“Camera” is Latin for “Room”

“Camera” is Latin for “Chamber”, or “Room”.

“Aperture” is Latin for “Opening”.

To make a room-sized camera, you’ll need a room with an opening that can let light in.

An 11-foot by 9-foot room will be the interior of our camera.

A 70-inch by 25-inch window is the aperture that controls how much light enters the room.

By darkening the room and placing various-sized holes over the window, we can begin to see an image of the outside world on the interior walls of the room.

The effect is similar that of a photographic camera… but this camera is large enough to also house the photographer within it.

Cycling through various window aperture sizes  (click or tap image to see comparison)

If we replace the circular window aperture with an elongated slit, we get different effects, as shown below.

Replacing the circular window aperture with a vertical slit  (click or tap image to see comparison)

To try this experiment yourself, you’ll need three things:

  • A room that can be darkened
  • A window
  • Cardboard with a hole in it, to serve as the aperture

Get the room as dark as possible, and then cover the window with the cardboard aperture.

Small cardboard aperture = dimmer but sharper image.

Large cardboard aperture = brighter but fuzzier image.

(click or tap image to see comparison)

To see the whole camera-obscrura-making process, including the totally-unnecessary math equations, here’s a video with basically the same content you can view in these gif images.

How To Fit A GIANT Pizza Box Into A Small Refrigerator

There are more than 20 pizza “giant pizza” restaurants in San Diego.

“Giant” pizzas are typically 28″ in diameter.

“Giant” pizza boxes are usually 30″ squares, which just barely fit through a standard-size 32″ door frame.

Unless you have a “giant” refrigerator, you may be unable to fit a “giant” pizza box into your fridge.

Solution? Scissors!

Fitting a Giant Pizza into a Tiny Fridge

How To Fit A Large Pizza Box Into A Small Refrigerator

Sometimes I bring home pizza, only to discover that the pizza box is too large to fit in my refrigerator.

One solution is to cut the large pizza box so that it becomes two small pizza boxes.

This technique is suitable for fitting 28” pizza boxes into a standard-size refrigerator.

This technique works for fitting pizza boxes into hotel mini-fridge units.

Coffee Grinder Comparison: Comandante and Hario

Does a $130 coffee grinder make better-tasting coffee than a $16 coffee grinder?

Short Answer: No, they both produce good-tasting coffee.

Long Answer: The grinder is just one aspect out of many that contribute to the quality of the finished cup of coffee.

Things I learned while performing this side-by-side comparison:

  • The Comandante-style grinder took 41 seconds to grind 21 grams of coffee beans and the Hario-style grinder took twice as long (90 seconds) to grind 21 grams of coffee beans.
  • Both grinders produced grounds that appeared similar BUT the grounds from the Hario-style coffee grinder took 45 seconds longer to finish brewing, compared to the Comadante-style grinder.
  • The finished cup of coffee from both grinders tasted great, despite the differences I listed above.

Does this mean that that your coffee will taste good regardless of the coffee grinder you use?

Maybe.

In my specific case, it’s likely that since both coffee cups were made using identical beans, identical brewing methods, and identical amounts of filtered water, the resulting coffee cups were largely identical.

Controlling variables in your coffee-brewing process is the best way to ensure a quality cup of coffee, morning after morning.

There was a time where my coffee-making process was highly disorganized and I would never be able to pour the same cup of coffee twice.

I wish to think James Hoffmann for his series of coffee-related YouTube videos; thanks to James’ videos, I’ve learned a great deal about how to make a consistently-good cup of coffee.

If you read all the way to the bottom of this blog post, it’s likely that you will also like James Hoffmann’s videos.

If you’re still reading all the way to the bottom of this blog post, then maybe it’s because you’re looking for links to the specific grinders I used.

Here are my Amazon Affiliate links to the grinders.

If you click the links I’ve included, I may receive a percentage of the sale.

If you prefer to avoid Amazon, try searching for “Hario-Style Coffee Grinder” or “Comandante-Style Coffee Grinder”.

Comandante-Style Coffee Grinder – JUNOESQUE JM40 : https://amzn.to/30Gxmt2

Hario-Style Coffee Grinder – Mixpresso : https://amzn.to/3huRIfR

“Spit Kills” T-Shirt Creation

I got a fabric marker and a white T-shirt from the art store.

My intent was to make a T-shirt with the slogan “Spit Kills”.

The resulting shirt is satisfactory, hence this blog post.

“Spit Kills” slogan with stick figures
Sketch Draft, as shown on the Rapid-Prototype Board (Dry-Erase Board)
Using scrap cardboard to visualize the text layout & size on the First Draft shirt.
Finished Second Draft T-shirt, with binder clips to prevent the shirt from bunching while I drew on it.
Showing the First Draft and the Second Draft. I like the Second Draft better, for a lot of reasons.
Same comparison, but with a button-up shirt over it. I definitely like the Second Draft better.

To learn more, visit www.SpitKills.org

Experiment: Salt-Soaked Face Coverings

This experiment tests how much bacteria remains on face-covering fabric bandanas that are soaked in an iodized salt-water solution, compared to bandanas that are not soaked in an iodized salt-water solution.

