Apple buys SnappyCam

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Date: Tuesday, January 7th, 2014, 08:54
Category: App Store, Apple, Apps, Developer, Digital Camera, iOS, iPhone, photos, Software

3015176-inline-i-1-snappy-cam-faster-appleNo more than a week into 2014 and Apple is already scooping up another small technology company. This time it’s an iPhone app called SnappyCam and its developer, John Papandriopoulos. Don’t go looking for it in the AppStore though, it has unfortunately been removed, so if you ‘snapped’ it up (couldn’t resist) consider yourself lucky. As for everyone else, wait a while and you may see the benefits of the app showing up in an iOS update. So what was so amazing about SnappyCam?

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Samsung Release VGA 5cm Screen

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Date: Wednesday, August 16th, 2006, 11:00
Category: Digital Camera

samsung-sigma-300.jpgSamsung have announced that it has developed the industry’s first 1.98” LCD panel to achieve 640 x 480 pixels (VGA resolution).
This means that camera and mobile phone-size screens will be able to display images at 300 dots-per-inch, three times that of most LCD displays, and ten times that of many plasma screens. The practical outcome of this is that text will remain legible at smaller sizes, and more data can be viewed without ‘panning and scanning’.
I’m looking forward to the time when PDAs (and laptops) come with screens with this (and greater) resolution. The primary benefit will be that text can be displayed at qualites that approach those of the printed page.
(Contributed by: Brett Jordan)

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Fujifilm FinePix F30: First impressions

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Date: Wednesday, June 28th, 2006, 09:00
Category: Digital Camera

fujifilm_f30.jpgUp until last Friday I possessed two cameras. My ‘proper’ camera is a Sigma SD9, a bulky and unsophisticated digital SLR with one saving grace, its Foveon image sensor, which is capable of recording some of the most beautiful digital images I have seen from any digital camera.
Because of its bulk (especially when combined with an extra lens, batteries, chargers, flash attachment…) I don’t carry the Sigma with me everywhere I go. This job was (until last Friday) taken by a Pentax Optio 555, a chubby but carriable digital compact with a decent lens and CCD. For the last 18 months it has gone everywhere with me. I was so happy with it that when I went on holiday to Crete with my kidz last summer, I left the Sigma at home. There were a couple of occasions when I wished I had taken the Sigma, but the images the Pentax recorded will provide me with perfectly acceptable memories of our time in Greece.
The Optio 555 has some major failings. Its start up time is slow (up to 6 seconds) and its ‘shutter lag’ (the time taken between pressing the button to take a photo and the photo actually being taken) has meant that I’ve missed capturing a number of shots. And while the images it captures are excellent, this only occurs when it’s CCD’s sensitivity is set to ISO 64, the equivalent of having a ‘slow’ film in a conventional camera. This means that taking pictures in anything other than bright daylight is problematic.
However, up until recently, there hasn’t been anything else that was ‘better-enough’ to justify trading it in. I looked at some of the new Pentax and Nikon compacts, but their speed and light-sensitivity weren’t that much better. Casio and Fuji offerings were faster, but the image quality was suspect.
The Fujifilm F30 was announced earlier this year, and its selling points were clear… up to ISO 3200 light-sensitivity, ultra fast start-up speed with imperceptible ‘shutter lag’, all in a small form-factor with a huge, bright LCD, and excellent battery life. It became available in the UK last week, I purchased one last Friday.
It looks beautiful, the design is elegant, yet robust, with the only two minor niggles being the fragile plastic cover for the USB and power sockets, and the plastic tripod thread.
The LCD screen is so clear and bright (when you select the optional 60 frames per second refresh rate) that the lack of an optical viewfinder is not missed, and the menu system is ugly but well thought out, with the most used functions available via buttons on the rear of the camera.
Focussing is fast and accurate, even in very low-light… which is fortunate, as this is a camera that works in VERY low light. Indoor and evening pictures can be achieved without flash, allowing natural-looking shots to be taken in nearly any situation, especially as the shutter-lag really is imperceptible, you press the button, and the picture is taken. There is even a superb function where you keep the shutter held down, and the camera takes a stream of pictures, only keeping the three just before you ‘release’ the shutter. Great for those ‘waiting for something to happen’ shots
Contributed by: Brett Jordan

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What’s Right With this Picture?

