Geographic Relativity
Dec 22nd, 2012 by Ken Hagler

I keep hear­ing the Austin is locat­ed in the “Texas Hill Coun­try.” It is slight­ly hilly, but less so than the “Los Ange­les Basin.” I sup­pose it’s a dif­fer­ence in per­cep­tion between a state that’s most­ly flat and a state that’s full of moun­tains that reach more than two miles above sea lev­el.

Photographers, avoid Instagram like the plague
Dec 17th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

New Insta­gram Terms of Ser­vice.

The Facebook-ification is start­ing:

Some or all of the Ser­vice may be sup­port­ed by adver­tis­ing
rev­enue. To help us deliv­er inter­est­ing paid or spon­sored
con­tent or pro­mo­tions, you agree that a busi­ness or oth­er enti­ty
may pay us to dis­play your user­name, like­ness, pho­tos (along
with any asso­ci­at­ed meta­da­ta), and/or actions you take, in
con­nec­tion with paid or spon­sored con­tent or pro­mo­tions, with­out
any com­pen­sa­tion to you.

Where by “meta­da­ta”, they’re not talk­ing about expo­sure and shut­ter speed. They’re talk­ing about loca­tion. Just awful.

[Dar­ing Fire­ball]

It’s actu­al­ly much worse than that. Accord­ing to the terms of ser­vice, not only Insta­gram may do basi­cal­ly any­thing they want with your pho­tos, includ­ing license them out to oth­ers, they also say:

You rep­re­sent and war­rant that: (i) you own the Con­tent post­ed by you on or through the Ser­vice or oth­er­wise have the right to grant the rights and licens­es set forth in these Terms of Use; (ii) the post­ing and use of your Con­tent on or through the Ser­vice does not vio­late, mis­ap­pro­pri­ate or infringe on the rights of any third par­ty, includ­ing, with­out lim­i­ta­tion, pri­va­cy rights, pub­lic­i­ty rights, copy­rights, trade­mark and/or oth­er intel­lec­tu­al prop­er­ty rights; (iii) you agree to pay for all roy­al­ties, fees, and any oth­er monies owed by rea­son of Con­tent you post on or through the Ser­vice; and (iv) you have the legal right and capac­i­ty to enter into these Terms of Use in your juris­dic­tion.

What that means you as the pho­tog­ra­ph­er could eas­i­ly wind up in very deep, very expen­sive legal trou­ble just because you used Insta­gram. Con­sid­er how this could play out: you take a pho­to of a ran­dom com­plete stranger on the street and dis­play it freely as an exam­ple of street pho­tog­ra­phy. So far, so good. How­ev­er, some­one in the PR depart­ment at a gener­ic huge cor­po­ra­tion sees the pho­to and pays Insta­gram $100,000 to sub­li­cense your pho­to for a major adver­tis­ing cam­paign. You don’t get any say, or any of the mon­ey. Now it’s not look­ing so good. Now we’re get­ting into dan­ger­ous ter­ri­to­ry, because use of a person’s image for com­mer­cial pur­pos­es requires a signed mod­el release–which doesn’t exist.

But it gets worse! The ran­dom per­son on the street sees the adver­tise­ments promi­nent­ly fea­tur­ing their face and decides to sue. Because of the Insta­gram terms of ser­vice, you get hung out to dry by Insta­gram and the huge cor­po­ra­tion. Con­grat­u­la­tions, your lit­tle art pho­to tak­en with Insta­gram has cost you tens of thou­sands of dol­lars. Too bad your life is ruined because you didn’t read the terms of ser­vice.

This real­ly is just like Face­book.

