Posts Tagged ‘interesting’

Famous ‘Valley Of The Shadow Of Death’ Photo Was Almost Certainly Staged

You might recognize the photograph above. Titled Valley Of The Shadow Of Death and snapped by British photographer Roger Fenton in 1855, it’s considered to be one of the oldest known photographs of warfare. Problem is, it might also be one of the oldest known examples of a staged photograph.
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Baseball Fan Catches Home Run Balls with a Camera in the Other Hand

Die-hard Dodgers fan Bobby Crosby is the only person to ever film himself catching a home run at a Major League Baseball game. That’s not all though: over the past few years, he has also filmed himself catching tens of home runs during the batting practice prior to games, holding his baseball glove in one hand and his camera in the other. The video above, which is currently going viral online, shows Crosby’s amazing first person view of all but a few of those catches.
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Photos of Astronauts Using DSLRs on the International Space Station

Earlier this month we shared some neat photos of astronauts using DSLRs while on spacewalks outside the International Space Station. In case you’re also wondering how the cameras are used inside the habitable satellite, we’ve carefully perused NASA’s 2Explore Flickr photo stream in search of those photos as well, and have collected them here in one place for your viewing pleasure. They’ve got some pretty nice gear up in the ISS… lucky astronauts.
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The State of Professional Photography Back in 1946

Want to know what the professional photography industry was like over half a century ago, and what advice was commonly given to aspiring professionals? Check out this 10-minute vocational guidance film from 1946 that offers a quick overview of the various types of photography that people went pro in at the time. Suggested careers include portrait photography, commercial photography, and photojournalism. Here’s how the video starts off:

Photography is often called “the universal hobby.” It is a means of creative expression within the reach of people in all walks of life, and it speaks a language that everyone can understand.

The camera lens is a mechanical eye: seeing everything, and recording everything. It captures actions that will never again be repeated.

It’s fascinating to see how much the industry has changed in some ways, while remaining virtually unchanged in others. The brief glimpses of negative retouching are probably quite foreign to many modern day photographers, while the tip on starting photography as a hobby first is still heeded by many an aspiring photographer today.

(via The Atlantic via ISO 1200)

1909 Lincoln Penny Used to Calibrate the Mars Curiosity Rover’s Camera on Mars

Did you know that there’s US currency on Mars? It’s true: when NASA’s Curiosity rover was launched back on November 26, 2011, one of the things it carried with it was a penny from over a century ago. The 1909 Lincoln cent is part of the rover’s onboard calibration target used to check that the cameras are working properly.
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The Emperor’s New Gadget: Behold the Effect of Fanboyism on Consumers

Marketing and customer loyalty are two powerful things. They can make minor improvements in gadgets seem great, and major advancements to-die-for. In the world of photography, many camera owners feel strong allegiances to the brand they use, fiercely defending it as their own, and even going on the offensive to belittle other photographers who shoot under a different banner. This kind of customer loyalty does strange things to how the “fanboys” perceive the quality of their camera gear.
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The Light Show on CN Tower is Actually a Subliminal Photo Slideshow

If you’ve visited the CN Tower in Toronto, Canada anytime during the past five years at night, you’ve likely enjoyed the dazzling light show that appears on the side of the tower. The 1,330 uber-bright LED lights (which cost a cool $2.5 million) were installed in the elevator shafts back in 2007, and are turned on from dusk every day until 2 the next morning. What you might not have known, however, is that the seemingly random colors that appear are really not so random after all: they’re actually pieces of photographs!
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The Kent State Massacre Photo and the Case of the Missing Pole

Recognize this photograph? It shows 14-year-old Mary Ann Vecchio screaming and kneeling over the body of 20-year-old Jeffrey Miller, shot during the Kent State Massacre. Kent State photojournalism student John Paul Filo — just 22-years-old at the time — captured the image, and was later awarded the 1971 Pulitzer Prize for Spot News Photography.
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How the Curiosity Rover’s Photography Decisions Are Made

Earlier this month, when we were exploring why the NASA Curiosity rover’s cameras are so lame, we mentioned that the total amount of data the scientists can transfer on a daily basis is only around 31 megabytes. As anyone with a restrictive cell phone dataplan can attest to, having a small data cap makes you think carefully about the data that you choose to download. Glenn Fleishmann over at The Economist has an interesting writeup that sheds some light on how NASA scientists make their Martian photo shoot decisions:

Every day Justin Maki faces a tricky balancing act. He is one of the boffins at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) responsible, among other things, for deciding what Curiosity photographs each Martian day, or sol, and which pictures it sends back home. “We can always take enough pictures to fill up the downlink,” Dr Maki says. The mission can currently beam at least 30MB a sol, including scientific measurements, engineering data and images, from Mars, via two satellites orbiting the planet, to Earth.

All of the rover’s 17 cameras, seven more than any previous exploratory vehicle, store images in a raw, unprocessed format and initially beam back tiny thumbnails (which NASA uploads as they come in). The scientists working on different aspects of the mission meet daily to determine which of the thumbnails to download in higher resolution. The “health and safety” of the rover takes priority. After the deliberations, which can last over an hour, instructions are dispatched to Mars.

Taking pictures on Mars: Red eyes (via Boing Boing)

Mac Engineers Hid Photos of Themselves in Old Macintosh SE Computers

The people over at New York-based hackerspace NYC Resistor recently found an old Apple Macintosh SE on the side of a road in Brooklyn — a computer that was manufactured between 1987 and 1990. They decided to do a little “digital archaeology”, and came across something strange:

While digging through dumps generated from the Apple Mac SE ROM images we noticed that there was a large amount of non-code, non-audio data. Adam Mayer tested different stride widths and found that at 67 bytes (536 pixels across) there appeared to be some sort of image data that clearly was a picture of people. The rest of the image was skewed and distorted, so we knew that it wasn’t stored as an uncompressed bitmap.

After some investigation, we were able to decode the scrambled mess above and turn it into the full image with a hidden message from “Thu, Nov 20, 1986“.

After some further techie magic, they were able to unearth four black and white photographs showing the engineers that worked on building the computer for Apple 25 years ago.
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