January 2008


Well, it’s taken a couple of years …… but I have finally taken the leap, and shelled out for a ‘second digital camera’.

Not only have I not had the money, but also, the specification of most of the pocket sized camera just didn’t appeal. This has now changed with a number of manufacturers now producing 12 MPix pieces.

The Canon G9 is build like a tank. It feels really substancial, and some will say too heavy. But I like it to feel solid and with a little weight means less camera shake. The specification is completely fantastic. See Below … and just check out the links I’ve made to the reviews.

Canon UK – PowerShot G9 [company site]

Canon Japan [company site] inc sample images

Canon PowerShot G9 Review [dpreview 1]

Canon PowerShot G9 Review [dpreview 2]

Canon Powershot G9 02 [640x72]

Canon Powershot G9 03 [640x72]

Canon Powershot G9 04 [640x72]

Canon Powershot G9 06 [640x72]

Canon Powershot G9 09 [640x72]

Canon Powershot G9 10 [640x72]

Summary Specs PowerShot G9 

Sensor • 1/1.7″ Type CCD
• 12.1 million effective pixels
 
Image sizes • 4000 x 3000
• 3264 x 2448
• 2592 x 1944
• 1600 x 1200
• 640 x 480
• 4000 x 2248
Movie clips • 1024 x 768 @ 15fps
• 640 x 480 @ 30fps
• 320 x 240 @ 30fps
• 160 x 120 @ 15fps
• Time Lapse (640 x 480 @ 0.5/1fps, playback @15fps)
Maximum clip length  • 1024 x 768, 640 x 480, 320 x 240: 4GB or 1 hour
• 160 x 120: 3 mins
• Time lapse: 120 mins
File formats • JPEG (Exif v2.2)
• DPOF 1.1
• RAW
• AVI (Motion JPEG + WAVE)
Lens • 35-210mm (35mm equiv)
• 6x optical zoom
• F2.8-4.8
Image stabilization Yes (Lens-Shift)
Conversion lenses Yes
Digital zoom  up to 4x
Focus TTL
AF area modes  • Face Detection AiAF
• 9-point AiAF
• 1-point AF (center, FlexiZone or Face Select and Track)
• Manual focus
• Focus bracketing 
AF lock  Yes (on/off selectable) 
AF assist lamp  Yes
Focus distance Closest focus distance 1cm
Metering • Evaluative (linked to Face Detection AF frame)
• Center-weighted average
• Spot (center, linked to Flexizone or Face Detection AF points)
ISO sensitivity • Auto
• High ISO Auto
• ISO 80
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
• ISO 1600 
AE lock  Yes (on/off selectable) 
Exposure compensation +/- 2EV in 1/3 stop increments
Exposure Bracketing  +/- 1/3 – 2EV in 1/3 stop increments
Shuttter speed 15-1/2500 sec
Modes • Auto
• Program AE
• Shutter Priority AE
• Aperture Priority AE
• Manual
• Custom (2 modes)
• Stitch Assist
• Movie
• Special Scene


Scene modes  • Portrait
• Landscape
• Night Scene
• Sports
• Night Snapshot
• Kids & Pets
• Indoor
• Foliage
• Snow
• Beach
• Fireworks
• Aquarium
• Underwater
• ISO 3200
• Color Accent
• Color Swap
 
White balance • Auto
• Daylight
• Cloudy
• Tungsten
• Fluorescent
• Fluorescent H
• Flash
• Underwater
• Custom 1
• Custom 2 
Orientation sensor  Yes
Self timer 2 or 10sec, custom
Continuous shooting • Approx 0.7fps until card is full (AF)
• Approx 0.8fps until card is full (LiveView)
• Approx 1.5fps until card is full (LCD monitor off)
Image parameters My Colors (My Colors Off, Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, Black & White, Positive Film, Lighter Skin Tone, Darker Skin Tone, Vivid Blue, Vivid Green, Vivid Red, Custom Color)
Flash • Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Slow Sync, Red-eye reduction
• +/- 2EV in 1/3 stop increments
• Face Detection FE compensation
• Safety FE
• Flash exposure lock
• Manual Power Adjustment (3 levels with internal flash, 19 with external EX Speedlite)
• Range (Internal, Auto ISO): 30cm – 4.0m (wide) / 2.5m (tele)
Viewfinder • Real-image zoom optical viewfinder
• Dioptre Correction 
LCD monitor • 3.0-inch P-Si TFT
• 230,000 pixels
• 100% coverage
• 15 levels of brightness adjustment
Connectivity • USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
• AV out (PAL / NTSC switchable) 

