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Author Topic: J'Accuse  (Read 28041 times)

MikeMac

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #20 on: March 27, 2012, 05:55:12 am »

Hi David, always good to get a factual update/correction and made for interesting reading.

 To give credit where credit is due, not everyone who works at "these companies" is Japanese. That include those in Tokyo, let alone plants overseas. Of course, if you are talking about upper management/executive level, then your statement is a little closer to being correct. (I couldn't guess why that would be.)

The  last statement is not exactly accurate. The devastation from the tsunami was in the northeast (Tohoku) region. The Fukushima nuclear plants are also there. That area suffered enormous destruction. Tokyo had a stiff quake, but suffered little damage and few casualties. Things were mostly back to normal by the following Monday except for the threat of power outages and some transportation disruptions along with increasing concern about the problems with the nuclear plants. People in Tohoku and nearby areas suffered greatly, but most families outside that area---except those with friends or relatives there---escaped with little more than inconvenience. We certainly did in Tokyo, and that includes most of the staff (including engineers) at various Fujifilm offices. Further southwest toward Kobe, Osaka, Kyoto, was barely affected by the quake.

Going to work after the quake for the vast, vast majority in Tokyo was in no way an act of heroism. We had to go to work. Since we wanted to have jobs, our companies---no matter the industry---had to find ways to keep operating and work around any difficulties from the quake which for most were problems of logistics and adapting to temporary electrical shortages. (Of course some camera companies---Nikon, for example---had factories in the Sendai area destroyed. I do not believe they lost any lives at the factory, but I am not certain of that.)

The fact that companies were able to turn things around so quickly is still an amazing accomplishment, but thankfully most did not have to do it having personally suffered a tragedy anything like people in Tohoku. People there are still living it and probably always will. There is a huge difference.


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jjj

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #21 on: March 27, 2012, 07:06:44 am »

I am in general agreement with Michael and what he has to say about camera ergonomics ever since I started reading LL, but this part of the article I take real issue with.

"As for the rest, I can only urge you to look at companies like Apple, who can manufacture an amazing 67 million new iPads in a one year period (as but one example), and yet who rarely have significant design flaws. And when there are firmware flaws, they are quick with updates. The reason is simple. Apple is, as a company, dedicated to excellence in both design and implementation. This is the reason why they are now one of the world's most successful and wealthiest corporations. They also are one of the best companies in the world at keeping new products secret, so any argument that having testers compromises secrecy is flawed at its core."

Apple being very successful is indeed in part due to good design, but not because of good design for the end user.
The major reason Apple are so very profitable compared to other companies is that their product design is concentrated in keeping costs down, often at the expense of the end user. Take keyboards on laptops, I'm typing this on the biggest MacBook Pro, yet it has the same compromised keyboard as the smallest Air and the wireless desktop option. No delete button, grief!! And even worse has modifier keys in a different place to my desktop keyboard, playing havoc with muscle memory. Which is particularly daft considering Apple only two keyboards sizes for all uses and yet they have a different layout of important keys. I experience less confusion going between my full sized Apple desktop keyboard and my 13" Sony Vaio than I do between my Apple desktop and my 17" MacBook Pro.

I have an iPhone and a Nano, but I threw away the earbuds that came with them as they are a single size and painful in use as they are way too big, thus unusable for me. I now have ear buds that take the standardised and cheap Sennheiser three sizes replacement rubber end pieces. Apple Mice are the same but the opposite problem, way too small and which lead to RSI on adult sized hands.

Single size devices to fit all sizes of humanity and varying sizes of laptop having the same tiny and compromised keyboard are simply cost cutting exercises which results in poor ergonomics, is really bad design. Hardly a case of form following function.
To my mind the worst design failing is making something pretty at expense of usability and sadly Apple do just that. But pretty sells far more products than ergonomics ever did.  :(

As for fast firmware updates and the like, I avoid any Apple product until version 3 or 4 as if it's software, it's usually too buggy until fix .3 or .4 and if it's hardware, it's usually too compromised. I finally got an iPhone with the 4s which is so much better than previous models, yet at same time really inferior in many basic ways to my 4 year old HTC. It's also better than my HTC in other ways, but and this is a big but, it is the worst mobile phone I have ever had with regard to the basic ability of being a mobile [that's cellular to to North Americans  ;)] phone and by a long way the most expensive mobile too. It drops calls all the time, sound quality is so bad people ask to ring me back on my landline and voicemail takes up to a week to arrive. As for Siri, it is an utter waste of time as it struggles with even well spoken British accents and a lot of Siri's service is restricted to the USA on the rare chance it actually understood you.
As for the iPad, a very useful tool in many ways but it is an internet device that doesn't recognize a large proportion of website content due to personal reasons at Apple, rather than end user concern. That is not good design to my mind.

