Saved For The D7100 But Waiting For The D7200

As I mentioned a while ago, I was saving money to buy me a Nikon D7100 DSLR camera. Some time passed and I reached my goal now, I could now buy the Nikon D7100 with the 18-105mm VR kit lense. After watching all kind of lense reviews, I thought that the 18-105mm VR lense is not that great, but as I would be a DSLR beginner, it should just be ok to learn more about the camera and until I would decide to buy a better lense.

However, now there are rumors that Nikon might announce the D7200 in some weeks. I assumed that this could happen as I have read a lot and while the D7100 is really good according to several reviews, I miss some features and I mentioned it a while ago on my blog.

The problem I see is that if I buy a €1000 camera, I demand a little bit more. The camera should have built-in Wi-Fi, I know you can buy an Wi-Fi adapter for the D7100, however, it would be much greater if it would be built-in. If the Nikon D7200 rumors are true, this camera will be a very interesting successor as it would be probably released with some modern features as built-in Wi-Fi.

Same for the articulating screen, I am not really sure why the D7100 has no tilt screen, but the D7200 would probably be released with a tilt screen and that makes the camera interesting. Not sure if I would use it a lot, but I can think of many situations where I would use it, including flower or macro photography, pet photography and anything where you would have your camera near the ground.

I don’t want to expand the subject in this post, if the rumors about the D7200 are true, this camera will most likely also be released with some other technical improvements. I know, I know, there will always come out new cameras and things move forward, however, in this case there are some essential things that I would demand from a semi-professional camera, including an articulating screen, or built-in WiFi and so on. That is my point.

I think I will wait a little to check out if the D7200 rumors come true and if Nikon will announce this camera this February as mentioned in my article about the Nikon D7200 rumors. If it comes true, the camera will probably cost more than the D7100, however, I shouldn’t be too much off with my savings. I will wait this February to find out more.

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The Nikon D7200 Could Be Announced This February 2015

Leaked certificates about new Nikon cameras appeared on a Russian site called Novocert, a site that is gathering documents and information’s from public sources and registered companies, workers or entrepreneurs. According to the leaked documents from this website there are several new Nikon cameras rumored to be announced at the CP+ 2015 Camera And Photo Imaging Show in Japan. The exhibition will open February 12 and end on February 15.

The rumored new Nikon cameras are the Nikon D7200 DSLR, mirrorless Nikon 1 J5 camera and it is possible that they will announce a high-end compact camera called Nikon Coolpix P900. Other compact cameras as the Nikon Coolpix S9900, Nikon Coolpix S7000, Coolpix S3700, Coolpix L840, Coolpix P610 and the Coolpix AW130 could be announced then too according to the leaked certificates:

If the leaked documents have substance, that is another question. But the CP+ exhibition opening is not far away, we might find out more February 12. Previously there were all kind of rumors about the Nikon D7200 specifications. You can find different sites that assume the following D7200 spec:

  • New 24MP APS-C sensor
  • Expeed 4 processor
  • Body similar to the Nikon D750
  • Articulating screen (Often called tilting or swivel screen)
  • MultiCAM 3500DX2 autofocus system
  • 51 autofocus points
  • 6 FPS
  • Wi-Fi built-in
  • Buffer: 16 RAW+JPG
  • Video: 1080p at 60 FPS and 720p at 120 FPS
  • Aperture in video mode might be adjustable during Live View

If you planned to buy a D7100, it might make sense to wait some time now, in case the Nikon D7200 rumors come true with the starting CP+ exhibition in Japan. However, if the Nikon D7200 announcement comes true, it is still in question where Nikon did set the release date. Anyway, the D7200 might be a very good successor to the D7100. It would also be interesting to find out more about the Nikon D7200 price then. Let’s see.

