It was a day of typically brutal summer heat in Phoenix, and I had the air conditioner blasting as I raced down the freeway en route to some event I was obliged to cover in my role as a general-assignment newspaper reporter.
The scene came to me in pieces as I glanced to the other side of the roadway. A car on the shoulder, broken down and steam billowing from under the raised hood. Somebody, presumably the driver, sitting on the grass embankment nearby, head in his hands. Wearing a full-on clown outfit — wild hair, floppy shoes, pancake makeup, red nose, the whole package. And looking about as morose and defeated as a clown can get.
Back in July, Lexar vice president of products and technology Wes Brewer confirmed that the company was going to jump into the XQD game in Q3. This was good news for the technology, since only one camera was taking them and one company was making them at the time.
Well, the Nikon D4 is still the only DSLR capable of using the cards at the moment, but now Lexar (a couple of quarters late, but here nonetheless) has officially made the leap with its new 1100x pro series cards.
When Hurricane Sandy struck the East Coast back in October, the photograph above was widely circulated by people who believed that it showed the storm bearing down NYC. It doesn’t. The image is actually a composite photograph that combines an ordinary photo of the Statue of Liberty with a well-known image by weather photographer Mike Hollingshead.
One of the big ideas that seems destined to explode over the next decade is lifelogging, the ability to automatically capture and store one’s life and experiences for future reference. Memoto is a new camera that’s trying to be a pioneer in this emerging market. Its name and tagline should give you a good sense of what it does: “Memoto Lifelogging Camera: A tiny, automatic camera and app that gives you a searchable and shareable photographic memory.”
When XQD memory cards were announced in December 2011, the CompactFlash Association touted the format as the successor to CompactFlash cards. We definitely seemed to be moving in that direction at first: one month after the unveiling, Nikon’s flagship D4 DSLR was announced with XQD card support. The day after that, Sony became the first major memory card maker to announce a line of XQD cards. Six months later, Lexar also announced its intentions to join the party.
Since then, things have died down to the point where you can hear grasshoppers chirping. Not a single XQD-capable camera was announced at Photokina 2012 this past week. Despite being the first to make them, Sony strangely decided to leave the cards out of its top-of-the-line cameras as well.
Lexar has set a new bar in SD memory card capacity with its new 256GB card — the largest size offered in the SDXC (Secure Digital eXtended Capacity) format. SDXC has an upper limit of 2TB, compared to the 32GB cap that restricts the SDHC (Secure Digital High Capacity) format.
The official name of the card is the Lexar Professional 400x SDXC UHS-I. It’s geared towards photographers who need to “capture, store, and transfer a large number of high-quality photos” and videographers who need to record massive amounts of HD video.
Professor and self-proclaimed cyborg Steve Mann created an eye and memory-aid device he calls the EyeTap Digital Glass. The EyeTap, worn by Mann above on the left, is a wearable device that is similar to Google Eye, pictured right, but he’s been making them at home since the 1980s. The goal of his project is to use images to aid memory, or even to augment the memories of people with Alzheimer’s Disease or who simply want to preserve their memories more permanently. However, a recent misunderstanding over Mann’s technology allegedly caused a confrontation between Mann and several employees at a Paris McDonald’s restaurant.
Here’s a great little-known tip coming at you via photographer Dan Carr that has the potential to make using Lightroom just that much easier. If you didn’t already know — and it seems most people didn’t — assuming you have enough card readers, you can actually import multiple memory cards into Lightroom all at once.
Many amateurs and most enthusiasts never shoot more than one card at a time, but professionals often fill up several over the course of a photo shoot. For them, this tip should help get the process of importing all of those cards into Lightroom closer to that ideal “set it and forget it” scenario.
(via ISO 1200)
KEH has published a helpful primer on memory cards that describes the different types, common error codes you might come across when using them, and how to take care of them:
Memory cards are quite sturdy and commonly expected to work through one million read/write/erase cycles. The weakest part of the card is the connectors however, and should withstand around 10,000 insertions/removals into a camera or card reader.
No matter which type of card (CF I&II, SD, XD, SM, MS, etc.) your camera takes, it’s a good idea to format it on a regular basis. While it may not happen often, these little cards of information can fail and reach the end of their life unexpectedly. To keep your card in good health, format it in the camera from time to time. (I format my card after every major download). This clears up the card and erases all of the data. Of course make sure that you have downloaded and saved onto a computer all of the files on the card before formatting.
Since the number of insert/remove cycles a card can handle is far less than the number of read/write cycles, it’s very important to handle your cards gently in order to prolong their lifespan.
Memory Cards: Compatibility, Error Codes, and Health (via Photojojo)
P.S. Last month Canon also published a helpful guide on its cameras error codes and what they mean.
Image credit: 4GB Memory card by Jorge Quinteros
Samsung has released a new line of SD and microSD memory cards that focus not only on speed and durability but appearance as well. They come with a brushed metal look in silver or black, and are able pretty dang tough as well:
In order to ensure their reliability, Samsung has designed both lines of memory products to be waterproof, shockproof, and magnet proof, allowing them to withstand some of the harshest conditions. All models are guaranteed to survive up to 24 hours in water, withstand the force of a 1.6 ton vehicle (3,200 lbs), and resist up to 10,000 gauss (slightly less than the power of a medical imaging magnet).
Prices range from $10 to $90 for 2GB to 32GB cards.