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Comment: Mt Airy, Philadelphia (Score 1) 999

by russellh (#40993469) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What's the Best Place To Relocate?

Mt Airy, Philadelphia. I am not kidding. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Airy,_Philadelphia

- diversity: one of the most racially integrated communities anywhere
- excellent schools: Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs have some of the biggest variety of excellent schools anywhere including private and charter schools.
- tight knit startup community
- cheap: low cost of living for a big city on the US east coast
- transportation: fast train to center city or to New York
- food: Philly is a fantastic city for foodies
- beer: philly is an unbelievable beer city. tons of local crafts and world class bars
- Not Boston
- Not New York, but it is highly accessible

Comment: Re:Once the data is there, yes (Score 1) 282

by russellh (#40009969) Attached to: Photographers, You're Being Replaced By Software

I agree with everything you wrote. But a lot of commercial "photography" is already intensely photoshopped, essentially collages of lots of other material with impossible lighting (eg the intense orange/blue effect), impossible focus. And we already see what I'd call optimistic renders in marketing material instead of photographs of a real object (which might not exist yet). So that sort of thing is not a huge reach. Historically, actual straight optical photography will probably occupy only a minor span of time. Previously dominated by drawing and painting, and will now and in the future be dominated by digital compositing. 3D of course is just one technique, which is simply getting more and more popular.

What we're seeing is the vast expansion of technique, and very little of the final product will be "real" – if it ever really was. I like these popular animated gifs of famous movie scenes (the term for which I can't recall just now) because they remind us how unrealistic an actual still photograph actually is - we never perceive the our world the way a photograph shows it - instantaneously frozen in time. Except maybe for landscapes.

Comment: Once the data is there, yes (Score 3, Insightful) 282

by russellh (#40006259) Attached to: Photographers, You're Being Replaced By Software

A photograph requires a subject - similarly, a cgi render requires scene data. If you have the scene data, such as a product model, or a mountain, then you can take a virtual photograph by setting the lighting, framing the scene, etc.

So let's say I want an image looking up a tall skycraper from the ground. I could go out, find a location, wait for the right weather and lighting conditions and take my traditional photograph. Or, if I happen to be able to find a skyscraper model, I could easily compose the exact scene I want in my computer. Faster, probably. And maybe with Google's or someone else's increasingly accurate data, it could be an actual skyscraper and not just some stock model. So yeah, this will replace a lot of traditional photography, without a doubt.

But art is always up to the artist.

Comment: Re:Don't (Score 1) 350

by russellh (#39933881) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Option For Printing Digital Photos?

Color will always fade. Black and white, optically printed, will outlast everything else if they're properly stored. Everything digital should be treated as ephemeral in your short lifetime. Besides, in 20 years you'll have millions of digital photos and you won't be able to find the ones that matter if they're not at least tiered by quality. Curation is really the answer - print the best of the best and tier the rest by quality.

Nothing digital will last. All my DVDs that I burned in 2001-2002 are dead - organic dye decomposing, probably - and so are many of my digital video tapes. Hard drives have to be copied repeatedly. Your cloud providers will abandon you.

Comment: Re:Photographic prints! (Score 1) 350

by russellh (#39933691) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Option For Printing Digital Photos?

But if you want your prints to actually last, you have to have them printed optically in black and white, at a place like ilford labs. This really is the best and only long term archival method - do it for the best of the best. Your other options: rent your own data from a service provider who may end up locking you out or deleting your data anyway, or perpetual copying.

Comment: Re:Advocacy of NoSQL is a warning sign... (Score 1) 194

by russellh (#36954874) Attached to: Unified NoSQL Query Language Launched
Everything involves trade-offs, right? So if the relational model is ideal for all data, then tell me why, after all these years and billions of dollars in research, why do we have a file system and store documents in opaque file formats? I mean everything can be ordered into rows and columns, right? Oh, wait, I know: relational databases can store BLOBs, right? But you said you haven't come across data that can't be represented relationally. Why must BLOBs exist? You can't stop there, you must break them down. We can't just say some things fit the model and others are just big opaque BLOBs. I can only imagine your sorrow at being such an idealist living in this evil mirror world.

Comment: Re:A new app model (Score 1) 432

by russellh (#33416388) Attached to: iPhone App In App Store Limbo Open Sourced
A lot of these iPhone apps are so basic that most of the code is the UI, and without serious software engineering effort or the use of some cross-platform UI tool, no, there is very little that can be cross-platform. And doubly hard if the iPhone apps use apple data store technology like core data. Rewrites are easier. Remember, cross-platform apps are like unisex underwear: possible, but nobody wants it.

Comment: Re:Is it me or is he sounding more desperate? (Score 1, Interesting) 733

by russellh (#31906452) Attached to: Roger Ebert On Why Video Games Can Never Be Art
No no, see - your two year-old can do what you can't. Artists are just trying to get back to their two year-old selves that are free from all this cultural baggage that comes with growing up. But what the two year-old does isn't art because he hasn't taken the journey. Like a karate blackbelt that has worn through to white.

If all the world's economists were laid end to end, we wouldn't reach a conclusion. -- William Baumol

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