Entries Tagged as 'nokia'

Why #section331 makes Apple Beta and Android VHS

Remember Beta Folks, ok for you younger ones it was like HD DVD, one of those great formats that a still few use in high end roles but went the way of the dodo.

Today’s announcement of Section 3.1.1 by Apple.

“Applications may only use Documented APIs in the manner prescribed by Apple and must not use or call any private APIs. ”

Of course this is aimed squarely at Adobe and the upcoming CS5 which will let Flash Developers port to the “I” platform. And as it turns out happens to be the biggest step down the road of turning Apple into the next Beta Format. Like Beta it will be around for many years to come and I am sure that many people (most much smarter than I) will be able to put forward lots of technical reasons why the Native only path is the best way to go.

But why did the public, yes not developers and not marketers choose VHS over Beta… because it was cheaper easier and OPEN. Sure when VHS was first coming out, Beta was better, but people didn’t care.

Apple got the jump going for the “people” aspect with the iphone… but the market is bigger than just the iphone and whilst Nokia still hold the high ground on numbers and devices (Sorry Apple users but my N95-8gb is still more useful than an iphone!), Android is on the rise.

Reviewers who have lauded the iphone and now looking at devices like the Nexus One and the HTC Desire which pack all the “wow” of the iphone with one extra little toy… OPEN Platform.

Now if you are a development company and can build a new game/widget/etc and output it via Flash to Android, Nokia, WinMo and all the devices that are on this.. but miss the “I” platform what are you going to do. In the medium term, sure you will develop for both, but not long term.

The restrictions of the “I” world are starting to bite and the noose is getting tighter, due in no part to Apple pulling on it themselves.

The times are a changing.. the rise of Android will see to that… the rise of the OPEN environment where people change things on their device without voiding warranty are coming….

This graph helps to show the rise of Android in the Mobile Operating System Market in the US….

Mobile OS Traffic Share in the US
(Source from JavaLobby)

Missing from the Exif – First post

Thought I would add the some of the stuff from photos to my blog, the sort of stuff that you do not find in EXIF data… the stuff that really makes a photo.

First cab of the rank so to speak will be my sunset photo from the other day…. of course if there are flickr photos you want the story behind, just drop me a line.

The basic shot was planned 3 hours before hand, when I noticed the smoke around the city from the series of burn off’s that the DSE was conducting that day.

Now smoke in the atmosphere will ALWAYS give you a red sunset. And if the smoke is thick enough, you will be able to see the whole disk of the sun with the naked eye, let alone needing ND Filters.

So I know it is going to be a great sunset, so I get home from work grab all my gear and head to my favourite place where I know that I can get the sun setting over water every time. Before I go however I have I quick scan over my flickr sunset set just to make sure I have the approx F Stops and Shutter speeds for similar photos in my head.

When I got to my location, I like always fired up the GPS on my phone to create a log file so that I can tag the photos… and because I am shooting the sunset swap to my 70-300mm lens. I’m after the sun as big as I can get in the shot (well at least very large, so am looking at the 200mm+ range)

Also I have my Hoya 62mm Circular Polariser on my lens. Now I have the cheap 70-300mm which has the problem that the front element rotates on focusing, meaning that you have to tweak the Polariser every time focus changes.

So that kind of covers the technical side of things… then that bit of luck comes into play. There was a boat with a wake boarding moving up and down the bay right opposite the outcrop I was standing on. This shot was the 4th shot I took of them.

As this shot is all manual, this is what I did. I took a practice shot of the sunset to make sure that the colour and lighting were correct. Then as the boat passed left to right I got a focus lock (single point – centre left) on the wake board rider. This gave me the opportunity to check that the first time they went passed that I could get the shot I was after. By now I already knew how far they would travel and when the return trip would be.

Next is that moment of fear… will they pass through my shot again… will they fall off, will they do something unexpected.

Lucky for me…. They didn’t… it all went to plan. I’d also put the camera into highspeed burst mode so that I could shoot more frames that I needed to capture the action. Given that it took the rider less than a second to pass through the sweet spot of the image I wanted to give myself every chance. As the rider got close to the the sun I made sure that I had focus lock on him and just panned the camera as he moved from right to left.

The biggest piece of luck however was when the rider decided to jump. Just before the reflection of the sun from my point of view.

So that is how I fill a blog post writing about a lucky image that took a lot of understanding to get.

So look at the EXIF data of peoples shots to see how the shot was done.. but really… look at the photo and that will tell you how it is really done.

