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07-06-2019, 07:07 AM   #1
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A good one by Thom Hogan

I especially like the bit about the upload speeds of the 5G capable cameras. Good upload speeds, for instance to Dropbox, could be mighty handy to me for work.

I also liked his statement that all Japanese camera companies suk at software. What is up with that???? We are about to start the third decade of the 21st century!

07-06-2019, 07:32 AM - 1 Like   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by texandrews Quote
A good one by Thom Hogan I also liked his statement that all Japanese camera companies suk at software. What is up with that???? We are about to start the third decade of the 21st century!
What has made American technology manufacturers unique - say Apple, or anyone that developed PC’s around published Microsoft standards - is that they’re good at both software development and large scale manufacturing. We got a huge head start with the original research at Stanford, in Palo Alto generally and at AT&T and Xerox; and for the space program. You have to understand that, while the Apollo 11 Mission used a hand-wired computer, the astronauts had paper star charts and as sextant to check the computer’s work. But the space program - landing on the Moon and returning - ushered in the digital age. We had a huge head start in software. Our industrial base was intact after WWII so we used the cash flow selling everything to ‘rebuild’ the entire western world to perform the research and spend the money to commercialize our advantage.

It really has been a unique American advantage for sixty years, and why we are so concerned about Chinese forced technology transfer and Huawei. Trump isn’t doing the Trade stuff in a vacuum - industry is whispering in Commerce Department’s ear.

ROIC of the camera / lens industry is around 8%, vs. 20% for Medical Technology. 8% isn’t high enough to be good at software. Japanese MedTech companies are very good at software (but even there we’re much, much better).

Last edited by monochrome; 07-07-2019 at 03:58 PM.
07-06-2019, 08:14 AM   #3
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Camera companies came from the area where cameras where electro-mechanical, software wasn't their primary domain of expertise.
07-07-2019, 04:57 AM   #4
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The ability to think in a particular way is in part culturally defined. "Culture" is generally defined as a sort of group consensus about the axioms that underly the group's shared assumptions about the world and the place of individuals within the group. I think of it as the operating system running on the human nodes within the group. So comparing any one group of humans to another is like comparing Android to Windows. The thing is that cultures arise under specific environmental conditions, both socially and physically. People who hunt monkeys with blowguns in the tropical jungle have a different set of assumptions and thinking styles than do people who hunt IPO's on Wall Street. Neither group could show up and start doing what the other can do, because the kind of thinking required is different.

It is my opinion that the religious traditions that came along with the main bodies of immigrants to North America played a big role in our ability to write good software. The reason is that "death to self" is an important aspect of those religious traditions; programming requires the programmer to understand how the computer works (non-self observation of external reality) and to deal with it as it is (regardless of how self-importance dictates it "ought" to be). In most East Asian cultures, Confucianism has dictated an authoritarian, hierarchical structure to society, resulting in an emphasis on self-importance (because the instinct for self-preservation requires one to be ever vigilant to ensure that he is in proper conformity to "the authorities"). One of the former "red guards" who participated in the destruction of Chinese society in the "Great Proletariat Cultural Revolution" of 1968-69 recorded his observation about how his group had to constantly "watch the facial expression of the central authorities" in order to know whether what they were doing was "politically correct". People who are more worried about their appearance before the "authorities" than actual effectiveness in dealing with the world as it really is, will never perform as well as people who are determined to do their best regardless of what anyone else thinks about it. People who are more concerned with timely delivery of their TPS reports don't write code as well as people who don't give a good healthy defecation about the TPS reports and who can thus conform themselves to the "real world" as represented by the CPU's instruction set.

07-07-2019, 05:38 AM   #5
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Wifi and high megapixel cameras are probably going to be a mixed bag. The files are just so large, the best you can hope for is to send a down-resed jpeg. That's the sort of thing you could use to get photos to Flickr, Instagram or Facebook, but as far as getting RAWs onto your PC, I think using a dedicated card reader is still the way to go for awhile yet (even as wifi speeds increase, so do the read speeds of USB connections and the readers).
07-07-2019, 06:31 AM - 1 Like   #6
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Radio signals cost a LOT of energy for massive data transfer.
Expect battery life’s to drop seriously.
Benefit: more laziness.
07-07-2019, 06:32 AM - 2 Likes   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by beholder3 Quote
Benefit: more laziness.
"Alexa... take the picture" ?
07-07-2019, 06:35 AM - 1 Like   #8
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Google show bird in flight.

07-07-2019, 07:20 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by texandrews Quote

I also liked his statement that all Japanese camera companies suk at software. What is up with that???? We are about to start the third decade of the 21st century!
Perhaps the root cause is "respect for elders & tradition" which contrasts with cultures that celebrate youthful innovators and let them create new companies and new industries.
07-07-2019, 09:32 AM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
Camera companies came from the area where cameras where electro-mechanical, software wasn't their primary domain of expertise.
In 1970 everything was electro-mechanical. There were 6 (Cray see below. They were probably CDC) supercomputers on earth, 5 owned by US government agencies and one by Stanford.

In 1970 the brokerage firm Goodbody & Company went under after they couldn’t meet their settlements due to a processing backlog. Beginning in 1968, The NYSE couldn’t timely process and settle trades and that exposed Goodbody’s weak financial condition. Merrill Lynch took over Goodbody and guaranteed their debts (with government backing). The market closed on Wednesdays to hand-process trades from Monday and Tuesday, then Saturday the Exchange processed Thursday and Friday’s trades. On LEDGER paper. The NYSE bought a computer, the largest brokerage firms jointly created DTCC and it bought a computer, then Merrill, Lynch bought the first computer owned a Wall Street firm, to ‘manage’ the Goodbody assets they had acquired and to interface with DTCC and the Exchange. It gave Merrill an advantage they didn’t lose until 1987.

