January 2009 Archives

Film: A Japanese Funeral

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These days I've been busy editing my new film, titled A Japanese Funeral. A few months into my fieldworkin Japan, one of my informants died. I was given the opportunity to film the entire funeral sequence -- from the moment the body came back from the hospital to the cremation.

Editing it was very difficult emotionally for me. I'm close to the family, which is why I got the permission to film it. But it also means I feel a deep responsibility to make sure my informant's death is remembered properly.

The film is designed to be shown in the classroom. The current rough cut is 10 minutes, but after watching it today I think I cut it a bit too short and might expand it to 15 minutes. I want to screen it to a few more people first, though.

Meta: Upgraded to MT 4.23

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I upgraded our blogs to MovableType 4.23. I was panicked for a second since it looked like I had crashed the blogs badly and couldn't either upgrade or backout to the originals. What had happened was a typical n00b mistake in UNIX, I had copied the files to the mt-static directory but had accidentally copied the folder itself, not the contents, so for a while I had a directory named:


/usr/www/users/gpsy/photoethnography/mt-static/mt-static

with all the files in it and I couldn't figure out why it didn't work. Duh.

p.s. I wish MT did more sanity checking for idiots like me. :-)

I swear that at the American Anthropological Meeting, at least one third of the anthropologists that I met had an iPhone. What a bunch of geeks!

jesus.jpgIn case you didn't know, AT&T will often give you discounted / corporate rates on their monthly service charge if you are an employee of some companies. And most larger schools have these negotiated rates for their students, faculty, staff, and other affiliates.

I should've done this when I signed up for my Jesus-phone but I didn't know until a few months later when a colleague told me. I went down to my local AT&T store and showed them my Yale ID card and they input the discount code in the computer.

Two months later, I'm saving about $12 a month on my service. Not a whole lot, but it adds up to $144 a year.

I recently installed CHDK on my Canon A590IS, which allows me to take time lapse photos.

CHDK is a piece of software that provides additional functionality to Canon digital cameras. I have explained it to others as "jailbreaking" my camera, as some have done with their iPhones.

It is admittedly a little complicated to install CHDK onto the camera. The hard part is that you first have to use a hex editor to change the boot sector of the SD card to make it bootable. Once that is done you just copy the CHDK software over to the card, switch it to the locked position, put the card in the camera, and go.

One other caveat is that CHDK works best with FAT16 formatted media, which puts a 2GB limit on the amount of memory that is able to be used. For this reason I bought an extra 2GB card to put the CHDK software on instead of the 4GB card I already had.

Once you have the CHDK loaded there are various scripts that you can run. One script, the Ultra Intervalometer, allows you to specify how many photographs to take at what interval. This is the script I used.

The video you see above is from a set of pictures that were taken from 11:38 p.m. to 12:06 a.m. on New Year's Eve 2008. Make of it what you will. ( ^ _ ^ )

I used the "open image sequence" option in QuickTime Pro to make the video, then uploaded it to my Flickr account (which plays on iPhones).

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This page is an archive of entries from January 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

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