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Press Releases

Ricoh announces the Pentax Q-S1 lens-interchangeable digital camera

Mon August 4, 2014

PRESS RELEASE

PENTAX Q-S1 Digital Camera: Providing endless artistic expression in a fashionable compact design complete, with interchangeable lenses

Denver, Colorado August 4, 2014 RICOH IMAGING AMERICAS CORPORATION is proud to introduce the new PENTAX Q-S1, one of the world’s smallest and lightest digital cameras with interchangeable lenses. With a new refined look, Smart Affect mode for creative photo enhancing, and color variations from today’s hottest fashion trends, the Q-S1 is an ideal everyday camera for the style-minded looking for the portability of a compact and added benefits of interchangeable lenses.

“Along with its stylish, petite body, this new model offers impressive specifications. The PENTAX Q-S1 is an ideal everyday camera for photographers of all levels, complete with an entire system of 8 lenses designed for on-the-go fun” said Jim Malcolm, Executive Vice President of RICOH IMAGING Americas, Corp.


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Press Releases

Ricoh Announces 28-45mm F4.5 Ultra-Wide-Angle Zoom Lens for its Pentax 645 Medium-Format Camera

Mon August 4, 2014

PRESS RELEASE

HD PENTAX-DA645 28-45mmF4.5ED AW SR: An ultra-wide-angle zoom lens engineered to elevate the optical execution of the PENTAX 645 Medium Format Digital Cameras

Denver, Colorado August 4, 2014 Today, RICOH IMAGING AMERICAS CORPORATION announces the addition of the HD PENTAX DA645 28-45mmF4.5ED AW SR to the 645 interchangeable lens series. This ultra-wide-angle zoom lens is the latest in the PENTAX 645 line-up and is engineered for use with PENTAX medium-format, digital SLR cameras. Now Pentax 645 medium-format shooters will have a new high-quality lens to expand their distinct format shooting.

This new lens provides focal lengths from 22mm to 35.5mm in the 35mm format, and is the first ultra-wide-angle zoom lens (approximately 1.6X zoom ratio) designed for use with our medium-format digital cameras. Its optics consists of 17 elements in 12 groups, including two high-performance aspherical elements and two extra-low dispersion elements. In addition, the PENTAX-innovated SR (Shake Reduction) mechanism has been incorporated into this exceptional lens, which effectively compensates for camera shake up to approximately 3.5 shutter stops.


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Press Releases

Movidius Accelerates the Era of Computational Cameras with a New Vision Processor for Mobile, Wearable and Embedded Markets

Mon August 4, 2014

PRESS RELEASE

Myriad 2 delivers 20x gain in energy efficiency for computational imaging and visual awareness applications

San Mateo, California – July 30, 2014 – Movidius, the leader in mobile vision processor technology for connected devices, today announced Myriad 2, the next generation of its vision processor unit (VPU) system-on-a-chip (SoC). Compared to Myriad 1—which was introduced as part of Google’s Project Tango—the new chipset delivers 20x more processing efficiency in terms of computations per watt of power consumed.  Myriad 2 comprises a larger and upgraded set of programmable processors as well as a new set of dedicated and configurable image and vision accelerators to power the next wave of computational cameras.

Myriad 2 is a programmable, high-performance, ultra-low power SoC that brings computational imaging and visual awareness to life for a variety of mobile and portable applications. Myriad 2 features are key to enabling use cases such as vision-enhanced image and video capture, 3D scanning and mapping, 360-degree panoramic video, indoor location-based services, immersive gaming and many new possibilities.

“As rapid innovations in mobile, wearable, and embedded vision applications continue, users expect increasingly sophisticated and immersive experiences that do not compromise the device’s battery life,” said Remi El-Ouazzane, CEO of Movidius. “The next disruption in mobile will be about incorporating vision applications into connected devices, bringing them closer to the complexity and sophistication of human vision. Thanks to Myriad 2’s radically innovative architecture, our customers can now create proprietary ultra-low power, captivating vision experiences that drive demand for existing products and accelerate completely new product categories.”


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Articles

Massive, undetectable security flaw found in USB: Only plug USB devices you trust

Sun August 3, 2014

Security researchers at Security Research Labs in Berlin have found a fundamental flaw (dubbed BadUSB) in USB devices that allows any compromised USB device to take over your computer. There are no known effective defenses against this variety of USB attack and solutions are estimated to be months and even years away.

