Posts Published in August 2011

An Introduction to Google’s Photovine

Confused about what Google’s new Photovine photo sharing app is all about? Here’s a short video published yesterday that explains the service without blinding us with hairy-chested dudes. “Instead of just posting a photo, you plant it and watch it grow.”

Aside from the fun-factor of “vines” planted for random topics, it seems like the service could be useful for spreading images of real-time news stories (e.g. protests, disasters, etc..), similar to what Twitter does with text and hashtags.

Large Objects Shot as Miniatures Using a Giant Coin and Tilt-Shift Effects

Norwegian design studio Skrekkøgle — the one that printed a photo with a cremated dog — has a creative project called “Big Money” in which they made a giant 20:1 replica of a 50 cent Euro coin. They then placed the coin next to large objects and photographed them together, making the objects look like tiny toy replicas.
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8 Ways to Title an Online Photograph

I love what the Internet has done for the sharing of photography. Social websites such as Flickr make it so easy to get our work in front of the faces of people on the other side of the Earth so easily that it boggles my mind sometimes. This incredible ability of technology has one horrible side effect however. I’m talking about title fields.
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Baseball Photographer Talks About Capturing a Triple Play

The 684th triple play in the history of baseball happened yesterday in a game between the Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays, and Boston Globe staff photographer Jim Davis managed to capture photos of the rare occurrence (they happen a few times per year) through anticipation and preparedness. Here’s a short video in which Davis explains how he did it.


Thanks for the tip, @tmwsiy!

That Explains It: Canon vs. Nikon Debate Linked to Self-Esteem

Ever wonder why certain people always seem to engage in meaningless Canon vs Nikon vs et al. camera brand debates at every opportunity? A recent study conducted at the University of Illinois has found that the more knowledge and experience you have with a particular brand, the stronger your self-esteem is tied to it. Ars Technica writes,

Those who had high self-brand connections (SBC)—that is, those who follow, research, or simply like a certain brand—were the ones whose self esteem suffered the most when their brands didn’t do well or were criticized. Those with low SBC remained virtually unaffected on a personal level.

The residual effect of this is that those with high SBCs tend to discount negative news about their favorite brands, and sometimes even ignore it altogether in favor of happier thoughts.

So that’s why feathers are so easily ruffled when camera brands are bashed…

(via Boing Boing)


Image credit: Canon Vs Nikon Faceoff by Rakesh Ashok

Google Opens Up Photovine to the Public

Google’s new Photovine mobile photo sharing app for iOS is now out of private beta and open to public signups. Here’s how the iTunes download page describes it:

Photovine is a fun way to learn more about your friends, meet new people, and share your world like never before. It all starts with what we call a photovine: a group of photos around a single, shared caption. Start a new vine with a photo and caption of your own or add your photo/take on someone else’s vine.

It has a long ways to go before it can catch Instagram, which is currently the 800-pound gorilla in this space. Instagram has already passed 7 million registered users, who have uploaded more than 700 million photos. Google has a pretty big reach though, so products launched by the company can get really big, really fast — just look at Google+.

Photovine (via TechCrunch)

Cremation Portrait: Owner Has Photo Printed with Dead Dog’s Ashes

There’s all kinds of things people do to remember their beloved pets after they pass away, but here’s a pretty creepy one: a dog owner in Norway had a photo of their Gordon Setter named Susie printed with her ashes. Norwegian design studio Skrekkøgle figured out a way to rebuild a printer to accept dog ashes as “ink”, allowing them to print a vintage-looking black-and-white photograph of Susie.

The studio is also offering to do this for other grieving pet owners, but you’ll have to contact them to find out the pricing and specific details.

Cremation Portrait (via Pop Photo)

Amazing Optical Illusion Shows That Our Eyes Are Horrible Light Meters

Here’s a mind-bending video in which someone created the famous checker shadow illusion in real life. The optical illusion takes advantage of the way our brains process lighting and shadows.

As with many so-called illusions, this effect really demonstrates the success rather than the failure of the visual system. The visual system is not very good at being a physical light meter, but that is not its purpose. The important task is to break the image information down into meaningful components, and thereby perceive the nature of the objects in view. [#]

Interesting huh? Our eyes aren’t very good as a light meters, since they’re easily deceived by context.
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Google and Microsoft Named as Possible Suitors for Kodak

Talk about a Kodak acquisition seems to be heating up as giant tech companies — including Google, Microsoft, and Apple — continue to engage in a patent-hoarding war. Just two days ago, Google agreed to acquire Motorola for $12.5 billion in order to snatch up the roughly 25,000 patents owned by the handset maker. Bloomberg writes that the patents held by Kodak may be worth five times more than the company itself, making it a prime acquisition target:

If Kodak’s patents can command $3 billion, acquiring the company would outweigh the liabilities [...] An acquirer would also be able to sell Kodak’s commercial and consumer printing businesses and the digital camera unit for at least $2.5 billion, he said.

Buyers may include Microsoft, the world’s largest software maker, Samsung, the Suwon, South Korea-based maker of Galaxy phones and tablet computers, and Google, according to Luskin.

That’s crazy — can you imagine Google or Microsoft buying Kodak to strip it of its patents and then selling off the corpse to some other camera maker? No wonder Kodak adopted a ‘poison pill’.

Kodak Worth Five Times More in Breakup With $3 Billion Patents [Bloomberg]


Image credit: Kodak by t-miki

Daily Mail Publishes Photo Anyway After Owner Denies Them Permission

The Daily Mail is no stranger to copyright infringement accusations, but this time they’ve taken it even further — publishing a photo after the owner denied them permission to do so. Alice Taylor of Wonderland recently snapped a photo of a “dangerously emaciated” mannequin promoting GAP’s “Always Skinny” line of clothes. As the photo started spreading on the web, The Daily Mail emailed Taylor to ask for permission to use the image, which she agreed to — on the condition that the newspaper donate £250 to a charity of her choice. When they balked at the price, she gave them a flat out “no”.

That same day, they published an article (which has since been taken down [Update: It's back up]) using both the photo and quotes lifted from The Washington Post without include any linkbacks. Taylor is now demanding that they cough up a £2000 donation for the unauthorized use.

(via Wonderland via Reddit)


Update: The Daily Mail has apologized for publishing the photos, which was apparently due to a breakdown in communications. They’re planning to settle with the Taylor.