Thursday, 2 January 2014

A review of 2013

I have been meaning to post some kind of annual review for the last few years, but usually never get around to it. Right now, after a very busy year, I have a few quiet days in which to reflect on the past year and how it might relate to photography in museums.

I intend to use this blog as a personal notepad, of sorts. If I find something that is useful, or interesting, then I will attempt to post it here. There won't be detailed run-throughs of things, instead, notes and pointers on what to do. Hopefully readers can take these and experiment with them.

That said, here are my salient points from the past year:

  • Digital photography is now ubiquitous, and the rate of introduction of new models makes it almost impossible to recommend a specific piece of equipment. More interesting to me, is the fact that the earlier models of D-SLR can now be found on the secondhand market at extremely reasonable prices. Many of the examples for sale are in "enthusiast" condition, having been well cared for and with plenty of life left. These could be of use in setting up dedicated imaging stations, or putting a dedicated camera somewhere inaccessible and simply leaving it there for when it is needed. 
  • Early on in the year, Flickr increased their standard storage offering from 200Gb to 1Tb. To most people this means that every image from their cameraphone can be instantly stored in the cloud, forever. To museum imaging, this is a robust, mature, cloud delivery platform for free. If I upload one image of each collection object, say 10Mb in size, then I have capacity for roughly 100,000 objects. 
  • The Getty Institute released a large number of images, completely free, under their Open Content Program. A project I have been working on is in the process of releasing a large number of images of fossils.
  • I now have development machines running the three major operating systems - Mac OS X, Linux and Windows. More to come on this in the next year.