Monday, 30 April 2012

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Review

Digital Photography Review have published a full review of Panasonic's top-of-the-range compact super-zoom. (Note that the DMC-ZS20 is known as the DMC-TZ30 in the UK.)

Snippets of the conclusion follow:

"The Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 is a well-designed, easy-to-use travel zoom camera that stuffs a 20X Leica lens into a body just 1.1 inches thick."

"Other features on ZS20 include its Intelligent Auto mode which is probably the best point-and-shoot mode in the business. If you have no idea how to operate a camera, just set the mode dial to iA mode, and the camera will do the rest."

"Camera performance is very good in most respects, with only two areas in which the camera lags a bit. The first area is startup time which, at 2 seconds, is a bit slower than average. Focusing times, on the other hand, are very responsive, and are among the best you'll find on a compact camera."

"While the ZS20's photo quality is quite a bit better than on the ZS10 that came before it, there's still a fair amount of room for improvement. Exposures were generally accurate, though since the camera has the tendency to clip highlights, you might want to bracket in high contrast situations."

"If you can live without the GPS, touchscreen LCD, 1080/60p movie mode, and don't mind a 16X lens, then the DMC-ZS15 is also worth a look. Since it uses the FZ150's sensor, I have a feeling that image quality will be better than the ZS20's, as well."

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Monday, 23 April 2012

Lolita cover ideas

Imprint reports: [edited]

Among the problems Nabokov’s Lolita poses for the book designer, probably the thorniest is the popular misconception of the title character. She’s chronically miscast as a teenage sexpot. John Bertram, an architect and blogger sponsored a Lolita cover competition asking designers to do better.

Now the contest is being turned into a book, Lolita: Story of a Cover Girl, due out in June and coedited by Yuri Leving, with essays on historical cover treatments along with new versions by 60 well-known designers, two-thirds of them women: Barbara deWilde, Jessica Helfand, Peter Mendelsund, and Jennifer Daniel, to name a few.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Cubby reports: [edited]

Cubby is a service that helps you keep your stuff up-to-date and available wherever, whenever.

A cubby is any folder that you want to share with people or devices via Cubby. You can turn any folder into a cubby. Just drag any folder onto the Cubby application. The folder stays where it is and becomes a cubby.

Leave your folders where they are and make them into cubbies so you grab your stuff on the go and share with friends, colleagues, and other computers.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Architectural Stationery Vignettes

Bibliodyssey reports: [edited]

The images in this post all come from Columbia University's very large assortment of commercial stationery (featuring architectural illustrations): the Biggert Collection.

The majority of the images have been cropped, cleaned and variously doctored for display purposes, with an intent towards highlighting the range of letterform/font and design layouts. The underlying documents are invoices (most), letters, postcards, shipping records and related business and advertising letterhead ephemera from the mid-1800s to the 1930s.

via Kottke

Monday, 16 April 2012

Kurt Vonnegut on how to write a great story

Brain Pickings reports: [edited]

Kurt Vonnegut — anarchist, Second Life dweller, imaginary interviewer of the dead, sad soul — with eight tips on how to write a good short story, narrated by the author himself.

1. Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.

2. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.

3. Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.

4. Every sentence must do one of two things - reveal character or advance the action.

5. Start as close to the end as possible.

6. Be a Sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them - in order that the reader may see what they are made of.

7. Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.

8. Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To hell with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ150

Digital Photography Review have published a full review of Panasonic's £475, 12.1MP, 25-600mm (24X) superzoom.

Conclusion: [edited]

"Panasonic has done a good job with its latest long zoom. In challenging conditions the FZ150 gives better image quality than its predecessor."

"A wide angle, image-stabilized 24x (25-600mm) zoom, raw mode, full manual and automatic controls, an articulated LCD, full HD video and 3D capture are only some of this highly capable camera's feature highlights but look away from the impressive spec sheet and you'll find that image quality is very good too, across the span of the camera's 24x optical zoom lens."

" is one of the best cameras of its type on the market. It combines an expansive feature set, great performance, and enough still and video options (and quality) to keep enthusiast photographers and casual videographers happy."

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Free Font - Edding 850

Design & Dev reports: [edited]

Büro Destruct is an internationally acclaimed design studio based out of Switzerland. The team, very well-known for its type design, has just recently crafted a typeface based on Edding 850, the boldest marker from Edding (the German equivalent to the ubiquitous Sharpie).

As the font evolved, it was broken down to its simplest form, based only on the thick and thin strokes, which created a modular system that could be assembled digitally.

The resulting typeface is quite impressive and distinctive, and the accompanying HTML5 web app should catch even more attention. It is an “endless whiteboard, following the principle of Edding marker – what has been written, can’t be erased.”

For a gallery of examples of this typeface being used, click here

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

SSD drive prices continue to fall

Register Hardware reports: [edited]

Intel has a new budget 330-series solid-state drive (SSD) coming on Friday, 13 April, and it almost doubles the current 320 SSD's performance.

Amazon UK lists the 120GB 2.5-inch Intel 330 SSD for £109.05.