Wednesday, June 13, 2007

i can't believe i am writing a love note about a computer program

I am not a geek. I am not a tech geek. I do not like tv shows about the future. (I am mtg by the way for those of you not caught on yet. TG is a geek, a tech geek, and a lover of tv shows about the future obviously).

You know how there are those details of your grandparents' -- even your parents' -- lives that you just can't believe because it's almost impossible to imagine the world changing so much in such a short period of time? Like movies were a quarter. Like spaceships were lauched into actual space with actual people in them based on calculations figured on a slide rule. Like going to the airport and flying in airplanes used to be fun. I think sometimes about how I would explain to my kid about film.

Me: Well we'd go on vacation and take a camera, but we'd have to make sure we had film which was this black tape like stuff all rolled up in a canister, and we fed that into the back of the camera after making a special trip to the store to get it, and then we had 24 pictures we could take, and then it was used up, so we had to roll the tape back up and bring it back to the store and leave it there for a few days to get it developed and then go back and pick up the pictures. And more film.

Kid: How could you see the image after you took the picture?

Me: You couldn't.

Kid: How could you know if it was a good picture then?

Me: You couldn't.

Kid: How could you share your pics with other people?

Me: You passed them around.

Kid: Like, literally?

Me: Yes. Good use of the term literally.

Kid: What if you wanted to take more than 24 pictures?

Me: You had to buy more film.

Kid: What about the camera on your phone?

Me: I didn't have a camera on my phone. And it wouldn't have helped anyway as it was at home attached by a wire to the wall.

Anyway, digital cameras are neat, sure. The lack of film and film hassle is liberating. Being able to see the shot after you take it is handy. Being able to take a thousand shots of whatever strikes your fancy is great. Being able to post and share and fix photos is nice. But it's almost too much. I have taken a zillion fabulous photos. I could blow them up and frame them and put them on my wall. I could take them to an art show thus and sell them for 150 dollars apiece except that everyone else now has the ability to take these photos for themselves as well. Mostly, though, they just sit on my computer. There is no point even in getting them printed. It's cool but kind of anticlimactic. I do miss my very-not-at-all-automatic 35mm which i was using up until, um, three maybe years ago.

Today, however, I was ichatting with my mom who wanted to send me some photos and doesn't have her mail set up yet, so she just dragged the photos from iPhoto into our chat, and they showed right up in the chat window more or less instantly. This is worth the price of admission. It is just the coolest freaking thing yet. (A very close second was when we were ichatting with sam who said you have to hear this song and just dragged it from itunes into the chat as well, and we listened to it together, half a world away.) (You see what happens? My prose gets all purple. Computers shouldn't be this romantic.) Also, I had never dragged photos from iPhoto into my iChat before and had no real reason to believe that it could be done besides a hunch that since it would be convenient and cool, mac had probably figured out a way to do it, and since it was a mac, it was probably done exactly the way I'd guess it would be. And this was, just that simply, entirely the case. It is just about exactly like love.


heart said...

Ahh that does sound absolutely fabulous. I do find myself ooh-ing and ahh-ing at Mac's ability to be cute all the time. A maching, cute? why yes!

fronesis said...

At this:

Kid: Like, literally?
Me: Yes. Good use of the term literally.

My colleagues had to come check on me because of the extremely loud laughter emenating from my office.

Daniel said...

That was the just the sweetest thing, and one of the nicest descriptions of love that I have heard. Also, I learnt something. When my bf and I iChat and we get all excited about some song and we decide to listen to it together, one of us just plays it in iTunes and the microphone picks it up. When it's a video, one of us mutes it and we press play at the same time. It didn't occur to me that there was a more elegant way to do this (I've been a Windows user until just last Fall).