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Digital photography All-in-one desk reference 3rd edition - Busch D.

Busch D. Digital photography All-in-one desk reference 3rd edition - Wiley publishing, 2006. - 755 p.
ISBN: 0-470-03743-1
Download (direct link): digitalphotographyallinone2006.pdf
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This chapter provides an overview of all the ways you can acquire digital pictures and points you to chapters that explore these topics in more detail.
Transferring Images from Your Camera to Your PC
The first challenge you have to face is getting your digital images from your camera into your computer so that you can edit them (if necessary), store them on some archival medium (such as CD or DVD), and make prints.
Today, transferring images to your computer is a fairly painless process. It wasn’t always so. My first digital camera back in the last millennium had no removable storage. It was bad enough that when the camera’s internal storage was full, I had to stop taking photos. But what was even worse was that it often took 10 to 20 minutes to move those photos from the camera to my computer. The only option was an old-fashioned serial cable that moved an image one bit at a time, like a line of soldiers, from the camera to the serial port on my computer at about 64 kilobits per second.
Transferring Images from Your Camera to Your PC
Even at a prehistoric resolution of 640 x 480 pixels, I had roughly 2.5 million bits (307 kilobytes) to move per picture. So at best, I spent a minimum of 40 seconds transferring one photo. It seemed longer.
To make things worse, this was back in the days when PCs didn’t share peripheral ports very well, so my computer really had only two functional serial ports. I used one for my mouse, and the other for both a modem and my camera’s serial cord. I had to unplug one to use the other. This may seem bizarre in these days of USB (Universal Serial Bus) ports, which enable you to connect a mouse and dozens of other peripherals at once, and FireWire connections, which speed files between computers.
Today, you have multiple options for transferring your images. I can plug a USB cable directly into my favorite camera and transfer multi-megapixel images in a few seconds. I also have a card reader that accepts memory cards and lets me move images between the card and my hard drive as if the memory card were another disk drive.
Card readers are so inexpensive these days that they are often built right into computers or printers, as you can see in Figure 3-1, which shows the slots of a reader included below the DVD drive in a Windows PC. Usually,
such a reader will be your best choice for transferring photos. Compared to transferring using a cable connection, the reader is faster and uses less juice
from your digital camera’s battery.
SmortMedio — Ō — - . —•» MMC / SD
' _ " ' Compoctfloih I/ll 4 Memory Stick

Figure 3-1: Card readers built into computers allow transferring photos quickly without the need for a cable.
I outline all the options and explain the pros and cons of each storage medium in Book VIII. You can find everything you need to know about transferring images from camera to PC or Mac there.
Grabbing Digital Images of Prints and Slides 35
Grabbing Digital Images of Prints and Slides
Another way to create a digital image is to capture an existing print or slide with a scanner. As far as your image editor or printer is concerned, these kinds of digital images are just as digital as those that began their lives in the sensor of a digital camera.
Indeed, before digital photography became common, the only way most of us who worked with images could acquire a digital picture was with a scanner. Scanners remain a valuable tool for anyone who needs digitized graphics from hard copy originals. The good news is that the price of scanners has come down since the late 1980s, while the features have improved.
Whereas my first “real” scanner (forgetting about toys such as the ThunderScan, available for the Macintosh in the mid-1980s) captured a whopping 16 levels of gray at 300 samples per inch, my latest has a true resolution of 2,400 samples per inch and can grab a few billion different colors. It’s about 10 times faster and includes a capable transparency scanner. My first scanner cost me about $2,500; the list price of my latest is about $200. A typical scanner is shown in Figure 3-2.
You can find a lot of information about scanners in Book II, Chapter 4, but I can summarize a lot of what you need to know here in this overview.
Kinds of scanners
A variety of nonprofessional scanners has drifted off into the fog of history. My first scanner was a ThunderScan unit that (I am not making this up) replaced the ink ribbon in an Apple ImageWriter printer with an optical imager that captured a scan of a photo as it fed through the roller. Other scanners have included the hand scanner of the early 1990s, which looked like an overgrown mouse.
Yesterday’s sheet-fed scanners became obsolete but lived on for awhile in the form of dedicated fax machines that sucked your documents past a stationary sensor. The flatbed scanner, which looks and works a little like a photocopier, has become today’s standard.
Figure 3-2: Scanners have become less expensive, thinner, faster, and capable of better resolution.
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