Mitch from Planet 5D Interviews Clint Milby

Special thanks to Mitch from Planet 5D for swinging by the ikan booth and taking a look at the new camera support system, the ikan ELEMENTS.

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Two Cameras at the Crossroads: 5D Mark II or 7D

Two Cameras at the Crossroads: 5D Mark II or 7D.

Check out my latest blog post that details my paranoia in deciding which way to go:  5D Mark II or 7D.


leogold headshot smkpftglobe

What you’ve heard from Ernesto is false. What he’s saying about what was said on Thursday’s show is only half true. Listen to the entire show — more remarks to follow.

The CIA and the Social Media Networks

It’s funny.  If a CIA agent were to come to your house and ask who you had dinner with, what you ate, where you went to school, where you work, who your friends are, what your political views are, you would probably call an attorney.

However, give people a forum to publicly post all of this information themselves packaged in a way that makes them a mini-celebrity, they will freely do it…vigorously…  People are just that narcissistic, and the CIA knows it!  Check out this article Brand Republic.

CIA invests in social media monitoring company

CIA invests in social media monitoring company

CIA invests in social media monitoring company

by James Quilter , Brand Republic 21-Oct-09, 08:55

LONDON – US intelligence agency, the CIA, has formed a “strategic partnership and technology development agreement” with Visible Technologies, a company specialising in data-mining social-networking sites such as Twitter, Flickr and YouTube.

In-Q-Tel, the investment arm of the CIA, has invested in Visible Technologies, “a leading provider of social media analysis and engagement solutions”. The move is believed to be part of the CIA’s aim to utilise the “open source” information available on social networking sites.

In-Q-tel was set up in 1999 to identify “innovative technology solutions to support the mission of the CIA and the broader U.S. Intelligence Community”.

Troy Pearsall, executive vice president of architecture and engineering at In-Q-Tel, said: “Visible Technologies’ platform is key to understanding the breadth and depth of the online social landscape.

“Its platform delivers a clear and comprehensive view of complex information, integrating real-time data into a navigable and easy-to-use application that understands the context and tone of online dialogue.”

Visible listens in to around half a million sites a day covering forums and blogs. It also crawls commercial sites with forums such as Amazon. The only sites it cannot reach are closed networks such as Facebook.

Customers of Visible receive real-time feeds on a required subject, based on a series of keywords. These are scored as neutral, positive or negative depending on the message and the influence of the writer.

Neither Visible, which expects revenues of about £20m next year, or In-Q-Tel would divulge the size of the investment. According to sources at the company, the money will be used to boost its language capabilities.

Steve Aftergood of the Federation of American Scientists said it was legal to monitor social networking sites but there were restrictions as to how this could be used.

In a Wired magazine report, he said: “Even if information is openly gathered by intelligence agencies it would still be problematic if it were used for unauthorized domestic investigations or operations.

“Intelligence agencies or employees might be tempted to use the tools at their disposal to compile information on political figures, critics, journalists or others, and to exploit such information for political advantage.

“That is not permissible even if all of the information in question is technically ‘open source’.”

Visible Technologies currently works with clients including Microsoft, Hormel and Xerox.



I’m spending this weekend with Jake, kitty and the 5D Mark II.  So far it’s been totally amazing, and I can totally see what all the fuss is about.  Trust me when I say, if you enjoy taking pictures, you’re in for a great ride.  Video, which is the primary reason I wanted to play with the 5D takes some finesse to get right.  Initially, I shot video in full auto mode.  Expect some grain when doing this.  In manual,  got much better results.  Check out some of the better images below, and video will follow in the coming days.

One big gripe here though, and pardon my negativity.  My gripe is with the City of Houston, specifically Metro Transit Authority.  All this consistent hype about how shooting in Houston is permit free, blah, blah, blah!  Don’t believe it.  We were on the dock waiting for the light rail just around Texas street.  An angry homeless guy came up to us and starts harassing us for change.  I look to my right and there was a Metro Police Car, and I waved at him hoping he would keep this guy moving who was now becoming belligerent.  I’m usually not so nervous in these situations, however, I did have $2500.00 worth of camera strapped around my neck.

The cop yelled out something, but we couldn’t hear over the homeless guy screaming that all he wanted was to talk, and he didn’t want any money, yea right.  Finally the homeless guy splits, and we could understand what the cop was saying:  “NO VIDEO OF THE TRAIN!”  I’m like…what the hell..?

It seems harassing pedestrians is fine, but if you intend to take a picture of the Metro Light Rail, well you’ll be dealing with the long arm of law.  I’m not sure if it’s because they thought I was some sort of photo terrorist or if they don’t want any potentially damaging images of a fatality, (they don’t call it the DEATH RAIL for nothin).  Whatever the reason, they just don’t allow no picture takin of the Metro Light Rail in Houston…  H-Town — and the H is for Hater!   So no video of the train in the permit free city of Houston.   Whatever, I got some video of the train, and now I’m on a mission to get more…POWER TO THE PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!