Hard Drive

Found an old hard drive and decided to take it apart to see how it looked inside. This drive, manufactured in 2008, boasted a capacity of 500GB, which is larger than the default storage for the current base model MacBook Air. Of course, hard drives are much slower than modern SSDs.

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Arc de Triomphe Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

ICI REPOSE UN SOLDAT FRANCAIS MORT POUR LA PATRIE

At the Arc de Triomphe, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier honors a soldier who died for his country during World War I. I visited during Bastille Day when the tomb was adorned with ribbons and flowers.

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Full Worm Moon

The last few nights have been overcast. I was able to see the Full Worm Moon this morning before sunrise. It soon descended into a low bank of clouds and disappeared.

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Arc de Triomphe and Les Misérables

Fans of Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables, the novel and the musical, should recognize this name on the Arc de Triomphe: Lamarque. The Paris riots that followed the funeral of General Jean Maximilien Lamarque is central to Les Misérables in that it provided Valjean the opportunity to save Javert and Marius Pontmercy.

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Sunrise over Gilead Sciences Campus

These buildings are located just to the right of the San Mateo-Hayward bridge. In the minutes before sunrise, the illumination from the building lights pair well with the emerging sunrise and the reflection in the waters of the San Francisco Bay.

I had to look up these buildings on Google Maps and they appear to be part of the Gilead Sciences campus in Foster City, California.

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San Mateo-Hayward Bridge

The last time I was at the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge, I was on the other side with the sunrise behind me. This time, I tried a new location and took a three-photo panorama.

With each passing week, the sun is starting to rise earlier and earlier. This shortens the shutter speed and the water ends up choppier. Will try again with an ND filter if the weather cooperates.

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Last Quarter Moon

Took a morning photo of the last quarter moon with 55% illumination. I used a Nikon AF-S Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens for this photo, so the moon was “smaller” than usual. At the 300mm focal length, I can still see the craters quite clearly and even the slow f/5.6 aperture is still two full stops faster than the f/11 aperture when using the telescope.

The focusing ring of the lens was adequate. It got the job done, but didn’t feel smooth and precise. However, I found it easier to focus using the camera lens because any minute vibration when using the telescope would send the image on the back of the camera oscillating.

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C-130 Hercules Soars Over Moffett Field

During lunch, I saw a Lockheed C-130 Hercules circling around Moffett Field. I think the plane was performing a touch and go because I would see it descend and take-off shortly after. Because the landing was obscured by the surrounding buildings, I was not 100% certain.

During one of its revolutions, another plane took off from Moffett Field. I was tracking the C-130 through the viewfinder and the appearance of another plane startled me.

I saw the C-130 Hercules take off from Moffett Field a few times. This photo has a mix of the old and new. Google is building its Bay View campus in the foreground while Moffett Federal Airfield Hangar 2 and 3 are in the background. At the top of the mountain, you can even see Lick Observatory.

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Two Moons

Two moons taken about a week apart. The top is a 82% illuminated waxing gibbous moon. ISO 1600 at 1/1,250s. The bottom is a 12% illuminated waxing crescent moon. ISO 1600 at 1/1,000s.

The crescent moon is actually quite dim so I had to adjust the exposure in post-processing more. The waxing gibbous moon was approaching a full moon in a few days. This is better than a full moon because where the light drops off, the craters are more visible.

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San Mateo-Hayward Bridge

On a quiet morning, I stopped by the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge just before sunrise. I could see some cars beginning their daily commute across the bridge while the sky was faintly illuminated in pink and purple hues. The water was glassy and still, except for a few early rising ducks who were already gliding across the San Francisco Bay.

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