A Canadian woman named Karen Gwillim was driving through the village of Craven, Saskatchewan back in September when she came across a cormorant (perhaps like the one above) standing in the middle of the road. Seeing that it was struggling, Gwillim got out of her car to take a closer look, and found that there was a silver digital camera hanging from the bird’s neck. After taking the camera off — or stealing the camera from the bird, depending on how you look at it — Gwillim took the gear home to investigate. Read more…
The latest photo to go viral on the web is a photo about photos. Lost photos, that is. Earlier today a man named Roland van Gogh shared the above image on Facebook and on Reddit, stating,
My father in law found a red Nikon Coolpix camera on 2012-06-20 in the train at the station Amsterdam Amstel in the Netherlands. His photos show a trip throughout Europe from about 2012-05-07. Since 2012-06-15 he stayed in Amsterdam.
We would like to give him back the camera and the photos. Please Like, Share and spread this photo around so we can give him back his camera! Thanks!
The image quickly racked up tens of thousands of shares on Facebook (it at nearly 40,000 at the time of this post), and some progress appears to have been made: Roland reports that he has received a lead to the woman in the photo.
If you were to lose your camera today, would anyone who found it be able to get in touch with you? If not, it might be a good idea to put a couple “digital dog tags” on your camera’s memory card. First, add a photo with your contact information onto the card so that anyone looking through the photos on the camera will come across it. Next, add a series of text documents to the root directory of your memory card (the first directory that appears when you access the card on a computer). Give these files names that both attract attention and contain your contact info. Open up these text documents and add your full contact details. This way, anyone who opens up your card on a computer will (hopefully) see your info as well.
These tips are especially useful if you’re traveling with your camera, since you might not be clearing the data off your card very frequently and may have a higher chance of losing your camera.
Looking for a lost camera on the web by searching for its serial number in uploaded photos is nothing new (see Stolen Camera Finder), but GadgetTrak’s new CameraTrace service takes it one step further. For a fee of $10 per camera, the service will actively monitor the Internet for your camera’s serial number. If it ever pops up in a photo uploaded to popular photo sharing services, you’ll get an email notification. Back in August, GadgetTrak’s manual Serial Search helped a photographer recover $9000 in stolen gear.
The power of the Internet is amazing. Just yesterday we reported on how a man found a battered memory card that apparently spent four years in the ocean and recovered 104 photos from it. After the story went viral and was widely reported, the owner of the camera has now been found. The girl nearest the camera in the photo above was visiting relatives four years ago when she accidentally dropped the camera into the Pacific Ocean from a wharf Santa Cruz. Read more…
A little boy named Miles was documenting a sledding adventure with his little sister when his new camera slipped out of his hands and disappeared into the snow. As his life flashed before his eyes, the camera kept rolling and recorded the mega-cuteness that ensued.
The Stolen Camera Finder is a new search engine developed over the past two years by programmer Matt Burns. His idea is to search the web for photographs that have a stolen camera’s serial number embedded in the EXIF information. It uses two web crawlers — the first is a standard one that accesses Flickr’s API, while the second is a Google Chrome browser plugin that silently runs in the background and peeks at the serial numbers of images on any webpage viewed. These serial numbers and URLs are stored in a database, and if you’d like to volunteer your browsing for this you can download the Chrome plugin here.