Awesome Photo

I loved this shot of The Milky Way Over Mauna Kea.

Facebook and Photos

It is another late night and I am not even close to being tired. It could be blamed upon the pounding I took today from multiple quarters. It could be said that I feel like someone tried to give me a colonoscopy with an object that was never designed to go where few dare to tread. I could easily go off on a rant about such things, but what fun would that be.

So instead I am going to blame my late hours on sorting through old photos, a few of which even made it onto Facebook. Until recently I had little to do with Facebook. I have plenty of activities which serve the purpose as general timesuck and had been cautious not to get caught up in more. But the damn bug caught up with me.

Actually what happened is that a group of friends of mine all simultaneously realized that it is a really freaking easy way to stay in touch. So we have been making like Ma Bell and doing the reach out and touch someone routine.

In addition one of my 1,287 siblings and I have both been uploading some family photos to look at. Since we live far apart it is an easy way to try and get a look at the rugrats and see if they really are growing as fast as it seems.

But as much as I enjoy doing the trip down memory lane I do hesitate to put too many pictures on line. I figure that whatever goes up is a lifetime gift to cyberspace. Since I am not independently wealthy and haven’t ruled out running for office I am careful about what goes up. Not to mention that I am especially careful when it comes to the children. Sometimes I get a bit antsy about putting their mugs up.

Mostly this was a good excuse to try and sift through some old photos and figure out which ones needed to be scanned in so that they could be shared online.

Anyhoo, that is about all I have to say about that.

Goodbye Polaroid

I don’t know about you, but I still think that Polaroid cameras are kind of cool. It is kind of sad to see them go by the wayside. My grandparents and my parents had them. Up until recently my kids school still used them.

I had a field day watching the picture develop. It always seemed so magical to me.

CNN has the story:

…Because the Polaroid Corp. announced it would stop making instant film. And without it her project, “Day by Day Polaroid,” would never be complete.

Sixty years after Polaroid introduced its first instant camera, the company’s iconic film is disappearing from stores.

Although Polaroid says the film should be available into 2009, this is the final month of its last production year.

Eclipsed by digital photography, Polaroid’s white-bordered prints — and the anticipation they created as their ghostly images gradually came into view — will soon be things of the past.

From David Hockney’s famous Polaroid art compositions, to the line, “Shake it like a Polaroid picture” from OutKast’s hit “Hey Ya!”, Polaroid instant film has embedded itself in popular culture.

The public’s reaction to Polaroid’s announcement reflects that. Blogs lament the loss. Polaroid-fan groups have formed on Facebook. On Amazon.com, a four-pack of 10 exposures is selling for $64 — nearly $1.60 per photo.

A Digital Photo Disaster

Folks I am in the middle of a Digital Photo Disaster. Some of you are probably wondering what a Digital Photo Disaster is. Well you are in luck because I am going to tell you.

A Digital Photo Disaster is the term you give yourself when you somehow lose the 4 gigabyte memory card upon which you have stored hundreds of photos that you can never replace. Yep, I seem to have misplaced the card and can’t figure out where the hell that sucker is.

Now if there is any good news involved in this it is that I had transferred a portion of the photos to my computer, not to mention that I have access to photos taken by other family members. But it still irks me to no end to not know where that card is.

What the hell happened to it. Is there a photo gremlin wandering around my home. Was it homesick for Kansas. Did it click its heels and find itself magically transported home.

It almost sounds like the premise for a movie. Memory stick is inadvertently separated from his camera and family. Lost stick wanders aimlessly around town looking for help. Along the way the poor little card has amazing adventures, all of which are transcribed on the card.

Come home little card, all is forgiven.

Crossposted here.

The Challenge of Digital Photography

The desk my parents got me for my childhood bedroom is located inside my garage. Wrapped in shrink wrap and a blanket it does a fine job of occupying space against the wall. Inside the desk are any number of treasures from youth. In the bottom drawer are a couple of baseball mitts, some folders with various papers and some other odds and ends.

In the middle are drawer are my old Kodak Disc camera, another camera that used 126 film and the first 35 mm I owned. At least I think they are. Truth is that I haven’t looked inside the desk since we moved into this house way back in 2001.

That is ok, because around the same time that we moved in I stopped using film cameras. Digital seemed to make more sense. You didn’t have to worry about taking bad shots. You no longer had to be stuck paying to develop shots that were out of focus or ones in which the subject wasn’t paying attention.

Digital photography was supposed to be the promised land, especially for parents. I suppose that you could say that goes double for new parents. If you ask my middle sister double stands for the number of pictures I am in compared to her. I used to tell her that it happened because mom and dad liked me better and I was much better looking. Not to mention much more humble.

Anyway, when we got our first digital camera I was quite excited. I was excited because like my father I love gadgets. And I was excited because I thought that it was pretty damn cool. For a while I used a film camera alongside the digital. That 35 mm Olympus did the trick and I took some pretty good photos with it. It didn’t suffer from the lag time in shutter speed that the digital one did. That made it easier to catch the constantly in motion children and thanks to one hour photo at Costco I didn’t have to wait long to get them developed.

In time though I just kind of stopped using the Olympus. Digital meant that I didn’t have to pay for film and that I could develop them individually or collectively. Sure, there was the challenge of the lag time, but as technology improved the price of the better cameras came down and some of those issues disappeared.

Still, I have one challenge that I seem to be stymied by. For some reason I am just not good about developing the photos on my memory card with any sort of regularity. I don’t know why, but for whatever reason I just seem to wait until the card is almost full.

It is not a smart way to go. Do you know how many photos fit on a 1 GB card. Not only does it get a bit costly to develop 1,298,986 pictures at once, it takes way too much time. And then there is the album dilemma. When you print out 36 or even 72 pix it is easy to see that they all get filed in an album, but 1,298,986 pictures is an entirely different story altogether.

Last week I asked one of my buddies what he was doing about this. He told me that he had a system. He takes his photos and uploads copies of all of the photos to his iPod and then backs it up on his computer and an external hard drive. He claims that this saves him a lot of time and money on albums that would just get dusty.

But if you ask me there is something nice about being able to hold a photo or flip through an album.

On a related but somewhat separate tack I have to blog about what happened to all of the Super 8 my folks took of us and the status of the home movies of my own children, but I’ll save that for a different time. For now I think I’ll call it a night.

See you all in the A.M.