(also you will find this image on Redbubble, with the Lat Long on the final image, where you can buy it from a post card to a framed print)

(oh nearly forgot)

Here is the EXIF Data:

Camera: Nikon D90
Exposure: 0.002 sec (1/640)
Aperture: f/5.6
Focal Length: 200 mm
ISO Speed: 250
Exposure Bias: 0 EV
Exposure Program: Manual
Date and Time (Original): 2010:03:25 19:12:24.00+11:00
Metering Mode: Multi-segment
Exposure Mode: Manual
White Balance: Auto
Digital Zoom Ratio: 1
Focal Length In35mm Format: 300 mm
Scene Capture Type: Standard
GPSVersion ID:
GPS Latitude: 37 deg 53′ 57.12″ S
GPS Longitude: 144 deg 59′ 2.35″ E
GPSAltitude: 9.5 m
Creator Tool: Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
Lens: 70.0-300.0 mm f/4.0-5.6

Geotagging without a dedicated GPS on your DSLR

Now of course this works for any camera digital camera not just high end DSLR’s.

I guess people are going to say but who cares about Geotagging photos.  That is easy… say you are on a once in a lifetime trip heading to some out of the way places or even just around town.  You take that great photo of a beach, a wall or even a person… now in 6 months time are you going to be able to find that location again are you even going to remember where it was roughly…    This is why I geotag my photos.  I can now find any location for my photos from the last 3 years, because all the photos have it stored in the Exif data.

I am going to show how using the GPS built into my phone running in the background I can do this.  So you people with phones that have a GPS that can not multi-task will have to spend some money and get a logger to be very accurate. My Nokia N95-8gb runs Sports Tracker in the background just fine so this is what I am going to use as my example. Then by using software called Geotag will add lat long and altitude to all the images, before they are uploaded to flickr.

The biggest advantage of Geotag however is that it will add the data to the RAW files as well as the JPEG/JPG files.  Formats include ARW (Sony), CR2 (Canon), DCR (Kodak), DNG (Adobe), ERF (Epson), MEF (Mamiya), MRW (Minolata), NEF (Nikon), ORF (Olympus), PEF (Pentax), RAF (Fuji), RAW (Panasonic), SR2 (Sony) and SRF (Sony).

Geotag should run on any operating system for which a Java SE 6 runtime is available.

Of course you can just manually add lat and long to say Flickr or Picasa but if you have a big set of photos or have travelled a long distance in a few days it is always easier to get software to do it all for you without having to guess locations.

First Step.. and most important... Make sure that the time on your Phone and on your camera are as close as possible. The software works by comparing the time stamp of the photo to the time on the track file.  You can set offsets for it.. but it is just easier to get it right in the first place.

Always switch on the logging software on your phone and wait for it to get a fix.  If you just fire up the software and hit the road and start driving it can take a much longer time for the GPS to get a fix than if you are stationary. Once you are happy that the software is working you are good to go.  Another tip is to break up a journey into a series of smaller track files, that way if the software crashes you still have a large part of the trip as a log file.  For example when I have been on my road trips I’ll often stop the GPS and start a new track when ever I got out of the car to take photos.

So lets dive in…

Getting the Log File to Geotag.

Open Sports Tracker, go to Training workouts…

Select the date you are after.

Now find the first track file you want.

Then Choose, Export, then Export as GPX. Most GPS Log file software programs handle GPX and this format contains all the info you are after.
Then Choose create file only.
It doesn’t matter what drive you put this on.. so often Root Drive is just faster especially if you have a few track files to create.

.. Repeat as needed :-) …..

Then once you have all these files simply drag and drop from your phone on to your computer so then we can move to the next part of the process.

Once you have opened Geotag choose File > Load Tracks From File.

This will let you select all the small tracks files that you have created in one group so you don’t have to open each track file on its own.

Then you can either open up just the image files or a whole directory.  I tend to just import into Lightroom, do a quick pass to delete the dud shots, then tell GeoTag to look in the directory from the last import and work from that.

Now with the Track Files and the Directory Open, you right click, choose Find Locations > For All Images.

At this point a cup of coffee may be required if you have a few thousand images…

Once it has finished processing you will have all your images that the gps was working for tagged…

Then just choose Save All and you are done.  Now your RAW files and your Jpegs have the correct geodata embedded into them, so any time you upload to a service that supports Geocodes your photo will be mapped automatically.

You can of course get GeoTag to look up information such as lat, long, altitude, place names or get it to guess locations based on missing parts of the track file.