Phones tapped at the rate of 1,000 a day

By James Kirkup, Political Correspondent. Daily telegraph

Britain is in danger of becoming a “surveillance state” as authorities including councils launch bugging operations against 1,000 people a day.

Councils, police and intelligence services are tapping and intercepting the phone calls, emails and letters of hundreds of thousands of people every year, an official report said.
 
Those being bugged include people suspected of illegal fly-tipping as councils use little known powers to carry out increasingly sophisticated surveillance to catch offenders.

The report, by Sir Paul Kennedy, the Interception of Communications Commissioner, has fuelled fears that Britain is becoming a state where private communications are routinely monitored.

It also found that more than 1,000 of the bugging operations were flawed. In some cases, the phones of innocent people were tapped simply because of administrative errors.

David Winnick, a Labour member of the Commons home affairs committee, said greater legal protection was needed to prevent abuse of surveillance powers. Britain already has more CCTV cameras per person than any other country in the world.

advertisementHe said: “Most of these operations are needed and done for good reasons, but the numbers do raise concerns about the safeguards we have put in place to protect people from constant intrusion.”

Referring to George Orwell’s vision of a surveillance state, Mr Winnick added: “To walk blindfolded into 1984 is not anything that anybody in their right mind would want.”

Michael Parker of NO2ID, which campaigns against ID cards, said the figures showed the state’s desire to gather more information about people. “We are living in a surveillance state.”

The report shows that in the last nine months of 2006, there were 253,557 applications to intercept private communications under surveillance laws. It is understood that most were approved.

In that period 122 local authorities sought to obtain people’s private communications in more than 1,600 cases.

Councils are among more than 600 public bodies with the power to monitor people’s private communications.

Senior council officers are given the power to authorise surveillance in order to catch fly-tippers, benefit fraudsters and rogue traders. However, intelligence agencies must seek the permission of ministers while police need approval from chief constables.

Eric Pickles, the Conservative local government spokesman, said the use of surveillance powers against suspected fly-tippers was “completely over the top.”

Sir Paul, a senior judge with access to secret intelligence material, also reported 1,088 incidents where public bodies broke the rules on surveillance operations.

His report covers interception activities over a total of 264 days, during which time new applications for interception were made at a rate of 960 each day.

This did not include warrants personally issued by the Foreign Secretary and the Northern Ireland Secretary – thought to be several thousand – which are kept secret.

Each application under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act can cover several means of communication used by one named person, or all communications to and from a named building.

The Local Government Association defended the use of the powers against people “ruining the countryside or trying to take the taxpayer for a ride”.

Eric Metcalfe, a barrister who advises Justice, a civil rights group, called the findings “disturbing”. He added: “Putting the Home Secretary in charge of authorising interceptions is like putting the fox in charge of the henhouse.”

Shami Chakrabarti, the director of Liberty, said: “It beggars belief that in a nine-month period, based on these figures, the entire City of Westminster could have had their phones tapped – yet Britain remains one of the few Western countries that won’t allow this evidence to be used in court … to prosecute criminals and terrorists.”

But Sir Paul confirmed that MI5 and other intelligence agencies remain opposed to any change in the law.

Everybody seems to be listening in

A total of 653 state bodies — including 474 councils — have the power to intercept private communications.

Bugging is usually carried out by MI5, MI6, GCHQ and the police and most people are targeted on suspicion of terrorism or serious crime.

But under laws that came into force eight years ago hundreds of public bodies can carry out surveillance.

These include the Financial Services Authority, the Ambulance Service and local fire authorities and prison governors.
 
