Kodak’s First Digital Moment
“It only took 50 milliseconds to capture the image, but it took 23 seconds to record it to the tape,” Mr. Sasson said. “I’d pop the cassette tape out, hand it to my assistant and he put it in our playback unit. About 30 seconds later, up popped the 100 pixel by 100 pixel black and white image.”
Like beer and pop music, it was easy to make do with what’s cheap and available, only to look back on a life of Dave Matthews and Bud Light and wonder why I’d gotten by on “good enough.” Because I am aging, and because I have the memory of the original Tamagotchi, I am profoundly grateful to have these clear, high-resolution photos of the people I loved and love. [more inside]
... in the Victorian era (1837-1901), a small, tightly controlled mouth was considered beautiful. They took their cues from much of Europe's fine-art portraiture. Some say photographers even suggested those posing say "prunes" to heighten the effect. Smiling was something captured on children, peasants and drunkards, hardly something you'd want for your family legacy.Advances in dental care and ubiquitous technology: why people started smiling for the camera, and why we say cheese, with a whistling bird, some whiskey, and a little flash game thrown in for good measure. [more inside]
Then, there was the matter of oral hygiene.
Jeff Altman has posted several stunning examples of his grandfather's Kodachrome 40 8mm home movies.
Previously with less, but now with more!! [more inside]
Previously with less, but now with more!! [more inside]
Kodak's long fade to black. 'Like the passing of distinguished individuals, the passing of great corporations should prompt us to ponder the transience of earthly glory. So let's pay our respects to Eastman Kodak, which at this writing appears to be a shutter-click from extinction.' [more inside]
The contraption was "created from a mishmash of lenses and computer parts and an old Super 8 movie camera." It was the size of a toaster, ran off "sixteen nickel cadmium batteries, a highly temperamental new type of CCD imaging area array, an a/d converter implementation stolen from a digital voltmeter" and took 23 seconds to record an image to cassette tape. But when Steve Sasson and his team of Kodak technicians presented the world's first digital camera to the public in 1975, they were asked: 'Why would anyone ever want to view his or her pictures on a TV?' [more inside]
Final Kodachrome produced and processed. 13 months after (previous MeFi thread) Kodak announced they were discontinuing production of Kodachrome, the final Kodachrome roll made by Kodak has been processed by Dwayne's Photo Service, in Parsons, Kansas—the only Kodachrome processor left in the world. It was given to and shot by (NPR interview) Steve McCurry, of "Afghan Girl" fame, around New York City for a documentary by National Geographic. Just a reminder: you only have until December 30th, 2010 to get any rolls of Kodachrome developed before Dwayne's Photo stops processing Kodachrome.
Michael Williams, the guy behind A Continuous Lean, buys Kodachrome slides from the 50's and 60's at flea markets, estate sales, and other sources. Then he posts his finds online: Part I, II, III, and IV. [more inside]
Fotomat 's tiny drive-up huts with the yellow roof were an icon of the 1970s suburban experience, with 4000 of them throughout the U.S. You drove up, gave your film to the girl inside, and got prints a couple of days later. But stores began closing en masse in the 1980s with the boom of in-store "prints in an hour". Most Fotomats have been torn down or are crumbling away (cool slideshow), a few being used for coffee or cigarettes. Former alumni are out there and share some memories stories on Facebook. Fotomat unbelievably is around and has a website but this September they threw in the towel on their Snapfish-like business model.
For 40 years starting in 1950 the huge - 18 x 60 foot - Kodak Coloramas hung in the east balcony of New York's Grand Central Terminal. Photos were enlarged onto successive strips of Ektacolor print film, each 19 inches wide and about 20 feet long, and after processing, 41 such strips were spliced together with transparent tape to make one, giant 18 x 60 foot display transparency. [more inside]
They were originally created to maintain consistency in color, greyscale, and fleshtones. Lab technicians posed them, projectionists collected them, and the general public wasn't supposed to see them. After they were consigned to obsolescence by digital technology, they became a found object for artists and filmmakers. What no one can agree on is how they got their names. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you China Girls.