Apple software is also as bad as many camera manufacturers stupid menu systems. Finder is possibly the worst software ever, without the ability to replace it with PathFinder, I'd simply bin OSX and install W7 instead and then buy a PC when it came to upgrade. iTunes - not quite as terrible, but again without script hacks it is near unusable in some very basic functionality. iTunes 10.6 is more like the original LR1 beta in terms of file management. And doing something as simple as add a track to a playlist in iTunes on my phone makes any camera menu system seem friendly.  :o In fact Apple's hatred of buttons and simplistic interfaces is very much like using a camera with fiddly menus, rather than dedicated physical buttons and control dials.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2012, 07:08:27 am by jjj »
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theguywitha645d

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #22 on: March 27, 2012, 09:44:28 am »

The "built by engineers" hypothesis would be good if it were true. There are more than engineers in the product teams. There are outside user inputs to the process. Most cameras work without the need for any knowledge of photography. The functions are not defined by engineering terms, but photographic ones (or invented ones that have nothing to do with either engineering or photography).
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allenmacaulay

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #23 on: March 27, 2012, 10:52:50 am »

I finally got an iPhone with the 4s which is so much better than previous models, yet at same time really inferior in many basic ways to my 4 year old HTC. It's also better than my HTC in other ways, but and this is a big but, it is the worst mobile phone I have ever had with regard to the basic ability of being a mobile [that's cellular to to North Americans  ;)] phone and by a long way the most expensive mobile too. It drops calls all the time, sound quality is so bad people ask to ring me back on my landline and voicemail takes up to a week to arrive.

There's a reason for that, Apple knowingly compromised the antenna design on their phones to make them slimmer and more fashionable.  It was a known problem in development but they went ahead and released it anyway.  On a related note, as with many other problems, it can indeed be fixed with duct tape.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-07-15/apple-engineer-said-to-have-told-jobs-last-year-about-iphone-antenna-flaw.html
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Fips

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #24 on: March 27, 2012, 11:26:58 am »

Quote
Take keyboards on laptops, I'm typing this on the biggest MacBook Pro, yet it has the same compromised keyboard as the smallest Air and the wireless desktop option. No delete button, grief!!

For me it's an advantage to have the same keyboard (layout) on different machines. The missing delete key doesn't bother me as well as I find pressing 'fn' + 'backspace' just as convenient.
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Hans Kruse

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #25 on: March 27, 2012, 12:51:59 pm »

For me it's an advantage to have the same keyboard (layout) on different machines. The missing delete key doesn't bother me as well as I find pressing 'fn' + 'backspace' just as convenient.

I agree and I don't think the Apple approach in this matter is to keep down the cost. Steve Jobs was very keen on certain principles and as I recall it he didn't even like the arrow keys.

I have an iPhone 4 and although my old trusty Nokia from 10 years ago worked as well or better as a phone to speak in, I would never miss for the world all the functions in the iPhone. It is an amazing phone and not strange that it is selling like hot cakes. My only regret is that I didn't buy shares in Apple 10 years ago or even 5 years ago ;)

Regarding camera design I have always felt that camera makers didn't support customers adequately by firmware upgrades and didn't put fairly obvious functions into the cameras.

A couple of examples: On my Canon 1Ds mkIII the shutter range limit is from 1/60s to 1/8000s. This means that I want to use auto ISO (although you cannot find the word auto ISO in the manual, of course) and use Av mode I cannont choose e.g. a minimum shutter of say 1/250s or 1/500s which I might like for some wild life shooting. So instead I have to use Tv and set the shutter speed and use the aperture range to limit the aperture to say max f/5.6 (e.g. to avoid an f/4 on a 500mm lens). But there is no easy way to change the aperture range except going into the menu. Fortunately there is a Mymenu where the aperture range is inserted by me so I can find it quickly, but still!! Why isn't there an extra wheel that I can program for that purpose to control either minimu shutter speed in Av mode or maximum aperture opening in Tv mode?