The vulnerability arises because USB controllers can have their firmware easily reprogrammed so that they announce themselves as a different device type, a versality that has made USB extremely popular. However, benign devices can also be reprogrammed to turn malicious:

  1. A device can emulate a keyboard and issue commands on behalf of the logged-in user, for example to exfiltrate files or install malware. Such malware, in turn, can infect the controller chips of other USB devices connected to the computer.
  2. The device can also spoof a network card and change the computer’s DNS setting to redirect traffic.
  3. A modified thumb drive or external hard disk can – when it detects that the computer is starting up – boot a small virus, which infects the computer’s operating system prior to boot.

With billions of USB devices out there, we could be facing a serious security situation of enormous proportion. And, don’t expect an immediate fix anytime soon. Your only protection: practice safe sex USB use: only plug in USB devices that you 100% trust into your computer; and, do not plug your USB device into another computer. Sound advice.

Karsten Nohl & Jakob Lell of SR Labs plan to present proof-of-concept tools at BlackHat 2014 on August 7.

Editor’s note: This might or might not become the serious threat that SR Labs describe. But after they have presented their proof-of-concept, I guess any one who wants to will be able (and have the know-how) to exploit this vulnerability. Will this mean that even out-of-the-box USB devices from unreliable sources could be already compromised? Hopefully, the USB Implementers Forum (USB IF, the USB standards body) gets together soon to propose a quick solution.

via ExtremeTech

Articles, Videos

MIT Media Lab Develops Display Technology That Automatically Corrects For Vision Defects

Sat August 2, 2014
© Christine Daniloff/MIT - Click to view animation

© Christine Daniloff/MIT – Click to view animation

MIT Media Lab researchers have developed a new display technology that automatically corrects for vision defects and could lead to e-reader and smartphone displays that let users dispense with glasses.

Imagine being able to consult your car’s dashboard-mounted GPS display without putting your glasses on (for far-sighted drivers) or read your tablet’s display without the need for reading glasses.

The vision-correcting display projects slightly different images to different parts of the viewer’s pupil. Using technology the Camera Culture Group has already developed for their glasses-free 3-D displays, two liquid-crystal displays (LCDs) are used in parallel to carefully tailor the images displayed on the LCDs to each other to allow the system to mask perspectives. The researchers plan to incorporate a third project which diagnoses vision defects so that the same device could determine the user’s prescription and automatically correct for it.

The first spectacles were invented in the 13th century. Today, of course, we have contact lenses and surgery, but it’s all invasive in the sense that you either have to put something in your eye, wear something on your head, or undergo surgery. We have a different solution that basically puts the glasses on the display, rather than on your head. It will not be able to help you see the rest of the world more sharply, but today, we spend a huge portion of our time interacting with the digital world.
– Gordon Wetzstein/MIT

Read the whole article at: MIT News

Press Releases

Sony Announces Slim 10x Cyber-shot DSC-WX220 and 20.1MP DSC-W810

Fri August 1, 2014

Sony Adds Two New Compact Zoom Cameras to Cyber-shot® Line

WX220 model with 10x Zoom plus Wi-Fi; W810 model with 6x Zoom, Easy Operation

SAN DIEGO, July 31, 2014 – Sony today has introduced the versatile new DSC-WX220 and DSC-W810 cameras to its compact Cyber-shot® line, offering consumers a variety of new ways to capture high-quality images and HD videos on-the-go.

Cyber-shot WX220 Camera – Premium power in a compact package
The new pocket-sized DSC-WX220 model is extremely slim and compact, yet packs a ton of imaging punch thanks to its 18.2 megapixel Exmor R® CMOS sensor and 10x optical zoom G Lens.  The high-resolution sensor and versatile lens are paired with Sony’s powerful BIONZ® X processor, ensuring that all images and full HD (1920×1080 @60p) videos are captured with exceptional detail and low noise.


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Contests

Northwest International Exhibition of Photography & Washington State Photographers Exhibition: Online Entry Registration by Aug.4, 2014 at 10 PM PT

Thu July 31, 2014


This video presents “Washington State Fair Trailer.”

The 74th

Northwest InternationaL Exhibition of Photography

Washington State Fair Photo Salon, Pavilion • Puyallup, Washington

September 5-21, 2014

Superintendent:
Eric Bastin, NW International Exhibition Chairman
Email: fairphotosalon@comcast.net

Competitive Exhibits Office:
Washington State Fair
110 9th Avenue SW, Puyallup, WA 98371-6811, USA
Hours: Mon-Fri, 8 am – 4:30 pm
Phone: (253) 841-5074
Email: CompExhibits@thefair.com

ONLINE ENTRY REGISTRATION DUE on August 4 at 10pm Pacific Time

LAST DAY TO RECEIVE ENTRY PACKAGES at the Photo Salon is August 5 at 3 pm (Please print and enclose a copy of your online entry summary/receipt with your entries.)

