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MANTIS Compilation and Windows Executable

Been keep having hard trouble following MANTIS compilation guide at http://developmentalimagingmcri.github.io/mantis/installation/

Today, I think I am really getting close. Git Update was apparently blocked for subprojects related to the SourceForge. So I literally had to use a VPN in order to just get the source code for the compilation.

Tried on my 8GB laptop and totally ran out of RAM. Running now on a 32GB beast to see if that helps… If I manage to compile it I will host it somewhere for others who need the MANTIS Binary Windows 64.

Actually managed to compiled it without issue, as of date 2018-04-17 17:33. So be aware of the date. Here is the Google Drive link. I obviously don’t claim any ownership. Go buy those fine Devs in Melbourn U a beer when you get a chance. :)

Also, CentOS7 Binary.

Kudos to the Deanna Thompson’s group of crazy hardcore devs.

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Potential MagicLantern Bug on 5DII Nightly (2018-04-15)

Running into some BIZARRE issues with MagicLantern on EOS 5DII.

Maybe someone will find this useful and know I am not crazy lol.

Toshiba 1066x UDMA7 64GB CF card.

ML tested on Canon 50D and Canon 5DII.

  • 50D + latest ML nightly (magiclantern-Nightly.2018Feb04.50D109.zip) work flawlessly.
    • Wakeup/startup speed normal (< 1s)
    • Hence: This Camera + Card + ML version works at least.
  • 5DII + same card (formatted) + without any ML: wake/boot normally, lightning fast. wake < 0.5s, startup < 0.5s.
  • 5DII + same card + 5DII ML Nightly = slow wake (about 1.5s), slow startup (2s). Seems spent on reading the card with red access light on
    • Tested with ML “magiclantern-Nightly.2018Feb04.5D2212”. Still slow.
    • Tried reformat card in camera. No use.
    • Tried low level reformat card in PC into exFat with different larger block size, not recognized in camera, reformat in camera, no use.
    • Tested with older nightly as far as almost one year back: “magiclantern-Nightly.2017May07.5D2212”. Exact same issue. No use.
  • 5DII + NO card + ML = fast wake (about 0.5s), fast startup (0.5s).
  • 5DII + NO card + NO ML = fast wake (about 0.5s), fast startup (0.5s).

Quite odd that 5DII, which started the ML testing/play/exploration, is the one with this bug. I initially thought this would be a camera issue as I got it used 5DII but no ML test ruled that out. I thought it could be the card, but same card on 50D ML works wondrously so it must be something related to 5DII + this card + ML.

So far, the real fix for this kind of slow wakeup and slow startup lag is to remove ML/bootflag by installing ML and leave it on for 60s so it removes the bootflag.

It might be a quite old bug/quirk. Other similar reports of this issue with the ONLY resolution being removal of ML/bootflag. Here is a brief review of all prior 5DII and 5DIII bug I found via search

  • 2012:
    • https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3016685
    • https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=2049.0
    • https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=2745.0
    • https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=2883.0
  • 2013/2014:
    • http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=1321731
    • Might be even related to the issued reported in 5DIII as reported here: https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=10992.0
    • It seems this delay is “accepted” by a hero forum member, Walter Schulz as shown here: https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=13698.0 suggesting this cam bootflag related delay is a known issue, as far back as 2014 with 5DIII? Could this be an old bug rearing its head?
    • https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=7488.msg64184#msg64184
    • Further evidence suggest it was a known issue:  https://www.magiclantern.fm/forum/index.php?topic=10992.25
    • Further evidence about the 2s delay: https://www.cinema5d.com/guide-raw-on-a-5d-mark-iii-magic-lantern/
      • “NOTE: When installing Magic Lantern your camera will start up 2 seconds slower (this can now be undone by simply uninstalling Magic Lantern)”
      • I wonder if it is ever fixed for 5DIII
  • Current:
    • FAQ: https://wiki.magiclantern.fm/faq “startup time may be a little slower, even on non-ML cards.”
      • Oddly, it actually happens ONLY on ML cards.

So I guess I will be running my 5DII without ML for a while.

2018-04-22 Update: tried with a different CompactFlash card SanDisk Extreme III. Still same issues. Definitely not card related. Might be specific version of hardware with  issue?

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YUL US preboarding custom opens at 3:45am it seems. Surprised I couldn’t find that online anywhere. Accurate as of 2018-03-13.

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50mm and those sick 1.8F lens


I really wish I had shot & reviewed those wide aperture lens more often.

Huge benefit in terms of image quality STRAIGHT out of the camera with minial processing.

  1. Color is MUCH more vibrant.
  2. Shallow DOF, subject isolation is much easier.
  3. Regardless of how shitty the body is.

50mm 1.8 is great.

That Sigma 50-100 1.8 is a VERY seriously sickly awesome lens too.

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MincTool Confusions

I really wish MNI folks could clarify this a bit but:


MincTool: is a set of commandline tools (very low level minc related IO tools like DICOM2MNC conversion etc).

MincToolKit: is a collectiction/pack of various software pieces (e.g. larger than just commandline tools) to help deal with image processing (including, normalization tools ANT, N3, etc but it ALSO includes MincTool above (e.g. those commandline tools).

MincToolKit v2: is the updated collection of above. Use this. You most likely want to comiple everything all together as MINCLibrary is at the core of everything so for example, just try to compile DCM2MNC won’t work unless you have the MINCLibrary somewhere active.