Of course the usual comment on not having a MLU botton. I can better live with that since I store it in Mymenu for easy access, but still, why isn't there an extra botton to program this against.

When we use AF and point the camera at a certain point, wouldn't it be nice to know the DOF (which could be displayed in the viewfinder)? Or on the LCD screen get an indication of DOF when stopping the lens down with the button that serves that purpose? One can move the zoomed in display using the joystick and the DOF button pressed to see the DOF which is useful, but it would be nice and very useful with other ways to see this.

Now the 1Ds mkIII is more than 4 years old so the new cameras have of course fixed these things, haven't they?

Isaac

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #26 on: March 27, 2012, 01:21:27 pm »

Camera companies do use design firms.

I don't know which camera companies do design in-house and which work with design firms, and I don't know which aspects of design they do in-house and which aspects they work on with design firms - so I'll take your word for it.

I do know that the kind of expertise found in one "design firm" can be very different from the kind of expertise found in some other "design firm".

I do know that the comments being made in this discussion are about usability and I provided a link to a firm that specialises in interaction design.

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MarkL

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #27 on: March 27, 2012, 01:28:09 pm »

If Apple made dslrs we'd all be choosing between a 32Gb version and a 64Gb version - not sure they are the best example ;)
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Frank Kolwicz

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #28 on: March 27, 2012, 01:48:40 pm »

The topic has really gone off on some wild-goose chases, but a couple of you guys have hit it: the problem is the need for constant change, novelty for it's own sake, and that is driven by marketing. In a rational market, a mature product, one might think, would have converged on standardized or at least similar forms following it's intended function (like QWERTY keyboards). I would only expect the kind of wild variation of function layouts that digital cameras display in a brand new technology rather than one that's 150 years old (and, no, digitizing did not change the function of a camera any more than Fujichrome did.)

I don't think it's about having photography enthusiasts at the top of the corporate food chain in order to consistently produce well thought out, functional and satisfying cameras for users - there used to be cameras with consistent functional designs, they were mechanical. It's about the needs of the marketing department that changed when cameras went from being relatively specialized mechanical tools to ultra-mass-market electronic toys.

A lot of the defects and encumbrances that the manufacturers introduce are a product of the need to constantly come up with new buzzwords to fill real or imagined marketing demands and those demands come from the marketing department, not from customers or engineering, although engineering has it's own blame to shoulder for trying put as many frivolous options into a camera that the computer chip can handle ("hey, we still have 1.5% unused functional memory, how about a mode for photographing carp underwater?"), like the digital clocks that have so many functions you have to refer to the multi-page instructions and navigate down 4 or 5 menu selections just to reset the time.

And it's also from a desire to hold back or parcel-out real, desirable, properties to force a constant need for the user to upgrade and generate new sales instead of making a single camera that utilizes the latest tech and well-tested UI in one model, one that will retain it's value for more than a model cycle. We see this in things like firmware that cripples a function in one camera that's available in higher-priced models using the same hardware.

I find it hard to believe that designers want to make things different after successfully producing an acclaimed model and deliberately change it despite degrading the handling, performance or suitability for any given use. The excessive complexity and meaningless choices are driven by the desire for advertising bragging rights, not for coming up with a well-functioning camera.

Back in the old days of mechanical cameras, almost all SLRs had the same basic form and layout, as did most rangefinders. You didn't have to hunt around much to find controls (the simplicity helped a lot). Although some things like direction of rotation varied, the camera/lens still fit your hand pretty much the same way and the rewind lever was in the same place. You didn't need a couple of hours with the manual and an engineering degree to figure out how to control any basic function.

