just wait another hour to see if they are able to fix the server?

I appreciate it your comments.

dnd 5e – Can poor quality goblin food cause harm?

Poor quality refers to the lifestyle descriptions on page 158 of the D&D 5th Player Manual. The food is not spoiled or toxic, so the food in the store is not dangerous, just of poor quality.

A bad lifestyle means going without the comfort available in a stable community. Simple food and shelter, worn clothing, and unpredictable conditions translate into sufficient, albeit possibly unpleasant, experience.

The sordid and miserable lifestyle descriptions both refer to the disease, so it might be reasonable to introduce disease mechanisms if the food was described as sordid or miserable quality instead of bad.

The complete list of quality of life levels, in ascending order, is: miserable, sordid, poor, modest, comfortable, wealthy and aristocratic. Whenever you see the "quality [of a thing]" for one of them, it probably refers to those lifestyle levels, and the full descriptions will give an idea of what it means exactly.

Poor way to determine the color of an object with filters?

One of the earliest forms of colorimetry involved a light sensor (or film) with a known sensitivity curve over the visible spectrum and, if a film was involved, a densitometer to measure the resulting density.

You organize constant lighting and measure the level of light received (or the density above low + fog with a standardized development process) for each of the three or more filters (also known absorption characteristics, of course ).

As you can probably see by now, this is not exactly a "poor man's method", because of all the necessary science behind the instruments. Still, it probably cost less to do it that way with a panchromatic film, in the 1950s, than to buy and use an actual colorimeter.

An alternative that was available at different times was colored chips. That had limits, but the idea was that you would hold a known color swatch against the object, and in the same light, and then move on to a swatch that was, say, a little greener, a little less blue, etc. until you have an exact match. It used to take time, but if the sharpness of your measurement doesn't need to be too high, it will most likely be less than the film and filter method.

virtual machine – Virtualbox – Poor performance on guests with graphical environment

I am using Virtualbox 6.1.4 on macOS 10.15.3 (Catalina). On all guest machines with a graphical environment, I experience huge delays in the graphical interface, even when I leave VirtualBoxVM (the sub-application contained in the VirtualBox application) 39; run in low resolution mode.

Compared to that, I get excellent graphics performance from VMware Fusion even with Retina graphics.

These are my properties:

Host machine:

MacBook Pro 16 & # 39; & # 39;

2.3 GHz Intel Core i9


Radeon Pro 5500M

Guest machine (there are several, but let's look at a representative example):

Linux Ubuntu 19.10 Eoan Ermine (all updates installed)

2 processor cores


128 MB of graphics memory (Virtualbox does not allow more compared to the
1024 MB I reserve in VMware, maybe this is the main cause?)

3D acceleration on or off (tested both, will make no difference)

2D video acceleration on or off (tested both)

Nested paging enabled or disabled (tested both)

If you need more information, don't hesitate to ask. When I let the machine start in low resolution mode, it is usable but far from acceptable. The user interface is late but responds on time. When I start in retina mode, I have to wait up to 20 seconds for the windows to appear. And yes, it is the graphical interface. Let's say I start the terminal, I can click on it, no window appears. I start typing, 10 seconds later the window is visible, including the typed text, so the background logic works.

Virtualbox Guest Additions is installed and up to date, interestingly, the pre-installed open-vm tools (on Ubuntu) worked with VMware when I had to install the specific driver software for Virtualbox.

I thought it could be related to the small graphics power that I can associate with Virtualbox. But all the Youtube videos I watch have decent performance, I just don't understand what I'm doing wrong. I even tried it on a Mac installed without VMware (to check for driver interference), but it didn't help. In addition, support for Virtualbox indicates that it would make no difference when increasing graphics memory (see here: https://forums.virtualbox.org/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=81370 ) but I said to myself, maybe the guest OS machine handles it differently ??

The only thing I can say for sure is that the performance of VMware is not only better, it is absolutely smooth, while Virtualbox is barely acceptable.

If someone asks me why I want to use Virtualbox instead of (for me) VMware which works better: it is simply better supported by Vagrant, this is the main problem. In addition, most tools like Docker and Kubernetes switch to it by default.

Thanks in advance.

Oh no! It looks like the Corona virus will collapse the Trump economy, just in time for the elections! Isn't that so unfair to poor little Trumpy?

republicans should stop panicking

allow the Carnival cruise ship to dock and let passengers return home

authorize all flights, let paying passengers decide

allow big gatherings, for example concerts, let people have fun

if a child at school is infected, send him home and let the lessons continue

if a colleague is infected, let him work, the invoices do not disappear

if a medical worker is infected, let them treat your child, some treatments are better than none

Trump and Trumpets promote a nanny state

automation – does Android automatically switch between SIM cards for data on dual SIM phones when one of the SIM cards has poor reception?