All this could have been way more simplified. Hopefully you are less confused than before…

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Tips on photography

I have been doing some photography for a while as a casual hobbit with about 50K on my 60D and 14k on my T3i  (mostly probably due to my timelapse). I do mostly shitty shots but I am trying to get better. Here are some lessons I learned.  Take what you will. :)

Some cheap a f lens I shoot with:

  • EF 50mm 1.8
  • EF 70-300mm IS USM
  • EFS 10-17mm IS STM
  • EF 28-135mm IS USM (gotta be my least favourite lens)
  • Kit 18-55 I, II


  • Conference:
    • if you want speaker shots, take 70-300 or something longer to get some nice portraits without disrupting everyone in the conference.
    • Fast lense like 50mm F1.8 for when you can get close and personal and not interupting everyone.
    • Tripod is impractical due to mobility. Maybe monopole.
    • Use flash if you can… but as a silent transparent observer, I try to bring the least amount of disruptions
  • Timelapse of beaches, construction sites, clouds, etc
    • Wide angel: 10mm to 17mm for APSC if you can.
    • Make sure MagicLantern is installed
    • It is best if you can get a battery grip (even shitty ones costint $15 is okay as its extra battery draining will be offset by the extra battery somewhat.. or you can spend $150+ get the legit one. )
    • OR if in door, get a socket power plugin
    • IF doing anything near window/through window, ensure 1) in door light is never one or else you will ruin the shot. 2) maybe longer lens can mitigate that but you are losing views.
    • Example:
      • Penthouse views
      • Constructions site views
  • Offshore cruise/short boat ride
    • Mid to long. 
      • Long (70+)  really help with isolating things you actually want to see off shore.
    • Do not bring wide. Usually they make everything look way too small, unless you are like visiting the great LeShan Budha and cruising right down to its knee or something.
    • This is where slower lens shine.
    • Example:
      • boat tour around liberty island.
  • Building / Indoor/Under bridge / downtown / skyscrpter:
    • Example:
      • taking photo of the brooklyn bridge
      • take image of trump towel underneath it
  • Flight takeoff/landing:
    • Fast Lense: 1.8 50mm
    • Wide angle so you can really take some nice views
    • Do not bring anything longer than 70mm due to 1) lense size around the seat, 2) motion blur, low light.
  • Insect/flower/ closerups:
    • Any macro obviously….
    • 50mm 1.8 works too.
    • Antyhing fast tbh
  •  Random:
    • Use point focus, and use BACK BUTTON FOCUS!
    • Get a proper strap like those black rapid but there are far cheaper ones than those…
    • Always bring a spare battery not just because you might run out but because battery can die mid way before reaching 50% even!
    • a dirt cheap body like T3i or something like is probably better than an idle lens sitting around.
    • Cap do not go well with SLR.
    • Try to shoot enough image with any gear such that that a shutter fix is required is better than buying the best gear and unable lift them or always lament shitty not focused image. AI will help rate images down the road.
    • Throw away the lens cap. Put any filter on. Shitty filter is as bad as damaged front element for lense but… even damagned front element lens actually see VERY little artefacts so put on any filter just to keep fingers out.
    • Shoot and forget. Then when you go back to process them, your mind will wonder WTF you were thinking shooting that one and crop it properly. All will be well.
    • Do not ride bike with your SLR. It will make biking uncomfortable and you will have less focus taking pictures.
    • Composition trumps lens, and just about everything. Shitty composition will not be saved by better equipment, camera, subjects, lighting etc. Post processing MAYBE can save it but usually not worth the time.
    • Shoot what you like but you don’t have to like what you shot.
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Jupyter / Anaconda / Python Path in Windows

Oh gosh this took me literally a FULL day to resolve yet so freaking stupid.

For those of you trying to run Python/Jupyter and get the annoying cmdlet not found error etc but you can start without issue, this is a pathing problem BUT an odd one. So…

Apparently you will need to add C:\ProgramData\Anaconda3 (for python) and C:\ProgramData\Anaconda3\Scripts and most importantly C:\ProgramData\Anaconda3\Library\bin (for Jupyter) for Powershell to recognize Python/Jupyter at the commandline level. I cannot believe this was not spelt out elsewhere… and I had to crawl StackExchange forever… Also not sure why even after reinstall Anaconda, it still did not path properly

Get http://patheditor2.codeplex.com/ to make it MUCH easier to work with… Best of luck.


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Update on the Note 4s

So yeah, as I have feared, the old method worked okay for a few weeks but proved completely unreliable under consistent uses depsite optimal appearance in the first few weeks. The fact that I also dropped it one more time also didn’t help while tryign out VR.

Seriously considering Note 8 now that ZeroLemon has let loose the powerpack for it. But gotta save money first….

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Note 4 heat reflow update

Nothing much to add here. Long term stability test out. Camera tests out. Boot looped only once upon impact. No other noticeable negative impact if oven time and temperature is controlled tightly and no directly heat source exposure.

Heat reflow might be recommended on a semi annual basis to ensure device circuitry integrity…. Sigh the price of being a Samsung fan….

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HP spectre 360x 13-4102dx wifi issue revisited

So the wifi Intel dual band wireless access 7265 antenna cable came loose again and armed with the proper tool and technique and knowledge I had to reattach the cable once more. I got a better chance to take even better shots than last time. For a almost 2k laptop, this really shouldnt be happening in addition to its mobo death within warranty period. As they say… Tape usually fix everything…
Also I just noticed that the cable that came off is most likely  the main signal cable….. Damn…



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