Cultural Differences
Dec 16th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

I’ve noticed a few cul­tur­al dif­fer­ence between LA and Austin that weren’t real­ly appar­ent before I moved. Some of the inter­est­ing ones:

  1. Dogs in Austin are most­ly dog-size. The lit­tle hybrid rat/dog things that are ubiq­ui­tous in LA exist here, but are a small minor­i­ty.
  2. White peo­ple work min­i­mum wage jobs in Austin. I don’t recall ever see­ing that in LA.
  3. In Austin a total stranger say­ing “hel­lo” on the street is just being polite. In LA, he’s about to beg for change.
  4. Anorex­ia is rare in Austin, and com­mon in LA.
On hypocrisy
Dec 16th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

God Damn You, Amer­i­ca, and Your White, Priv­i­leged Grief [Once Upon a Time…]

An excel­lent (if typ­i­cal­ly long-winded) arti­cle on the rather dis­gust­ing dis­plays of hypocrisy and nar­cis­sism in response to the recent mur­ders in Con­necti­cut. Let’s not for­get that the very same peo­ple who today are claim­ing to be oh-so-upset about a cou­ple dozen mur­ders were, just over a month ago, active­ly and enthu­si­as­ti­cal­ly endors­ing the mass slaugh­ter of many hun­dreds of times as many peo­ple by the vile, mon­strous tyrant who rules in Mor­dor on the Potomac (and this includes the peo­ple who vot­ed for his pho­ny “oppo­nent,” who made it clear that he would do the same things).

Old theme back
Dec 15th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

I’ve gone back to the pre­vi­ous Word­Press theme, which is called Ahim­sa.

Amusing side effect
Dec 11th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Recent­ly I’ve been see­ing a lot of talk about a new game Google is devel­op­ing for Android, called Ingress. I’ve noticed that so far nobody seems to have noticed an unin­tend­ed (pre­sum­ably) con­se­quence of the game: peo­ple play­ing it will be trav­el­ing around to libraries, post offices, cour­t­hous­es, fire sta­tions, mon­u­ments, and the like, stand­ing around for sev­er­al min­utes, and then mov­ing on to anoth­er loca­tion in a seem­ing­ly ran­dom pat­tern.

What the peo­ple writ­ing about Ingress as a game seem to have missed is that it’s fair­ly well known by peo­ple who pay atten­tion that the gov­ern­ment tracks everyone’s move­ments using the loca­tion data from their cell phone ser­vices. The strange and errat­ic move­ments of Ingress play­ers are bound to dri­ve the secret police­men respon­si­ble for such spy­ing berserk, which I con­sid­er to be a huge ben­e­fit. I’m con­sid­er­ing get­ting a Nexus 7 just so I can help con­fuse Big Broth­er.

Theme Change
Dec 11th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

I’m try­ing out the Twen­ty Twelve theme that came with the Word­Press 3.5 update.

Not exactly hiding their corruption
Dec 7th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Staffer axed by Repub­li­can group over retract­ed copyright-reform memo. The Repub­li­can Study Com­mit­tee, a cau­cus of Repub­li­cans in the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, has told staffer Derek Khan­na that he will be out of a job when Con­gress re-convenes in Jan­u­ary. The incom­ing chair­man of the RSC, Steve Scalise (R-LA) was approached by sev­er­al Repub­li­can mem­bers of Con­gress who were upset about a memo Khan­na wrote advo­cat­ing reform of copy­right law. They asked that Khan­na not be retained, and Scalise agreed to their request. [Ars Tech­ni­ca]

Appar­ent­ly the Repub­li­can fac­tion of the Boot On Your Neck Par­ty wants to be sure every­one under­stands that they’re just as much in the MAFIAA’s pock­et as the Demo­c­ra­t­ic fac­tion, and that vot­ing Repub­li­can will cer­tain­ly not change any­thing.

I think I saw this movie
Dec 6th, 2012 by Ken Hagler


A huge flock of these small black birds like to gath­er on the pow­er lines at Bar­ton Springs and First Street around sun­set. It’s a bit creepy.

Quote of the Day
Dec 4th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Side note: “If you don’t, I’ll poi­son your din­ner” is a com­pelling argu­ment for a fea­ture request, but can typ­i­cal­ly only be used once.

BBE­d­it 10.5 Release Notes

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