(Nǐ hǎo is the romanization of 你好, which is Mandarin for "hello." I learned this recently from Tommy and Yuki at a sushi restaurant I sometimes go to in Geneva (New York, not Switzerland). It's dubious whether my Mandarin is going to progress much further than this, sadly.)
Anyway, two tidbits of news...
• First, the Hasselblad X1D is at long last showing up in the wild! Here's a post at GetDPI from "ddanois" that shows his.
• Second, Hasselblad is now Chinese.
Well, not really. But the Chinese drone king DJI has apparently bought a majority stake. TechCrunch asks, "Will DJI leave the business of Hasselblad to operate like an independent subsidiary, but continue to ensure its cameras are easily integrated with DJI’s drone rigs? Or will DJI use Hasselblad technology to entirely replace the cameras used in their consumer-level drones like the Phantom and Mavic?"
Pentax 645D and Hasselblad X1D. Illustration courtesy camerasize.com.
The answer isn't known, but when DJI took a minority stake (along with a seat on the Board of Directors) in Hasselblad in 2015, both companies said they would keep their operations independent.
(By the way, I have a lot of respect for people like Tommy and Yuki, who as far as I know are just co-workers. He's from "The South" of China and she's from Beijing. It's been hard enough for me migrating from Wisconsin to New York, never mind what they've done. Tommy's been here for ten years but speaks poor English, and says he "prays" to be able to take ESL classes. Yuki has a small child, Leo, with whom I had quite an involved and serious conversation last week about whether you need to be afraid of ghosts. That Leo was there at the restaurant seems to indicate that Yuki has no one to watch him while she's waiting tables. And the sushi restaurant is closing, so they and their other co-workers will be out of work soon. I got the picture that this is very serious indeed for all of them. I wish them well. My earliest American ancestors might have been Pilgrims, venerated now, but they were immigrants, and they also had a hard time at first.)
(Thanks to Oren Grad, Bryan Signorelli, Aaron Greenman, Jeffrey Schimberg, and others)
UPDATE Tuesday morning: Ming Thein puts the whole Hasselblad thing into perspective with intelligent guesses and his two cents' worth. If you're interested. (There's a summary TL;DR version at the end.)
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Featured Comments from:
Struan (partial comment): "I think it's a mistake to see this tie-in in terms of putting Hasselblads into consumer toys.
"Drones are already taking over professional aerial and mast-based photography, and new uses for top-down and oblique imagery are under vigourous development everywhere. Mapping cameras and photogrammetry have always used the highest resolution possible, because even the very best photographic tools and analyses are a small part of the overall financial and opportunity cost of getting into the air. National mapping and reconnaissance agencies won't be dumping their Leica Geosystems kit, but there plenty of civilian applications where savings on, say, helicopter time are so dramatic that what hobbyists think of as the high price of a medium-format camera is actually a drop in the bucket.
"There are already companies here in Europe here offering farmers remote sensing-style analysis of drone footage of their crops. The results used to program and control GPS-aware fertiliser spreaders and harvesters. In this kind of application, medium-format imagers don't just provide better spatial resolution, their better spectral resolution aids image analysis too.
"So to me, the DJI tie-in makes perfect sense. Hasselblad get a cash-rich owner/investor that is actually interested in cameras. DJI brings in-house the products, expertise and technology it needs for developing non-commodity drone applications. Win-win. I'm just hoping the some of the crumbs from the table fall into my lap."
Jay: "I know it wasn't the main subject of this post but thank you for acknowledging the struggles immigrants face every day. It is unfortunate that so few people make an effort to understand what the true lives of immigrants are like."