The other day, I peeked into the library, aka “Kokoro’s Room”, to see how she was doing.

As is often the case, she was snoozing in her heated nest. I wanted a picture.

Taking a photo with a cellphone through a door that’s only slightly ajar is tough. I tried again.


I didn’t want to open the door further. That usually wakes her up, and I didn’t want to disturb her sleep.

Fortunately, we have tools we can use in these situations. A few minutes shoving things around in GIMP, and voilà!

Meezers look much better as (nearly) complete entities, rather than a collection of parts.

Cat Selfies

My ex-boss demanded more cat posts. Apparently there isn’t enough information about and pictures of cats on the Internet already.

It seems that she’s not the only one who feels that way. Humans, it seems, just can’t keep up with the demand for cat pictures.

Two developers are working to fix this serious deficiency.

Acceleroto has released Cat Selfie for iOS devices, while Snapcat has Snapcat for Android.

Both apps serve the same purpose: they allow your cats to take their own picture, saving you time and effort.

The Android app is the better deal at this time. Not only does it have the ability to upload photos directly to EyeEm, Facebook, and Twitter–capabilities the iOS app lacks–but it’s also free, unlike the iOS device.

Cat selfies are apparently a thing. A quick Google search shows well over a million results for “cat selfies”. News to me; I guess I’m behind the curve again. So, in the interest of remedying my ignorance, I installed Snapcat on my phone and turned it over to Yuki for a test run. Yes, for the record, my phone does have a screen protector.

Both apps work in much the same way: the screen displays a moving red dot (or, in the case of the iOS app, a “bouncing ‘flaming laser'”, which sure sounds like a moving red dot to me). You turn on the phone, launch the app, and walk away. You cat will chase the dot and the app will take a picture every time the cat touches the screen. That’s the theory, anyway. As we all know, the difference between theory and reality is that in theory there is no difference.

Yuki’s first two attempts ended in failure when he flipped the phone over onto its face. Not only did that not result in a picture, but it meant he couldn’t chase the red dot anymore. Once he figured that out, though, things got a little better.

The first conclusion we can draw is that Yuki sucks as a photographer:

In all fairness to The Floof, though, his efforts are no worse than a lot of human’s selfies I’ve seen. Also, note that the app does not use the camera flash, something that isn’t made clear in the documentation. I turned the lights up and gave Yuki a second chance.

He did a little bit better. The second picture in particular is quite amusing, but it still has some problems with blurring around the edges that can’t all be chalked up to his fur.

In order to see how much of the problems were unique to Yuki, I tried to enlist the other cats. Kaja, despite her reputation as a mighty huntress showed no inclination to attack the red dot, though she was happy to watch it for several minutes. Rhubarb and Watanuki were sharing a sunbeam in the living room. They too were happy to watch the dot in amicable peace, but showed no inclination to move, let alone lift a paw to chase it. Kokoro initially declined my invitation to show off her artistic talents, as her stomach was feeling somewhat unsettled. She was far more interested in purging herself of a hairball than taking pictures. Even once her primary concern was remedied, she was more interested in the empty food bowl than the phone next to it.

So the final score is four cats with no interest in photography and one who’s interested but unskilled. Perhaps he’ll improve with practice.

Next time: Apps to help your cats to write music. Oh, wait, there don’t seem to be any. Market opportunity! Any app developers who want to fill the niche? Drop me a line. I’ll be happy to organize a feline QA team.