There are moments in our day to day that are better described with a simple picture, a second in time where no words can express the power of what we are witnessing. Whether the picture is being taken in space or in your neighbourhood, the best pictures are those that don't need a caption.
I consider myself lucky for having moved to Toronto and be able to grow up in one of the most multicultural cities in the world. Just like everywhere else in the world it has its ups and downs, but the capital of Ontario provides a healthy mixture of North-American culture with the remaining cultures of the world. If you look closely at the city map you can find just about a little-anything, as half-of Toronto's population of 2.6 million were born outside of Canada. There is something electrifying about this city, from its lively street corners and gypsy-like markets of Kensington to sky scrapers and old-fashioned trams. As a result, there have been numerous occasions where I wished had the camera ready; I guess I was simply enjoying the moment and saving it in my mental camera roll.
Apple QuickTake 100. Source: CNET
On September 7th, 1979 British group The Buggles released their debut single entitled "Video Killed the Radio Star". The hit single was a nostalgic account of a singer's career cut short by the rise of television as a main stream medium. Over half a century later, television broadcasters are beginning to realize that their dominance may have their days counted.
However, this trend is also visible in the photography markets, where at the turn of the millennium almost everyone had a point-and-shoot camera but within the last 10 years its market share has begun to quickly fall, where traditional camera usage dropped 12% over 2011.
Self-portrait of Rover Curiosity. Source: NASA
Using a collection of different images, NASA has been able to piece together a self-portrait of the Rover Curiosity. The car-like laboratory with a 2.5 billion dollar price tag travelled for 8.5 months and 352 million miles in order to reach Mars.
The self-portrait shows Mount Sharp in the distance, which is the final destination of the Rover. These high-definition images are released to the public in websites such as Unmanned Space Flight and enhanced in order to display an earth like colouring. Portraits like the one shown on the left, are used by NASA engineers to track dust accumulation on the vehicle and tire wear.
It should be noted the picture does not show the arm that connect the camera to the rover; this is because the image is produced using a collection of images stitched together with technology much like the ones that we use on our smartphones to make panoramic photos.
While reading an article on the Globe and Mail newspaper about a 22 year-old engineer sending the first text message on December 3rd of 1992, I came to the realization that anyone born after my birth year (1991) was brought up with text-messaging as part of their life. That thought may not even cross most people's mind right away, but considering young adults (aged 18-24) are sending an average of 110 texts a day may stir up some thoughts. I, myself, am an avid smartphone user
idea mater is a series of articles, ideas and reflections written and compiled by Rafael Fraga and Edmundo Rodrigues. Topics such as history, science, art or life-style are presented with a hint of personal opinion.
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