Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Cameras, Shutter Speeds, and Suspicious Half-Chickens

In the interest of taking motion-blurred pictures of rotating objects (a la this, this, this, this, or this), I did some mini-research about my digicam and about the iPhone. I'm not one to be particularly bogged down on electronics or to be nitpicky about what tools I own, etc. But, the results of my research have spurred me to want to get another camera (or one of the newer iPhones)!!

It turns out that the Canon Digital Elph -- which Geoff and I have and love -- only has two modes: one being instantaneous exposure (with flash) and the other being long exposure (1 second or longer). For the purposes of math-teaching, if I were to take motion-blurred pictures myself, the exposure should be somewhat variable in the 0 to 1 second range. And, more depressingly, it looks like because Geoff has an older iPhone (iPhone 3G, with OS version 3.0), its built-in camera does not have all the spiffy features that I would need, either. --Doh!! I'll have to keep looking around for another solution, I guess. In the meanwhile, the Flickr photos will have to do (provided that their owners are kind enough to share their shutter speeds with me).


By the way, it's pretty amazing that Geoff and I have not gotten really, really sick from food poisoning in our 12 months of living together. Case in point, two nights ago I decided to try cooking a new chicken dish. Now, I'd say that I'm a pretty decent Chinese-food chef, but whenever I try a new dish, it's still really nerve-wracking because my mom's recipes are hand-wavy at best. In this case, it was something like, "You boil half a chicken with some salt, and then when that's done, you scoop out the oil at the top of the broth, and you add the oil to some chopped ginger, scallions, and you add some salt to the dip. You take a big butcher knife to chop up the chicken into slices, and -- tada! You'll have what's called the Scallion-Oil Chicken." Sounds pretty easy, but it turned out that for some reason, part of the chicken we boiled was pink even after a while of cooking (and we were pretty sure, by the way, that this chicken was well-defrosted before cooking). We sliced it up pretty well and threw it back in the broth for some more time, and then took it out. After a couple of bites, Geoff and I decided to be safe and to microwave the chicken before eating.

I'll never know if that chicken was fully cooked or not. It tasted oddly tender and looked oddly pink even after the microwaving. But, I'll say that this is the first time I've topped off any cooking feat with microwaving! It's royally sad. And, amazingly, Geoff and I didn't get sick from that meal; we just might have stomachs of steel!


  1. Sometimes if meat has been marinated or had salt on it before cooking, it will stay a little pink. Don't know the scientific reason why, just know from experience. (i.e. pastrami) Anyway, I'm a firm believer that what doesn't kill you will only make you stronger ;)

  2. hehe... Lovely. :)

    I forgot to mention that that was the same day when we had cut off and toasted some pieces of bread for lunch, only to find at night that the bread had huge chunks of mold growing on the bottom!! (HOW could this be?!?! We had just bought it, like, the day before!! I was so disillusioned.)