Steath InkJet Printer Could Rock Industry I know that once your desktop printer reached a certain quality, you probably stopped caring about printing news at all. But suddenly there are a few breakthroughs to get excited about. Kodak's first inkjet printers have cut ink cartridge prices in half, Zink doesn't use ink at all and will fit in your pocket and now an Australian start-up is announcing a $200 printer that will print a page a second. And the inkjet connection to nanotechnology won't just mean cheaper printers. People are using inkjet heads to print microchips and even human cells. Fab@Home is trying to replicate the Altair phenomenon with 3D printers, and you can even get a ZPrinter 450 industrial-strength 3D printer for less than $40,000. How long before the word print means serving yourself the latest Stephen King, a pair of glasses or even a new kidney?
and there's nothing you can do about it, Bucko! (I think its a parody). As someone who came from Rochester, I bet this gets heavy circulation there, the company being the center of attention through all the fat and lean years ....... (actually the company DOES alredy have kick ass digital products, but this is funny)
"I am at war with the obvious", photographer William Eggleston once said, explaining his attraction to a ceiling lightbulb engulfed in a shock of red or an old Gulf gasoline sign sprouting like a giant weed against a rural skyline. Attempting to understand that battle, filmmaker Michael Almereyda trailed the photographer in action and in repose over a period of five years. The resulting film is "William Eggleston in the Real World". More inside.,
Kodak gives more reason to convert to digital photography. Eastman Kodak's "Kodak Park facility" in Rochester, is #1 in New York for releases of suspected toxicants and neurotoxins to endocrine, gastrointestinal, liver, cardiovascular, kidney, respiratory, and reproductive health. Remember dioxin? The stuff of Agent Orange, used in the Vietnam war that caused so much grief to war vets and Vietnamese, well Kodak released more dioxin into New York's environment in 2000 than any other source. In 1996 they were dumping methylene chloride concentrations as high as 3,600,000 parts per billion into area rivers, when the legal level is five parts per billion. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has found Kodak guilty of illegal disposal of hazardous wastes, illegal use of incinerators and waste piles, failing to notify the EPA of groundwater contaminations, making undocumented shipments of hazardous wastes, and for 20 years having leaky underground pipes, among other violations.
Palmer Cox created the famous Brownie characters in 1883, and a successful series of children's books detailing their adventures. These are the characters that George Eastman chose for promoting the Brownie line of Kodak cameras.
American and European Companies Profit from Iraqi Weapons What do Dupont, Hewlett Packard, and Eastman Kodak have in common? They all supplied parts for the Iraqi weapons program under Saddam Hussein, according to this list taken from Iraq's newly released weapon programs dossier. The Associated Press also weighs in with this wire report.
Reply To All button considered harmful An employee (called a manager in the headline but a millwright in the article) was fired from Eastman Kodak in Rochester, NY when he replied to an email announcing "National Coming Out Day" (hint: he wasn't in favor). But in addition to the sender, his message went to about 1000 other employees. Kodak says he was terminated when he refused to admit that sending it to all those people was wrong, not for it's content. Is this Political Correctness run amok or justifiable?
A Generous Brazilian Helping Of Cartier-Bresson's Photographs: His work is so vital it's unusually monitor-friendly. This 1999 Brazilian website includes many hard-to-find photographs, interestingly divided by location(Europe, America, India). There's also a nice selection of his classic images on Photology.com's commercial site and an avaricious but compelling set of portraits of writers here, courtesy of a Eastman Kodak-sponsored exhibition. [As far as I can tell, they're all copyright-cleared. Bring your old Leicas out...and despair!].
When you drive across America, you may or may not want to take a picture at every mile marker, but be sure to stay at vintage motels, eat at classic diners, and, above all, visit historic mental institutions. (Then thank the site with the Interesting Ideas.)
Can you camera do this? Kodak's MC3 looks to hot to trot featuring an MP3 player, Digital Video recorder and camera. There's not much reason I can see not to run to the store and grab one now!