“This exhibition, established in 1937, has received recognition by the Photographic Society of America (PSA), and is considered one of the leading international exhibitions in the world. Although shown for only 17 days, it is viewed by a million or more people from the greater Puget Sound area in the state of Washington, who come to see the latest and best in photographic art. Since its inception, we have encouraged a high degree of personal expression.”

  • The exhibition is open to anyone; however, an entry may be rejected when the sponsoring organization, or its agent, in its reasonable discretion, believes the entry does not conform to exhibition rules and conditions.
  • You may enter one image per Class, 01 through 04; in other words you may enter up to four images in each division.
  • Digital images must be submitted on a disc and discs will not be returned.
    • Do NOT send digital images via email.
  • Unless prior arrangements are made prints will be destroyed after October 3 2014.
  • Exhibition Catalog will be posted online at thefair.com by October 17, 2014.
  • Photographic Society of America (PSA) Medals to be awarded by the judges for “Best of Show” in each PSA division, plus one for “Human Interest” in photojournalism. Ten PSA medals awarded by divisions of the Photographic Society of America for:

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Press Releases

Photographic Documentation of “Octomom’s” Tenacity to Brood Eggs for Over Four Years

Wed July 30, 2014
"Octomom" never leaves her eggs unattended. Image extracted from video below.

“Octomom” never leaves her eggs unattended. Image extracted from video below.

This video presents “Deep-sea octopus invests in future: Longest brooding period ever recorded.”

  • “At the sediment-covered base of a sloping wall in the Monterey Submarine Canyon, off central California, researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) have observed a deep-sea octopus brooding its eggs for four and one half years—longer than any other known animal: from May, 2007 to September, 2011, or 53 months.
  • Throughout this time, the female kept the eggs clean and guarded them from predators.
  • This strategy has apparently worked for Graneledone boreopacifica—it is one of the most common deep-sea octopuses in the Northeastern Pacific.
  • From HD video frame grabs of the empty capsules and the characteristic green cement of their anchor points we estimate the clutch size to have been between 155 and 165 eggs.”
    Original journal article: Robison B., Seibel B., Drazen J. (2014), Deep-sea octopus (Graneledone boreopacifica) conducts the longest-known egg-brooding period of any animal. PLoS ONE 9(7): e103437. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0103437

Photographic and Video Documentation

This study provided photographic and video documentation of the tenacity of “Octomom” – a deep-sea octopus – to remarkably brood eggs for over four years which is by far the longest egg-brooding period ever reported for any animal species.

“Octopuses typically have a single reproductive period and then they die (semelparity). Once a clutch of fertilized eggs has been produced, the female protects and tends them until they hatch….In the cold, dark waters of the deep ocean, metabolic processes are often slower than their counterparts at shallower depths… Likewise, laboratory studies have linked lower temperatures to longer brooding periods in cephalopods, but direct evidence has not been available. We found an opportunity to directly measure the brooding period of the deep-sea octopus Graneledone boreopacifica, in its natural habitat. At 53 months, it is by far the longest egg-brooding period ever reported for any animal species.

The ultimate fate of a brooding female octopus is invariably death, but in this first example from the deep-sea, brooding also confers an extension of adult life that greatly exceeds most projections of cephalopod longevity.

This study did not involve endangered or protected species. The location of the study site was 36° 42′ N, 122° 03′ W, at a depth of 1397 meters. Field work was conducted under NOAA Office of Marine Sanctuaries permit MBNMS 2005-010-A3, and California Department of Fish and Wildlife scientific collecting permit D-0004069542-0; no specimens were collected.”

Robison B, Seibel B, Drazen J (2014) Deep-Sea Octopus (Graneledone boreopacifica) Conducts the Longest-Known Egg-Brooding Period of Any Animal. PLoS ONE 9(7): e103437. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0103437

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0103437

Photography and Videography Via Ventana, a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV)

ROV Ventana was built for the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute by International Submarine Engineering. The specifications for Ventana were developed by David Packard and the original core group of scientists and engineers at MBARI. The vehicle was delivered in 1988 with a standard suite of instruments and cameras. Data collection sensors, a high definition camera, and animal collection devices have been added. As requirements changed and requests for tasks grew Ventana has evolved into its present configuration. Image by MBARI.