No matter what manufacturers want you to think, there are still only 3 functions that you have control over with a camera that affect image quality and those 3 things should have priority of access and consistency of location within brands: ISO, shutter speed and aperture. Yes, there are genuinely useful and convenient things some times made available that do help creating better images in at least some situations. MLU, AF modes and the ability to shut it off, for instance, are necessities for me and there are photographers who have other specialized needs that go beyond the basics, but I don't see any new images, out of the camera, that couldn't have been made by a competent photographer with a Canon F1 or the equivalents from other brands 40 years ago. For my purposes, as a landscape and nature photographer, the digital equivalent of an F1 with those same basic controls would suffice for everything I do. In fact, that's how I use my 5DII, even though it took me hours to find and set the controls in that simple and familiar way and figure out that Live View gave me one-button access to MLU. Of course, I also had to get used to the new way those functions are accessed compared to the Xti that was my first digital camera and that makes it hard for me to use the Xti as a backup camera.

What purpose does it serve for every camera to have a whole host of mostly non-functional options, essentially false choices, vying for access space with the critical 3? (HINT: it makes advertising copy.) Learning to use a camera with just the 3 basic settings doesn't take all that long and really does make you a better photographer, rather than trying to figure out if "landscape mode" versus "floral" would work better for photographing your cat or *is* there a "cat mode" or a "black and white cat in the sun mode"?




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Hans Kruse

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #29 on: March 27, 2012, 01:52:09 pm »

If Apple made dslrs we'd all be choosing between a 32Gb version and a 64Gb version - not sure they are the best example ;)

Well, with a blink in the eye ;) But if we use Apple as an example and we discuss DSLR's then we should consider how the Macs like MacBook, iMac's etc. with OSX works compared to alternatives. I think anybody who have used multiple platforms would agree that the Apple one is more consistent and user friendly than any of the alternatives and to some degree at a price. And unpacking and installing an Airport Extreme is a breeze compared to almost any alternative I can think of ;) Apple didn't become the most valuable publicly traded company by limiting user options. An iPhone or iPad is not to be compared to a DSLR. I can only think of how the whole DSLR concept would have been rethought had it been Apple that had one that....

Isaac

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #30 on: March 27, 2012, 02:37:30 pm »

Apple didn't become the most valuable publicly traded company by limiting user options.

Limiting user options to options provided by Apple simplifies product design and keeps all the revenue at Apple.
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Quentin

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #31 on: March 27, 2012, 02:45:39 pm »

Limiting user options to options provided by Apple simplifies product design and keeps all the revenue at Apple.

Which is why I own neither an iPad nor an Apple computer. 
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Quentin Bargate, ARPS, Author, Arbitrato

Fips

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #32 on: March 27, 2012, 03:36:42 pm »

Quote
What purpose does it serve for every camera to have a whole host of mostly non-functional options, essentially false choices, vying for access space with the critical 3? (HINT: it makes advertising copy.) Learning to use a camera with just the 3 basic settings doesn't take all that long and really does make you a better photographer, rather than trying to figure out if "landscape mode" versus "floral" would work better for photographing your cat or *is* there a "cat mode" or a "black and white cat in the sun mode"?

I do agree with you, that learning the very basics would make many people better photographers. But the question is: do people really want to be better photographers? I'm convinced the answer is 'no' if spending time and reading manuals is the way to achieve this goal. We, as enthusiasts and pros make the false assumption that the average DSLR buyer is as devoted to photography as we are. The reality is that most just want to have nicer picture and the impression that a big, pro-looking camera let's them do this. The market for the three-dial-camera is much smaller than one might think. That's why all those "carp underwater" and other "scene modes" exist.

Having said this, I have the impression that the demand for simplistic cameras is growing as more and more people are fed up with overcomplexity. That's why Leica is doing so well and why Fuji introduced the X-series. I'm certain that we can expect more such cameras in the near future. I'm certainly looking forward to it  ;)


Quote
Back in the old days of mechanical cameras, almost all SLRs had the same basic form and layout, as did most rangefinders. You didn't have to hunt around much to find controls (the simplicity helped a lot). Although some things like direction of rotation varied, the camera/lens still fit your hand pretty much the same way and the rewind lever was in the same place. You didn't need a couple of hours with the manual and an engineering degree to figure out how to control any basic function.


