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| DearWebby is actually Helmut Morscher, the CEO of Webby, inc.
Originally the "Tech Support Pits" were reports of the funniest tech support incidents, but over the years the
column gradually shifted to answering tech support questions put forward by the readers of the Dear
Webby Humor Letter.
This collection of computer and web advice was started partly because readers demanded an archive, and partly
because some questions were asked again and again. Each page has a different day's Tech Support Pits column.
Tech Support Pits column from Dear Webby's Humor Letter of
07/02/04: Fireworks pictures with a digital camera
Tech Support Pits:
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What's the trick to getting fireworks to show half decently
on pictures shot with a digital camera?
This might require reading parts of the manual for your
camera, but you can set it up beforehand and take your
time getting all the settings right.
First set it for Outdoor, then
Starlight-NO flash (some cameras use a moon symbol for this)
Next set the aperture to F8 for thin and dark trails or
F4 for fatter and brighter trails
Find the setting for time exposure, preferably one that
stays open as long as you have your finger on the button.
That is usually called the "B" setting, because we used to
use a rubber bulb on a hose to do long time exposures.
If you have a remote control, check the battery in it and
try a few shots to make sure it works in the "B" mode.
Last, and most important, set up a sturdy tripod or a sand
bag on a car roof and line up the camera.
When the fireworks start, hold down the button for a few
seconds. It's better to shoot lots of pictures and sandwich
them later with your paint program, than to overload a
picture and get a get a blurry mess that looks like a plate
of spaghetti and tomato sauce floating in thick fog.
If you have big, organized fireworks on July 4th, set off
by the fire department, check with them and ask if they
are going to fire test shots the night before. They usually
do. You can find out what time they do that and use them
to test your set-up.
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