Experiment Origin:

This experiment is inspired by a scientific study published by Nature, in 2017.

Quan, F.-S. et al. Universal and reusable virus deactivation system for respiratory protection. Sci. Rep. 7, 39956; doi: 10.1038/srep39956 (2017).

The Nature article explains testing done on fabric face masks that were soaked in a salt solution, with intent to reduce viral transmission in face masks.

I am an amateur scientist and I do not have the ability to test for viral transmission of my salt-bandana face coverings.

While I can not test for viruses at home, I can test for bacteria on my homemade salt-bandana face covers.

Process:

– Five clean bandanas are soaked for 60 minutes in a 1:4 salt-water solution

– Allow the five salt-soaked bandanas to air dry

– Wear each individual bandana as a protective face covering while doing everyday tasks

– The five salt-soaked bandanas are then swabbed with sterile cotton

– Salt-soaked bandana swabs are brushed on agar in petri dishes

– Petri dishes are left in an 80 degree F kitchen cabinet for 72 hours

– Results are then observed and cataloged

Results:

Petri dishes containing the result of the salt-bandana experiment, 72 hours after being swabbed.

All five salt-soaked bandanas show evidence of bacteria in their petri dishes

All five petri dishes showed evidence of small white, yellow, and red circular blobs

Three of the five petri dishes showed evidence of white fuzz

Conclusions:

No definitive conclusions can be drawn from this experiment, due to the relatively-small sample size.

Next Time:

-Collect larger sample size (30 bandanas instead of 5)

-Wear the bandanas in a variety of different environments (beach, park, restaurant)

-Wear the bandanas in different weather conditions (sun, fog, mist)

-Wear salt-soaked bandanas while driving (windows down, air conditioning on)

-Ask friends to wear salt-soaked bandanas and return them for swabbing

Possible Name: BandaNaCl

(NaCl is the chemical formula for salt)

Ghost World – A Visual Soundtrack

Ghost World is a movie from 2001.

It does not have ghosts, but it does have great music.

In this re-edit of Ghost World, I’ve removed all dialog and sound effects.

The result is a “Visual Soundtrack”, allowing the music to be enjoyed in a new context.

Jump to a song in the movie:

01 – “Jaan Pehechaan Ho” – Mohammed Rafi

02 – “Graduation Rap” – Vanilla, Jade, and Ebony

03 – “Disco Hippie” – Play

04 – “What Do I Get” – The Buzzcocks

05 – “Devil Got My Woman” – Skip James

06 – “Devil Got My Woman” – Skip James

07 – “Georgia On My Mind” – Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks

08 – “I Must Have It” – Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks

09 – “Scalding Hot Coffee Rag” – Craig Ventresco

10 – “Pickin’ Cotton Blues” – Blueshammer

11 – “Venezuela” – Lionel Belasco

12 – “Miranda” – Lionel Belasco

13 – “Solid As A Rock” – Ashford and Simpson

14 – “Las Palmas De Maracaibo” – Lionel Belasco

15 – “Theme From Ghost World” – David Kitay

Skillet Pizza Recipe

This is a recipe that I know by heart.

Makes 1 large skillet pizza, or two medium ones, depending on skillet depth. 

Liberally oil a 10” cast iron skillet and set aside. (Or two 6” skillets)

  • 250 grams flour 
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp yeast
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water (110 degrees)
  • Optional** 3 Tbsp ground flax 

Make the yeast mixture: Combine 1 Tbsp yeast, 1 tsp sugar, and 1/4 cup water (110 degrees f)

Let yeast mixture rise for 15 minutes. 

Make the flour mixture: combine 250 grams of flour, 1 tsp sugar, 1 tsp salt, and optional 3 Tbsp ground flax

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture, and pour the olive oil and yeast mixture into the well. 

Mix until the dough is sticky, then firmly press dough ball into pre-oiled skillet(s)

Cover dough in skillet, and let rise for 1-2 hours. 

Heat oven to 425 degrees f

Place skillet on bottom of oven and bake for 5 – 7 minutes. 

Remove pizza from oven

Add sauce, cheese, and any desired toppings

Return pizza to oven for 12-18 minutes, depending on amount of toppings. 

Remove pizza(s) from oven and let them rest, in the skillet, for 10 minutes. 

Remove pizza by the slice, or whole. 

Enjoy. 🙂

The only photo I have of this recipe. I usually eat it all before I think to take a photo. 6-inch Skillet Pizza with broiled goat cheese shown.

(For extra crispy crunch, safely hold the skillet under the oven’s  broiler element for 15-20 seconds. )

Learn Animation In 45 Seconds

In 1937, Walt Disney’s Snow White employed 200 artists and cost $1.5 million dollars.

In 2020, you can make an animated movie using only your smartphone, for free.

Do you need any special tools to make an animated movie?

If you have a camera-equipped smartphone or tablet, you can animate.

Where should I animate?

Animate wherever you are.

What should I animate?

Animate something that normally doesn’t move on its own.

Why should I animate?

Good question! 😀

Please let me know your answer.