Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Adobe update camera RAW released

For photojournalist wondering when their new toys would be supported by Adobe Camera RAW, you'll be glad to hear a new update supports some popular cameras that were hereto now only partially or only through betas.

Which is good news, because when I borrowed a Mark II N for a few assignments recently, I was surprised to learn that even Abobe CS2 was having trouble opening the pictures. This update should take care of these nuisances.

In addition to the Canon EOS-1D Mark II N, the updates also adds full support for Canon EOS 20Da, Canon EOS 5D and Nikon D200, in addition to various consumer grade cameras.

Download the official Adobe Camera RAW 3.3 plug-in for the PC or the MAC today. Keep in mind you must have CS2 for this update.

Be sure to share your thoughts, I'd be interested in hearing your impressions.

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Monday, January 30, 2006

New comments method

commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

This replaces the existing Blogger coments and unfortunately this process does not import the existing comments.

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Sunday, January 29, 2006

The revamped Spartan Daily is online

The new Spartan Daily online is off to a running start. As the new Online Editor I'm quite proud of what we were able to do in such a short time. The changes go far beyond the cosmetic. Sure it's slick and quite a piece of eye candy, but there's more under the hood than a fresh coat of paint!

But first, I believe in giving credit where credit is due. This isn't just my baby, it's just as much Ryan Sholin's baby. I love this guy! And by that I mean in the "I'll have your back in a ballroom brawl" way. (Shouldn't that be bar room? Even better!)

We're tackling the site together. I'm the Online Editor and he's our Webmaster. Ryan's a whiz at coding and keeping up with technology. He always seems to know just what to use when I start going, "what if we did..." I provide the content and do the general posting and editing while Ryan handles the code that keeps the site running. Together we both come up with design ideas and think up new ways to make the site better. Incidentily, if you have an ideas for the site, we're all ears! Leave me a comment below.

In the coming weeks we're going to try some things that take the Spartan Daily Online from a last resort for those unable to find a print copy to a destination site with unique and exclusive stories and features not available anywhere else.

I've already started reqruiting a staff of photographers and columnist (if you're a SJSU student or alumni and want to be a part of it, shoot me an e-mail or leave a comment here). Up next is generating the exclusive content. For instance, short films and music from SJSU students. And we've got interactive slideshows, downloadable goodies, and a message board in the works as well.

Eventually I see the Spartan Daily Online becoming a splinter cell companion to the print edition, with it's own staff and content in addition to the content available in the print.

But this semester is a building year, hopefully I'll do a good enough job to convice others to carry on with my efforts. Don't forget to check out the site by clicking on the picture above.

As an added bonus, The Spartan Daily is now part of the College Front Page network and we're now also part of Yahoo News and Google News. So any relevent searches should show up.

Ethics of Photojournalism in the pre-digital age

Photographic manipulation and the questions of ethics aren’t a recent creation of the Photoshop era. As the Museum of Hoaxes shows us it’s as old as photography.

In the above picture: In 1925, as the story goes, New York News photographer Harry Warnecke was out looking for a feature and happened to see a traffic cop stopping traffic to allow a cat and her kitten to cross the street.

A humorous and amusing image that Warnecke was lucky to come across and insightful enough to snap it from just the right position. He named it “Cat Crossing the Street in Traffic” and turned it in later that night. At least that’s the story, the truth is, Warnecke set up the photograph.

Warnecke was out looking for features and a policeman did stop traffic to let an animal cross the street (I say animal, because I believe the real incident involved a duck). But he wasn’t there to see it, rather he heard about it much later that same day and decided it was such a perfect image that he had to re-enact it. With the assistance of a policeman and a stray cat, he conjured up the set and created the scene.

It’s unclear to me, whether Warnecke tried to pass off the image as real or not. However the ethical question remains.

A little more about Warnecke...
"Times Square at Night" A tricolor carbro print created in 1947

You may recognize Warnecke’s name as a pioneer in color photography -- in the mid-1930s he designed a special camera that used three plates, the red, blue and yellow-- a camera which he used for The New York News.)

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Friday, January 27, 2006

The oceans aren't quite as wide anymore

The world is getting smaller and smaller as we get interconnected and the trade of communication becomes a global language.

As we shrink down and get closer to each other it becomes more important than ever to understand other people and their cultures. Higher education seems to agree with me. Seeing as, in the wake of China's rising stature as a business mecca, many colleges and universities are encouraging students to take Chinese as a foreign language.

I think it's important for us to know what's happening in the world. Just yesterday, I was having a discussion with a friend about world politics and cultural exchanges. He made the point that, "The world is ****** up," and that there is nothing we can do about it. Now before you, just dismissing his comments as the cynical views of a disillusioned mind, think about it.

