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Wednesday, 03 May 2017


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This is what I use for photo library management https://www.amazon.com/AmazonBasics-8-Sheet-Strip-Cut-Credit-Shredder/dp/B01DN9NX0I/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1493873423&sr=8-3&keywords=paper+shredder 8-)

Oh, I'd hoped you'd seen this!

My own weird take is this: I'm not collecting a small number of really god pictures. Instead, I'm building a time machine. I can go back and dial in what my world looked like for most days for the last ten years or so, and hidden in there is a small number of really good pictures. But someday, my kids will be able to fire up this time machine, and they will be able to see what I saw.

Another way to put it is this: it is possible to survey a building, to draw up plans and take measurements, to make some sketches and take a handful of photographs, and say, "I know this building, I hold it complete in my mind." It is impossible to take this approach with the wilderness. You can only make trails, and see what you can see, and move on. This is what having a photo archive is like.

This insight is not my own, I actually found it in a book by Zach Dundas, "The Great Detective: The Amazing Rise and Immortal Life of Sherlock Holmes", where he talks about the impossibility of even surveying all the material about Holmes, citing for instance, a five volume (!) bibliography published in 1974. (see footnote on p. 45) The reader is meant to infer if that is the scope and scale of our culture's written response to Conan Doyle, how much more unwieldy must it be now!

As an aside, Dundas' book is filled with charm, with both fascinating historical detail as well as his own sincere personal stories, all spun around a framework of "how he (Doyle) did it." Highly recommended.

My nit: Lesson: most people can't shoot enough pictures to out run Moore's law. Not even close.

On a recent vacation I brought along my trusty Olympus E-M1, 2 64GB cards and my trusty iPhone.

I shot my usual heavier than average amount for two weeks and barely scratched half of the total available storage I had in all media.

I probably could have shot 1 picture per waking minute for the entire trip and maybe not filled the cards in the Olympus ... let's see ... assuming 10 hours per day that's around 8400 pictures and each picture is around 20MB (it's actually less, but let's overestimate). So we're in the ballpark of overfilling them by a tiny bit. In 2 years time I'll be bringing 4 times as much storage (probably). So that's 4 or 5 pictures per minute 10 hours a day for every day of the trip.

Video is, of course, a different story.

Very informative...and all this time it was just me !

This should do it: http://www.infobarrel.com/media/image/172155.jpg

Of course, choosing which image to keep and which to not creates it's own anxiety (see previous post on perfectionism). But it's also a great way to practice with the anxiety since I always feel better after deleting a bunch of images, even if I'm not 100% sure they were the right ones to delete. Get enough of that good feeling, and I start looking forward to deleting images, enough to (mostly) not mind the anxiety.

In Dante's hell, every perfectionist will be punished to carefully edit and catalogue endless sessions shot with Sony A9's 20-shot/sec bursts.


There's a terrific essay by Georges Perec about organizing books that might apply here: http://monumenttotransformation.org/atlas-of-transformation/html/c/classification/brief-notes-on-the-art-and-manner-of-arranging-ones-books-georges-perec.html

If you don't get an xkcd comic there is a wiki to help explain every one.

e.g. https://www.explainxkcd.com/1832/

One caveat: large scale storage doesn't depend on Moore's Law (and even semiconductors have stopped scaling with Moore's Law with the latest 10nm process taking forever to come online).

The rule change in disk storage sizes was called Kryder's Law but we seems to have fallen off that curve in the mid-2000 (i.e. disk sizes are increasing at about 15% per year and slowing).

The other problem is that disk storage speed is not increasing by much any more (so you have the problems of saving (and reading) those photos in a fixed amount of time!).

SSDs are faster but smaller and more expensive and their density isn't scaling.

Perhaps SSDs and AI acting as photo editor might left you take as many photos as you want and still see all the good ones. Then again perhaps the AI might start taking the photos and cut out the middleman.

How appropriate. So far, whatever laws govern increases in storage capacity and the number of images I produce are working together well.

My several year old 3 TB image and back-up drives are nearing full. The replacement 6 TB WD Blue, for back-up, is sitting on my desk; the 6 TB WD Black, primary, should be arriving this afternoon.


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