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Are primes brighter and sharper than wide open zooms



 
 
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  #141  
Old October 3rd 05, 06:06 PM
Chris Brown
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In article ,
Jeremy Nixon wrote:
Chris Brown wrote:

It's entirely unclear why you think this usage has "almost certainly been
destroyed beyond hope of recovery". If a cricket-nerd uses it, it will be
obvious from context which version they are talking about, hence there is to
be no confusion.


Do you really think that, even in the nerdiest of cricket-nerd circles,
anyone can ever again use that word without everyone who hears him thinking
of the "new" meaning?


Even if they can't, that's not even close to your original position.
  #142  
Old October 3rd 05, 06:14 PM
Nostrobino
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"BC" wrote in message
oups.com...
"Go ahead, outline "that evolutionary process" for me. I'd sure like to
see
how you get "fixed focal length" to evolve into "prime." What might the

intermediate steps look like, I wonder?"

Many of the earlier zoom lenses from the 1960's and 1970's comprised an
afocal zooming portion in the front, followed by a fixed focal length
lens group in the rear. That fixed focal length lens group was, and
still is, called a "prime lens".


That's interesting. If that FFL lens group would (or could if separated)
function independently as a stand-alone lens, then that seems like correct
usage. That is, you have what is essentially a prime lens with a zoom
attachment, even if they are built as a single unit.


I suspect that this may have led to
all fixed focal length lenses being called prime lenses.


For all I know you may be right, though I have always suspected the usage
came about through someone seeing "prime lens" correctly used, i.e. in
connection with some attachment such as a close-up lens or tele extender,
and the prime lens happening to be FFL, just assumed that was what "prime"
meant. But this is just speculation on my part.



As a side note, this early type of zoom lens automatically had a
constant f/# through zoom. However, it is not nearly as common a
design form as it used to be.

As I've pointed out to you earlier, respected manufacturers such as
Panavision do use the word "prime" to mean fixed focal length. The cat
is clearly out of the bag here, and we might as well get used to
"prime" and "fixed focal length" being synonyms.


I'm sorry I don't remember your earlier mention of this. (Was it recent?)
I've just Googled "panavision" and find you are correct, though as I've
mentioned previously other manufacturers (Schneider, Zeiss, Arri etc.) do
*not* use "prime" and "fixed focal length" synonymously, since they
catalogue "variable prime" lenses--lenses of variable focal length.
Panavision appears to be in the minority among lens makers as far as its
usage is concerned.

Incidentally, while looking I also found this, in connection with
Panavision's Camera 65 system: "This employed using 65 mm film in
conjunction with the APO Panatar lens, an integrated anamorphic lens (rather
than a prime lens with an anamorphoser mounted on it) set to a 1.25
expansion factor."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panavision

Now that clearly uses "prime lens" to distinguish the camera lens--whether
FFL or not--from the attachment used with it, which is correct usage. A link
in that sentence takes the reader to Wikipedia's definition for "prime
lens," which is the now popular and incorrect one. I think it's significant
that Wikipedia's definition of the term, though a popular one, does not
comport with their own use of the term in the Panavision article.

This sort of confusion could be avoided simply by not using "prime" to mean
fixed focal length, which no existing definition for "prime" can support in
the first place.

N.


  #143  
Old October 3rd 05, 06:22 PM
Nostrobino
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"Peter" wrote in message
ups.com...

Chris Brown wrote:


For awesome, try awe-inspiring.
For amazing, try astonishing
I don't agree that "astounding" has "lost" its meaning - perhaps this is
a
British English/American English difference?
Incredible - not-credible
Unbelievable - not-believable



One of my strongest memories from reading H.G. Wells'
The Time Machine when I was about 10 or 11 was the
way he used the word "incredible" it was immediately
obvious from the context that he really meant it.

I do not think I had read the word used in its strong
sense before. It has left me with a conviction that
words can be rescued.


Hear, hear! :-)


Perhaps the word did not yet
need to be rescued in 1898 when the book was first
published, but it certainly did in 1978, and for me
the word was restored to its proper meaning as soon
as I read it.