He's right in many ways. India and Pakistan are constantly at odds and both have nuclear bombs ready to deploy. North Korea is openly boosting of destroying America and taking South Korea. China won't leave Taiwan alone. Palestine is changing day by day and a potential terrorist government loams overhead. The Gaza Strip has become so trivial, that we sample rap lyrics like "Peace in the Middle East" rather than deal with it head on. The entire continent of Africa is struggling with AIDS. There's not much one person can really do in these cases. So in a way my friend is right. However, we mustn't give up so easily.

What can we do? You get informed and then you have discussions like the one we had, and you go out and learn what is happing in the world. You try to understand it and ask yourself "why?" Then you work on finding the answer, even if you can't solve the worlds problems at least be aware of them. At least try to understand eachother, maybe that's all it'll take.

That's what you can do. You have no right to complain about the world if you won't bother to get informed.

On a lighter note, you might be wondering what inspired this post. It's time for an upper. The world is smaller and I've seen it first hand. In the past three days, the hits for SLR have exploded. Normally I would have about eight unique visitors a day. Just yesterday alone I had 44! And the interesting part is that about 30 of those were from readers outside the United States! Largely in parts of the Middle East and Asia. I have no idea why the sudden surge in interest, but it feels nice to know people are reading.

It got me thinking, and being a photojournalist (notice the second word?) I'm naturally interested to news. And by pure coincidence fellow photojournalist and blogger Daniel Sato happened to send me a very unique news aggregator yesterday. A globally connected news medium. It seemed an interesting concept and one worth sharing.

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Thursday, January 26, 2006

test for daniel


Monday, January 23, 2006

Oy am I thirsty! Day one at my SVCN internship.

What a day! Friday was day one of my internship with SVCN and boy what a day! I tell you, getting ready for the first day of work is like getting ready for the prom. I spent twenty minutes trying to comb my hair toady, and even then it didn’t satisfy. But enough about my encroaching OCD.

If you’re a student interested in a career in photojournalism, an internship is a must. The industry very much still believes in paying your dues and climbing the ladder. And in reality, even the best of us don’t know everything, a little practice and experience never hurts.

When I arrived at the Los Gatos office, the photo editor hadn’t arrived yet and the roller coaster was still on the way up. I received the grand tour, was warned to put my name on anything I put in the fridge and discovered the glorious midday light that shinned through the rear window. (I got plans for that window.)

Next I was shown to the photo desk and left to my whims. I spent the hour Googling myself… (wait for it)… and then they handed me a computer. Hiiii-Hooo! But seriously, working on a pair of community papers (the Los Gatos satellite office produces The Saratoga News in addition to the Los Gatos Weekly Times) with an existing staff of one (that would be the aforementioned photo editor) means you have to hit the ground running. It’s stressful but if you get high on taking pictures, it’s an exhilarating rush.

I won’t bore you with the details, you’re probably reading this and asking “what’s an internship like?” Well, it’s like being in school and being at work. Everyone tries to teach you and share their wisdom, but they also expect you to come through in the clutch and treat it like a job rather than a gig. It’s the perfect learning environment. Real world pressure and pace, but at the end of the day you can always find an ear and a pair of eyes to go over your work. (Today's leason, flash is your friend)

I seem to know a bit more about toning and Photoshop than my editor and he definitely knows a bit more about reading light than I. So we’re going to teach each other you could say. I have the feeling that this is the start of something good.

I’m going to open it up to you readers now-- hey Albuquerque, cut that out-- what do you want to know about the internship process?

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Not quite CS3, Adobe with Flash!

Days ago I ran across a peculiar e-mail in my inbox. It seems the first steps in the Adobe and Macromedia marriage have been taken as Adobe re-released CS2 as a version bundled with Flash.

It's not quite CS3, but it's an exciting development that hints at things to come.

It's not to hard to imagine seamless flash integration within Photoshop, Illustrator, or GoLive (maybe then I'll actually venture into the latter app). We could create a flash slide show as simply as we import and render an mpeg in Premiere. Take Illustrator projects and give your creations life with movement and sound. And for us photographers, we can give our websites a splash of style while taking advantage of the copyright protections built into Flash. Best of all, using flash will become like using Acrobat-- simple creation and with no qualms of meeting user end compatibility.

In essence the grand scheme introduced with the CS line would be complete. Assured compatibility between apps is nice, but now we would have a reason to really crank it open… to borrow a term long lost of its flavor, there would be synergy within the systems.
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My portfolio and other news….

With some clever reading a little mental grease from a friend I’ve been able to add my portfolio to SLR in a pretty snazzy looking flash applet. I’ve created a new sub-head for “Personal Links” and my ever-evolving portfolio is linked there.

