A good novel: Blindsight by Peter Watts

Just finished reading Blindsight by Peter Watts. It is really good. It discusses identity and consciousness with a backdrop of a very good story. To be honest, it is a bit hard to follow. I had to read some passage many times. I still probably understood less than half of the ideas behind the story. I will definitely re-read it in near future. This novel has renewed my interest in philosophy.

Also Peter Watts released this novel under Creative Commons, so you can read it for free at http://www.rifters.com/real/Blindsight.htm. Or buy at Amazon (Affiliate link).

 

Links

Here is a collection of various sites, blogs, forums that I read or follow.

Technology:

Startup & Business:

Small Blogs:

Photography:

Mega Blogs with Multiple Focuses:

Once a Photographer

A few years ago, I had sold all my camera gear. Got a small mirrorless camera instead. I called my photography days over. I did all that mostly to simplify my life and focus on programming and work.

But photography is very important part of me. It has been my hobby since childhood. So this year, I plan to take up photography more seriously and possibly restart doing it semi-professionally.

A New Camera

So now I am looking for a new camera. Now I would really like a full frame camera but I am open to crop cameras too. What I really care about is:

  • A good indoor performance,
  • A good fast zoom lens with a range of ~24mm-100mm,
  • Inexpensive,
  • Professional looking. (Only because clients may not take one seriously if they don’t have a professional looking huge camera.)

Although last point is not so important, because I don’t plan to do weddings or event photography or anywhere where I have to work not with just client but multiple parties. If I am just working with client, I can educate them that small cameras can produce just as beautiful photos as any other camera.

I have narrowed down my options but still a lot of research to be done. I listing my options here and I will update this as I do more research.

Sony Alpha a6000

This is the smallest and cheapest camera. It is highly rated. Probably the best mirrorless camera right now.

Cost:

Camera (body only): $550

Sony 18-105mm F4: $600

Sony 16-70mm F4: $1000

Total estimate cost: $1150 – $1550 – $1750. (more likely $1150).

Pros:

  1. I already have a couple of lenses that will work with this camera; 50mm f/1.8 Lens & the kit lens of Nex-3N.
  2. Cheapest option.
  3. Small enough to take on vacations.

Cons:

  1. Slow autofocus in low light due to Contrast Detection.
  2. Maybe not the best option for working with clients.

 

Sony a7 Full-Frame

Cost:

Sony a7 Full-Frame: $1300 (Body only), $1600 (with 28-70mm lens, $500 lens).

Sony 24-70mm F4: $1200 – Online reviews indicate it is overpriced and marginally better than kit lens.

Total estimate cost: $1600 – $2500

Nikon D610

Cost:

Nikon D610: $1500

Nikon 24-85mm f/2.8-4.0: $670 – I want top low light performance

Nikon 24-120mm f/4: $1300

Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8: $1900

Total estimate cost: $2170 – $2800 – $3400

 

Nikon D750

Cost:

Nikon D750: $2300 (body only), $3000 (with 24-120mm f/4 lens)

Nikon 24-85mm f/2.8-4.0: $670 – I want top low light performance

Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8: $1900

Total estimate: $3000 – $4200

I like the idea of mirrorless full-frame cameras but I have read that mirrorless camera have difficulty focusing in dark.

UPDATE 1/12/15: Right now, I am leaning to D750 with either 24-70mm lens or 24-120mm. 24-120mm lens is cheaper and has VR, meaning better for movies. 24-70mm would be a perfect low light zoom lens but it lack VR. Movies would be shaky. I wish I could afford both lenses

The Best Pocketable Point & Shoot Camera

Sony RX100 M3
Sony RX100 M3

Sony DSC-RX100M III is the highest rated point & shoot camera according to number of camera & photography experts like:

I wish I had bought this instead of Sony Nex-3N. However, since my camera is almost brand new, I cannot justify buying another camera just yet. But for anyone in market for a new camera, my suggestion would be this RX100 M3. I recommend a smaller camera because it is easier to carry and you use it more. I used to have a bulky DSLR but I sold that and got Nex-3N because it was smaller and I use it more often.

Also I prefer dedicated camera because not only the picture quality on high-end cameras is better but also high-end cameras are easier to use. Even easier than using cell phone cameras.

Here is a video comparing Sony RX100 M3 with another camera, Fuji X30.


 

Above links to Amazon are affiliate links.