Wednesday, March 08, 2006


` Recently, I have been leafing through past issues of Scientific American. I found that an article in the November 1855 edition read:

` Photography is the general name now applied to sun painting on paper and glass as being different from the daguerreotype, which is produced on metallic plates.
` The inventor of photographs is Fox Talbot, of England, who secured patents in Britain and America, but has thrown them open to the public.
` Photography is destined apparently to supersede the art of Daguerre. In France, the splendid display of photographs in the Great Exhibition of Industry, and the limited number of pictures on metallic plates, affords conclusive proof that, within the French artists, the daguerreotype is becoming obsolete.

` Ah, 'twas a tragedy! I like the sharp, silvery contrast of the Daguerreotype. Interestingly, the preceding edition of SciAm had an article in which was announced the discovery of a 'capital auxillery to identification', in relation to tracking down the numerous soldiers who had deserted in Lanarkshire.
` The pictures are fidelity itself. When a man disappears from Lanark, the plate upon which his physog is imprinted is sent to the recruiting serjeants for the regiment, who can look after the man as if he had been an old acquaintance.'

` In other words, it seems that the first ID photos were not even photographs. And now, digital photography is threatening to take over!

` I'd write something more interesting, but I am currently surrounded by Very Talkative People: On my left are two girls who are giggling about their friends on MySpace, while to my right, a very verbal 'internet lesson' is in session.
` Why am I still here, you ask? Hey, it's my five-dollar-hour and I'm sticking to it! Plus, they have Mozilla.
And at least I can ignore boisterous conversation, whereas I cannot at all tune out whispering, which is why I left the library earlier today.

` Grah! I can't wait until I finish rebuilding MAL! He is currently 'in the shop' so to speak, undergoing decontamination.


Galtron said...

...Gee, I wonder if you can find a daguerreotype camera nowadays? That would be so cool!

Hope the decontamination is successful!

S E E Quine said...

` Oh, it has been quite successful! MAL is now more powerful than ever before!
` All he needs now is some kind of link to others of his own kind... after which he will be unstoppable!

` Bwaaa haa haa haaaaaa!

Joey M. said...

What, you have issues of magazines dating back to 1855 just lying around? Hell, even having magazines from 1955 would be impressive.

S E E Quine said...

` Actually, I was cheating this time - the 1855 material was actually printed in a 2005 issue!