That's an interesting point which is brought up in many discussion about modern technology. The resaon that these cameras looked similar and handled similarly was because the function dictated the form. Form follows function. The rewind lever just had to be along the film canister axis, the penta prism had to be above the mirror box, and so on.
Now the thing is, that this doesn't hold anymore in many cases of modern devices. The extreme case might be an mp3-player. There is no function which defines a form. With flexible displays and batteries now available there is no requirement for any generic form at all. The same is true to a lesser extend with digital cameras. As a consequence designers become more important. But they don't need to understand as much of engineering but rather ergonomics. And that's at least as difficult. There are much more ways how to ergonomically arrange all the buttons, switches, and displays on a camera than possibilities given by a mechanical construction as it used to be.
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Rob C

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #33 on: March 27, 2012, 03:41:47 pm »

The topic has really gone off on some wild-goose chases, but a couple of you guys have hit it: the problem is the need for constant change, novelty for it's own sake, and that is driven by marketing. In a rational market, a mature product, one might think, would have converged on standardized or at least similar forms following it's intended function (like QWERTY keyboards). I would only expect the kind of wild variation of function layouts that digital cameras display in a brand new technology rather than one that's 150 years old (and, no, digitizing did not change the function of a camera any more than Fujichrome did.)

I don't think it's about having photography enthusiasts at the top of the corporate food chain in order to consistently produce well thought out, functional and satisfying cameras for users - there used to be cameras with consistent functional designs, they were mechanical. It's about the needs of the marketing department that changed when cameras went from being relatively specialized mechanical tools to ultra-mass-market electronic toys.

A lot of the defects and encumbrances that the manufacturers introduce are a product of the need to constantly come up with new buzzwords to fill real or imagined marketing demands and those demands come from the marketing department, not from customers or engineering, although engineering has it's own blame to shoulder for trying put as many frivolous options into a camera that the computer chip can handle ("hey, we still have 1.5% unused functional memory, how about a mode for photographing carp underwater?"), like the digital clocks that have so many functions you have to refer to the multi-page instructions and navigate down 4 or 5 menu selections just to reset the time.

And it's also from a desire to hold back or parcel-out real, desirable, properties to force a constant need for the user to upgrade and generate new sales instead of making a single camera that utilizes the latest tech and well-tested UI in one model, one that will retain it's value for more than a model cycle. We see this in things like firmware that cripples a function in one camera that's available in higher-priced models using the same hardware.

I find it hard to believe that designers want to make things different after successfully producing an acclaimed model and deliberately change it despite degrading the handling, performance or suitability for any given use. The excessive complexity and meaningless choices are driven by the desire for advertising bragging rights, not for coming up with a well-functioning camera.

Back in the old days of mechanical cameras, almost all SLRs had the same basic form and layout, as did most rangefinders. You didn't have to hunt around much to find controls (the simplicity helped a lot). Although some things like direction of rotation varied, the camera/lens still fit your hand pretty much the same way and the rewind lever was in the same place. You didn't need a couple of hours with the manual and an engineering degree to figure out how to control any basic function.

No matter what manufacturers want you to think, there are still only 3 functions that you have control over with a camera that affect image quality and those 3 things should have priority of access and consistency of location within brands: ISO, shutter speed and aperture. Yes, there are genuinely useful and convenient things some times made available that do help creating better images in at least some situations. MLU, AF modes and the ability to shut it off, for instance, are necessities for me and there are photographers who have other specialized needs that go beyond the basics, but I don't see any new images, out of the camera, that couldn't have been made by a competent photographer with a Canon F1 or the equivalents from other brands 40 years ago. For my purposes, as a landscape and nature photographer, the digital equivalent of an F1 with those same basic controls would suffice for everything I do. In fact, that's how I use my 5DII, even though it took me hours to find and set the controls in that simple and familiar way and figure out that Live View gave me one-button access to MLU. Of course, I also had to get used to the new way those functions are accessed compared to the Xti that was my first digital camera and that makes it hard for me to use the Xti as a backup camera.

What purpose does it serve for every camera to have a whole host of mostly non-functional options, essentially false choices, vying for access space with the critical 3? (HINT: it makes advertising copy.) Learning to use a camera with just the 3 basic settings doesn't take all that long and really does make you a better photographer, rather than trying to figure out if "landscape mode" versus "floral" would work better for photographing your cat or *is* there a "cat mode" or a "black and white cat in the sun mode"?





We must be twins, you and I. Pleased to meet you at last!

