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click, click, clickity, click Adventures in the Big Empty
by Geek Jane

Chapter 6
Jane Returns Triumphant, or, Wielding A Big Information Gun

I've been on a hiatus lately, having just moved from the Big Empty to a quieter, greener place, two hours north. I do have plans to return to New York City pretty soon, however, so for the time being my column shall remain in the place where my mind lingers.

I have graduated to a new type of tech, one which I am most excited about. For my birthday, my Geek Other purchased me the digital camera of my choice (well, within reason cost-wise). Still, after much research and many test drives, I decided upon the Sony MVC-FD88. There are better and there are worse cameras, but this one seems to be just right for my first foray into digital photography.

I love photography - snapshots, outdoor shots, posed shots, you name it. Getting a decent camera, film, then having to wait for the processing time (not to mention the cost of it all) was wearing on my nerves. Digital seemed the way to go - instant gratification, if the picture stinks, just delete it. So many options and buttons and blinking thingies to choose from, a seemingly endless day in a technological amusement park.

I received my camera very recently, and was able to master its basic functions in about thirty minutes. Usability is a good thing, already I was taking pictures that looked great on my hi-res monitor, and hopefully if I get them printed on photo paper will look even better.

Of course, this does present a problem of sorts. With ease comes waste. Photos that would be carefully rationed and savored with a regular print camera are no longer. Caution can be thrown to the wind as easily as another floppy disk can be popped in the camera (there turned out to be a use for all of those AOL floppies from the mid 90's, after all). I predict I will have tons and tons of photos, since it's as easy as saving them on my computer and tucking them away in a file. Most likely 50% of those photos will be of my cats. I'm silly that way.

It seems with information-gathering devices getting faster and bigger and more accessible to Mr. and Miss J. Q. Public, we may be in danger of drowning in information. Already the Internet holds a wealth of useful information, but there is twice as much flotsam. A quick jaunt on the Web can find any number of "look at pictures of me, my family, and my pets" pages (I stand guilty as I own a similar page), and even moreso, pages and pages of things that no one can imagine why someone would be possessed to take the time to create HTML for.

For instance, I found a consumer web site recently for a bus company, containing all of its schedules and fates and destinations. Problem is, there was already an "official" page for this company, which was updated much more frequently than the private "fan" site, so what is the point? What need seized this person so that they said to themselves, "I really want to create a page about this bus line!" It's a mystery to me.

Then there are the web pages that state something akin to, "JUST UPDATED! NEW FEATURES!" and in teeny little letters at the bottom: "Last updated January 1996." Uhhh...okay. I found a personal site for a theatre company, and they were advertising for performances that occurred three years ago.

So much information, but how much is it really worth? I'm afraid my newfound oh-so-easy-to-use photographic freedom may prove on a small scale how convenience makes more of a mess than doing it the long way. But I'll have fun, snapping all those pictures. Looks like I'll need to buy a floppy disk file again.

Want some pictures of my cat?

Peace, love, and T-connections for all,
- GJ

Geek Jane's Archive:
Chapter 1: The Origins of Geek Jane, or, From Whence I Came
Chapter 2: Jane Gets In Touch With Readership...
Chapter 3: Jane As Couch Potato, or, What Geeks Watch
Chapter 4: Jane Goes To War, or, Coffee Creamer in the Trenches
Chapter 5: Jane Thinks Metaphorically, or, Wired Vacations

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