See Different The lens arrived! Whee! It's a heavy little sucker....
Here is the zoom lens next to my Nokia 6100 series cel fone, for size comparison.
Normal view of a buncha plants on left; at right, with Zoom lens.
Normal view (left) of a lamp that I really need to get rid of; Zoomed in view (right) that makes the reason all the more clear.
T - minus 15 days and counting. . . Why the zoom lens now? The better to see a Space Shuttle Launch with, my dear! I don't know if I'll get images like this, but I'll get a better shot at it from the Banana Creek area where we'll all be viewing! :D
Ah, here's a foto of a sunrise shuttle liftoff from the Banana Creek viewing area. Since STS-111 is scheduled to go sometime between 4 and 8 pm, the sun will be behind, making for a prolly dramatic well-lit smoke plume.
Space Flotsam on earth BBC: NASA searches web for shuttle parts eBay, Yahoo and other places to find old, outdated equipment. Why not swap out for newer stuff, you might wonder? My NASA source tells me that the kind of bureaucratic gauntlet that any piece of equipment goes through to be declared "Space-quality" is very prohibitive. Each part accumulates a 3-foot stack of paper describing each and every detail of its history, the tests, and who knows what else to certify that said widget is, indeed space-quality. That's why they don't just run down to Fry's and pick up something new.
More on this at GeekNews (thanks to Don for the link!)