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I Should Cook More Often

Meatballs stuffed with ewes cheese

Above you can see a dish that I cooked yesterday. I made meatballs stuffed with ewe’s cheese. I did eat it with noodles and gravy. I used ground beef and ground pork, I added one egg, ketchup, mustard, freshly sliced onions and fresh parsley. I added some salt and pepper and breadcrumbs. Then I did knead everything together and started to form meatballs. I am not sure if this is different elsewhere, but that’s how most people do it in Germany. The only thing that was not so German about my meatballs is that I stuffed ewe’s cheese into them before I started to roast them. The ewe’s cheese was a nice tip I got and I wanted to try this and it was super delicious.

I can cook some basic things but it is not much. I do now want to learn more, and maybe I start to cook a little bit more often. The thing is that this was a nice idea that I took out of my therapy. Not that my therapist would think that my nutrition would be the only reason why I still have some phases with anxiety and depression at times, but she said it is at least one piece of the puzzle. She suggested me to cook more often and to eat less convenience food. That was an idea that inspired me. I do see that my nutrition is not the best.

When I for example do visit my mother sometimes, then I can eat very good food, however, at home I would rather open canned soups way too often. I don’t think that the nutrition alone would be a big problem, but I agree that it is one part where I can improve my life. Now I must admit I am more the lazy guy and it probably will never happen that I cook every day, but I do at least want to do this more often than usual now.

Talking about the stuffed meatballs I was amazed because they were super delicious. That is a new dish I can cook now. I want to try other dishes soon. I think as soon as I can cook more than just five dishes or so, I will have more choice over the week then. Maybe that was one of the reasons why I didn’t cook so much, because I would create the same dishes over and over again. I will expand my list and learn new things, and maybe then it is more fun.

Posted in Life, Photography, Photography and Design | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Fighting Depression And Anxiety Relapse

evening photo taken in the garden

I don’t write often about it, not because I wouldn’t like to, rather because the whole issue was not a too big problem anymore, at least when I compare it with the past. The problem was that I suffered from depression and social anxiety years ago. I really got out of this mess, but sometimes things can bounce back for a while. I want to write about this today.

I want to fight over the last bastion, that means, I don’t want to feel healthy most of the time, I want to feel healthy all the time. When there are five bad days in a month, it’s still way too much. I often feel healthy for weeks, but then in another moment, things can bounce back at me out of the blue.

There are still days where I get an anxiety attack with all kind of symptoms, there are days I fall into a hole and the depression is back for a moment, and there are days with heavy sleep problems and that can be a big problem. What changed is that it happens rarely, or irregular but it still can happen at times.

Most of the time this was very acceptable because I know it could be worse, it could happen more often, because that’s something I experienced back then. It’s acceptable if it happens rarely, however, I am curious if it is possible to fight it back so that the disease doesn’t even come through a single day anymore. That’s what I want to achieve. I am happy how it is now, I just asked myself how it would be if I go one step further. That’s what I mean with fighting for the last bastion.

Apart from that, I am not very stress-resistant anymore. Whenever there is stress, the chance is big that I get some bad days again. While I feel most of the time very good, I realized this is still a huge problem if some bad days can interrupt a good week. Then there is the fact that I do still take antidepressants, even if it is just a very small dose, I want to live without that again some day.

I realized, it is fine as it is, but I believe it could be even better. I thought about this already a year ago and contacted a therapist. A long time passed, over a half year, but then I got my first appointments, that happened a little more than a month ago. I had my first appointments before Christmas 2014. First I wanted to find out if I am ok with the therapist. I think she is very friendly and I like to talk with her, I had already six or seven appointments now.

She does understand that I am not in a deep depression anymore, she does understand that my anxiety disorder is not severe anymore. I got out of this mess without much help. However, she did understand what I mean, I told her that there can be still bad days, and if there are bad days then I am controlled by the disease again and the day becomes a challenge. She does understand that I want to burst this barrier completely. That’s what we work on right now. I want to find out if I can learn anything new.

I am not that much of a person who seeks help from strangers. But I wanted to give it a try. I can leave this therapy at any time if I am unhappy, but who knows, maybe I do really learn some strategies. How do I feel about this therapist? As said, I think she is very friendly and wise. I am surprised, because I like to talk with her. We don’t only talk about my problems, there are minutes where we have some nice conversations about other things. In some moments it doesn’t even feel like a therapy at all, and this is really cool.

