time marches on, especially for dogs

the two charactersI spent the day working and getting ready to catch my flight out to Austin on Thursday. I’m facing another two-plus week in Killeen, just an hour north of Austin. I’ve been watching all the weather reports coming out of Texas and following the forecasts on my cell phone via Weather Underground. Looks like tomorrow will be partly sunny, enough for me to fly into Austin around 10am local time without running into any bad weather. But after that, looks like lots of rain for me to face. I’ve even packed two umbrellas.

I grabbed this frame of the two Labs with my old original E-M5 (I now have two) and the 15mm body cap lens. Just because. I exposed it using the Gentle Sepia art filter, but when I got it out of the camera and into Lightroom, I decided to crop the original raw and then run it through Silver Efex Pro 2. Again, just because.

I’m going to miss those two. Especially Max. This is Max’s last hurrah. His evening walks are limited to the local cul-de-sac right across the street from my home. We take it at his pace. His hips are giving out on him, and it’s not unusual for me to go back and give him a boost back up on his feet when his rear end collapses. What’s startling to me is how quickly this has taken hold of him. Back in February (was it just three months ago?) he was still going on what I’d call a regular, if slow, walk. But these days he picks the cul-de-sac every time. Even he has come to recognize his limitation.

What hits me so hard is his mind is still there. And he knows.

More Fun Now!This is what the two of them were like back in 2008. Ruby is four months and Max is just seven. This year, if Max makes it, he’ll be 15 in August and Ruby will be seven herself. And just to show how far I’ve come with cameras, that one was made with an Olympus E-300 FourThirds DSLR and the original 40-150 f/3.5-4.5 Digital Zuiko. I’ve used a lot of Olympus digital cameras since 2006, or nine years. I bought that E-300 in March of that year.

alternative calculator updates

I spent a bit of time this weekend working and learning more about Android via Alternative Calculator. These are screen captures from the current implementation running on my Galaxy S4 and Android 5.0.2.

I’ve changed the colors a bit. I got rid of the red display color and picked a dark cyan background. The upper menu bar is an Android blue. These colors will probably change yet again.

I added logic to change the 2nd key and all other affected keys to a dark orange when active. All the keys that are the same color as the 2nd key above will work accordingly. Thus we have the pi constant, the root key, the exponent key, and the inverse trigonometric keys. Once complete the keys revert back to their primary functionality and the key’s background color reverts back to its original color. Or if that’s not what you intended, just press the 2nd key again to revert.

The Deg(ree) key toggles between degrees and Rad(ians). It’s sticky, in that it stays that way unless pressed again. Not even Clear or Clear Entry can change it.

The main algebraic keys now change color to indicate what the last key was pressed in a chain of calculations. I wrote before that one of my biggest pet peeves was being interrupted and when getting back, forgetting where I was at. Hopefully this will help address that problem. Other calculator apps get around this by actually ‘writing’ the full equation as you type it in the display. I personally am not crazy about that, at least now how its implemented. This is, again, something of a compromise.

Finally, I discovered how to set the keys as borderless by setting my custom style parent to “android:Widget.Material.Button.Borderless”. Looks great, but it breaks my current ability to change the key’s background color as I do above. I need to further investigate how to programmatically change the color of a borderless Material button.

Behind the scenes I’ve implemented code for store, recall, and sum, although I’m not so sure sum will last. I’ve never used sum for any reasons. The current number of storage registers is an arbitrary 100 (00-99). I’m also looking at making the registers store imaginary numbers and vectors (both two and three dimensional). Since an imaginary number is usually part of a complex number (two values) it fits within the idea of vectors. For those of you who are wondering what I’m talking about, complex numbers are used in electrical engineering and circuit analysis (among other things).

EE (exponentiation) and the use of parenthesis and algebraic notation are in progress.

There’s also been a bit of refactoring going on. Hard-wired constants, especially strings, are now in strings.xml. That allowed the Java code to be greatly simplified. Hopefully this is a bit more idiomatic Android coding that what I had before.