JPEGmini is a new image compression service that can magically reduce the file size of your JPEG photos by up to 5 times without any visible loss in quality. ICVT, the Israeli company behind the service, explains how the technology works in an interview with Megapixel:
Our technology analyzes each specific photo, and determines the maximum amount of compression that can be applied to the photo without creating any visual artifacts. In this way, the system compresses each photo to the maximum extent possible without hurting the perceived quality of the photo.
Here’s a nifty visual guide to all the keyboard shortcuts you have access to when viewing a photograph on Flickr. Don’t bother bookmarking this page though — Flickr just added these guides to every page on the site. Simply press the “?” key for the popup to appear!
If you’ve been dying to turn your Android phone into a remote for your Canon DSLR, today’s your lucky day. A developer who goes by “chainfire” has released a new app called “DSLR Controller“. It gives you live view and access to a whole host of camera functions through your phone, which connects to the camera through a USB host cable. Check out the demo above to see it in action. The beta version currently costs $8.56 over in the Android Market.
Multi-tools are pretty convenient when you’re wandering around the great outdoors, but they’ve never really been a friend specifically to photographers. That changes with Gerber’s new Steady multi-tool, which turns into a mini-tripod using fold-out legs on one side and a fold-out tripod screw on the other. It also has 11 other useful tools to help you get things done. The Steady will be available starting in Spring 2012 for $65.
If you’ve tried to scan film using an ordinary flatbed scanner as you would a piece of paper, you’ve probably discovered that it didn’t turn out very well. The reason is because film needs to be illuminated from behind, while conventional scanners capture light that’s reflected off what they’re scanning. Before you give up hope and shell out money for a film scanner, here’s some good news: you can build a cheap and simple cardboard adapter that turns any scanner into a film scanner! Read more…
Pose is a camera case that doubles as a simple stand. Designed to replace the little bean bags or mini-tripods that many people carry around separately, Pose has an attachment mount built in, and can either be propped up by itself on flat surfaces or wrapped around poles and curved surfaces. The $24 accessory is available for pre-order over at quirky, and will be manufactured if at least 1,000 people join in.
Time-lapse enthusiast and electronics wiz Achim Sack came up with this super-small hardware-based intervalometer. Only a little larger than the size of a standard 2.5mm stereo plug, the device doesn’t require any special setup or configuration — all you do is plug it into your Canon/Nikon/Pentax DSLR and then take two photographs between 0.4 seconds and 18 minutes apart. The device will continue to shoot photos at that interval until the memory card is full or the battery dies. Sadly, it’s not for sale, but if you’re handy with electronics you can find the schematics and code for free on Sack’s website.
Researchers in Australia are working on developing a thin piezoelectric film that can be used to convert mechanical energy into electricity. An uber-useful application would be to use the film in existing gadgets, allowing button presses and finger swipes to be used to recharge the device’s battery. One of the lead scientists, Dr. Madhu Bhaskaran, states,
The power of piezoelectrics could be integrated into running shoes to charge mobile phones, enable laptops to be powered through typing or even used to convert blood pressure into a power source for pacemakers – essentially creating an everlasting battery.
Wouldn’t it be crazy if cameras of the future could be powered solely by pressing the shutter button when taking photos (and perhaps other buttons while chimping)?
If you use Photoshop, you’re probably experienced with the uber-useful — and oft-abused — Clone Stamp tool, but what about the Clone Source panel that’s been around since CS 4? This brief but informative tutorial by Photoshop guru Brian Wood is a great primer for that panel, and also includes some general Photoshop tips and tricks that you might not have known.
Last week we featured Shopobot, a new website that can show you the price history of camera gear and tell you whether it’s stable or not. Decide is a new service (just launched yesterday) that goes a step further — it not only tells you whether to buy or not based on price stability, but checks to see whether there’s a newer model available or likely to be announced in the near future. The service bases each decision on 40 price factors, historical trends, and relevant rumors regarding upcoming announcements. With a new camera being announced every 45 hours on average, Decide might just help you avoid the pain of buyers remorse.