To my mind, "not-credible" is a weak work-around for
a word that has lost its former power, and I'd much
rather read "incredible" from someone capable of
writing in a way which shows that he really means it.


Fully agree. If the cheapening and dilution of words like "incredible" is
anyone's idea of evolution, I'll take vanilla.

N.


  #144  
Old October 3rd 05, 06:39 PM
David Littlewood
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In article , Nostrobino
writes

"David Littlewood" wrote in message
...
In article , Nostrobino
writes


Common use makes it "correct", and indicates the language has
evolved.

No. The popularity of some misusage does not automatically make it
correct,
as you seem to believe. Look in any authoritative dictionary that has
usage
notes, and you will find misusages that have enjoyed great popularity for
many, many years and are just still as wrong as they ever were.

As with many "quotations" - for example, "gilding the lily".


I'm not familiar with the origins of that.


It is a Shakespeare quotation which has gone into common usage here for
needless over-adornment or expense, as for example with gold plated
taps. However, although pretty well everyone in the UK at least would
understand "gilding the lily" to mean this, it is a foolish misquote,
which flatly makes nonsense of the point: lilies are not already gilded,
so gilding them is not pointless.


The correct quote (from King John, ii 9) is:

"To be possess'd with double pomp,
To guard a title that was rich before,
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
To throw perfume on the violet,
To smooth the ice, or add another hue,
Unto the rainbow, or with taper light,
To seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish,
Is wasteful and hideous excess."

(He sure could write)

Byron also quoted the key line in Don Juan, stanza 76:

"As Shakespeare says, 'tis very silly
To gild refined gold, or paint the lily."

However, if you used the expression "painting the lily" I doubt if one
in a thousand in the UK would get the point.

Just an example of the massive power of popular ignorance.

My current anti-favorite is "that begs the question, question inserted
here." Ever since some TV ads appeared (again and again) with a voice-over
asking, "That begs the question, Is it better to give name of product,
forgotten or to receive?" this annoying misusage has spread like the
proverbial wildfire, among commentators, columnists and others, who
evidently think it's just a classy way of saying "raises the question."

Here in the U.S. the expression "that begs the question" was almost never
seen, except occasionally in British writing. So when the average American
reader saw "that begs the question" in, say, an English novel, he had not
the foggiest idea what it meant. (Question? What question?) Now
unfortunately we see it again and again, *never* used correctly.

To beg the question is, correctly, to assume the truth of a proposition
without actually attempting to prove it. For example (from Brewer's
Dictionary of Phrase and Fable): "parallel lines never meet because they
are parallel". Originally a translation from Latin "petitio principii",
though first used by the Greek Aristotle.

You are right in that it should not be used to mean "raises the
question", as begging the question very much involves deliberately not
raising a question (i.e. the truth or otherwise of the underlying
proposition) which really needs to be raised.

David
--
David Littlewood
  #145  
Old October 3rd 05, 06:43 PM
Jeremy Nixon
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Floyd Davidson wrote:

*Nobody* cares whether words match precise dictionary meanings, because
*point* is to communicate.

When people *communicate*, the question is not "what did they
say", but "what did they mean".


When things devolve too far in that direction, communication becomes
difficult or impossible.

--
Jeremy |
  #146  
Old October 3rd 05, 06:50 PM
Jeremy Nixon
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Nostrobino wrote:

My current anti-favorite is "that begs the question, question inserted
here."


Yes, that one's taken quite a beating. Another that leaps to mind is
"in lieu of", which people seem to have begun using to mean exactly the
opposite of what it actually means.

--
Jeremy |
  #147  
Old October 3rd 05, 07:13 PM
Nostrobino
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"Peter" wrote in message
oups.com...
[ . . . ]

There's no point in objecting to slang when it is used as such.
The slowly creaping respectability of the term is a relatively
recent phenomenon. I have dozens of books about photography,
only one, published in 2000, contains "prime lens" in the sense
of "fixed focal length lens." It would be interesting if someone
could dig up the earliest print uses in photography books.


I don't know whether it's the earliest, but I have somewhere--can't find it
at the moment--a book on the Minolta 600si by Thomas Maschke and Peter K.
Burian that uses the term "prime" to mean FFL. The book is part of the Magic
Lantern Guide series and (checking Amazon just now) was published in 1996.