However, we also had some differences in some respects. I don’t agree with everything she says but we do talk about this. She doesn’t have a problem if I tell her “Nope, I think we are on the wrong track now”, because she just tries to understand me and my problems, and then she tries other directions. It’s good.

I am not really sure if I went into a therapy with the thoughts to go completely through this, I was rather curious. As said, I just asked myself if it might help. I am not even sure yet. I am just a little bit surprised that it helps more than I thought. I knew that talking can help because all my friends and family members listened to me too when I wanted to talk about it. Some people were always involved, especially when the disease was severe years ago. On this way, my loved ones helped me already to get out of the biggest mess, it’s just that I didn’t expect that talking with a stranger could make me feel good as well. But the reason is probably because I trust the therapist.

She did also get that I am somewhat well-read about the depression and anxiety subject, and even about some more broad medical subjects. She won’t explain me things that I already know, she is asking, and then she finds out what I don’t know to start from there. I think she really knows her stuff. I still don’t agree with all parts of the cognitive behaviour therapy and I told her, but that is not a problem, I am there to see if I can learn something helpful, I don’t have to agree with all parts. I got the impression that she understood, she told me that this is ok, and we agreed, we both are confident.

The antidepressants that I take since years, they do only damp the symptoms. Antidepressants don’t heal, that is the problem. If I would stop to take my antidepressants tomorrow, the chance would be big that I would get into a mess again. When she asked me what I expect from the therapy, I answered “To learn something that might make it possible to live without both, antidepressants and the disease”. She agreed, this would be an achievement we should work on. That’s it, that is my goal.

If I complete the therapy, that is a question that I can’t answer yet, however, I am very confident. At the moment it helps. If this impression stays, I would of course complete it. At the moment there are still round about twenty hours in front of me, we have a one hour appointment each week. I will find out if this is going well and if it really helps me.

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About WordPress Changes and What We Can Do

Originally posted on Freed from Time:

For Help with the changes (workarounds) please click here.    This content is about Underlying Motive, The Problems, Probable Cause, How We Can Make a Difference and Remaining Questions.

Underlying Motive

Matt Mullenweg, owner and recently appointed CEO of WordPress, has himself indicated a wish to pursue the mobile market which is made clear in and interview with Forbes click here ! (page 5/6) .  However that interview does not indicate any intention to abandon desk top users.

Add to this, Tiger Global now have at a total of $110 million invested in WP here !.  Tiger Global also have investments in the expanding Indian and South American mobile and e-commerce markets.

Amended/Addition:  From WSJ/Digits  “We both have a long term outlook, and we’re focused on growth,” said Mullenweg of Tiger  in an interview. “

This is altogether an entirely legitimate business pursuit but it’s gone…

View original 1,230 more words

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Is Steam Legit? Yes, And Here Is Why…

Up to this day I do often still find some people asking in different gaming related forums if Steam is legit. Some trolls would then usually answer if this question is legit and that’s just sad because there could be several reasons why you asking this question, maybe you are new to PC gaming or whatever. So, let’s dig into this subject. The short answer is, yes, Steam is a very legit and a quite popular service in the PC gaming world. So, why is Steam legit?

First of all we should clarify what Steam is. Steam is a digital distribution and social network platform related to games and designed for gamers. That means, you can buy games there, you can find and befriend with other gamers who play the same games as you, in fact you can befriend anybody there even if you want to have a chat buddy to talk about games or what not. Steam comes with several nice features related to gaming. It’s basically a platform made for games and gamers.

Steam was developed by the company Valve Corporation and released in September 2003. Valve was earlier just a game developer, but with Steam, they became also a digital distribution company. In other words, they don’t only develop games, they also started to sell them when they released Steam, and they do it up to this day.