Daily Telegraph: Full Article

No chanting, no music, no banners, just a shuffle down Park Lane and onto Victoria to hand in a petition at the Home office.  Then on to the pub, i guess.

10 or 20,000 policemen demonstrated through London [depending on who you believe], to protest at their pay and conditions. Government say that they are ‘not moved’, since their offers are very generous.

The BBC reported ‘An extremely orderly protest’

Because of the police past attitudes to the policing of protest, a number of folks turned up to watch their progress with a view to making citizens arrests if their was any signs of disorder 🙂

Reports on the Indymedia UK newswire ‘Police demo … behind enemy lines’ 

Earlier on this blog, Police are upset, at a demonstration ban on pay & condition They were cross abount not being able to march to Parliament.  That blasted SOCPA law 🙂

Police anger at Commons march ‘ban’ [Observer]

and …… the icing on the cake  ………….

“BNP Chief at head of police march” [Evening Standard]

BNP chief on police march

A senior member of the BNP marched at the head of a huge police demonstration over pay in London today. Richard Barnbrook, the far-Right party’s leader in London, walked alongside top members of the Police Federation

Mr Barnbrook, a BNP councillor in Barking & Dagenham and a candidate in the election to pick London’s next Mayor, told the Standard he took part to support the police and denied his presence was an embarrassment. An estimated 22,500 off-duty police officers, many wearing white baseball caps with the logo “Fair play for police”, walked from Park Lane to Millbank, passing close to the Houses of Parliament.

Police Federation officials claimed they were powerless to prevent Mr Barnbrook from marching. Spokesman Metin Enver said he was not invited specifically but police officers recognised him when he turned up. He said: “Some of my colleagues saw we had the BNP Mayoral candidate with us. The one thing we want to make clear is we didn’t invite him. It wasn’t a closed march. He chose to attend by his own accord which is his right in a democracy. It is disappointing if anyone chose to join the march for their own agenda.

“We didn’t ask him to leave because whether we like it or not we live in a democracy.”

Mr Barnbrook said: “I was there to support the police. I spoke to one of the organisers of the march and I explained who I was and he was quite happy about it. We did some interviews for BNP TV. I spoke to a few Pcs and they were happy to talk.”  ……………

More from the Evening Standard >>>>

 

Riseup Radio is a community based podcast from Nottingham, UK. Reports, music and chat on stuff that matters. Join us for the monthly podcast…

http://riseupradio.wordpress.com

It will be a selection of audio reports, put together in an entertaining way, from Nottingham Indymedia.  http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/regions/nottinghamshire

I still liked ‘ nott-a-pod ‘ for a title …….. but they won’t listen!

The river has been rising all week.  Floods nowhere near as grim as in the summer and the levels are falling.  However there is another shed-load on the way. 

Earlier in the week, I had been along the Trent to the Watersports Centre at Holme Pierrepont and the whole course is underwater.  So, this loan Canoeist was playing, and ‘giving it some welly’, between the suspension and Trent Bridges, in Nottingham.

He had to mind out for the odd tree-truck passing by at speed though.

080120_083

080120_068

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080120_062

Went for a walk down by the river this afternoon.  I’d gone out to take some more pictures of the river, as it’s in flood.  But luckily, levels are falling again now. 

But I got distracted by these pieces of ‘wall arts’ so I thought I’d take a few pictures……

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080120_024

080120_009

080120_003

Yesterday 17 January 2008, I [with a few hundred others I hope] wrote to Meg Munn MP, Minister for Asia and the Pacific, Foreign and Commonwealth Office.  I wanted to know what was being done about it all. [see yesterdays blog entry…….]

Anyway, they have been released.  But there is no mention of investigation or charges being laid against those commiting, what to appears to me, to be a criminal act.  What’s new you might say.

This is the reply below.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Room G/108
Consular Directorate
Old Admiralty Building
Whitehall
SW1A 2PA
Tel: 0207 008 0145
Fax: 0207 008 0161
E-mail: liz.hawkins@fco.gov.uk

18 January 2008

Thank you for your e-mail about the detention of a British national on a Japanese whaling vessel to which I have been asked to reply as the assistant consular desk officer for Japan.

