Female Sweat Bee

Friday, August 15th, 2008

banded bee on white flower
Halictus tripartitus
San Joaquin Wildlife sanctuary, 2008-08-10

Fiery Skipper

Tuesday, August 12th, 2008

Fiery Skipper, Hylephila phyleus
UCI Arboretum, Irvine, California, 2008-08-11

The Dark IMAX

Monday, August 11th, 2008

I finally got around to seeing The Dark Knight yesterday. I don’t know why the rule that comic book sequels are always better than the originals, but it continues to hold. (Superman II, Batman Returns, The Incredible Hulk). Possibly it also holds in sci fi in general: The Wrath of Khan, Empire Strikes Back, Attack of the Clones, etc.

As everyone already knows, Heath Ledger was incredible as The Joker, and Christian Bale once again blew chunks. (Why no actor has ever been able to voice Batman properly, I have no idea; but in my head I just never heard him talking in some funky whisper. Batman has a strong, authoritative, commanding voice. It’s Bruce Wayne who disguises his voice, not Batman.) Nonetheless, it’s a really good movie. Go see it.

The reason I waited so long was that I wanted to see it in IMAX. I heard that it had been specially designed and shot for IMAX, and that it would really take advantage of the medium. Wow, was that wrong.

Dreams Do Come True

Monday, August 11th, 2008

Dreaming in Code book cover Dreams do come true. Chandler 1.0 has been
released. The client component is written in mostly Python and the server in mostly Java. I’ll have to try this out a little later today.

#440 Baird’s Sandpiper

Sunday, August 10th, 2008

I slept in this morning, and consequently almost drove over to the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary for the monthly Sea & Sage Audubon Walk, but fortunately I decided there was still a good chance to pick up a BGBY species or two if I walked. Last month I drove over and consequently missed Sora and Rock Pigeon. However this time I did walk and consequently I can now count #440 Baird’s Sandpiper for my life, California, Orange County, and BGBY lists.

I have a list of target birds I’m looking for in the local area, but this wasn’t on it. It’s fun to still find completely surprising life birds within walking distance of my apartment. Baird’s are far from unknonw out here, but this was apparently the first one at SJWS in the last two years.

#439 The Elusive Lesser Nighthawk

Friday, August 8th, 2008

I’ve been going out to Irvine Regional Park every Thursday evening for the last month+, since it’s one of the few “reliable” places to find Lesser Nighthawks, a Southern California specialty. Of course, reliable inn this instance seems to mean somewhat more likely than having a red-necked Stint turn up on your doorstep. Two weeks ago I even found two Phainopeplas (previously #438) but still no nighthawks, even though they were reported to be breeding in this location.

Lesser nighthawk at dusk flying behind Irvine Regional Park