Sunday, June 25, 2017

Washed Out Color With NVIDIA Graphics

I recently purchased a brand new ASUS VE278H 27" LED-backlit monitor.

While a wonderfully big and bright display (especially paired with my NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 video card), once set up (using the DVI interface) dark colors, particularly blues and blacks, appeared washed out.

BEFORE: Blue / black wallpaper on DVI, note the rather nasty gradients.

After some research (most of which seemed to focus on display issues related to using the HDMI interface), I did find a solution which seemed to help in my case.

Generally with NVIDIA I install their Control Panel to tweak cards with an NVIDIA chipset. There's a setting under Display => Change Resolution called Output Dynamic Range which purports to preserve shadow and highlight details.

By default this setting is "Limited", but by changing it to "Full" and then clicking Apply, I was rewarded with the beautifully silky-smooth blues and blacks I expected.

AFTER: Significantly richer, silkier color.

Why not have this set to Full by default? It is a mystery for NVIDIA to address. 🤔

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Prickly Pear Cactus Helps Hangover

Opuntia ficus-indica, otherwise known as prickly pear cactus, is called nopal, and in the U.S. at least the fruit are oddly called "tuna".

Aside from its culinary uses and being decorative fauna, there is actual research which suggests that chemicals in nopal can actually help reduce the effects of alcohol hangover

In a study reported by Scientific American, a group of healthy volunteers consumed an extract of prickly pear cactus prior to drinking alcohol. Compared to those who took a placebo, those who took the cactus experienced noticeably less nausea, dry mouth, and loss of appetite. 

Further, researchers found that recipients of the cactus concoction had lower levels of C-reactive protein, associated with inflammation in the body.

Although prickly pear is a popular ornamental plant, it's not necessary to grow your own or pilfer some from your neighbor's yard and run it through your blender. It does exist in tablet, capsule, even oil and syrup forms.

Yet another example of nature's fascinating repertoire of flora that science discovers has the potential to ease human suffering, even the self-inflicted kind. 🙂

Saturday, April 15, 2017