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Date: Tuesday, June 27th, 2006, 08:00
Category: Digital Camera

casio-EX-Z1000.jpgCasio has recently announced their latest compact camera. The EX-Z1000 manages to cram 10 megapixels into a 92 x 58 x 22mm case (think of an inch-thick credit card).
Along with the usual slew of features and special effects, there is one option called ‘best shot’, takes a 3 megapixel shot of the area you are focusing on, while simultaneously recording a 10 megapixel image of this area, plus the area surrounding it. This is designed for people who have a tendency for ‘chopping’ the heads off people, or steeples off churches, allowing them to re-crop the picture in image-editing software later on.
Now, this made me think about my recent blog about Stephen Wiltshire, and a less-recent one about aerial panoramas. Stephen remembers every detail of the scenes he looks at, and is able to ‘stitch’ them back together again later. What if the cameras of the future had a lens apparatus that took a gigapixel picture similar to the panorama pictures.
Of course, getting the lens 100-feet in the air might be a problem, so maybe we’ll have to settle for a 360-degree horizontal view (cue a new ‘hold mobile phone above head when taking shots’ craze).
Later you could browse through the ‘flattened’ picture, and choose the portion you wanted.
And while we’re being silly, why not throw in an HDR imaging system (High Dynamic Range) which takes three identically framed pictures, one under-exposed, one correctly exposed, and one over-exposed, then blends them together to create a picture with far more detail than would be possible using conventional photographic methods?
Now, I can already hear howls of protest from ‘proper’ photographers saying that it takes all the skill out of photography. However, people will still need to choose the ‘best bits’… and the HDR method can lead to bland and uninteresting images without the right ‘eye’ to decide how much light and shade to mix in.
There was a time when only someone with photographic equipment worth tens of thousands of pounds could take professional-looking images. Now someone with a camera costing under �500 can record an image good enough to grace the cover of a glossy magazine.
Is this a good or bad thing? Discuss.
Contributed by: Brett Jordan

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SanDisk Ultra II SD Plus Card Eliminates the Card Reader

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Date: Tuesday, June 28th, 2005, 14:54
Category: Digital Camera

SanDisk's Ultra II SD PlusDon’t you just hate it when you forget your digital camera’s USB cable or card reader when your traveling? Nothing’s worse that being forced to buy an extra memory card at exorbitant resort prices because you can’t offload your pictures. If you’re tired of forgetting your cable or card reader I think that I have found the solution. Read More…

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Megapixel Arms Race: Digital Cameras

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Date: Tuesday, May 31st, 2005, 08:56
Category: Digital Camera

First we reported on the 144 Megapixel digital camera, not to be outdone, we then posted the 1 Gigapixel digicam (with about one billion pixels). PowerPage reader Will Hammond sends us some links to other high-end digital cameras. “The Phase One captures a 786MB file!” Read More…

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Whew! Kodak EasyShare One Delayed

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Date: Wednesday, May 25th, 2005, 07:03
Category: Digital Camera

Kodak EasyShare One WiFi Digital CameraGizmodo is reporting that the Kodak EasyShare One WiFi digital camera is being delayed from June to October. I am extremely relieved by the decision. Find out why after the jump…

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One Gigapixel Digital Camera

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Date: Wednesday, May 25th, 2005, 06:20
Category: Digital Camera

Gigapixel CCD CameraYou’ll recall yesterday’s story about the 144 megapixel digital camera that blows away your average consumer digicam. Well, an astute reader pointed us to the 1 gigapixel PanSTARRS camera. Yes, gigapixel.

The four PanSTARRS cameras will each be the largest digital cameras ever built. Each camera will have about one billion pixels spread over an area about 40 centimeters square. For comparison, a typical domestic digital camera contains about 3 million pixels on a chip a few millimeters across.

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Camera Envy: 144 Megapixels

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Date: Monday, May 23rd, 2005, 11:04
Category: Digital Camera

144 Megapixel Digital CameraBBC’s Click Online: Digital cameras are the technology miracle of the decade, from the flat blurry images we got ten years ago we’ve progressed to stunningly vibrant pictures right up there with film. But for two photographers in New York State this wasn’t enough. They went in search of the ultimate way to capture every minute digital detail… Tom Watson, Photographer: “This is a 144 megapixel camera. It writes a 140mb file. If you compare that with the average consumer digital camera, it’s about 100 times more data.” It takes a minivan full of technology. The large format camera is mounted on a sturdy, wind resistant tripod. A laptop and 80gb hard drive are also part of the kit.

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CASIO Exilim EX-Z55 Media Issues II

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Date: Thursday, February 10th, 2005, 08:32
Category: Digital Camera

I posted a previous story detailing the problems I’ve been having with SanDisk’s 1GB SD media in a new Casio Exilim EX-Z55. Essentially the card won’t read in my PowerBook G4 1.5 GHz for love or money, and to make matters worse, I had to shoot a whole card of excellent shots to find this out. Needless to say, your fearless editor is pretty fired up about this issue. Read on…

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