If you use the Internet on the phone, does Android automatically switch between SIM cards in dual SIM phones when one of the SIM cards has poor reception?

No. Android does not offer such provisions. The Pixel 3a line is dual Sim and if Android had this provision, it would have been integrated into these phones.

This is most likely to be Dual SIM Dual Active devices where the two Sims simultaneously can be active be it voice or data. For example, you could speak on SIM1 and yet receive a call on SIM2 which will be put on hold or you could attend and put the first SIM call on hold (the Pixel 3a).

(This contrasts with Dual SIM Dual Standby, where if SIM1 is used, SIM2 becomes inactive and vice versa. These phones are cheaper)

Edit: If you refer to Smart Signal, the FAQ makes it clear born choose the best signal (as your question suggests) but simply switch between two networks

Does Smart Signal automatically choose the network with the best signal?

No, with Smart Signal, you will automatically switch to EE or O2 if you lose the signal on Honest Mobile. On some phones, you can also manually select the network you want to connect to.

c # – Using a strategy model for poor construction architecture

I'm facing an architecture that I can't change at the moment, but I have to fix the problem about it.
Here is a sample code for the problem:

class A
   void f(var ratio) {
   abstract void g(ratio);


class B : A
   void g(var ratio) {

class C : A
   var _ratio; // defined at the constructor of C
   void g(ratio) {
      if(_ratio != null)  otherMethod(_ratio);
      else otherMethod(ratio);

The main function indifferently calls the method f with an input ratio even if the latter is not used when the ratio is already defined locally.

I want to merge classes B and C and keep the behavior of using the local report member if it is defined or the input report if not.

I hope I am clear enough.

Someone told me that I can use the policy model (I understand that there is some kind of injection dependence) if I don't want to change the whole thing architecture.
Do you know what that means? Do you have another solution to remove this and have something clearer than this condition in method g?
The main function indifferently calls the method f with an input ratio even if the latter is not used when the ratio is already defined locally.

Notes: I am using C #

Thank you for your help!

macos – Poor monitor resolution in Catalina

After updating from Mojave to Catalina, one of my external displays is determined by the system with the wrong native resolution. I am using Samsung C43J890DK which has a resolution of 3840×1200 pix. But Catalina determines 1920×600 as the native resolution for this monitor. I resize it to 3840×1200 from the system preferences, but each time I start or exit from standby mode, the system resizes the resolution 3840×1200 (obtained from NVRAM) -> 1920×600 (because Catalina thinks it is the native resolution for the monitor) -> 3840×1200 (after resizing by system). As a result, all open windows are resized to 1920 x 600 pixels.

I have tried disabling HiDPI, but that does not help. All I can do, its standard return preferences with frequency and resolution selection using IOGFlags. How can I change the native resolution of this monitor to 3840×1200?

Contents of /System/Library/Displays/Contents/Resources/Overrides/DisplayVendorID-4c2d/DisplayProductID-f5b












My ioreg for this display

| |   | | +-o display0  
| |   | |         "IOProviderClass" = "IODisplayConnect"
| |   | |         "IODisplayEDID" = <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>
| |   | |         "IODisplayPrefsKey" = "IOService:/AppleACPIPlatformExpert/PCI0@0/AppleACPIPCI/IGPU@2/AppleIntelFramebuffer@0/display0/AppleDisplay-4c2d-f5b"
| |   | |         "IODisplayParameters" = {"bgsc"={"min"=0,"max"=65536,"value"=65536},"pscn"={"min"=8800,"max"=10000,"value"=10000},"rgsc"={"min"=0,"max"=65536,"value"=65536},"cmod"={"min"=0,"max"=4096,"value"=1},"ggsc"={"min"=0,"max"=65536,"value"=65536},"cyuv"={"min"=0,"max"=268435456,"value"=268435456},"vblm"={"min"=0,"max"=196608,"value"=65536},"ownr"=4294968793,"colr"={"min"=0,"max"=18446744073709551615,"value"=257}}
| |   | |         "IODisplayAttributes" = {"IODisplayAttributes"=<676174760000000073676c6603000000726c6f63010000006364670080808000676c666401000000>}
| |   | |         "IODisplayConnectFlags" = <00000000>
| |   | | |   "IODisplayParameters" = "IOFramebufferParameterHandler is not serializable"
| |   | | |       "IOMatchCategory" = "IODisplayParameters"
| |   | | |   "IODisplayParameters" = "IOFramebufferParameterHandler is not serializable"
| |   | | |       "IOMatchCategory" = "IODisplayParameters"