Friday, April 27, 2012

Space Shuttle Enterprise over New York City

With the Space Shuttle Enterprise's trip to New York City finally happening today, after a few reschedules due to weather, I arranged to take the morning off from work and figured I'd go to Battery Park on the southern tip of Manhattan to see it.

It was colder than I expected, and as one guy nearby commented, colder than it was all winter. I got a spot raised slightly above the park, where there were a few other spectators as well.

I was there for over an hour as it got more crowded, including at least one person who got a phone call from someone in Washington D.C. who told him when it was taking off so we'd know when to expect it.

With patchy clouds the sun shone off it different between photos, and I wasn't able to get a good, consistent exposure setting on my camera in manual mode (or at least, not for a clumsy guy like me who can't fiddle with the camera and capture a moving object). And I also realized just how dirty my filter is on the lens…

I used it in full automatic mode on the shuttle's first pass, and then on aperture priority mode on the second, with poor results.  But a few of the second pass photos are still nice because the contrast between the shuttle and the sky is much different.

In June they'll be moving it to the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum, which is just a couple of blocks from my apartment.

Here it is going by the Status of Liberty.

Cropped closer shot of it passing by.

Here it comes!  Past the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, and over Governor's Island.

Here it comes!  Past the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, and over Governor's Island.

Here's people closer to the river, not blocked by the structure I was on, following it as it heads north...

Here's the second pass, coming down the Hudson from the north.  This is where I switched to aperture mode on my camera, with it set for the narrowest (i.e. slowest) aperture so I'd have the longest exposures.  I was hoping to do that and try the "zoom effect" but really it was too far away for that to be effective, and by then my fingers were shaky from the cold wind...

Bye, bye Enterprise...

Overall, it was fun.  And just seeing something so cool makes me think my job is very boring and doesn't result in much interesting.

Monday, April 23, 2012

M - The Doormat

A previous occupant of the apartment I just moved into here in Manhattan left the doormat for me.  At first I sighed and thought it didn't suit me, but I wasn't going to bother ever buying a new one.

But then I realized it does suit me.  Both of my late grandfathers' initials were M, for Marty and Morris.

Now I remember them almost every time I come home.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

I Haven't Been Trained On That (or a mild work rant...)

For years at a previous job, where over time I'd written a lot of code for a number of modules of our software, including creating whole modules by myself, one of my favorite jokes was when someone would come to my desk to ask me how a particular part of the software worked, especially if I knew the querent knew I wrote that part, I'd answer "don't ask me, I haven't gotten training on it yet."

I was just trying to be a little funny, and even if I said it with a straight face, I still didn't let them leave my desk without giving an answer to their actual question.  Whether it was funny or not is not my current point...

Unfortunately at my current job, that is the actual answer I get to a lot of my queries of other developers who've been working on the software far longer than I have.  The developers who wrote parts of the software tell me things like "I know I wrote it, but I don't remember how it works, you'll have to figure it out on your own."

For the last few months I've had one task on my plate that has me sort of whipped...  But I can't get any instructions on how to set up the test data to duplicate the problem so I can come up with a solution.  The answer I get from the developers who've worked on it is "talk to So-and-So" and when I talk to that person, "I don't remember, read the source code."

And it's not like I remember every detail about all the code I've written, and when people have asked me questions about my code, I haven't always been able to give an immediate answer.  I've resorted to "let me review and do a little research, and I'll get back to," but currently I don't really get that, I just get a "I don't know, you're on your own," sort of answer.