Rob C

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #34 on: March 27, 2012, 03:59:50 pm »

The topic has really gone off on some wild-goose chases, but a couple of you guys have hit it: the problem is the need for constant change, novelty for it's own sake, and that is driven by marketing. In a rational market, a mature product, one might think, would have converged on standardized or at least similar forms following it's intended function (like QWERTY keyboards). I would only expect the kind of wild variation of function layouts that digital cameras display in a brand new technology rather than one that's 150 years old (and, no, digitizing did not change the function of a camera any more than Fujichrome did.)

I don't think it's about having photography enthusiasts at the top of the corporate food chain in order to consistently produce well thought out, functional and satisfying cameras for users - there used to be cameras with consistent functional designs, they were mechanical. It's about the needs of the marketing department that changed when cameras went from being relatively specialized mechanical tools to ultra-mass-market electronic toys.

A lot of the defects and encumbrances that the manufacturers introduce are a product of the need to constantly come up with new buzzwords to fill real or imagined marketing demands and those demands come from the marketing department, not from customers or engineering, although engineering has it's own blame to shoulder for trying put as many frivolous options into a camera that the computer chip can handle ("hey, we still have 1.5% unused functional memory, how about a mode for photographing carp underwater?"), like the digital clocks that have so many functions you have to refer to the multi-page instructions and navigate down 4 or 5 menu selections just to reset the time.

And it's also from a desire to hold back or parcel-out real, desirable, properties to force a constant need for the user to upgrade and generate new sales instead of making a single camera that utilizes the latest tech and well-tested UI in one model, one that will retain it's value for more than a model cycle. We see this in things like firmware that cripples a function in one camera that's available in higher-priced models using the same hardware.

I find it hard to believe that designers want to make things different after successfully producing an acclaimed model and deliberately change it despite degrading the handling, performance or suitability for any given use. The excessive complexity and meaningless choices are driven by the desire for advertising bragging rights, not for coming up with a well-functioning camera.

Back in the old days of mechanical cameras, almost all SLRs had the same basic form and layout, as did most rangefinders. You didn't have to hunt around much to find controls (the simplicity helped a lot). Although some things like direction of rotation varied, the camera/lens still fit your hand pretty much the same way and the rewind lever was in the same place. You didn't need a couple of hours with the manual and an engineering degree to figure out how to control any basic function.

No matter what manufacturers want you to think, there are still only 3 functions that you have control over with a camera that affect image quality and those 3 things should have priority of access and consistency of location within brands: ISO, shutter speed and aperture. Yes, there are genuinely useful and convenient things some times made available that do help creating better images in at least some situations. MLU, AF modes and the ability to shut it off, for instance, are necessities for me and there are photographers who have other specialized needs that go beyond the basics, but I don't see any new images, out of the camera, that couldn't have been made by a competent photographer with a Canon F1 or the equivalents from other brands 40 years ago. For my purposes, as a landscape and nature photographer, the digital equivalent of an F1 with those same basic controls would suffice for everything I do. In fact, that's how I use my 5DII, even though it took me hours to find and set the controls in that simple and familiar way and figure out that Live View gave me one-button access to MLU. Of course, I also had to get used to the new way those functions are accessed compared to the Xti that was my first digital camera and that makes it hard for me to use the Xti as a backup camera.

What purpose does it serve for every camera to have a whole host of mostly non-functional options, essentially false choices, vying for access space with the critical 3? (HINT: it makes advertising copy.) Learning to use a camera with just the 3 basic settings doesn't take all that long and really does make you a better photographer, rather than trying to figure out if "landscape mode" versus "floral" would work better for photographing your cat or *is* there a "cat mode" or a "black and white cat in the sun mode"?






That is called "I want camera companies to do want I want" argument. The trouble is, that "ideal" camera would only be perfect for one person.

It is also a false argument. Cameras are easy to use. Most cameras are not made for professionals. The cameras make better exposure than most photographers in the past could. And you can just as easily use manual controls if you wish.

BTW, camera companies make cameras that sell. So who is to blame for all those feature you don't want? Don't blame companies for customer preference.
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Isaac

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #35 on: March 27, 2012, 06:10:09 pm »

BTW, camera companies make cameras that sell. So who is to blame for all those feature you don't want? Don't blame companies for customer preference.

