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Aperture replacement
Sep 4th, 2014 by Ken Hagler

When look­ing at Adobe Light­room as a pos­si­ble replace­ment for Aper­ture, I quick­ly dis­cov­ered that it wasn’t suit­able. Light­room just can’t han­dle the very large files pro­duced by scan­ning large-format neg­a­tives, and I have a num­ber of such files in my pho­to library. For­tu­nate­ly, a bit of search­ing turned up an alter­na­tive. Years ago I had used a pro­duct called iView Media Pro to man­age my pho­to library, but it was bought and prompt­ly killed by Microsoft–which led to my using Aper­ture.

It turns out that at some point it was res­cued from Microsoft by Phase One, a com­pa­ny best known for dig­i­tal medi­um for­mat cam­eras, and is now avail­able once again. That made it an easy choice to go back to Media Pro as my Aper­ture replace­ment.

Time to look elsewhere
Jun 27th, 2014 by Ken Hagler

Apple to cease devel­op­ment of Aper­ture:

Apple has announced that it is ceas­ing devel­op­ment of its Aper­ture pho­to edit­ing appli­ca­tion. The com­pa­ny will instead be focus­ing on the upcom­ing Pho­tos for OS X soft­ware, which will be includ­ed in the next ver­sion of Mac OS X (Yosemite). Apple will ensure com­pat­i­bil­i­ty with the next ver­sion of OS X and will allow you to import your Aper­ture library into the new Pho­tos app. This cer­tain­ly bodes well for Adobe, since even more Aper­ture will be defect­ing to Light­room.

(Via News: Dig­i­tal Pho­tog­ra­phy Review (dpreview.com))

I’ve been using Aper­ture to man­age my scanned pho­to library. I like its abil­i­ty to eas­i­ly link dif­fer­ent ver­sions of pho­tos (the scan and files for var­i­ous print ver­sions, for exam­ple), and the soft­ware I had been using before was eat­en by Microsoft and then killed. I guess I’ll be mov­ing to Light­room now.

Photographers, avoid Instagram like the plague
Dec 17th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

New Insta­gram Terms of Ser­vice.

The Facebook-ification is start­ing:

Some or all of the Ser­vice may be sup­port­ed by adver­tis­ing
rev­enue. To help us deliv­er inter­est­ing paid or spon­sored
con­tent or pro­mo­tions, you agree that a busi­ness or oth­er enti­ty
may pay us to dis­play your user­name, like­ness, pho­tos (along
with any asso­ci­at­ed meta­data), and/or actions you take, in
con­nec­tion with paid or spon­sored con­tent or pro­mo­tions, with­out
any com­pen­sa­tion to you.

Where by “meta­data”, they’re not talk­ing about expo­sure and shut­ter speed. They’re talk­ing about loca­tion. Just awful.

[Dar­ing Fire­ball]

It’s actu­al­ly much worse than that. Accord­ing to the terms of ser­vice, not only Insta­gram may do basi­cal­ly any­thing they want with your pho­tos, includ­ing license them out to oth­ers, they also say:

You rep­re­sent and war­rant that: (i) you own the Con­tent post­ed by you on or through the Ser­vice or oth­er­wise have the right to grant the rights and licens­es set forth in the­se Terms of Use; (ii) the post­ing and use of your Con­tent on or through the Ser­vice does not vio­late, mis­ap­pro­pri­ate or infringe on the rights of any third par­ty, includ­ing, with­out lim­i­ta­tion, pri­va­cy rights, pub­lic­i­ty rights, copy­rights, trade­mark and/or oth­er intel­lec­tu­al prop­er­ty rights; (iii) you agree to pay for all roy­alties, fees, and any oth­er monies owed by rea­son of Con­tent you post on or through the Ser­vice; and (iv) you have the legal right and capac­i­ty to enter into the­se Terms of Use in your juris­dic­tion.

What that means you as the pho­tog­ra­pher could eas­i­ly wind up in very deep, very expen­sive legal trou­ble just because you used Insta­gram. Con­sid­er how this could play out: you take a pho­to of a ran­dom com­plete stranger on the street and dis­play it freely as an exam­ple of street pho­tog­ra­phy. So far, so good. How­ev­er, some­one in the PR depart­ment at a gener­ic huge cor­po­ra­tion sees the pho­to and pays Insta­gram $100,000 to sub­li­cense your pho­to for a major adver­tis­ing cam­paign. You don’t get any say, or any of the mon­ey. Now it’s not look­ing so good. Now we’re get­ting into dan­ger­ous ter­ri­to­ry, because use of a person’s image for com­mer­cial pur­pos­es requires a signed mod­el release–which doesn’t exist.

