Screen Shot 2013-09-03 at 4.42.23 AMThis is a picture of an interesting mystery.

Well, it’s interesting to me, and it’s my blog, so I’m going to babble a bit about it.  (This is the “your mileage may vary” part of the ‘Wit, Wisdom, and Whimsy’ subtitle.)

The scene is my driveway, the view from a cheap security camera.  The mystery presented itself tonight, when the light bulb in the fixture overlooking the vehicles burned out.

The dead bulb (so much for the 15 year life expectancy!) was one of the newer, power-saving fluorescent contraptions that screw into a regular light socket.  It “burns” about 20 watts of electricity, and is supposed to produce an amount of light the equivalent of a 100 watt incandescent bulb.  Here’s where the mystery presents itself.

The image with the fluorescent bulb was dimmer than with the incandescent bulb I replaced it with.

A frosted incandescent bulb of only 60 watts.

The second part of the mystery is even more odd.  If you walk outside and take a look yourself, the driveway is noticeably darker with the 60 watt bulb than with the brighter power-saver.

Except to the camera.

I’m getting a brighter image with a 60 watt incandescent bulb than with a fluorescent with the “equivalent” lumens of a 100 watt bulb.

So now I’m wondering…  why does the camera see with less acuity under the brighter fluorescent light, and better under the dimmer incandescent?  A mystery for the ages.

(If you know the answer, just keep it to yourself. That would ruin the whole “mystery for the ages” thing, and throw off the “Wisdom” part of this blog. Thanks.)