What is interesting is that a book on the 700si etc. by the same two
authors, in the same series, published just a year or so previously,
covering the same subjects including lenses, does not use "prime" at all. So
from this I conclude that Maschke and Burian, who have written a number of
books on cameras, only picked up this "prime lens" thing c. 1995. (Amazon
gives only Burian as the author of the 1994 book, but I'm pretty sure my
copy--which I also can't find at the moment--lists both authors.)

N.


  #148  
Old October 3rd 05, 07:22 PM
Frank ess
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David Littlewood wrote:
In article , Nostrobino
writes

"David Littlewood" wrote in message
...
In article , Nostrobino
writes


Common use makes it "correct", and indicates the language has
evolved.

No. The popularity of some misusage does not automatically make
it
correct,
as you seem to believe. Look in any authoritative dictionary that
has usage
notes, and you will find misusages that have enjoyed great
popularity for many, many years and are just still as wrong as
they ever were.
As with many "quotations" - for example, "gilding the lily".


I'm not familiar with the origins of that.


It is a Shakespeare quotation which has gone into common usage here
for needless over-adornment or expense, as for example with gold
plated taps. However, although pretty well everyone in the UK at
least would understand "gilding the lily" to mean this, it is a
foolish misquote, which flatly makes nonsense of the point: lilies
are not already gilded, so gilding them is not pointless.


The correct quote (from King John, ii 9) is:

"To be possess'd with double pomp,
To guard a title that was rich before,
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
To throw perfume on the violet,
To smooth the ice, or add another hue,
Unto the rainbow, or with taper light,
To seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish,
Is wasteful and hideous excess."

(He sure could write)

Byron also quoted the key line in Don Juan, stanza 76:

"As Shakespeare says, 'tis very silly
To gild refined gold, or paint the lily."

However, if you used the expression "painting the lily" I doubt if
one
in a thousand in the UK would get the point.

Just an example of the massive power of popular ignorance.

My current anti-favorite is "that begs the question, question
inserted here." Ever since some TV ads appeared (again and again)
with a voice-over asking, "That begs the question, Is it better to
give name of product, forgotten or to receive?" this annoying
misusage has spread like the proverbial wildfire, among
commentators, columnists and others, who evidently think it's just
a
classy way of saying "raises the question." Here in the U.S. the
expression "that begs the question" was almost
never seen, except occasionally in British writing. So when the
average American reader saw "that begs the question" in, say, an
English novel, he had not the foggiest idea what it meant.
(Question? What question?) Now unfortunately we see it again and
again, *never* used correctly.

To beg the question is, correctly, to assume the truth of a
proposition without actually attempting to prove it. For example
(from Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable): "parallel lines
never
meet because they are parallel". Originally a translation from Latin
"petitio principii", though first used by the Greek Aristotle.

You are right in that it should not be used to mean "raises the
question", as begging the question very much involves deliberately
not
raising a question (i.e. the truth or otherwise of the underlying
proposition) which really needs to be raised.


I've almost given up on derailing the new usage and soon-to-be
standard meaning. Begs the question: "Have they stopped beating their
wives?"

--
Frank ess

  #149  
Old October 3rd 05, 07:56 PM
Nostrobino
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"David Littlewood" wrote in message
...
In article , Nostrobino
writes

"David Littlewood" wrote in message
...
In article , Nostrobino
writes


Common use makes it "correct", and indicates the language has
evolved.

No. The popularity of some misusage does not automatically make it
correct,
as you seem to believe. Look in any authoritative dictionary that has
usage
notes, and you will find misusages that have enjoyed great popularity
for
many, many years and are just still as wrong as they ever were.

As with many "quotations" - for example, "gilding the lily".


I'm not familiar with the origins of that.


It is a Shakespeare quotation which has gone into common usage here for
needless over-adornment or expense, as for example with gold plated taps.
However, although pretty well everyone in the UK at least would understand
"gilding the lily" to mean this, it is a foolish misquote, which flatly
makes nonsense of the point: lilies are not already gilded, so gilding
them is not pointless.