But it gets worse! The ran­dom per­son on the street sees the adver­tise­ments promi­nent­ly fea­tur­ing their face and decides to sue. Because of the Insta­gram terms of ser­vice, you get hung out to dry by Insta­gram and the huge cor­po­ra­tion. Con­grat­u­la­tions, your lit­tle art pho­to tak­en with Insta­gram has cost you tens of thou­sands of dol­lars. Too bad your life is ruined because you didn’t read the terms of ser­vice.

This real­ly is just like Face­book.

Kodachrome news
Mar 23rd, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Seen on a mail­ing list:

On demand” could con­ceiv­ably include any film that Kodak has ever man­u­fac­tured. Some­one in the audi­ence asked the inevitable ques­tion: “Includ­ing Kodachrome?” [Bev­er­ly Paster­czyk of East­man Kodak Co.‘s] answer: “Yes, includ­ing Kodachrome”. She added that while small runs of Kodachrome were unlike­ly, it was not out of the ques­tion, since they have had numer­ous inquiries.

To the ques­tion “How could this be made pos­si­ble?” her answer was intrigu­ing. “Vol­ume is the answer. Con­sumer groups of large num­bers of indi­vid­u­als could peti­tion for the return of a speci­fic film. This would include not only large com­pa­nies, but also indi­vid­u­als band­ed togeth­er such as cam­era clubs, espe­cial­ly those with a large enough base such that they could col­lec­tive­ly join on a nation­al or even inter­na­tion­al basis”.

The ques­tion of pro­cess­ing isn’t real­ly addressed here. I seem to remem­ber read­ing that Dwayne’s sold their pro­cess­ing equip­ment after they stopped pro­cess­ing Kodachrome. How­ev­er, if that were dealt with, it occurs to me that anoth­er com­pa­ny could con­ceiv­ably order a pro­duc­tion run and then resell it, like the way that com­pa­nies buy graph­ics cards from a man­u­fac­tur­er and then resell them with their own com­pa­ny name.

Strange Sign
Mar 10th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

No Babies

I came across this dump­ster with a pecu­liar sign on it recent­ly. I won­der if this is some­thing that comes up often?

QA is hard to escape
Jan 29th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Wine Bbar

Despite hav­ing been out of Qual­i­ty Assur­ance for almost ten years, I still found myself writ­ing two bug reports at the same time as my film scan­ner was scan­ning this pho­to.

Poor filming choices
Dec 6th, 2011 by Ken Hagler

When a char­ac­ter in a movie says, “We’ll ride out at first light,” the scene when they ride out should prob­a­bly not be shot at around noon. Just because Hol­ly­wood exec­u­tives are too stu­pid to tell the dif­fer­ence doesn’t mean every­body is.

Good turnaround time
Feb 27th, 2010 by Ken Hagler

The frame coun­ter reset on my Leica MP recent­ly broke, so I took it to Samy’s Cam­era, the store I bought it from. I was afraid they’d tell me I had to send it back to Leica for repair (the last time I dealt with Leica it took them six months to repair a dam­aged lens), but for­tu­nate­ly they told me it could be repaired in the store. To my sur­prise, it took only four days for them to fin­ish the work!

Aperture 3 finally works
Feb 14th, 2010 by Ken Hagler

Aper­ture 3 adds Faces, Places, and improved local adjust­ment.

After a long wait, Apple has released the next major update to its pro-class pho­to work­flow appli­ca­tion, Aper­ture 3. The new ver­sion boasts over 200 new fea­tures, includ­ing the addi­tion of the suc­cess­ful facial recog­ni­tion and geo­t­ag­ging fea­tures, Faces and Places, that were intro­duced with iPho­to ’09. Ver­sion 3 also adds edge-detecting adjust­ment brush­es for non-destructive local­ized edit­ing and touch-ups. Along with numer­ous UI and per­for­mance improve­ments, Aper­ture 3 adds full 64-bit sup­port on sup­port­ed sys­tems run­ning Snow Leop­ard.

