Over the course of the Summer, Ruby the Cat acquired this habit of plopping down right on my desk, right on my deskpad and sometimes right on the mouse and mousepad. No biggie. My work schedule was reduced or nonexistent, as is typical for academia, so mostly I was just farting around on the internet when she did it, so I would just give her the attention she wanted or let her nap if that was her idea.
But with the semester starting and a six-class load, I really need to concentrate sometimes, and sometimes under time pressure, so I rearranged a little. I moved my little solid-wood bookshelf I use for reference books to create a new perch for her right next to me at the desk. It's the nicest bookshelf I own and the only one I paid full price for rather than get at a thrift store or garage sale because particle-board-junk shelves can't take the weight:
Yesterday was the first day of classes
Then I got a call from my local phone store. My Note 8 was in ten days early and Samsung had authorized Verizon to issue them to anyone who had pre-ordered in August!!! So I immediately cancelled class and whipped down to the store to get my new phone (not really, but I thought about it). While I was there Elizabeth the Phone Lady brought my phone out to her work station but there were a few people ahead me in line so I had to wait. Impatiently, I might add.
While she was helping the other folks I took out my old phone to take a picture of my new phone and tweet it but she said "Ack, this isn't a public program yet, would you mind not tweeting it yet?"
I was somewhat skeptical that every Verizon customer who had pre-ordered would keep the secret but I said sure because by then I realized I had captured the proof-of-purchase sticker and the phone's serial number, which would be a terribly stupid thing to tweet out. I bought a tempered-glass screen protector and an OtterBox to go with. This is a picture of Ruby on her new perch
with my new Note 8 with the tempered-glass and the OtterBox I just mentioned:
I hooked up to my home wifi, transferred most of my apps and then poked around my new phone, literally, poked around with the new and improved stylus. The stylus is the big reason most so-called "power users" love the Note Series, but personally, although the stylus comes in handy on occasion, I'm not really a power user. There's also Bixby, Samsung's Siri knockoff, but I haven't even turned it on yet. I think I will though because it might be cool thing to use in class. All I ever really wanted was a bigger screen for my eyes and I grew to love love LOVE always having a high-quality camera in my pocket.
The camera is so complicated I don't know what I'm doing yet. I think I got into "Live Focus," (what Apple calls "Portrait Mode" on their high-end phone) but I'm not sure. Haven't even had time to familiarize myself with all the settings. But heck, I'm a guy, so who needs a manual? I just picked it up and started taking pictures. Here's the first two I took:
I dunno what I did here, but I took the darker picture, then tapped her nose for focus and the lighting changed. Apparently the autofocus is much improved, and faster, and there's a "low light" sensor. But I'm not sure yet.
There's a huge difference in shutter speed, even noticeable to an amateur like me. While I was doing the shoot, like the way professional photographers do, I ordered Ruby to roll around and act sexy, the way professional models do. I was stunned at the capture. I'm not joking--I have probably 1,500 images on my hard drive ruined by Ruby rolling or jumping or otherwise blurring the action. The pic makes her look like she was frozen still, but trust me, she was in the process of rolling around:
I knew when I moved my bookcase that cats have claws. I was hoping she wouldn't scratch my nicest bookcase, but, well, cats have claws. I told you she was no angel! Anyway, took this pic to see how fine the detail would be. Totally raw, no cropping or adjusting at all:
I can't say much else about the Note 8 that you can't find elsewhere written by pros at this biz. Like most of them, I can definitely tell the difference with the RAM boosted to 6G, for instance, but you really shouldn't listen to me on that. But for the one thing I care about most, the camera, I absolutely love so far.
It's truly incredible. And like Ruby with the bookcase, I've barely scratched the surface.
Ha ha, see what I did there?