Monthly Archives: February 2007

Canon Ixus 65 Digital Camera

On the weekend, Claire and I ventured down to our local Harvey Norman and Domayne super stores to investigate buying a new portable digital camera. Claire and I first dipped our toes into the world of digital cameras about three years ago when we purchased a Canon Ixus 400. At the time, the Canon Ixus 400 was one of the upper models within the Canon portable range and we paid approximately AUD$1150 for it including some simple accessories.

After a lot of use and wear and tear, the Canon Ixus 400 is still in perfect working order; it just seemed like a good time to upgrade to something a little more current. After investigating what sort of features the current range of compact digital cameras have, we came out with a short list:

  • 6.0+ megapixels
  • 2.5+ inch LCD screen
  • 3x+ optical zoom
  • Physically about the size of a pack of cards
  • Very light

The two serious contenders where the Canon Ixus 65 and an Olympus FE240. On paper, the two cameras have an excellent feature set:

  Canon Ixus 65 Olympus FE240
Megapixels 6.0 megapixels 7.1 megapixels
LCD Screen 3 inch 2.5 inch
Optical Zoom 3x 5x
Dimensions (mm) 90.3 (w) x 56.8 (h) x 20.2 (d) 93.5 (w) x 56.0 (h) x 23.4 (d)
Weight (g) 145 (chassis only) 115 (chassis only)
Image Size (px) 2816 x 2112
2272 x 1704
1600 x 1200
640 x 480
3072 x 2304
2048 x 1536
1920 x 1080 (16:9)
640 x 480

When you look at the above list, both digital cameras have an excellent feature set. However, considering its a portable camera – the numbers are not the be all and end all of buying. It’s important to actually try and use the camera and navigate through the menu options to do other actions as well. When navigating through the menu options, the Canon Ixus 65 had a superior navigation system, there is no doubt about it. The buttons on the camera were easier to use and I personally thought that the on screen display was easier to understand as well.

Both cameras have a feature called image stabilisation, which essentially means its meant to deal with you moving the camera around while taking a photo. It turns out, holding a camera that is only 100-150gm perfectly still while taking a photo is quite difficult and without the image stabilisation technology, all of your photos will turn out blurry because you’re moving (without realising it). After taking a handful of photos, it seemed that the Canon had the goods over the Olympus. What I’m not totally sure about is whether being indoors may or may not have had any impact on that.

Both of the portable cameras have large LCD view finders – especially when compared to the 1.5″ LCD on the Canon Ixus 400. The Olympus FE240 has the smaller of the two LCDs and unfortunately it also lacked the clarity of the larger Canon display. The colour through the Olympus was pretty reasonable, however you could see what appeared to be grid lines from the crystals in the LCD. It wouldn’t have bothered me particularly, knowing that it wouldn’t have an impact on the image quality of the photos – however Claire thought it was quite important since you quite often end up showing people photos which are on your digital camera.

In the end, both of these compact digital cameras were more than capable of taking your happy snaps. We ended up going with the Canon as our existing Ixus 400 has been such a reliable little unit. The image quality on the LCD on the Canon was clearly better than on the Olympus and the Canon Ixus 65 also had quite a few different photo filters (such as sepia, black & white, black & white with feature colours, ..).

I can’t wait to take it for a run when we’re out and about next and report back with some, what are hopefully, some nice photos.

Chinchilla Melon Festival

The bi-inaugural Chinchilla Melon Festival was held this year between February 10th and February 18th. Chinchilla is a small and vibrant township located approximately 300Km West of Brisbane. Once upon a time it was a typically sleepy country town, however in the last few years Chinchilla has become a hive of activity with power stations and coal & gas exploration common place.

The Chinchilla Melon Festival celebrates all things melon including water melon, rock melon and honey dew. The week of the festival culminates on the Saturday with back to back events taking place from very early in the morning. Patrons are encouraged to take part and experience the whole event starting with a poets breakfast and finishing late in the evening with a free concert.

The Melon Festival is a family oriented event with lots of fun things for the kids to do, some of which include:

  • Pip spitting
  • Melon bungy
  • Melon skiing
  • Melon smashing

It is recommended that you bring an older set of clothes for your children if you intend to let them loose for the Chinchilla Melon Festival. Due to the nature of the event, a lot of the activities involve broken and smashing melons; which get quite sticky and makes a bit of a mess. You’re kids will love it, its a whole bunch of fun!

This year everyone was privileged to witness Australia reclaim a Guiness World Record for the most water melons smashed in sixty seconds. You’re probably thinking that you could smash a whole lot of water melons in sixty seconds; well you probably could with your hands but the record is for using your head! The record has been floating back and forward between a bunch of Italians and Australians for the last few years. Fortunately, this time our Australian competitor stamped his authority on the title – beating out the existing record by seven water melons. Amazingly, he was so far in front of the existing record that he actually ran out of water melons to bust on the competition table – so maybe he could have got a handful more in!

If you’re looking for something fun to do with the family in February 2009 (I know it seems like a long way off), you should consider the Chinchilla Melon Festival but remember to book your accommodation early; its a very popular event!

LinkedIn Profile Error

LinkedIn in error has added a previous job role to my list which I have never held.This evening I received a notification via LinkedIn about some contacts within my immediate reach which I didn’t know about. After sending out a couple of invitations which make sense to have within my network, I clicked into my profile to see the above item listed.

In the last approximately three years with BreakFree and subsequently Stella Resorts Group, my roles have been within the realm of development and business analysis. As you can imagine, I was a little shocked to see an incomplete previous position listed on my profile.

At a guess, this error must have happened in the last month or so; as I don’t remember it being there the last time I logged in. What is peculiar, is that the title of the position is for the right company and overlaps with my time with BreakFree and Stella Resorts Group. If it was going to error in this fashion, I would have expected a totally random job from an unrelated business or industry.

I don’t have a way of explaining it, so for the moment it has been removed and I’ll be keeping an eye on it in the future.

What’s In That Book?

I haven’t participated in a meme for a long time but Zac posted one I thought was kind of cool, so I’ll give it a lash.

  1. Grab the nearest book. (Don’t you dare dig for that cool or intellectual book in your closet) Or anything with words and enough pages to complete this task. You remember books, those thin strips of dead trees that have lots of words printed on them bound together down 1 side. People used to have them before eBooks and digital paper.
  2. Open the book to page 123.
  3. Find the fifth sentence.
  4. Post the text of the next 3 sentences on your blog along with these instructions.

There are legal constraints, regulatory constraints and constraints imposed by distribution systems. There may be constraints of time and constraints of price. The constraints may be constant or they may be changing.

The above came out of an Edward de Bono book named Thinking Course.