AMD junks ATI, say hello to AMD Eyefinity

31 Aug

You read it right. After keeping the brand alive since its acquisition of ATI Technologies, AMD has finally decided to chuck out the ATI brand. The ATI Radeon and FirePro that we once knew will no longer be called as such, but only “Radeon” and “FirePro” with a little sprinkling of the AMD logo. Even the ATI Eyefinity technology will be rebaptized as AMD Eyefinity. But don’t fret just yet, because these changes will not be introduced until later this year. It is said that a major motivator to this move is AMD’s Fusion branding program which includes the introduction of the Fusion APU – a CPU and GPU integration. The dudes at AMD feel the great need to strengthen its brand identity and think that dropping the ATI brand is the answer to this. But why would AMD take away the one thing that gives it recognition?

Source: Engadget

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Digital Cameras – A Guide To Buying

30 Aug

Digital camera sales are going through the roof. As the quality of images from digital cameras improve, they are becoming much more affordable and the sales are simply not surprising. Consumers are also becoming more comfortable with the whole idea of taking photographs digitally.

In choosing a digital camera take into account your basic needs and what you plan to use the camera for.

Whether you’re shooting film or digital images, there are basically three types of cameras you need to consider. These are point and shoot cameras, prosumer cameras and professional quality cameras.

1. Point and shoot cameras operate automatically. They do everything for you except for framing the subject. Exposure is decided by the camera as well as whether a flash is needed or not. All you need to do is point and shoot.

2. Prosumer Camera. This camera is a step up from your typical point and shoot because it allows the photographer not only to shoot in a fully automatic mode but also to have control over various aspects of the exposure. The term “prosumer” is a cross between professional and consumer. When a camera is dubbed a prosumer model, it usually refers to a point-and-shoot that has advanced features such as manual exposure control and RAW format image capture. Such cameras are usually targeted at enthusiasts.

3. Professional Quality Cameras. These top-of-the-line cameras deliver high resolution, best-of-class optics, and extensive manual controls. Like less-sophisticated cameras, they are capable of functioning fully automatically, but also offer an extensive range of manual controls. All support uncompressed image formats like RAW and TIFF in addition to the standard JPEG format, making them ideal tools for photographers who use image editing software to optimize their work. Like traditional film cameras, digital SLRs offer the added advantage of using detachable lenses. Though certainly not cheap, these cameras deliver professional-quality performance and the ultimate in creative control.

Resolution

It doesn’t matter what sort of camera you decide to get you will have several decisions to make regarding the resolution of the camera.

The salespeople of most electronics superstores are quick to tell you that the most important thing to consider when buying a digital camera is how many pixels there are. Now while it is important it is not the end all of digital image quality. Pixels are tiny squares and in some new models they’re starting to use other shapes as well. The more pixels you have in your image the sharper the detail of the image will be. Most current digital cameras on the market today produce an image with more than 4 million pixels. That’s enough resolution to easily print images up to 8 x 10 with good image quality. It’s not likely that you will print images larger than 8 x 10 and so most of these camera should meet your needs.

Try various digital cameras before you purchase.

There is a wide selection of digital cameras on the market with various image qualities even though they may have the same number of pixels. There are different kinds and sizes of image sensors, which is the chip that actually records the picture. It is recommended that you take a memory card into the store with you so that you can put it in each camera and take sample photographs that you can then take home to view on your computer to compare.

The technology is constantly improving and digital cameras will be constantly changing. Don’t be surprised if several months after you purchase one there is a new and better one with more pixels in the market. If you take the time to choose a good quality digital camera which makes good photographs you’ll be able to enjoy digital photography for a long time in the future.

If you do make the move into digital photography remember this. Many people using digital cameras simply put their photos on their computers and never actually make prints anymore. It is easy for these photos to get lost and therefore it’s recommended that you print special photographs for generations to enjoy.

Digital Photography and the Printed World

30 Aug

Photo collections – for traditional photographers the phrase conjures thoughts of bound albums and mounds of shoeboxes, stuffed to capacity with 5 x 7 inch pictures. For today’s ever growing ranks of digital photographers however, it brings to mind thoughts of a stamp-sized memory card, a pocket hard drive, or CDs and DVDs. Welcome to the world of digital photography, which is fundamentally changing the way we capture and preserve images.

Digital photography today is a rapidly growing consumer pastime with many advantages versus traditional film-based cameras, including the ability to immediately review, erase, annotate or categorize images, speed and ease of operation, and quality at the high end of the digital photography scale. Although some film cameras can operate without batteries, minus the flash, most consumers are unconcerned with use in wet or poor weather environments and are drawn to digital cameras by all of the advantages that they offer.

Because of this, the entire photography industry is changing to embrace different consumer preferences, including a reduced desire for printed photos. The market for printed photos from film in the United States peaked in 2000 at over 30 billion, and then fell to under 26 billion by 2004. Initially, there were problems with quick-service photography shops “cropping” digital images in order to force them to print properly on the same paper used by film cameras – as more and more people move to digital however, services and products emerge to make it easier to transfer your memories from electronic to tangible

Some people feel that a picture just isn’t a picture if you can’t put it into a frame (although wireless, internet-enabled miniature LCD ‘picture frames’ ARE available) or store it in a photo album. But many of today’s young people are much more comfortable with technology than their parents and grandparents. It is not uncommon for a college student to feel more secure with electronic images than paper ones.

No one is certain whether digital photography will eventually reduce our demand for photo prints, but it is guaranteed that the way of the future in photography is digital. Additionally, there are far more snapshots being taken than ever before, due to the ease with which they can be reviewed and removed from digital cameras. So whether you’re partial to electronic or shoebox image storage, be ready for photos to get easier, better and cheaper in coming years – and of course, keep smiling.