Monthly Archives: April 2008

Earth from on high

Photographer Michael Poliza* has produced a stunning collection of aerial photos, Eyes Over AfricaHe says, "The images came mostly from an
8-week helicopter expedition from Hamburg to Cape Town.  Lots of
zickzacking over this amazing continent.  The Lightroom beta & LR 1.0 was the tool to work my way thru the 30,000 images."  You can browse more than 200 of the images on his site via Flash (also available in smaller HTML form, both uploaded from LR).  Beautiful
zickzacking indeed.

A few months ago Michael dropped by Adobe to visit with Tom Hogarty and me.  He brought with him his "newest baby," Eyes Over Africa XXL.  He’s not kidding about that suffix:  "It will be the largest coffee table book ever that was purely shot digitally. Almost 50 (!) lbs and definitely huge."  Just for fun, he used his iPhone to call up a satellite image of the same coordinates displayed on one of the pages, then laid the phone on the book.  For further weirdness points, I then snapped a couple of shots of the layout using my iPhone.  (At this point there was a great disturbance in the Force.)

For more Earth from above:

* Coincidentally the elder brother of GoLive founder Andreas Poliza

So long, and thanks for all the pixels

By now you may have heard that Mark Hamburg, one of the big brains behind the evolution of Photoshop, is departing the friendly confines & is heading off to work at–gasp–Microsoft.  We’re all sorry to see him go, but everyone at Adobe wishes him well in his new adventures.  I’ll miss our sparring matches (a process that sharpened everyone’s thinking).

Mark is not going to go work on other digital imaging tools.  After 17+ years of driving Photoshop & subsequently Lightroom, he’s looking for a complete change of pace & wants to work on operating system technologies related to user experience.  Given that Mark has always been a huge Mac guy (developing Lightroom first on the Mac, etc.), it’s kind of a Nixon-goes-to-China moment. He says,

Now, given that I find the current Windows experience really annoying and yet I keep having to deal with it, this opportunity was a little too interesting to turn down. I can’t imagine doing serious imaging anywhere other than Adobe, but, I needed to do something other than imaging for a while.

The cool thing is that having recently launched the Lightroom 2.0 beta, Mark leaves the product in excellent shape & excellent hands.  We’re really just getting warmed up.

PS–I probably shouldn’t swing at a pitch in the dirt, but I was disappointed by ZDNet’s inaccurate, typo-strewn coverage of the news.  When did major news outlets decide that labeling something a "blog" means that fact-checking no longer applies?  How sloppy do you have to be to fail to copy and paste Martin (not "Mark") Evening’s name correctly, or to notice that there’s no capital R in Lightroom or capital S in Photoshop (errors the article doesn’t even make consistently)?  At least it’s a good reminder not to believe everything you read.

Air cannons & soda fountains

Okay, so their connection to this blog is tenuous at best, but these semi-science-y vids are too fun not to share:

  • A while back I mentioned the 150-T-shirt Human Flipbook that Colle+McVoy created for sandwich chain Erbert & Gerbert.  Now they’ve returned with
    CandleCannon.com.  Gotta love the insane whooping of geeks celebrating. [Via Dustin Black]
  • Some 1,500 Belgian kids did their best Blue Man impression, launching sticky geysers of foam as they attempted to create the world’s largest Diet Coke/Mentos explosion.  I can’t find a video of this stunt, but these guys were apparently trying to outdo these folks in Cincinnati.

The guys behind You Suck At Photoshop, revealed

So… Dane Cook, or not Dane Cook?  Final wagers, please.

Time Online’s got the answer, along with plenty of other background on the the guys behind You Suck At Photoshop.  Says series co-creator Matt Bledsoe,

"We had both been in the agency business so long that after a while we’d seen every kind of person in the advertising world." One of those stereotypes, he said, was the "insane designer, basically. He has horrible social skills and horrible things going on in his life and the only thing he has going for him is he can out-Photoshop the guy in the cube next to him."

Matt & Troy Hitch are now back in action with Snatchbuckler’s Second Chance, picking up with Donnie’s tastefully named WoW comrade. [Via Scott Valentine]

Tangentially related, as it’s Photoshop-based humor: depending on political leanings you might get a kick out of this. [Via Adolfo Rozenfeld]

Old Glory, pourable meat, & more

Tips on using the Lightroom 2 beta

  • Image sharpness is a good thing… except when it isn’t.  Martin Evening shows how to achieve a “‘pseudo’ diffusion printing technique” using the Lightroom 2.0 beta’s ability to go negative on the Clarity slider.
  • To even out exposures across multiple images, Lightroom features a “Match Total Exposures” command. Sean McCormack explains it in this brief video. (I’d listen just for the soothing brogue. ;-))
  • Lightroom lets you create virtual copies of a single image, applying different settings to each.  New in the LR2 beta is the ability to stack virtual copies as layers of a PSD file, letting you composite and blend them in Photoshop. Mucho groovio!
  • Lightroom marketing manager Frederick V. Johnson toted his camera to the Golden Gate Bridge in order to demonstrate handing off a panorama from Lightroom to Photoshop.
  • Ken Milburn touches on the improved Auto adjustment algorithms in LR2.

Notes on tuning Photoshop performance

At the Photoshop World show a couple of weeks ago, PS co-architect Russell Williams & performance testing lead Adam Jerugim presented a session on tuning application performance to a packed house (see photo).  Adam has now passed along their presentation slides (6.5MB PDF), including notes.

Related topics:

Beards, Big B's, and other type bits

Lasers, big hair, & other motion graphics goodness

Wiimote Hacks + Photoshop

Photographer* Mike Hill passed along a link to crafty hacker Johnny Lee’s hacks to enable, among other things, whiteboarding on the cheap in Photoshop, thanks to a modified Nintendo Wii controller.  PS is shown only in passing, but it’s still fun to see.

This of course makes me think of the Flash-based, Wiimote-powered multi-user painting system created by BLITZ Agency for Adobe MAX last year (details).  It may sound frivolous, but I still like to get my little wheels turning about how to cross-pollinate this kind of Web-flavored coolness with our desktop apps.  I still want creation experiences that can feel more like this, and less like poking sliders and knobs.

* and creepily faithful Michael McDonald imitator