The point here isn’t that cameras were electro-mechanical. The point is there was no crisis like Goodbody and no national aspirational Goal like going to the moon that motivated and unified government and industry to digitalize. Lastly, don’t forget that government-sponsored Defense R&D was aggressively commercialized by US contractors. Japan wasn’t permitted (Constitutionally) to even have defense R&D.

Last edited by monochrome; 07-09-2019 at 08:31 AM.
07-07-2019, 11:05 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
The point here isn’t that cameras were electro-mechanical. The pint is there was no crisis like Goodbody and no national aspirational Goal like going to the moon that motivated and unified government and industry to digitalize. Lastly, don’t forget that government-sponsored Defense R&D was aggressively commercialized by US contractors. Japan wasn’t even permitted (Constitutionally) to even have defense R&D.
Without going back that far in time. When Apple developed the iPhone, every mobile phone maker of the time came from designing phones, mainly hardware with a small CPU to run some basic proprietary software. Apple came from their decades of experience with designing computers with true operating system and software apps, and they designed the iPhone. That took all mobile phone makers of the time by surprise. For Apple, designing the iPhone was like designing another computer model but to make it small. While phone makers designed new phone models with adding a bit more computing power. Today, ILC cameras are still much like the Nokia phones of before the iPhone area: hardware first, and a bit of software with rudimentary interface to make the hardware work, no shared applications.
07-07-2019, 12:32 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
What has made American technology manufacturers unique - say Apple, or anyone that developed PC’s around published Microsoft standards - is that they’re good at both software development and large scale manufacturing.
I can't just let that sweeping statement go unchallenged. First thing, Mega-tech American firms suck at manufacturing, that's why everything is farmed out to Asia. It was the Japanese who fixed the inefficiences in American style manufacturing and made the investments in Taiwan and Korea that turned those economies into innovation hotspots. Hitachi was challenging IBM and DEC in computer hardware back in the 70's. Personal telecommunications technology owes more to the Swedes and Finns than to American manufacturers; Nokia and Waterloo, Ontario's Blackberry (along with Sony) intoduced the world to smartphones.


Ranking software in terms of technological superiority is meaningless, there is no way to measure quality, but most of the early developments were tied to universities on the West's side in the Cold War, more specifically American universities that recruited the best and brightest, regardless of where those smartpeople were born. The very low barriers to entry for software development result in innovations coming fast and furious from everywhere, the cruel irony (to those of us that went down that path at some point in our careers) is that the incredible mass of installed software creates tremendous inertia in what software users end up working with on a daily basis and the penalty of using software that no one else in the same organization is using is so high that there is no incentive to demand innovation in software.

As far as the quality of personal use software bundled by Japanese camera manufacturers, my question is why don't the American camera manufacturers do better? Wait, who are the American camera manufacturers?
07-07-2019, 01:19 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by RGlasel Quote
I can't just let that sweeping statement go unchallenged. First thing, Mega-tech American firms suck at manufacturing, that's why everything is farmed out to Asia. It was the Japanese who fixed the inefficiences in American style manufacturing and made the investments in Taiwan and Korea that turned those economies into innovation hotspots. Hitachi was challenging IBM and DEC in computer hardware back in the 70's. Personal telecommunications technology owes more to the Swedes and Finns than to American manufacturers; Nokia and Waterloo, Ontario's Blackberry (along with Sony) intoduced the world to smartphones.


Ranking software in terms of technological superiority is meaningless, there is no way to measure quality, but most of the early developments were tied to universities on the West's side in the Cold War, more specifically American universities that recruited the best and brightest, regardless of where those smartpeople were born. The very low barriers to entry for software development result in innovations coming fast and furious from everywhere, the cruel irony (to those of us that went down that path at some point in our careers) is that the incredible mass of installed software creates tremendous inertia in what software users end up working with on a daily basis and the penalty of using software that no one else in the same organization is using is so high that there is no incentive to demand innovation in software.

As far as the quality of personal use software bundled by Japanese camera manufacturers, my question is why don't the American camera manufacturers do better? Wait, who are the American camera manufacturers?
Google and Apple.
07-07-2019, 02:07 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Google and Apple.
Google: Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. Apple: Foxconn (Apple has contracts with Pegatron as well) . Both Google and Apple have used open source software (which doesn't qualify as American) and have used programmers employed outside the U.S. I hate SilkyPix as much as the next person, but the number of companies developing photo-editing software in Japan (so their programmers can speak the same language as the product development people at Japanese camera manufacturers) is probably pretty limited and copying Adobe products to avoid paying license fees is not an option.

American corporations have a near monopoly on cultural exports, however.
07-07-2019, 02:09 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by RGlasel Quote
Google: Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. Apple: Foxconn (Apple has contracts with Pegatron as well) . Both Google and Apple have used open source software (which doesn't qualify as American) and have used programmers employed outside the U.S. I hate SilkyPix as much as the next person, but the number of companies developing photo-editing software in Japan (so their programmers can speak the same language as the product development people at Japanese camera manufacturers) is probably pretty limited and copying Adobe products to avoid paying license fees is not an option.

American corporations have a near monopoly on cultural exports, however.
Is Ricoh a Japanese company even though they manufacture many of their products in other countries?
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