Speaking about the game developer Valve developed big titles like Half-Life, Counter Strike, Portal, Left 4 Dead, Dota and Team Fortress. They are also the creators of the very well-known Source engine that they used in most of their games and that the modding community used heavily as well.

Valve Corporation was founded in 1996 by former Microsoft employees Gabe Newell and Mike Harrington. The headquarter of Valve is in the United States, Bellevue, Washington.

Valve basically reached cult status with their games, as same as the co-founder Gabe Newell became literary a Messiah for PC gamers. Why? He never was shy to raise his voice about technology and gaming related issues, including harsh criticism against console platforms, and that’s what PC gamers liked. Apart from that people simply loved the Valve games and the fact that they always have been released with high quality and without problems.

So much about the background of the company and people behind the digital distribution platform Steam. Is Steam legit? Yes, pretty much, and not only this, it’s an extremely popular platform as well. There are millions of players online with Steam around the clock.

So, if you ever asked yourself if Steam is legit, yes, Steam is legit and you can trust this service, quite a lot of people buy and play games with that platform. Another reason why many people think that Steam is great, they do often have a lot of deals and there are several ways how you can get Steam game discounts. There are even other sites related to it where you can win free Steam games with a little bit of luck.

I hope this article was helpful and answered your question. Let me know in the comment how you came to PC gaming and what you are up to.

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New Plant For The Living Room – Phoenix roebelenii

Phoenix roebelenii and my cat

I found this nice palm that is called Phoenix roebelenii in one of the local stores. I only had one plant at home, you can’t see that one fully as it is the plant in the orange pot, but I really liked the Phoenix roebelenii that I found in the store and searched in the internet if this plant could be toxic and dangerous for pets. I found out that this plant is not listed as a dangerous plant for pets and went back to the store to buy the palm. I researched that this plant is also sometimes called pygmy date palm, miniature date palm or just robellini.

As you can see on the photo above, my cat Shyna was curious about the Phoenix roebelenii right away and I am happy that I have done my research. Anyway, she never was curious about my old palm that you can’t see on the photo, she is more curious about this new Phoenix roebelenii and she tested some leaves already, but I take already care that this won’t become a habit. Not sure why she likes this new plant so much.
But I noticed she doesn’t want to eat the leaves, she tried to gnaw the leaves and played with them with her paw. I think she was curious about the plant.

my cat near two palms

On the photo above you can see my older plant a little bit better. Not sure how this plant is called. But on the left side you can see my new Phoenix roebelenii that I really like and that I have since some days now. Also you can see my cat again near the plants. By the way, I visited the same store again today and they have again some new plants but I was a little bit short in money as it is the end of the month.

It’s tempting to get a third palm as they now have different ones and I might buy a third plant in a few days, but I am not sure yet. If so, I would like to have flowerpots in the same colour, now I just used what I found in the basement. I would like to have all flower pots in orange or in red I think. I also would like to find more of these bamboo mats, it’s a year ago when I found these mats in a store and I am not sure if they still have them. But for now I am just happy that I have two plants now. Let’s see if I buy a third plant. I would write about it if I do.

Posted in Animals and Pets, Cats, Life, Nature, Nature and Animals, Photography, Photography and Design | Tagged , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Banks As We Know Them Today Are Outdated

Online Banking

Sometimes there are things I can’t and won’t understand. As the title of this post states, I will tell you why I think that the banks we know today are pretty much outdated and should be replaced by something better at some point.

Why do I think so? Well, there are several reasons. One of the reasons is about time. How can it be for example that it takes up to two weeks for a cash remittance to show up correctly on the bank account statement, and in most cases also to transfer the money?

I live in Germany in the year 2015, so, how can something like this be true? As a web user who does often use PayPal and Bitcoin for transactions, I simply can’t understand why transaction with both of them just take seconds while my bank transaction needs several days and in many cases even weeks. Old banks are inferior and do lag behind.

I think there is probably not a technical reason why cash remittance with banks can take a lot of time. I think they work with out money, they earn interest with our money. That’s where I come to another point. Why do I need a middleman at all? A technology concept like Bitcoin does show that you don’t need someone to take care about your money, or manage your transactions.

