February, 2007 Archives

Zooomr Metadata Problems

February 28th, 2007 Permalink

Well, it is beta…. I’ve been using Aperture to keep my photos organized and tagged. Aperture seems to be pretty good about adding metadata in a relatively standard way. I can add a caption, add keywords, make adjustments, and upload the photos to Flickr and Zooomr. Flickr is able to parse the metadata and it […]

Well, it is beta….
I’ve been using Aperture to keep my photos organized and tagged. Aperture seems to be pretty good about adding metadata in a relatively standard way. I can add a caption, add keywords, make adjustments, and upload the photos to Flickr and Zooomr.
Flickr is able to parse the metadata and it shows up just fine. When I download the original from Flickr, the metadata is still there.
Unfortunantly, Zooomr currently has a problem handling the metadata properly. The keywords, EXIF, and caption data is lost. The original photo does not have the metadata any longer either. The good news is that Kris (the developer behind Zooomr) is aware of these issues, and Zooomr mark III is due out very very soon. Hopefully, these issues will be fixed then. Stay tuned….

Why I Love Apple

February 28th, 2007 Permalink

I recently purchased the new Airport Extreme from Apple. Our existing wireless network was an old 802.11b network and was showing its age. And, as a bonus, the Airport functions as a firewall/router, so the plan was to replace 2 pieces of equipment with one. Tonight, I had some time and decided to bite the […]

I recently purchased the new Airport Extreme from Apple. Our existing wireless network was an old 802.11b network and was showing its age. And, as a bonus, the Airport functions as a firewall/router, so the plan was to replace 2 pieces of equipment with one.
Tonight, I had some time and decided to bite the bullet and set it up. It took about 40 minutes to disconnect the existing router and access point, set up the new one, and configure all our networked junk around the house to use it. Not bad at all.
And that is why I love Apple. Their stuff just works. The setup was painless. The setup utility found the new Airport and walked me through setup. When I clicked the button at then end of the setup, everything worked. It was beautiful.

One Week And Counting

February 28th, 2007 Permalink

One more week of real life, then we’re off to the UK, France, and Spain for 2 weeks. We are way overdue for a vacation. And I will have something interesting to write about on this blog. Hopefully. And lots of nifty stuff to take pictures of!

One more week of real life, then we’re off to the UK, France, and Spain for 2 weeks. We are way overdue for a vacation. And I will have something interesting to write about on this blog. Hopefully. And lots of nifty stuff to take pictures of!

Nighttime Photography: A Brief Howto

February 26th, 2007 Permalink

I’ve gotten some decent feedback on Flickr for some of my night shots, so I thought I would do a quick post on how these shots were taken. Currently I am shooting with a small Panasonic point-and-shoot, the DMC-FX3. It is a simple camera, and offers very little in the way of manual controls. Normally, […]

I’ve gotten some decent feedback on Flickr for some of my night shots, so I thought I would do a quick post on how these shots were taken.
Currently I am shooting with a small Panasonic point-and-shoot, the DMC-FX3. It is a simple camera, and offers very little in the way of manual controls. Normally, to get a good exposure at night, you would want to have more control over the shutter speed, and perhaps take 20, 30, and 60 second exposures — or even longer — to get the correct exposure. Since the shutter is open for so long, you would also need a way to keep the camera steady, and a way to trigger the shutter without touching the camera. Any movement would result in a blurry photo.
Most point-and-shoot cameras do not have shutter speed controls. But they do have a Night mode that tells the camera to keep the shutter open until it thinks it has enough light. On the FX3, you do this by selecting SCN (Scene Mode) on the control dial, and then selecting NIGHT SCENERY as the Scene.
To get the best picture quality, check your ISO setting. Set it to the lowest setting for your camera. On the FX3, this is 100 ISO. This will make the sensor less sensitive to light, but will reduce the amount of noise in the final photo. And since the shutter will stay open as long as necessary, the reduction in sensitivity is ok.
Now, to keep the camera steady. You can either use a tripod, or you can set the camera on a surface where it will not move around, such as a tabletop or even on the ground. I normally have a small tripod, such as the Gorilla Pod, to keep the camera where I want it. To trigger the shutter without moving the camera, I use the self-timer set for a 2-second delay. That way, I can hit the shutter release and be sure that the camera is not being touched when the shutter opens. In a few seconds — or more than a few seconds, depending on how much light there is — I will most likely have a pretty decent shot.
Not Quite Christmas

I always take several exposures of a scene, just to increase the chances of a decent shot. Even when I do not move the camera, it is common for each one to come out exposed a little differently. Depending on how good the camera sorted out the exposure, the photo may need slight adjustments in your photo editor of choice, but usually not much.
So get your little point-and-shoot out, and prowl throught the night. You’ll be surprised at the images you can capture with a simple camera and a little experimentation!

