I really wanted to love my new Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 with pancake lens. Peoplethat own it, love it. And honestly, the camera did live up to expectations. It produces DSLR quality in a smaller form factor. It’s small enough to fit in cargo shorts pockets, the lens that it came with makes any subject look great. It lets an amateur take great pictures. Look how great my wife looks!
The GF1 lived up the expectations; this picture is technically better than anything I can do with the iPhone (though with iPhone 4 that’s almost not true), but that’s not the point.
I was confident after I got the iPhone 4 that I would never need another unifunctional camera again, but had last minute doubts about not having a “real camera” on my Maui Honeymoon. But the unifuncitonal camera has been burdensome and I will be returning it when I get home.
The iPhone camera has an unfair advantage over the GF1: it does everything else too. Here’s why the iPhone (or perhaps any smartphone-camera) is the only camera I’ll ever need.
I like having every picture I’ve taken since 2007 on my person, locally. Yes, Flickr has a great app, but I look at pictures on the subway platform, on airplanes, and in other situations where internet is unavailable. And at 1-2 MB each, scrolling through pics remotely is cumbersome. I want them all with me, locally, unconditionally.
I want all my pictures in one place. Some on Flickr, some on my home computer, some on my memory card. BLAH. This just doesn’t work. 4000 pictures in my pocket. I know the timeline of the last 3 years well enough to find any picture pretty quickly.
Geotagging (“Places” on the iPhone). This has been my single favorite feature of iPhone 4. Every photo I’ve taken with iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 has been getting a geographic coordinate attached to it, so I can look at a world map and see where I’ve been. It even works when you don’t have voice/data service, since GPS is independent of those protocols. I have a picture of the island of Maui with little red tacks all over it. And back home, I can easily view every picture of Petra I’ve ever taken at Cafe Mogador (30+ so far)
And of course the obvious one: carrying fewer devices. To me, empty pockets is the ultimate luxury. I’d gladly let them implant a chip in my hand to never have to carry around keys or a wallet again.
I always wanted to be good at taking pictures, but as I get older I’m finding it necessary to zoom in a little bit and focus on the few things I want to be great at. Maybe I’ll adopt photography later in life and get a killer camera and learn how to use it. For now: iPhone!
We’re moving ever closer to a double-dip. Of course, as I’ve said before, most Americans never got out of the first one.
In previous postings I’ve suggested ways to reverse course, including a “people’s tax cut” exempting the first $20K of income from payroll taxes and making up the revenue loss with a payroll tax on incomes over $250,000.
Yet Democrats seem frozen in the headlights of conservative supply-siders, blue-dog deficit hawks, and pollsters who say the public doesn’t trust anything government does.
As to Republicans, now comes John Boehner, capitalizing on this distrust by blaming the bad economy on government bureaucrats.
In an address billed as a major speech on economic policy, the House GOP leader yesterday (Tuesday) attributed our economic woes to the fact that “taxpayers are subsidizing the fattened salaries and pensions of federal bureaucrats who are out there right now making it harder to create private sector jobs.”
It’s true workers at all levels of government now earn more than their private-sector counterparts. But that’s mainly because private-sector benefits have dropped precipitously over the last few years. Companies have replaced defined-benefit pensions with do-it-yourself 401(k)s, and have ratcheted up premiums, co-payments, and deductibles on employee health-care. Government workers’ benefits haven’t yet been sliced the diced these ways, but the cuts are coming.
The pay gap is also due to the fact that the typical public-sector job requires more education. According to the Center for State and Local Government Excellence, 48 percent of state and local employees have a college degree while only 23 percent of private-sector employees do.
Blaming government workers for this bad economy is absurd, regardless. The Great Recession continues because consumers can’t and won’t spend. They’re overwhelmed with credit-card debt, their mortgages are under water, their nest eggs have become chick peas, and they can’t afford health insurance.
Rather than help alleviate all this, Boehner and his Republican colleagues have been busily voting against extending unemployment insurance, against reorganizing mortgages under bankruptcy, against forcing credit card companies to stop charging exorbitant interest, and against giving Americans affordable health insurance.
As far as I can tell, all Republican want to do is to privatize Social Security, extend the Bush tax cuts to the richest 3 percent of Americans, and deregulate. But none of this seems particularly relevant to the task at hand.
Privatizing Social Security would put retirees entirely at the mercy of the Wall Street casino.
Extending the Bush tax cuts to the richest 3 percent wouldn’t stimulate demand because the very rich save rather than spend most of their extra cash.
And if anything we need more rather than less regulation. Just consider BP’s oil spill, Massey’s mine cave-in, DeCoster’s rotten eggs, Goldman Sach’s predations, and Wellpoint’s double-digit insurance premium increases.
Boehner delivered his speech at the City Club of Cleveland, a safe distance from those government employees he says are on the make. But of course Boehner is a federal employee. He gets $193,400 a year along with generous retirement benefits. In fact, he has among the fattest salaries and pensions in Washington.
They are coming for the Muslims and we must speak up. The proposed Muslim cultural center in downtown Manhattan is the excuse the Palin, Gingrich, and the Republican Party have been waiting for. These people hate Muslims. I’m afraid it’s just that simple.
The results of some cool research about my favorite puzzle, the Rubik’s Cube, concluding that every position can be solved in twenty moves or less. They had to borrow a bunch of computers from Google to do it. It would have taken today’s standard Desktop PC 35 years to calculate this.