Monthly Archives: March 2013

Your Internet tax break days are done

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New York State’s highest court today ruled that out-of-state online retailers charge state tax on New York State customers. Now it gets interesting since the 4-1 judgment by New York State’s Court of Appeals makes it all the more likely that the question will get an airing sooner, rather than later, in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.

via NY’s highest court: Your Internet tax break days are done | Internet & Media – CNET News.

50th Anniversary of the Instamatic (1963)

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50th Anniversary of the Instamatic (1963) | George Eastman House Blog

March 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the Kodak Instamatic family of cameras. These cameras, featuring the instant-loading 126 (Kodapack) film cartridge, were by far the most successful of the time. Instamatics, like the Brownies they replaced, were the entrée cameras for a new generation of photographers.

via 50th Anniversary of the Instamatic (1963) | George Eastman House Blog.

Digital cameras turned into spying devices

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Newer cameras increasingly sport built-in Wi-Fi capabilities or allow users to add SD cards to achieve them in order to be able to upload and share photos and videos as soon as they take them.

But, as proven by Daniel Mende and Pascal Turbing, security researchers with German-based IT consulting firm ERNW, these capabilities also have security flaws that can be easily exploited for turning these cameras into spying devices.

Mende and Turbing chose to compromise Canon’s EOS-1D X DSLR camera an exploit each of the four ways it can communicate with a network. Not only have they been able to hijack the information sent from the camera, but have also managed to gain complete control of it.

via Digital cameras easily turned into spying devices, researchers prove.

For Wedding Photography, Competition From Amateurs

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For professional photographers, advancements in technology pose an interesting predicament. Camera innovations have enabled them to take better photos, but it’s lowered the barrier to entry by competitors…With little or no overhead, like the cost of studios, staff, backdrops and editing equipment, they can easily undercut the fees sought by professional photographers by $1,000…Quality has become secondary, he said, noting that the arrival of smartphones is partly to blame. “All people need is for the photo to be ‘good enough ”


via For Wedding Photography, Competition From Amateurs –

End of “Tax Free” Internet Orders may be coming

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WASHINGTON, March 23 (UPI) — Major U.S. retail groups applauded the Senate’s approval in a 75-24 vote for a law forcing large Internet firms to collect state sales taxes.

Local retailers have long considered it unfair that they must charge state sales tax on purchases, while large Internet firms, like, can sell the same item without charging a sales tax, essentially giving their prices a discount.

via Retail groups voice approval of Marketplace Fairness act –

Fujifilm Shockproof Underwater FinePix XP200 with Wi-Fi

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The FinePix XP200 defines new standards for all-weather digital compacts (15m Waterproof, 2m Shockproof, Sand/Dustproof and -10°C Freezeproof)***; building on the success of previous Fujifilm XP models. The XP200 is the optimal camera for the outdoor enthusiast, and extreme adventurer; whether you’re into climbing mountains or diving in the oceans, the FinePix XP200 has what it takes to deliver high quality still shots and Full HD movies, whatever the conditions are. The CMOS sensor empowers continuous shooting at up to 10fps*4 (max. 9 frames) with a dedicated “Burst Mode Button” which lets you instantly switch into continuous shooting mode. And with Wireless Image Transfer function, you can transfer the exciting photos and movies*5 which cannot be taken by other cameras and smartphones.

The Fuji FinePix XP200 is available for pre-order from ADORAMA at a price of $299. No charges are made until the camera ships.

via Fujifilm launches a new ultra-resilient camera FinePix XP200 with Wi-Fi ®* | Fujifilm Global.

Sun and Cloud Self-Generating Digital Camera

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Sun and Cloud Self-Generating Digital Camera - AC Gears - for the innovative things in life. -

Cute, but I’d be reluctant to pay $200 for a zone focusing 3MP camera myself.

…On top of the camera a solar panel is capable of self-generated electricity power charged automatically. In addition, the camera can also be charged manually with a hand crank via kinetic energy, or through USB charging. So literally the camera can be used where you are! Don’t be fooled by just its minimalist and distinctive look of a rectangle box, the Sun & Cloud is capable of creating all kinds of imageries and movies…

via Sun and Cloud Self-Generating Digital Camera – AC Gears – for the innovative things in life. –.

PANSTARRS 3rd attempt

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Well, I had another try. Again I got lucky with a clear patch of sky in the west about an hour after sunset. This time I took several image sequences and the image above was made by stacking 8 images together. The sky is getting a little darker now the comet is a little higher and can be seen longer after sunset. There are a number of stars in the image now. Again shot with a 300/4L lens on an EOS 7D. Each exposure was around 2 seconds at f4 and ISO 3200.

Here’s a second sequence:


Mirrorless Android Camera in the works?

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Samsung have applied for a trademark on the name “Android NX”. Now “NX” is the name Samsung use on their line of mirrorless cameras and “Android” is, well, it’s Android, the operating system used on smartphones and tablet computers. Samsung have an Android powered “point and shoot” (compact digicam), but Android on a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera would be an advance.

What’s so special about an Android based camera? Well, you can write an App for that. If your regular camera only lets you bracket 3 images, you’re stuck with it. If your Andorid powered camera only has a 3 image bracket and you want 5 images or 7 images or 19 images, you could in principle write and App to do that. You could write an App for stop motion imaging, or one that took a shot when something moved into an area of focus. There’s almost no end to what it’s possible to do in principle given access to the hardware in the camera via Android. Not to mention playing “Angry Birds” on your camera or listening to music, the radio or podcasts while recording your position using GPS and uploading your images to Facebook via WiFi or even 3G or 4G wireless.

Is such a camera in development? Who knows. Samsung may just be staking out the territory in case they decide to make one. They certainly have a lot more Android development experience than the major traditional camera companies do (like Nikon and Canon). Samsung make some of the world’s best selling Android powered smart phones.



Canon Annoucement Scheduled

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Look like we should see information on the new Canon products released around 1am New York time tonight (i.e. 1am on 3/21/13).

Stay tuned for the full release after 1am EDT. That would be around 7am local time in Eastern Europe, 9am in Moscow, 2pm in Tokyo