You will be pleased to learn that the British national has now been returned to Sea Shepherd’s vessel, the Steve Irwin.  During the incident, we remained in close touch with both the Japanese and Australian Governments.  We are grateful to the Australian Government for making one of their vessels available to effect the safe transfer of the two men from the Japanese whaling ship to their own ship.

Yours sincerely,

Liz Hawkins
Consular Directorate

HOWEVER …….

On viewing the Sea Shepherd News release pages at:

http://www.seashepherd.org/news/media_080118_2.html

they appear to have a different take on it all …….
Sea Shepherd News Release

Lack of Cooperation May Kill the Whales

From onboard the Steve Irwin in the Southern Oceans

The Australian Customs and Fisheries Patrol vessel Oceanic Viking has thrown the Sea Shepherd ship Steve Irwin off the trail of the Japanese fleet.

After picking up the two Sea Shepherd crewmembers from the Yushin Maru No. 2 the Oceanic Viking notified the Steve Irwin to head for a rendezvous point a few hours away.

This was unusual considering that the Yushin Maru No. 2 was only about ten miles away at the time. The Steve Irwin was forced to stop tailing the Yushin Maru No. 2 to meet up with the Oceanic Viking. This allowed the whaler to head off in an unknown direction to rejoin the factory ship Nisshin Maru.

After dropping off Benjamin Potts and Giles Lane, the Oceanic Viking headed off in a direction away from the Japanese fleet. The fleet then apparently changed course and has now been lost from Sea Shepherd. Greenpeace tagging along with the Nishin Maru has reported that the catcher boats have met back up with the main fleet.

Although Sea Shepherd has been relaying the position of the catcher boats to the Greenpeace ship Esperanza for the last three days, Greenpeace refuses reciprocate and refuses to reveal the present location of the fleet.

“With “allies” like the Australian government and Greenpeace, it is becoming increasing difficult to keep the Japanese fleet from killing whales,” said Captain Paul Watson. “Australian Customs deliberately led us away from the fleet and Greenpeace is guarding the coordinates like the crown jewels to prevent us re-locating the fleet.”    

Complicating the search is the fact that the Japanese have sent a new ship the Fukoyoshi No. 68 to shadow the Steve Irwin at all times. The vessel is not part of the whaling fleet. It’s a large Japanese drag trawler. It does not have any fishing gear onboard and seems to have more electronic gear than normal for a fishing vessel. This ship is apparently reporting the Steve Irwin’s position to the Japanese fleet.

Sea Shepherd has shut down whaling for a week. Unless the Steve Irwin can find the fleet soon, the killing will begin again. The Oceanic Viking will take pictures of dying whales and Greenpeace will hang banners, take pictures and continue on with their ineffective stunts. They will not stop the killing.

“If whales begin to die within the next few days, I will hold Greenpeace and the Australian government responsible,” said Captain Paul Watson. “They know we can stop the killing because whales don’t die when Sea Shepherd arrives. By leading us off the tail of the whalers and refusing to cooperate on coordinates they are deliberately helping the whalers to escape from Sea Shepherd and to resume the slaughter of the whales.  I understand that Greenpeace needs kill footage and images of “heroic eco-warriors” buzzing about in inflatables but that does not stop the harpoons. Our very presence will deter the Japanese from killing whales. Sea Shepherd is the best weapon that Greenpeace can use to stop the resumption of whaling. By withholding cooperation they are contributing to the death of the whales. If any whales are killed within the next week I will hold Greenpeace responsible for their deaths because they have the power to cooperate with Sea Shepherd to prevent the killing from continuing.”

The Steve Irwin is conducting helicopter surveillance patrols to re-locate the whaling fleet. The fleet should be within two hundred miles of Sea Shepherd.

>>

Now, if this is true, Greenpeace have just lost several brownie points in my view. I am likely to write to the national office, and ask what the fuck is going on. We don’t appear to be all on the same page.

also:

Sea Shepherd News :: Japanese Poachers Release Sea Shepherd Hostages
http://www.seashepherd.org/news/media_080118_1.html

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