Thanks, Adolph Gasser

February 26th, 2007 Permalink

A couple of weeks ago I picked up a gorilla pod at the San Francisco camera shop Adolph Gasser. I was really enjoying it … until the top broke off. I was able to find the receipt among the pile of junk on my desk, so today I brought it back to Adolph Gasser, hoping […]

A couple of weeks ago I picked up a gorilla pod at the San Francisco camera shop Adolph Gasser. I was really enjoying it … until the top broke off. I was able to find the receipt among the pile of junk on my desk, so today I brought it back to Adolph Gasser, hoping that I would get a new one. And guess what? They exchanged it with no hassles, no questions. It’s a refreshing change to get some decent customer service.

Zooom with Zooomr

February 24th, 2007 Permalink

Master Lock No 1 Hosted on Zooomr Zooomr is a photo sharing site. Why another photo sharing site? It has some unique features. For example, Zooomrtations allow you to attach media to a photo, so people can hear what that photo sounded like. They also have a feature called Portals, which allow you to define […]

Master Lock No 1Master Lock No 1 Hosted on Zooomr


Zooomr is a photo sharing site. Why another photo sharing site? It has some unique features. For example, Zooomrtations allow you to attach media to a photo, so people can hear what that photo sounded like. They also have a feature called Portals, which allow you to define a part of a photo that, when moused over, displays a different photo. Very cool stuff. Zooomr also has great support for geotagging.

Zooomr is in beta, and is being actively developed with feedback from photographers, not marketing people. Check it out! Signup is free!

Stranger Things Have Happened

February 22nd, 2007 Permalink

Stranger Things Have Happened, originally uploaded by Jeremy Brooks. This is one of the keepers from the Photowalk yesterday (you can see the rest of the set here. What a blast that was! Several of the other people that were on the walk have posted their photos. Check them out: Matt Roe Andrew Moore Thomas […]



Stranger Things Have Happened, originally uploaded by Jeremy Brooks.

This is one of the keepers from the Photowalk yesterday (you can see the rest of the set here. What a blast that was!

Several of the other people that were on the walk have posted their photos. Check them out:

Some people have asked me what a photowalk is. Is it an organization that promotes “walks”? Is it a class? Well, neither, really.

It was not a formal “join the camera walking society and we will tell you when we do walks” thing. It was organized by Thomas Hawk, a Bay Area photographer that loves taking photos and loves sharing his work. He has done a few of them before, but this is the first one I was able to join. People read about it on his blog, or heard from somebody, and just showed up, maybe 20 or so. We wandered around some of the city, more or less following Thomas. Along the way we chatted, took photos, asked questions, and watched each other. It is not a class, but everybody was willing to answer questions about what they were doing — what do you see in that shot? What equipment are you using? Why are you shooting with that lens right now? What kind of pizza do you like?

If you enjoy photography, I suggest you Google for a photowalk in your area. Or organize one of your own! Post it on your blog, and see who shows up.

Great Photowalk

February 21st, 2007 Permalink

Light me Up, originally uploaded by Jeremy Brooks. I just got back from a great photowalk. We hit Chinatown, North Beach, and then got some great nighttime shots of the city. The group was diverse. The walk was led by Thomas Hawk, and there were three people from Smugmug there as well. Kristopher from zooomr […]



Light me Up, originally uploaded by Jeremy Brooks.

I just got back from a great photowalk. We hit Chinatown, North Beach, and then got some great nighttime shots of the city.

The group was diverse. The walk was led by Thomas Hawk, and there were three people from Smugmug there as well. Kristopher from zooomr was there. Eddie Codel was there shooting video. Matt and Andrew, high school students from Orinda. A pastor from American Canyon. A guy from Siemens that was just in town for business and happened to find out about the walk. I was a little worried at first since I definitely had the crappiest camera in the group, but everybody was really cool and it was just about taking some photos, talking about photography, and having a good time.

I took almost 400 photos before my battery gave up. That’s a lot to sort through, but this one stood out when I did a quick review, and I wanted to get it posted. More of the photos from this photowalk will be up on my flickr photostream soon. And probably on my zooomr page as well.

It really is enjoyable and inspiring to spend some time shooting with a group of people. Everybody brings their own perspective, and you end up seeing things that you would not have seen otherwise, and everybody learns a little bit as well.

Photowalk Tomorrow

February 20th, 2007 Permalink

Tomorrow I’ll be meeting up with Thomas Hawk and some other photographers for a photowalk in San Francisco. These guys are way out of my league, but I’m really looking forward to shooting with them. It should be an educational — and enjoyable — experience. How cool is it that somebody who takes photos like […]

Tomorrow I’ll be meeting up with Thomas Hawk and some other photographers for a photowalk in San Francisco. These guys are way out of my league, but I’m really looking forward to shooting with them. It should be an educational — and enjoyable — experience.

How cool is it that somebody who takes photos like this posts an open invitation on his blog for people to join up with a photowalk?

Citi

February 20th, 2007 Permalink

Citi, originally uploaded by Jeremy Brooks.



Citi, originally uploaded by Jeremy Brooks.