Category Tech Talk

The Value of Metadata

My colleague Kyser Lough sent this along – a look back in time to when Jose R. Lopez photographed Ruth Bader Ginsburg on her first day on the Supreme Court.

Why is this important? Aside from it being a very strong image, it was his ability to find that image, 27 years after it was made – this is a story about the value of metadata.

An old friend of mine has been scanning photos of trains of late, posting them to Facebook. He had notes on the slides about the type of train and where it was photographed for most of them, but not all – his metadata is incomplete.

Appending locations and notes to our files is easier now than ever before – there is absolutely no reason not to have all of that on every image. But it means you have to commit to it, make it part of your workflow.

App Failures and Lost Images

Within the last week, two significant coding errors wreaked havoc on Photographer’s who relied on a pair of popular imaging platforms.

It appears that image.canon was hit with a ransom ware attack and an Adobe Lightroom update wiped out images and presets for users on iOS.

This is another example of why why it’s critical that you establish and execute a robust digital asset management plan, and that means both online and offline backups of files. Keeping everything in just one place is tempting fate or, at least, hackers and bad coders.

Associated Press Switching to Sony for all Still and Video Photojournalist

If you ever needed a sign that mirrorless was the future, it’s today’s news that the Associated Press is moving to Sony equipment for both their still and video photojournalists.

While not a huge sale (or lease, more likely), the impact on both profesisonals and amateurs of this move could be immense. Canon and Nikon have had a stranglehold on the professional photojournalism world for almost half a century, so the fact that the AP (which may be the largest employer of photojournalists in the world) is switching is … shocking.

Maybe I need to try one of them out …

(H/T to my colleague Kyser Lough for the initial tipoff.)

Color in a Dark Time


You can look at this post on the Leica blog two ways: with lust over the newest Leica rangefinder or with lusciousness at the images Huw John created with it.

I, I choose both.

Polaroid at MIT

Not that we can go, but if we could, we should:

The collection was to be on display through June 21.

Transmitting History

We think it so common now – make a photo, two or three clicks later it’s shared around the world. There’s an entire generation who doesn’t even understand the idea of having to wait to see your own photos, let alone having to wait to see news photos from around the world.

But 85 years ago today, the Associated Press changed the world – the first Wirephoto made its way around the country and visual storytelling became an integral part of our news consumption.

Sixty years later, I was racing around New England with a trunk full of chemicals, stainless steel tanks, film reels and a … $35,000? … Leafax IIId digital transmitter, still needing a place to process film and tap into a phone line.

We’ve come a long way and it has been a very good journey.

The Importance of Design in Cameras

The designed Luigi Colani died recently. While that New York Times obit deals with many things, it doesn’t do justice to the work he did with Canon in the 1980s – he is credited with the design of the T90, the first truly modern SLR camera.

Look at that camera – introduced in 1986, almost every DSLR of today owes a debt to its purposeful, organic and humanist design. That was the camera that truly moved manufacturers away from the dedicated dials and knobs and started to take full advantage of microprocessors.

In the mid-1980s, that was one of the cameras we all lusted after. A beautiful piece of kit that was truly revolutionary.

Over at The Online Photographer, Adam Richardson has a nice tribute to Colani.

And We’re Back …

After being down for a month (long story and, while I gravitate towards long stories, I really don’t want to talk about this one), Visual Journalism is back up and running.

Mostly.

We did lose all of the Category assignments for the last 12 years worth of posts. Hoping we can recover them, but I think that may be a bridge too far at this point.

New posts coming soon, it’s nice to have this corner of the web back to myself again.

Photographing Apollo 11

This is one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen online, if you’re a space geek, you’re about to lose part of your morning.

Inside the Canon EOS R

Sometimes, I really want to take things apart … then I remember I would be responsible for putting them back together. Which makes me happy when Roger Cicala at LensRentals.com does it.

They last camera I disassembled was an all-mechanical Nikon, things have changed.