Children often incorporate things they see in the news and in movies into their playtimes, whether it’s soldiers engaged in battle or a superhero saving innocent people. Canadian photographer Jonathan Hobin has a project titled In The Playroom that offers a darker and more troubling look at this truth. The photographs show children at play, except instead of more traditional imaginary ideas, they’re reenacting the horrors of things seen in the news — things like 9/11, Jonestown, and the death of Princess Diana. Read more…
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. Read more…
Mexican photojournalist Julian Cardona has lived in Ciudad Juarez since 1960 and began documenting the city in the early 1990s as a photojournalist for the local newspaper, El Diario. He says he’s seen Juarez shift from an idyllic postcard-worthy border town to the city known as the homicide capital of the world. Read more…
Lytro has been pushing to make their living pictures — interactive, clickable photos that have a variable focus point — easier to share. Lytro is a camera that has a very specific, proprietary way of saving and viewing photographs, so sharing these photos can be tricky. Nevertheless, Lytro has been able to quickly expand living photos across the web through social media, most recently to Google+ and Pinterest through Google Chrome extensions. Read more…
Instagram’s latest 2.5 update has swapped out their “popular” tab for a new “explore” feature which allows users to browse photos based on users and hashtags — it’s a more functional search system. Now, instead of seeing photos that have the most likes, users can search for hashtags based on events and topics, which also makes it possible for users to have wider circulation of their images. Read more…
Turns out retro photo filters and mobile photo sharing are big business. Just how big? Get this: Facebook has agreed to acquire 17-month-old Instagram for $1 billion in cash and stock. Instagram amassed 27 million users through iOS alone, but Facebook was likely motivated by the photo sharing app’s recent Android launch, which signed up 1 million new members in the first 24 hours alone. Just last week it was reported that Instagram had raised $50 million based on a $500 million valuation. Those investors scored a 2X return in less than a week.
One of the biggest stories in the news over the past month has been the controversy surrounding the shooting of Trayvon Martin. Poynter has published an article that examines how the media has used photography to portray Trayvon Martin, the victim, and George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watchman who shot and killed him.
The dominant photo of Martin shows him 13 or 14 years old, wearing a red Hollister T-shirt. Other photos, none of them recent, depict a young Martin in a youth football uniform, holding a baby and posing with a snowboard. He is the picture of innocence.
The most common photo of Zimmerman is a 2005 police mugshot. He is 22 in the photo, which was taken after he was arrested for assaulting an officer. (The charges were dropped.) He looks unhappy, if not angry.
The contrast — the two photos are often published side by side — has led to criticism that news media have tilted the story in favor of the 17-year-old victim and against the 28-year-old man who shot him.
CNN published an opinion piece yesterday by photojournalist Nick Stern, who has some pretty harsh things to say about the spread of Instagram-style “fake images” in the news:
The app photographer hasn’t spent years learning his or her trade, imagining the scene, waiting for the light to fall just right, swapping lenses and switching angles. They haven’t spent hours in the dark room, leaning over trays of noxious chemicals until the early hours of the morning.
Nor did they have to spend a huge chunk of their income on the latest digital equipment ($5,999 of my hard-earned cash just went on ordering a new Nikon D4) to ensure they stay on top of their game.
The app photographer merely has to click a software button and 10 seconds later is rewarded with a masterpiece.
Stern also states that “Any news photographer worth his or her salt will tell you that the best camera is one that lets you take the photo unencumbered by the technicalities of the process.”
A French photographer who goes by the pseudonym Mani was recently in Homs, Syria documenting the urban warfare between government forces and rebel fighters. The video above, broadcast by Channel 4 News in Britain, shows the amazing footage Mani was able to capture by fearlessly putting himself in the midst of skirmishes.
While the world has become used to grainy shaky and gruesome footage and images from Homs fed through whatever Internet connection is available, Mani’s crystal clear and incredible footage gives perhaps the clearest and most frightening account of what Homs has been like for the past three weeks.
“The systems we used for photo storage a few years ago did not always delete images from content delivery networks in a reasonable period of time even though they were immediately removed from the site,” Facebook spokesperson Frederic Wolens told Ars via e-mail.
[...] “We have been working hard to move our photo storage to newer systems which do ensure photos are fully deleted within 45 days of the removal request being received,” Wolens said. “This process is nearly complete and there is only a very small percentage of user photos still on the old system awaiting migration, the URL you provided was stored on this legacy system. We expect this process to be completed within the next month or two, at which point we will verify the migration is complete and we will disable all the old content.”
In our tests, a Flickr photo was removed from the servers about 10 minutes after it was “deleted” on the service. In other news, Facebook has rolled out a new lightbox that displays photos at a whopping 960×720 (see screenshot above), and the Facebook iPhone app that we saw leaked screenshots of is apparently dead in the water.