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14 March 2016

In this recurring column, we highlight a few items we've run across that don't merit a full story of their own but are interesting enough to bring to your attention (with more than 140 characters). This time we look at parfocalness, lithium batteries on commercial flights, a rig only a journalist could love and how to speed up Time Machine.

  • In Mythbusting: Parfocal Photo Zooms, Roger Cicala explains why no zoom stays in focus while changing focal lengths.
  • In The Real Lithium Story, Thom Hogan addresses reports that "lithium batteries will be restricted on passenger planes starting April 1." Only 160+ watt-hour batteries are banned. A Nikon EN-EL15 is 14 watt hours, for example. Here's the Lithium Batteries as Cargo in 2016 Update III official update as a PDF.
  • Speaking of journalist rigs (as he was last week), Kirk Tuck details A Workable Rig For 'Man in the Street' Interviews. The Sony RX10 II with a Rode Reporter microphone and a Beachtek D2A to bridge the audio to the camera. He's going to test it today at SXSW.
  • Unix systems prioritize tasks and Time Machine modestly takes a low priority. In Massively speed up Time Machine backups, Mac Kung Fu reveals a one-line command to prevent the utility from assuming a low priority and thus finish the task quicker. If you step away from the keyboard during backups anyway, this may make you dance right back.

More to come! Meanwhile, please support our efforts...

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