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"Why are some of these images so dark?"
A series of nighttime photos displayed on a website is relatively uncommon. The images on this site were optimized for best viewing assuming a standard CRT, LCD, or mobile screen using the sRGB colorspace which is the default on these common web devices and a moderate brightness level setting. However, as many of the images on this site were taken at night, you will find it nearly impossible to properly see many of the darker images here if viewed in bright lighting conditions (and nearly any sunlight). This is an unavoidable property of viewing dark (night time) images on such illuminated screens. To avoid these problems, please view at least the darker images under conditions where the viewing screen is the dominant light source. (More info below image.)
In my best Slim Pickens: "Aw heck, this website's best viewed at night!"
For example, the photo below under proper lighting/viewing conditions has a faintly visible horizon. If you cannot see it, you may want to adjust your monitor and/or look at the darker images on this site under darker viewing conditions.
"Why do the images load so slowly?"
Those who haven't viewed high-resolution photos online will perhaps not realize that these larger photo files can result in longer load times. Fortunately, darker images often have a lower dynamic range and therefore a smaller file size and load time shorter than a comparable brighter image. Every effort has been made to strike a compromise between load times (file size) and image quality. As you are here to see the images and not to have a rapid web surfing experience, I have erred on the side of high-quality images. Enjoy.
"The images look blurry."
See above. Depending on the image use on the page (full page, thumbnail, lightbox) the final image may load from "top to bottom" while already sharp or all at once, though blurry and then finally sharpen. The photos on this site have large file sizes for web images and so they render progressively. If you have a slower Internet connection the image may display "out of focus" at first and then sharpen as the image loads completely. Most photos on this site, except for some of the street photos, are quite sharp. If there is a question of whether the image has loaded completely, the always-sharp copyright notice on the bottom can be a guide.
Want to optimize your monitor's brightness?
Go to The Lagom LCD Monitor Test site and click on the Black Level thumbnail. Adjust your monitor brightness so you can see all the squares. If you can't see the darker squares, you may need to view it (and this site) under darker conditions. There are other optimization tools on the site as well, such as gamma, which would be the best next choice to adjust/optimize. You can also adjust contrast, gradient, and many other parameters on the site.
"The dark images have light-colored specks."
If you see the darker images clearly but they look washed out or speckled with lighter points/specks, then your display is too bright. Most modern LCD (and many old CRT) displays are actually too bright out of the box for accurate still image viewing. These brighter displays are optimized for video and viewing in lighter viewing environments, but can "wash out" darker images due to their high brightness. Again, use the above Lagom Monitor Test website's black level page and adjust your screen brightness to make the first (and dimmest, number 1 ) box just barely perceptible.