Aper­ture has always had a focus on the work­flow of pro­fes­sion­al pho­tog­ra­phers, but Apple also mar­kets it for ama­teurs that want to move beyond the sim­plic­i­ty of iPho­to. Aper­ture 3 takes that even fur­ther, seem­ing­ly meld­ing more pow­er and advanced man­age­ment with the fea­tures and ease of use of iPho­to.

Read the rest of this article...

[Ars Tech­ni­ca]

I’d been inter­est­ed in Aper­ture since ver­sion two as a replace­ment for iView Medi­aPro, which was bought out and aban­doned by Microsoft years ago. How­ev­er, ear­lier ver­sions of Aper­ture couldn’t han­dle the very large files pro­duced by scan­ning 4×5 film (a slide pro­duces a file around 1.25 GB) and would crash if you tried to add one. That prob­lem has been fixed in ver­sion three–probably due to a com­bi­na­tion of 64-bit sup­port in Snow Leop­ard, and the fact that my Pho­to­shop sys­tem has 24 GB of RAM.

Kodachrome cancellation
Jun 22nd, 2009 by Ken Hagler

Kodachrome Ends 74-Year Run.

HaasroseBy Ern­st Haas

East­man Kodak announced this morn­ing that it will cease the man­u­fac­ture of Kodachrome this year.

Cel­e­brat­ed in song (lit­er­al­ly!) and sto­ry, Kodachrome is the old­est film in pro­duc­tion and the longest-lived film pro­duct in the entire his­to­ry of pho­tog­ra­phy. Devel­oped by Leopold Godowsky and Leopold Man­nes (known as “God and Man” with­in Kodak) in 1935, Kodachrome had excep­tion­al­ly low con­trast (a good thing in a trans­paren­cy film) and an inim­itably rich, beau­ti­ful col­or palet­te. For decades it was by far the best col­or mate­ri­al extant. Among oth­er things, for many years around mid-century it rel­e­gat­ed fam­i­lies to long ses­sions in dark­ened rooms with a slide pro­jec­tor and a screen, the best way peo­ple had of show­ing each oth­er their vaca­tion and birth­day par­ty pic­tures. Many lead­ing pho­tog­ra­phers even today, includ­ing Sam Abell, William Albert Allard, and Steve McCur­ry, did much of their impor­tant ear­ly work on Kodachrome.

How­ev­er, it is inher­ent­ly slow and very dif­fi­cult to man­u­fac­ture, and dev­il­ish­ly intri­cate to process. Only one lab in the world is cur­rent­ly pro­cess­ing it—Dwayne’s in Kansas, USA. The best arti­cle about Kodachrome was pub­lished in Pop­u­lar Pho­tog­ra­phy and reprint­ed in the book The Best of Pop­u­lar Pho­tog­ra­phy. (I should be able to provide issue and page num­ber, but I can’t seem to put my hands on it.) Many film users—including avowed Kodachrome fans—have moved away from it in recent years. It cur­rent­ly accounts for less than 1% of Kodak’s shrink­ing film sales.

It might have been ’97 or ’98 that I first wrote about the com­ing demise of Kodachrome, in the pages of Pho­to Tech­niques, at the time Kodak sus­pend­ed in-house pro­cess­ing ser­vices. If mem­o­ry serves, how­ev­er, Kodak promised back then to con­tin­ue man­u­fac­tur­ing the film for at least ten more years. It kept that promise.

GodandmanGod and Man, inven­tors of Kodachrome. I own a large dye trans­fer print of this pic­ture, but I’ve nev­er been sure who was who. I think Godowsky is at the piano. (Thanks to Helen Bach.)

This end was inevitable, but it was cer­tain­ly a fine long run! Not for noth­ing is the press around the world this morn­ing call­ing Kodachrome “one of the icon­ic prod­ucts of the 20th cen­tu­ry.”

Bravo to God, Man, Kodachrome, Kodak, and “those nice, bright col­ors.” R.I.P.

Mike

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[The Online Pho­tog­ra­pher]

Kodachrome is my favorite col­or film. The patent for it has to be long-expired by now, so may­be we’ll get lucky and some­one else will start mak­ing it (under a dif­fer­ent name), the way that Fuji makes Polaroid film.

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