Olympus Stylus Epic DLX

Okay, I like the new Olympus Stylus Epic DLX. The DLX portion has panorama and a quartz clock but aside from that it’s identical to the non-DLX version. I’m putting these into a set on my Flickr page, go take a look.

For this photo I left the flash on (I normally turn flash off) and I am really happy with the result. The camera is fully automatic, weather resistant, and with a little practice I think I’ll be able to take some good photos with it.

Read up on Rob Nunn’s post and video for some good information. I got mine on eBay and I consider it a good bargain.

The Stylus Epic is not as much fun as the Trip 35 but it’s small and takes really nice shots. And I’ve already taken it in the rain without any worry.

Still a sucker for WordPress beta

I took the plunge and once again used SVN to switch from running WordPress 3.1.3 to 3.2 beta. The betas are usually solid and I test my nightly backups on a different server from time to time.

Unless something really drastic happens to the WordPress repo, I’ll be fine with the beta.

The new fullscreen distraction free interface for composing posts? It’s unreal. The keyboard commands work fine, it’s just that the minimal GUI is hidden until you move the mouse. You “Just write” and that’s all there is to it. It’s just a blank page for you to type on.

The other improvements so far seem to be GUI based. I haven’t dug deeply into the documentation yet but my plugins work fine and I’m running a network of blogs from this installation. There is an oddity that when I load the post edit page, the TinyMCE does weird things during the load. Not a big deal and it sorts itself out in a second, just strange is all.

So far I like it. WordPress continues to improve and the beta keeps that record going strong.

Using IPv6

When IPv6 day came around, I installed Squid3 and a IPv6 tunnel setup on my in-house Linux server. I used the instructions from Ubuntu’s Wiki and made some minor configuration changes to Squid3 and that was it. You need to use version 3; version 2 of Squid lacks the right support.

The tunnel broker I am using is Hurricane Electric’s excellent Tunnel Broker. Just create an account, provide some information and you are good to go.

Easy! Now using Squid3 I can browse to Google and CNN’s IPv6 pages without any hiccup. I preferred to do it this way because setting up my Linux server as an IPv6 gateway would have required more (not much) work from me. This was quick to do and I had no problems.

Moving on, I created another HE tunnel on this web server. Using Apache 2 virtual hosts, I just added to the config file these lines.

<VirtualHost [2001:470:1f10:f10::2]:80>

 ServerAdmin webmaster@localhost
 ServerName blog.dembowski.net
 ServerAlias *.blog.dembowski.net
 ServerAlias photo.dembowski.net
 ServerAlias blog.epyon-1.com

 DocumentRoot /var/www/vhosts/blog.dembowski.net/
 #DocumentRoot /home/jan/public_html/

 <Directory />
 Options FollowSymLinks -Indexes
 AllowOverride All
 </Directory>

 ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/blog.dembowski.net-error.log

 # Possible values include: debug, info, notice, warn, error, crit,
 # alert, emerg.
 LogLevel warn

 CustomLog /var/log/apache2/blog.dembowski.net-access.log combined
 ServerSignature On

</VirtualHost>

The lines are duplicated from the existing vhost entry. I substituted the A record address of 209.20.89.108 with the AAAA record address of 2001:470:1f10:f10::2. This address was provided by Hurricane Electric.

Next up was to update my dembowski.net DNS zone by adding the AAAA record. This is the IPv6 address record and now my DNS name blog.dembowski.net has two entries.

blog.dembowski.net. 900 IN A 209.20.89.108
blog.dembowski.net. 900 IN AAAA 2001:470:1f10:f10::2

I restarted Apache and now when a IPv4 or v6 request comes in, it gets handled by correct IP address and all is well. My server and proxy logs show which address I am hitting, and the site validates.

So what did this get me? Nothing really, except to show how easy it is to add IPv6 to your site and web connection. A buddy of mine almost exclusively uses IPv6 only at home. The old address space is or has ran out (depending on how and who you ask). Migrating to anything new can be a challenge but really, there is no reason for ISPs or hosting providers to not support IPv6.

Waiting for my new toy

The film camera bug has hit me pretty hard. I’ve been using one of my Olympus Trip 35 cameras (see above taken last weekend) and have purchased an Olympus Stylus Epic DLX from someone on eBay. The new one is it’s way and should be here next week.

You can read up on the Olympus Stylus Epic here and for here is a copy of Popular Photograhy’s review here. The DLX version is the same but adds Quartz date and a panoramic mode. This model was introduced in 1997 and like many older cameras is available on eBay.

I’m getting this one because it’s compact, opens wide (f/2.8), and has a reputation for taking sharp photos. It’s also weather resistant (splash proof) and is fully automatic.

Unlike the Trip 35, it’s very electrical and has no manual features. It should be perfect for the kids to use and I’ll give it a try as a walk about camera for street photography.