Camera, Water Heater, and San Fran

I've got my big DSLR and Film SLR cameras and I still use them a fair amount, but I wanted something smaller for times when I need a pocket cam.

Over the past four years keeping a pocket sized camera has been an expensive task for me. About four years ago I was snowboarding with a small Sony camera that had had been using for awhile and it somehow fell out of my pocket. I wasn't too sad because it was old and there were smaller better cameras on the market so I got a Canon Powershot. I loved this camera but after only a year the lens focus motor stopped functioning. I figured this was just a fluke and I got newer version of the Canon PowerShot. I had this one for about half a year and I forgot it was in my pocket while swimming through a swap to get a geocache (it died). Since this was my fault I got another Canon Powershot. This one the LCD screen died while under warranty and I got another one free. Then this one just stopped turning on after the warranty ran out. I decided to give Canon Powershot one more try and got the Canon Powershot SD400. After about six months the auto focus motor died. This was about six months ago and I've been without a pocket sized camera since.

I don't baby my cameras, but I don't think I'm overly hard on them. My SLR cameras seem to handle my use. I decided this time I would try a different brand and found that a lot of people thought the Fuji F30 was a great camera. So I ordered it and got it a few days ago. It seems like a great point and shoot camera. It is much better in low light situation than any of my Canon Powershot cameras. What will make it a truly great camera is if it lasts for more than two years. Only time will tell.

Here's a picture of me and my new camera.

In other news my water heater died. It stopped making hot water and started to slowly leak a few gallons a day. I caught the leak almost immediately and my basement isn't finished so there was no water damage. I went to Home Depot Friday morning and they subcontracted a plumber to install a new water heater in my home. I was amazed that it would be installed that same day between noon and 4pm. Then the dude didn't show. I can't believe how often I've had problems with these sorts of people not showing. If I wasn't always in such a hurry I'd cancel the job and look for someone who can make an appointment. Anyways I didn't cancel and after a few more phone calls the guy arrived and installed the water heater at 9am on Saturday (only 17 hours late). And of course there were additional fees. In this case $160 for a replacement pressure release value that the plumber said the law requires and to cut a few copper pipes because the new water heater was a few inches higher. After talking with the guy he admitted it was impossible to not incur these additional charges and that the quote provided by Home Depot was never accurate. I don't blame the subcontracted plumber (for the extra cost, but I do blame him for being late), I blame Home Depot. The plumber did mention that Sears’s estimates for installs are more accurate. Anyways it's installed and working so I shouldn't need to worry about that again for at least 10 more years.

In more upbeat news I'm heading out to San Francisco next week for GDC. GDC is a huge week long video game developer conference. Most of my time there will be spent attending classes, but I will have to spend eight hours manning the AMD booth. I've done booth duty before at other conferences and found it pretty fun. All I do is stand around the company’s booth and answer questions. I'll tell you all how it went after the conference, but it should be lots of fun. I'm sure I'll find a few hours to explore San Fran. I'm excited!


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