ROV Ventana was built for the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute by International Submarine Engineering. The specifications for Ventana were developed by David Packard and the original core group of scientists and engineers at MBARI. The vehicle was delivered in 1988 with a standard suite of instruments and cameras. Data collection sensors, a high definition camera, and animal collection devices have been added. As requirements changed and requests for tasks grew Ventana has evolved into its present configuration. Image by MBARI.

Ventana includes these features. (Info was last updated on Mar. 07, 2013.)

  • The forward-looking camera sytems are mounted on pan-and-tilt units.
  • The main viewing camera is a High Definition Insite Zeus Plus and is mounted in a three-axis pan-and-tilt that is capable of plus or minus 45 degrees of pan and +45, –100 degrees of tilt.
  • Two forward looking cameras, a wide angle Insite Aurora and an Insight Orion Zoom, are mounted on a single two-axis pan-and-tilt above the main camera with a range of 270 degrees of pan and 120 degrees of tilt.
  • There are also self-contained time-lapse video cameras.
  • One major component of the Ventana’s control system is the camera control graphical user interface (GUI) and lap controller station and single board computer (SBC) to drive the main camera.
  • Camera Systems
    • One Ikegama HD camera with HA10X5.2 Fujinon Zoom Lens
    • Six Insight Orion zoom cameras with integrated pilot control
    • VARS Video Capture System (direct from RGB Sony Feed), HDSPI capable
    • Sony digital Betacam (D1), and Panasonic AJ-HD2000 high definition recorder (D5)
    • Dynair 30 X 30 Video Switch (ROV control room)
    • Focal 903 digital multiplexer, 21 RS232 serial, 5 RS485 serial, 4 Subsea USB

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI)

NEWS RELEASE

July 30, 2014

Deep-sea octopus broods eggs for over four years—longer than any known animal

This female octopus was photographed in May 2007 clinging to a rocky wall in Monterey Canyon less than a month after she laid her eggs and began brooding them. Image: © 2007 MBARI

This female octopus was photographed in May 2007 clinging to a rocky wall in Monterey Canyon less than a month after she laid her eggs and began brooding them. Image: © 2007 MBARI

Researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) have observed a deep-sea octopus brooding its eggs for four and one half years—longer than any other known animal. Throughout this time, the female kept the eggs clean and guarded them from predators. This amazing feat represents an evolutionary balancing act between the benefits to the young octopuses of having plenty of time to develop within their eggs, and their mother’s ability to survive for years with little or no food.

Every few months for the last 25 years, a team of MBARI researchers led by Bruce Robison has performed surveys of deep-sea animals at a research site in the depths of Monterey Canyon that they call “Midwater 1.” In May 2007, during one of these surveys, the researchers discovered a female octopus clinging to a rocky ledge just above the floor of the canyon, about 1,400 meters (4,600 feet) below the ocean surface. The octopus, a species known as Graneledone boreopacifica, had not been in this location during their previous dive at this site in April.

Over the next four and one-half years, the researchers dove at this same site 18 times. Each time, they found the same octopus, which they could identify by her distinctive scars, in the same place. As the years passed, her translucent eggs grew larger and the researchers could see young octopuses developing inside. Over the same period, the female gradually lost weight and her skin became loose and pale.


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Deals

Adorama Deals 2014-07-29

Tue July 29, 2014

Adorama Deals:

Fujifilm FinePix JZ250 16MP Digital Camera w/ HD Video
$59.95 (Regular $119.95)
Free Shipping. Expires 8/31
__________________________________________________________________

Crumpler 7 Million Dollar Home Shoulder Bag for DSLR Camera, Navy/Rust Red
$72.50 (Regular $145)
Free Shipping. Expires 8/5

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Contests, Press Releases

Sigma Canada Photo Contest Announces Winners

Mon July 28, 2014
Niagara Winter Blues © Doug Hagardorn

Niagara Winter Blues © Doug Hagardorn

Sigma Canada celebrates Canadian photography by awarding Doug Hagardorn of St. Catherines, Ontario and Henry Wong of Vancouver, British Columbia, two grand prize trips to Japan. Both Hagardorn and Wong submitted their photos in the Sigma Canada photo contest that launched in December. Selected from thousands of impressive images, both winners have earned a seven-day, six-night trip for two to Japan. Please join us in congratulating them!