The correct quote (from King John, ii 9) is:

"To be possess'd with double pomp,
To guard a title that was rich before,
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
To throw perfume on the violet,
To smooth the ice, or add another hue,
Unto the rainbow, or with taper light,
To seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish,
Is wasteful and hideous excess."

(He sure could write)


He sure could, and I'm embarrassed not to have known that source. (Sometimes
it seems to me that about half of our common expressions, and practically
all of the better ones, are from Shakespeare, so it doesn't surprise me.) I
think I've read most of Shakespeare's plays and especially love the
histories, but I guess I somehow missed King John. "Gilding the lily" is a
well-understood expression here in the U.S. too, but I never knew it was a
misquotation.



Byron also quoted the key line in Don Juan, stanza 76:

"As Shakespeare says, 'tis very silly
To gild refined gold, or paint the lily."

However, if you used the expression "painting the lily" I doubt if one in
a thousand in the UK would get the point.

Just an example of the massive power of popular ignorance.

My current anti-favorite is "that begs the question, question inserted
here." Ever since some TV ads appeared (again and again) with a
voice-over
asking, "That begs the question, Is it better to give name of product,
forgotten or to receive?" this annoying misusage has spread like the
proverbial wildfire, among commentators, columnists and others, who
evidently think it's just a classy way of saying "raises the question."

Here in the U.S. the expression "that begs the question" was almost never
seen, except occasionally in British writing. So when the average American
reader saw "that begs the question" in, say, an English novel, he had not
the foggiest idea what it meant. (Question? What question?) Now
unfortunately we see it again and again, *never* used correctly.

To beg the question is, correctly, to assume the truth of a proposition
without actually attempting to prove it. For example (from Brewer's
Dictionary of Phrase and Fable): "parallel lines never meet because they
are parallel". Originally a translation from Latin "petitio principii",
though first used by the Greek Aristotle.

You are right in that it should not be used to mean "raises the question",
as begging the question very much involves deliberately not raising a
question (i.e. the truth or otherwise of the underlying proposition) which
really needs to be raised.


Your explanation is certainly far better than my dictionary's, which
basically just says "beg the question" means "to reason badly" or some such
thing. I doubt that most American dictionaries even mention the expression
at all (my desk dictionary doesn't), which only makes it that much easier
for the ignorant to get away with misusing it.

N.


  #150  
Old October 3rd 05, 09:26 PM
David Littlewood
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Default

In article , Nostrobino
writes

(He sure could write)


He sure could, and I'm embarrassed not to have known that source. (Sometimes
it seems to me that about half of our common expressions, and practically
all of the better ones, are from Shakespeare, so it doesn't surprise me.) I
think I've read most of Shakespeare's plays and especially love the
histories, but I guess I somehow missed King John. "Gilding the lily" is a
well-understood expression here in the U.S. too, but I never knew it was a
misquotation.

It's not a popular play - the first of the English kings series (though
I don't know whether it was written first - I mean John was the earliest
king to be covered).


To beg the question is, correctly, to assume the truth of a proposition
without actually attempting to prove it. For example (from Brewer's
Dictionary of Phrase and Fable): "parallel lines never meet because they
are parallel". Originally a translation from Latin "petitio principii",
though first used by the Greek Aristotle.

You are right in that it should not be used to mean "raises the question",
as begging the question very much involves deliberately not raising a
question (i.e. the truth or otherwise of the underlying proposition) which
really needs to be raised.


Your explanation is certainly far better than my dictionary's, which
basically just says "beg the question" means "to reason badly" or some such
thing. I doubt that most American dictionaries even mention the expression
at all (my desk dictionary doesn't), which only makes it that much easier
for the ignorant to get away with misusing it.

Incidentally - and getting even more off topic - the bit about parallel
lines never meeting is not an essential truth, it was merely one of the
assumptions ("axioms") postulated by Euclid (another Greek philosopher,
these guys got around) in devising the rules of geometry. Other systems
of geometry exist in which it is not true at all, thus demonstrating the
benefits of questioning the underlying assumptions.

David
--
David Littlewood
 




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