I call it a technology concept as nobody knows if Bitcoin is the future way of money transaction. I mean, nobody knows if it will go mainstream. However, I think the concept, the idea and the protocol, that is the right direction. I think at some point it might happen, Bitcoin or something very similar to the Bitcoin protocol will replace banks as we know them. Yes, you read right, I think it’s long overdue. Banks are already a relict of old times.

PayPal had to register as a bank too, and while I like the usability of PayPal and the quickness how my transactions are handled there, I do think they have some high fees. That is another point I want to make and I do think that the future way of money transactions won’t plague with very high transaction fees. But if I talk about speed of transactions and the usability again, it must be mentioned that PayPal is superior to traditional banks. Even when I login there, everything does look more slick compared to the online banking site of my traditional bank.

Bitcoin does come with several advantages compared to my traditional bank too, and even with advantages over PayPal. With Bitcoin, transactions won’t be processed and verified by a central authority like banks or companies, because Bitcoin is a decentralized network that comes with all kind of benefits.

However, Bitcoin has several issues as well, especially when it comes to usability. You can cut out middleman services with Bitcoin if you install your own wallet on your system, but for non-tech people it is a little bit tricky to understand. That means the usability and security aspects are a problem. Then there do appear more and more services that make Bitcoin more easy to use, but if you use them, you have again a middleman in the boat. There are some other issues like the high volatility, the value of Bitcoin is unstable, as it is at the moment heavily used for speculation as well. Bitcoin is at the moment still more something like an experiment.

But the point I wanted to make is that this is the right direction, regardless of whether it will be Bitcoin or something based on that protocol, or something that is just very similar, I think that is the future. I do say this because I can’t understand why traditional banks do need so much time for transaction processing, I don’t understand why we need a middleman service at all, and I see no reason for high transaction fees.

This is why I think traditional banks are outdated. I do think that they will be replaced at some point with a technology that is superior. It probably won’t be Bitcoin, it also won’t be a service like PayPal, but I am pretty much sure it will be a technology that combines the advantages of both. It will happen, and if it happens, the banks as we know them today will be history. I wouldn’t cry, I think we all would benefit from it. Who does trust banks anyway? I don’t.

Traditional banks will be a relict of old times because technology does advance, and technology makes unreliable things obsolete. I agree, sometimes this is sad, because not everything that got replaced by technology was necessarily bad, but in the case of tradional banks it would be a blessing for us all.

If you appreciate my article, you can tip me on the following Bitcoin address 1M5Un812riWoxkNokRNpiP9X9wEYUzGkCd or via ChangeTip.

Posted in Internet, Technology | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Photoshopped Doggy And A Story With A Happy End

Black Dog

I thought it is time again for some Photoshop work. Above you can see the result of the work. I had this very bad base image of a quite funny looking dog. If I mean bad, then I really mean bad. There was almost everything wrong with the base image but since the dog looked so funny I gave my self the task to get the best out of the image as I can. I didn’t really think that I can get great results as the original image is just horrible, but I am anyhow quite happy what I have done with it. Above is the result and below I will show you the bad original image…

Unedited Black Dog

It’s probably very apparent what is wrong with the image. Apart from the really cool and funny looking dog, I disliked the background pretty much as there are some really heavy backlights on the floor and the whole green color looks just damaged. The whole floor looks really bad. The dog fur contained too much grey in my opinion and there were other issues and it was clear I had to fix a lot and I really wasn’t sure if it would be possible, I just experimented with all kind of things to get the best out of the photo. The first image in this post is the result and I am really happy, considering that the original image is that bad.

Apart from the image quality of the original, the dog looks absolutely funny considering this, it was worth the work to make something better with the image. The dog is by the way now in Sweden. There is a nice side story about the dog. My mother knew someone who was the owner of the black dog. Sadly he didn’t want the dog anymore which is a shame because that is something that shouldn’t come to mind after getting the dog. My mother thought the same and offered help. She took the dog as she wanted to get a good new home for the dog. The dog was too wild and too big for her home, apart from that she does already have a dog, but instead her plan was to find someone who seriously wants the dog.