The winning photos, which include the monthly regional winners selected by random draw, are posted online at www.sigmacanada.ca/photocontest.

Congratulations!

PRESS RELEASE

SIGMA CANADA’S PHOTO CONTEST CELEBRATES CANADIAN PHOTOGRAPHY WITH TWO GRAND PRIZE TRIPS TO JAPAN

TORONTO, ON., July 28, 2014 – Gentec International, the exclusive distributor of Sigma products in Canada, is pleased to announce that Doug Hagadorn of St. Catherines, Ontario and Henry Wong of Vancouver, British Columbia have each been awarded one of two grand prize trips to Japan in the Sigma Canada photo contest that launched last December.

Doug’s photo, shot with his Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM lens and entitled Niagara Winter Blues, was selected out of thousands of impressive entries submitted in the consumer category by talented Canadian photographers who shoot with Sigma lenses. Henry used his Sigma 150–500mm F5-6.3 APO DG OS HSM lens to create Wheat Land, his winning entry in the sales associate category, which was open to Sigma retailers across Canada.

Both Doug and Henry have earned themselves a seven-day, six-night trip for two to Japan that includes a tour of the world-famous Japanese Cherry Blossom Gardens, a traditional Japanese green tea ceremony, a Sumida River cruise, a ride on the Hakone Ropeway, and much more.

The winning photos, which include the monthly regional winners selected by random draw, are posted online at www.sigmacanada.ca/photocontest.


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Contests

2014 American Road “The Birds” Photo Contest: Submit Entries Before 11:59 P.M. US Eastern Time on Sept.30

Mon July 28, 2014
Enter The American Road® "The Birds" Photo Contest.

Enter The American Road® “The Birds” Photo Contest.

“Send us your favorite “Birds” themed road trip photo!
Photographs must incorporate the theme of “Birds.” For example, photos can be live birds, plastic flamingos, winged roadside sculptures–whatever: If it has wings and feathers, it flies!”

American Road magazine

Prizes

  • A Grand Prize winner will receive a prize package including US $300,and his/her winning photograph will be published in American Road magazine.
    • A panel of American Road staff will select a finalist from all eligible entries based on the following criteria (“Judging Criteria”): Creativity (50%) and photographic quality (50%) — in accordance with the contest theme.
  • A runner up may also be selected, in which case that individual will receive US $100, and his/her winning photograph will be published in American Road magazine.
  • Judges reserve the right to award up to four ‘honorable mention’ prizes, in which case each honorable mention will have his/her photograph published in American Road magazine.

Please note:


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Articles

Pompidoo Lima Camera Bag Is Stylishly Functional And Perfect To Carry Your Mirrorless Camera

Sun July 27, 2014

Under the tag line “We make functional things stylish,” the 4 Pompidoo girls have struck again with another camera bag for women photographers that not only looks unabashedly elegant, luxurious and stylish but stays solidly functional.

The new Pompidoo Lima Camera Bag features two padded, removable dividers to hold 1) a compact camera, 2) a mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera or a mid-sized DSLR, with lens attached, and 3) one additional lens. Additionally, it contains 4) a cellphone pocket, 5) an inside zipper pocket to hold keys, personal items or money, and 6) slots for credit cards. The exterior walls and bottom of the bag are padded to provide added impact protection.


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[ Read more in our Sigma dp2 Quattro Review... ]

Samsung WB350F Review

Read our Samsung WB350F ReviewThe Samsung WB350F is a compact travel zoom camera with 21x wide-angle optical zoom, optical image stabilization, and pretty impressive Wi-Fi capabilities. It is elegant and well built, with the option to use control buttons or the touch LCD. Advanced users will appreciate the availability of PASM shooting modes.

[ Read more in our Samsung WB350F Review... ]

 

 

Samsung NX30 Review

Read our Samsung NX30 ReviewThe Samsung NX30 is intuitive, delivers great results and easily meets the challenges a serious photographer might throw its way. It's that rare compact mirrorless DSLR that you pick up and enjoy using right away. It features 20.3MP resolution on a hybrid APS-C CMOS (23.5 x 15.7 mm) image sensor with 247 Contrast-detect AF and 105 Phase Detection AF, a large and bright 3.0-in. Super AMOLED Touch display screen (1.03M-dot), a tiltable EVF (2.36M-dot), Smart AUTO, PASM, Scene modes, i-Function, Smart Filters, In-Camera Panorama, RAW file, Continuous Shooting 9fps, Wi-Fi, NFC, and Full HD 1080/60p movie with stereo sound.

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