Another trick is to take one photo with your phone that is geotagged and then copy that information to the rest of the photos.  This is great trick if you are in just one place.  As another trick before going indoors take a photo of the front of the building, then use that as your tag if you cant get a GPS signal indoors.

Of course the easiest thing to do is to buy a GPS for your Camera, but if you don’t mind spending a bit of time the above steps should save you a bit of time money and still give you what you need.

(PS, I still have  dedicated GPS for the camera on my to buy list.. but I am a bit fussy like that :-))

Storm Over the Field

Taken at: 26°38’11″S, 149°54’29″E

Puffing Billy KML File

After living in Melbourne for 5 years I finally got to do Puffing Billy last weekend…. We did the full return trip from Belgrave to Gembrook. And I left my Nokia N95-8gb running with Sports tracker and created this KML file of the trip. You will notice that in places it jumps a bit which would be due to the thick tree coverage on the route.


Get the KMZ file here as well

View Larger Map

And my fav photo from the trip…

On Guard

See the previous post for video from the trip as well taken on the D90.

New Driving Video (may make you motion sick)

Driving video from the weekend trip to Lake Mountain.

This is the drive home… this time coming via the back road via Warburton through Yarra Junction.  (Where the police pull me over… his question… what was the thing on the windscreen in my car.  The R2H setup I have didn’t look like a GPS.  Poor officer he asked me what it was… didn’t take long for his eyes to glaze over and for him to let me on my way :-). (The standard clip format… R2H video via a webcam under the passengers front visor)

And don’t say I didn’t warn you about the road.  It has the advantage of little or no traffic and is a fun drive and is about the same time and distance as the Black Spur trip as well.

(And the KML)

View Larger Map

And the obligatory shot from the location as well.

Lake Mountain Sunset - 1

Oh noes… not another driving video from #wtrip09

Yes… it is…

this time the drive from Coober Pedy to Adelaide… (I forgot to hit go on one part of the drive in Sports tracker so about 10k are missing from the start of the trip in the KMZ file…)

The Start of the Journey
Here is a small panorama I made the morning we were leaving..
Sunrise over the Dugout

The Journey

and watch for the driver change at 3:46 🙂

The Route

View Larger Map

Macro on the Sun

Macro on the Sun

Originally uploaded by wolfcat_aus

Two reasons for this blog post… 1.. seriously this is one of my better photos for a while. It is a photo that I am happy with both on a technical and an aesthetic value as well.

This is a photo taken on a phone. I do think people need to stop and think about that for a while. We all rush to get the latest tech all the time. I remember the first digital camera I purchased in 1997 (yes I am an early adopter) it had a resolution of 320×240 (and yes I was a poor early adopter) . Now my phone (yes my trusty Nokia n95) has a 5mg camera with an amazing lens that captures photos like this. The other thing to notice is that this photo is geotagged. My phone has my GPS as well. First time I got to play with a hand held GPS was a Magellen Unit back in 2001. Now I am lost (not figuratively) with out one. I used the GPS on my phone to find this particular object that I have photographed here.

So I do think we all need to stop and think what really interesting times we live in.  Now I am reflecting on less than 10 years of tech in the above paragraphs…. consider what we are going to have in another 10!.

And the second point, is the subject.

Artist Chris Lansell has created a 1.1billion scale model of the sun. Not only that but now has been now laid out from St Kilda to Port Melbourne in the same scale the rest of the solar system. From the model of the sun to Mercury is 58 metres, then other 100 or so to Venus, then Earth. Saturn in scale is nearly 2 kilometres away from the St Kilda marina. Poor old Pluto is 5.9km. (all controversies about it status aside :-))

for more info on the project go here. http://www.melbournesolarsystem.com.au/ .

But for getting a sense of scale of our place on the planet you should go and visit the St Kilda foreshore.

Qr Codes – Nokia Style

Nokia have expanded their QR Code Generator to now give you the ability to create Business card barcodes.  More than just a URL, it will embed all the standard business card info.

(See the funny red square of to the side… that is what I am talking about)

Watch the video to see how to do it 🙂

more here… Nokia Beta Labs

and now there is a downloadable version of the QR code reader as well…. http://mobilecodes.nokia.com/scan.htm if you don’t already have it..