She created a classified ad where she mentioned the high standards to get the dog. There were several rules and my mother wanted to know what kind of people the interested ones are. She asked a lot of questions and really did take this all very serious as the dog shouldn’t get again in a similar situation as before. Someone who was currently in Germany did call my mother by phone and mentioned that he would be from Sweden and that he had a similar dog for a long time until he died. They exchanged photos and talked a lot until my mother decided, this can only be good for the dog. She was right. This guy took the dog and they traveled to Sweden and until today they still do exchange stories and photos. It’s not only that my mother found someone who seriously wanted to give the dog a good home, it seems she did also find a good friend in Sweden.

Yes this is really a cool story. The point is that my mother was in no way liable to help the dog to get a good home, but she did it. She just thought the ex owner wouldn’t put that much effort into the search for a new owner and offered to manage all this. The dog is now in Sweden and he can even play and run free without leash as the new owner is very experienced, but not only this, also because they do live in the nature of Sweden and that is pretty good for a wild dog. This and the fact that my mother does now know someone new with whom she can exchange stories and dog photos, that is really cool, and for the dog it is of course a happy end!

This shows again, if you walk through the world with opened eyes and ears, if you offer help where you can, it might be that something cool is happening to you too. But even if not, you always know for yourself why you helped. Helping is great and I am very happy that my mother helped the dog. It’s really a good story.

By the way, we took the photo when my mother took care of the dog last summer until she found the new owner. We took the image on her balcony while we had a lot of fun when we played with the dog. I have some more images of the time and especially some that I don’t need to edit as they a great. I will upload them too some day. I hope you liked my edited image and the story about the dog.

Posted in Animals and Pets, Dogs, Graphic Design, Life, Nature and Animals, Photography, Photography and Design | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Is Steam Down? How To Check The Steam Server Status!

Steam screenshot

As a gamer you know this question, is Steam down? That question comes up as soon as you can’t login to Steam anymore or if parts of Steam like the community or store section don’t load properly anymore. Maybe you also can’t go on with you game as you lost connection but it requires to be logged in to Steam, or the game downloads don’t work right and so on. Is Steam down? That is a question that all Steam gamers know. So, how can we find out more about the Steam server status?

There are ways to find out more about the Steam status. As I often frequent in the Steam community of Reddit, I would find it either out because a lot of people would open threads there with the question about the Steam server status, or I would find it out as they have a really nifty widget linked in the sidebar where you get information’s about the steam servers status.

However, the Steam network status linked there is based on and that is really a nice site to find out more about the Steam online status. If you ask yourself if Steam is down, I suggest you to take a look on this site. You can not only find out more about the Steam network status, you can also see how many people are currently online on Steam.

On this site you can check the Steam server status of all servers, including the United States servers, the Europe servers, the China servers, the Netherland servers, the Australia servers and the Singapore servers. All shown locations have several Steam servers and you can find out how many of them are online or offline. If the servers are healthy, the text is usually in green, and if not the text will be shown in red.

Not only this, you can check out there if the Steam store is ok, if the Steam community server is running and the Steam API. So, this is really a nifty site that will tell you information’s of the Steam online status and if every server is running correctly. You can find out on this way if the problem is on the end of Steam.

If Steam is not working right and really down, you would probably ask why is Steam down? The answer is that it could be due to all kind of reasons. If it is Tuesday at around 16:00 PST, it is most likely a scheduled server maintenance and it would probably show you the message “The Steam servers are currently down for routine maintenance.”, and in all other cases we can’t know as it could be due to any issues that they work on.

Steam servers are usually not for too long offline if there are issues or maintenance of the servers. If all Steam servers are online, the problems might be on your side. In this case you might check out the network connectivity troubleshooting page of Steam or the Steam support page in general. I hope this helps.

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