### The old bang-the-hell-out-of-it solution

Last year we bought a Canon PowerShot SD780IS Digital Elph camera (say that five times fast). It has been a great camera and together with our iPhones has taken most of the photography that appears on our blog.

So we were extremely saddened when the camera refused to open its sleepy eye one morning when John was trying to upload new pics to our computer. We of course didn't have our original receipt (who keeps all their receipts?!), so we weren't optimistic that our warranty would be valid.

Well, tonight Erin put in some serious web research and found a solution. After reading through hundreds of posts on various Canon/digital-camera help sites she found one solution kept popping up again and again: Just bang it on a hard surface and the lens will dislodge and deploy properly. We weren't the only ones to doubt the wisdom of this violent solution:

Another option was to send it in to Canon where they would likely deem the cause of the problem "improper or harsh usage" and charge $200 for the fix. A new camera is only$180!
Nope.

Fortunately there was an alternative to the banging it solution: shake it vigorously while turning it on. Well, Erin gave it a shot and it worked! Our comatose camera miraculously woke up and took a picture of a surprised John and a hysterically laughing Erin.

Just in time for Owen's first day of kindergarten and Mar's first day of preschool tomorrow! More soon.

blissful_e said…
I'll keep this in mind if we ever have a similar problem with our Canon.

Love the surprise/laughing photos! :)
Bonzer said…
OMG. I'm pretty sure a little pee came out.
TheOtherMother said…
Dear People in Charge of Where I Get a Job,

I hope that this blog post helps you understand why I pray for a job in Los Angeles.

Love,
Lindsay
Christine said…
That may be my favorite pic of Erin...and that is saying a lot! I thought this post would be a photo of the kids beating the heck out of a toy...but apparently it's the parents beating the heck out of their toy.

### On the Height of J.J. Barea

Dallas Mavericks point guard J.J. Barea standing between two very tall people (from: Picassa user photoasisphoto).

Congrats to the Dallas Mavericks, who beat the Miami Heat tonight in game six to win the NBA championship.

Okay, with that out of the way, just how tall is the busy-footed Maverick point guard J.J. Barea? He's listed as 6-foot on NBA.com, but no one, not even the sports casters, believes that he can possibly be that tall. He looks like a super-fast Hobbit out there. But could that just be relative scaling, with him standing next to a bunch of extremely tall people? People on Yahoo! Answers think so---I know because I've been Google searching "J.J. Barea Height" for the past 15 minutes.

So I decided to find a photo and settle the issue once and for all.

I then used the basketball as my metric. Wikipedia states that an NBA basketball is 29.5 inches in circumfe…

### Finding Blissful Clarity by Tuning Out

It's been a minute since I've posted here. My last post was back in April, so it has actually been something like 193,000 minutes, but I like how the kids say "it's been a minute," so I'll stick with that.
As I've said before, I use this space to work out the truths in my life. Writing is a valuable way of taking the non-linear jumble of thoughts in my head and linearizing them by putting them down on the page. In short, writing helps me figure things out. However, logical thinking is not the only way of knowing the world. Another way is to recognize, listen to, and trust one's emotions. Yes, emotions are important for figuring things out.
Back in April, when I last posted here, my emotions were largely characterized by fear, sadness, anger, frustration, confusion and despair. I say largely, because this is what I was feeling on large scales; the world outside of my immediate influence. On smaller scales, where my wife, children and friends reside, I…

### The Force is strong with this one...

Last night we were reviewing multiplication tables with Owen. The family fired off doublets of numbers and Owen confidently multiplied away. In the middle of the review Owen stopped and said, "I noticed something. 2 times 2 is 4. If you subtract 1 it's 3. That's equal to taking 2 and adding 1, and then taking 2 and subtracting 1, and multiplying. So 1 times 3 is 2 times 2 minus 1."

I have to admit, that I didn't quite get it at first. I asked him to repeat with another number and he did with six: "6 times 6 is 36. 36 minus 1 is 35. That's the same as 6-1 times 6+1, which is 35."

Ummmmm....wait. Huh? Lemme see...oh. OH! WOW! Owen figured out

x^2 - 1 = (x - 1) (x +1)

So $6 \times 8 = 7 \times 7 - 1 = (7-1) (7+1) = 48$. That's actually pretty handy!

You can see it in the image above. Look at the elements perpendicular to the diagonal. There's 48 bracketing 49, 35 bracketing 36, etc... After a bit more thought we…