In case you are wondering if you do… Nokia N82, N93, N93i, N95, N95 8GB, E66, E71, E90 or 6220 Classic should all have it preinstalled.. but you can get the Nokia version for the Nokia N78, 6210 Navigator, N96by clicking on this installer file  Nokia_Barcode_Reader_S60_32.sis

Plus you can find readers for other phones here… http://mobilecodes.nokia.com/scan.htm

Nokia Photos 1.5

Nokia Photos has hit 1.5 (Beta that is) …. (which is kind of amusing as I didn’t realise there was a 1.  But I digress with my lack of knowledge….)

  • Better integration with Share on Ovi
  • Maps view and geotagging: your photos and videos on the map
  • More supported devices
  • Import pictures from also from your digital camera
  • Ovi look and feel

Fully supported: N70, N71, N72, N73, N75, N76, N77, N78, N80, N81, N81 8GB, N82, N90, N91, N91 8GB, N92, N93, N93i, N95, N95 8GB, N96

Partially supported: all Nokia S60 devices and most digital cameras (import pictures/videos only).

PC system requirements:

  • Operating system: Windows® XP (Home and Professional, Service Pack 2 or later), Windows® Vista”

Important! If you are a Windows XP user, you must first update your computer with the Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0 from here. This update is not necessary if you are using Windows Vista


So that is the standard hype… here is what I think…

It does things that lots of other things do for my photos already…  yet for me this is the big and very nice kicker… the maps.

And by using the Navtec maps it means I can zoom in nice and close (unlike Flickr) on street level to see where to place a photo that did not get geotagged correctly.  Once you have opened a photo you can move its geodata as well. The one thing that is missing from the Navtec Maps however is a Satellite view.  So what most people would say… but if you have a photo that is not correctly tag and you took the photo in say a wilderness area that is easy to recongnise from Satellite imagery then you can easily tag it, this you can’t do.  I have actually got quite good at this, but that is mainly due to flickr using yahoo maps for Australia which basically suck big time.

The software is not without it bugs mind you.  I am having trouble navigating between images in map mode for example. Also it says it can intergrate with other hosting sites, but it does default to OVI.

Perhaps, just perhaps I will shift a bit more to OVI for my photos as well.  Yet this is a bit of software I think I am about to become very accustomed to.

But if you want to set up Nokia Photos with flickr (and I do)

here are the instructions… (care of http://europe.nokia.com/support/nokiaphotos)

Settings for Flickr:
Note: Flickr requires Nokia Photos to use a special login that is different from your normal Flickr/Yahoo! login. Get your special Flickr login here.

  • Server address: http://www.flickr.com/services/atom/
  • Username: get your special username here
  • Password: get your special password here

I am going to set it up at home simply to use it as the primary way of accessing my photos at home.  The geotagging and maps feature alone mean that I will want to use this over anything else.  The maps are not another application that has to be launched and then data passed back and forth.  They are a tab.

Now I must go and start geotagging 10 years of digital photos….

Updating Firmware – 20.0.016 to 30.0.018

O.k, well the firmware hit version 30 for the n95-8gb over night as well, and I have just finished installing it.   But for those that are uncomfortable about doing such a radical thing as updating your firmware, I thought I would put together a series of screenshots to show what you have to do and how easy it can be.

But one small catch, if you have your phone heavily customised it may not look the same when it reboots and not all of your apps may be where you think they are.  The process is still far from perfect in my opinion but the benefits of a more stable OS on your phone more than outweigh having to spend some time moving a few things around.

Stage 1 – Make a backup….   Just in case things go wrong 🙂 (and to put your phone back to how it was…!)

To create the backup choose the backup option in Nokia PC Suite.

Stage 2 Click on the Update Phone software button in Nokia Pc Suite.  (yes Mac people you will need to find a PC to use… don’t nark on me!)

Follow the instructions:-) Also make sure you phone is on power or at least has a full battery if the power goes out whilst you are doing the upgrade all sorts of bad things could happen!

Now, if you phone can find the update this is what you will see.  Not all phones will see this update, phones that are closely tied to a phone company for their firmware may not see this update at all.

Now it will download over 100 meg of stuff 🙂

Then it will Flash the phone and start installing the software.  At this point your phone will turn off and on a few times.  Your computer will also go through a couple of found new hardware devices as well.

Now all going well your Firmware is up to date.

Now comes the fun part.  Putting your phone back together.  Not all of your apps will be installed correctly.  You will need to go to Applications, App.mgr. and look through the list to see what is not installed.  At this point you can reinstall some of your applications by choosing install.

Now the final stage is to put things back…. the easiest way to do this is to go back to Stage 1, the backup you made… rememember that…  it was Stage 1.  Go to the Back Up in Nokia PC Suite and choose restore backup.

Now go outside and enjoy the day.