Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The Bastard File


I used to be embarrassed in shop class when the teacher talked about using bastard files. That sort of language was discouraged at home. I was careful not to use it in front of my mother.

Bless her, she is long gone. I am free to express myself when I edit pictures on the computer. And I do. Sometimes the family are scandalised and I have noted the occasionally the wife closes the door on the computer room when I am working in there. I just wish she wouldn't wedge it shut with a hammer...

Bastard files come in several varieties:

1: The ones that have a dynamic range of 56 stops. The low tones are so low that you can see nothing and the high tones are so high that you can see nothing. Eventually you lose interest and stop looking.

2: The noise traps. No matter what setting you have dialled into the camera these files have electronic noise. In the low tones, in the high tones, in the margin. Even the Exif data is speckled and grey. They look like someone has dropped them onto the floor and rolled them in kitty litter.

3: The Walking Dead. Files that have so little character or substance that the most attractive portions of them are the chromatic aberration. Many of them have been made using Big Stopper filters and many of them have been made by elderly Frenchmen.

4: The Fun House. Files so distorted that they could feature in a parliamentary enquiry. That lens that you bought at the Camera Mart for the low price was being sold for a very good reason...

5: The files that are supplied in the 18.5 - bit HOOTx format. This is a format devised by a graduate student in Nebraska that was briefly thrown out as freeware on the net in 1998 for a week. Before the narcs got to him. It surfaces like a dying Soviet submarine every few years and some fool converts normal digital data to it. and then throws away the normal digital data. No known program actually decodes it but once the files get into your drive they can never be removed.

6: The files that are all watermark. No actual image but entirely safe.

7: Commercial traps. The file that contains an opposing product to the one that you are trying to advertise. The kind of photo-bombng that spreads radiation.

8: Private traps. The thumb drive o' death that your mate gives you. Plug it in at your peril, but be warned that your mate has nursed a grievance against you for a long time and this may well be the opportunity to revenge it.

You must understand that none of this ever happened in the dear old days of film photography. We were pure and simple and never had fungus on our lenses. And none of our negative files ever got wet an smelly and mouldy. Wanna see some of my unicorn pictures?


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1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

And I thought I was going to get to read more about bearings and steam locomotives! How disappointing :P

February 18, 2014 at 1:14 PM  

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The Bastard File


I used to be embarrassed in shop class when the teacher talked about using bastard files. That sort of language was discouraged at home. I was careful not to use it in front of my mother.

Bless her, she is long gone. I am free to express myself when I edit pictures on the computer. And I do. Sometimes the family are scandalised and I have noted the occasionally the wife closes the door on the computer room when I am working in there. I just wish she wouldn't wedge it shut with a hammer...

Bastard files come in several varieties:

1: The ones that have a dynamic range of 56 stops. The low tones are so low that you can see nothing and the high tones are so high that you can see nothing. Eventually you lose interest and stop looking.

2: The noise traps. No matter what setting you have dialled into the camera these files have electronic noise. In the low tones, in the high tones, in the margin. Even the Exif data is speckled and grey. They look like someone has dropped them onto the floor and rolled them in kitty litter.

3: The Walking Dead. Files that have so little character or substance that the most attractive portions of them are the chromatic aberration. Many of them have been made using Big Stopper filters and many of them have been made by elderly Frenchmen.

4: The Fun House. Files so distorted that they could feature in a parliamentary enquiry. That lens that you bought at the Camera Mart for the low price was being sold for a very good reason...

5: The files that are supplied in the 18.5 - bit HOOTx format. This is a format devised by a graduate student in Nebraska that was briefly thrown out as freeware on the net in 1998 for a week. Before the narcs got to him. It surfaces like a dying Soviet submarine every few years and some fool converts normal digital data to it. and then throws away the normal digital data. No known program actually decodes it but once the files get into your drive they can never be removed.

6: The files that are all watermark. No actual image but entirely safe.

7: Commercial traps. The file that contains an opposing product to the one that you are trying to advertise. The kind of photo-bombng that spreads radiation.

8: Private traps. The thumb drive o' death that your mate gives you. Plug it in at your peril, but be warned that your mate has nursed a grievance against you for a long time and this may well be the opportunity to revenge it.

You must understand that none of this ever happened in the dear old days of film photography. We were pure and simple and never had fungus on our lenses. And none of our negative files ever got wet an smelly and mouldy. Wanna see some of my unicorn pictures?


Labels: , , , , ,