Please believe that I'm not actually trying to disagree with everything you write, but... :-)

Although I made the "Because camera users will buy them" comment, it's also obviously true that as camera buyers we can only choose between what camera companies offer for sale in our price range.

So the fact that a camera with such and such features is bought is not sufficient evidence that it was bought for those features - it might have been bought in-spite of some features, many features may have played no part in the purchase decision, and there may be other desired features that were not available for the price.

« Last Edit: March 27, 2012, 06:15:39 pm by Isaac »
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Tony Jay

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #36 on: March 27, 2012, 06:15:21 pm »

To me the issue is not so much the addition of perhaps frivolous functionality to cameras rather whether the package actually works as advertised.
Most Manufacturers in the last few years have had at least one, if not several, well publicised failures in this regard.

My $0.02 worth

Tony Jay
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meyerweb

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #37 on: March 27, 2012, 08:58:30 pm »

I think MR doesn't know as much about products outside the photo industry as well as he thinks.  Recalls from all the auto companies, including the vaunted Honda and Toyota, are all too common. BMW announced a recall just yesterday.  So is bad design all too common. The enthusiast mags (just like photo mags) tend to gloss over these things, but read Consumer Reports' car tests and you'll find lots of issues.  Every car I've owned has some things that drive me nuts. No car is perfect, nor will the same design choices satisfy everyone.

As for Apple, has Michael already forgotten the iPhone 4, the design of which causes signal dropouts if you hold the phone the way normal people hold a phone. And which still hasn't been fixed on the 4s. Apple design is far from perfect.

As with cars, no one set of design imperatives will satisfy everyone.  Design features that MR dislikes may be exactly what someone else wants. I've found some of the things he's criticized over the years to be of no import to me at all. Other things, which don't seem to bother him, I find inconvenient or annoying.  MR's opinion is just that.  Not everyone will share it.
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jjj

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #38 on: March 27, 2012, 09:05:41 pm »

There's a reason for that, Apple knowingly compromised the antenna design on their phones to make them slimmer and more fashionable.  It was a known problem in development but they went ahead and released it anyway.  On a related note, as with many other problems, it can indeed be fixed with duct tape.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-07-15/apple-engineer-said-to-have-told-jobs-last-year-about-iphone-antenna-flaw.html
I have the later version and as it is encased in rubber sleeve that wouldn't be the cause anyway.
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jjj

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Re: J'Accuse
« Reply #39 on: March 27, 2012, 09:35:40 pm »

For me it's an advantage to have the same keyboard (layout) on different machines. The missing delete key doesn't bother me as well as I find pressing 'fn' + 'backspace' just as convenient.
I agree and I don't think the Apple approach in this matter is to keep down the cost. Steve Jobs was very keen on certain principles and as I recall it he didn't even like the arrow keys.

Uh, if you read my post properly you'd have noticed that one of my big complaints is that despite such limited options, Apple still manages to make a mere 2 keyboard designs which are annoyingly dissimilar from each other.
And Fips, if you think using two hands is as convenient than one to do a very, very basic keyboard function, remind never to ask you for advice on design.  :P

It is correct that Jobs did not like arrow keys [or extra buttons] and he wanted to remove them from the keyboard too in the early days, luckily he was talked out of it. And the lack of arrow keys is one of the biggest irritants on the iPhone when trying to correct or add to text. The ease, speed and simplicity of arrow keys being replaced by a faffy magnifying thing which is very fiddly and at times really $%^ing annoying to use. Way slower than cursor keys. The iPhone keypad is way slower and fiddlier to use than my old HTC, the reason - Apple made it simplistic, not easy to use. Though I do really like the capital letter memory ability.
The lack of a second mouse button on a Mac mouse one again turned a simple one handed function into a two handed function. Second button was later added, when it could be hidden [so as not to lose face] but was always off by default, duh!
My pet annoyance of Apple products is their making simple things more complex and fiddly to do because of Job's silly obsessions. For a clever bloke, he had some really dumb ideas. As for using the space bar in iOS to confirm autocorrect, who on Earth though that was a good idea?  Much easier not to enable it at all. At least Damn you auto correct provides amusement.  :D
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Tradition is the Backbone of the Spinele
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