I’m always open to interpretations and I would love a constructive critique if anyone felt so inclined. It’ll always be an ever-changing work-in-progress.

In other SLR news. I’ve been experimenting with a new blog/news service called Newsvine. If you scroll down the column on the right, you’ll find a new sub head: “Latest from SDulai.Newsvine.com”. I’m still not quite sure how well the service works, but it seems to make a valiant attempt at combining a blog with the community news aspects of sites like Digg.com. Take it for a whirl and let me know what you think.

Lastly, I’ve been tinkering with the idea of changing the look of SLR. If there’s something you’d like to see or if you have any suggestions, drop me a line.

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Friday, January 20, 2006

That's a Mighty Big Organ*!

My first reaction when running across this installment of Brian Crane's "Pickels"? It's soo true!

My next thought? Why did I think of that for my comic? But I digress. (BTW click any strip for a larger view.)As an aspiring photojourlist, I'm always looking for inspiration and National Gerographic is part of my regular rotation. I've even traveled many miles just to hear former Geo photographers speak of their passion. And the magazine is sacred to some, we never throw them away. Even now I'm looking at my bookshelf and see dozens of issues.

This story arc was so up my alley that I did something I rarly do. I contacted Mr. Crane.

Dear S. Dulai,
I wish I had an interesting anecdote to share with you about how the inspiration for the Nat'l Geo series came to me, but I don't. Like my character Earl, I have a very hard time throwing out my National Geographics, and that is where the idea came from. A lot of my own quirks and idiosyncrasies show up in my strip and this is just one of them. As to your question about when inspiration struck, I don't recall exactly. Like all comic strip artists, I work several weeks ahead of publication, so it would be somewhere in that neighborhood. Good luck with your studies at SJSU and in your photojournalism career.
Brian Crane

Well, great backstory or not, it was still hilarious all in the same. Be sure to check out the adventures of the Pickels everyday at the offical site.

*An organ in magazine-speak for a stack of the same periodical.

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Thirty Million Strong

Today Canon announced it has reached the lofty production milestone of thirty million interchangeable EF (or electro-focus) lenses. A feat that took less than twenty years since the launch of Canon’s EOS camera system and the EF lens mount.

In a press release Canon stated:
"The EF lens mount revolutionised SLR photography in 1987 by replacing mechanical links between camera and lens with electronic contacts and providing for an internal auto focus motor. Even with continued development and evolution of focus systems, Image Stabilizer technologies, lens element materials science, weather sealing and design, the EF mount remains consistent. Every EF lens is compatible with every EOS camera ever produced, including all new digital EOS cameras."

I know it's PR fluff, but look at the picture! It's purdy. (Admire it for the lighting, glass is a beast to photograph.)

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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Did Apple Awaken a Sleeping Giant?

A few months ago, Apple Computers stopped dipping its toe into digital imaging software and plunged it's whole foot in with the release of Aperture, a post production tool for working with RAW images aimed squarely at professional photographers. Some would say that was encroaching in Adobe's realm and there's been rumbling within the industry on what Adobe would respond with.

Adobe finally did respond and what they've come up with is Lightroom, a product Adobe hopes will fill the void created by Apple's offering. And apparently they've been working on it for some time.

"We first showed an early version of Lightroom at the Adobe Ideas Conference in April 2005 to demonstrate a new streamlined digital photography experience, from capture to print. Even in beta form, photographers will find world-class technology that complements Photoshop."

-Adobe President Shantanu Narayen in a statement

The major drawback for Aperture is that it demands too much in minimum system requirements. It was designed to run on a system with at least two (dual) 2GHz PowerPC G5 processors and 2GB of RAM for optimal performance. While I do meet all of Apple's performance requirements I donÂ’t match their OS requirement. I have a PC (yes yes, you can send all your hate mail).

So it is fine and dandy if your employer is willing to foot the bill for the upgrade, but what do you do if you're a student? A student who is being left behind from learning new software that could potentially become a staple of the photographers workflow.

That's where Adobe is hoping to step in it seems. Adobe developed Lightroom to run on the systems that Apple forgot. The slew of Macs not supported by Aperture and envualty the PC enviroment.

Right now, Adobe is recommending that those who want to try out Lightroom have a system with at least a 1GHz PowerPC G4 processor, 768MB of memory and a 1,024-by-768 pixel screen. It won't run on systems with less than 512MB of memory. That's pretty much run-of-the-mill compared to Apeture's lofty requirments.

If you're on a Mac, be sure to download the beta and play with it. As a photographer in the PC environment, I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts.

On another note, Abobe needs to change the name. Lightroom is awkward. Doesn't LightTable make more photographic-sense?

Want more? No need to visit your local libary, check out these links:
Adobe's offical video walkthrough
A first-look & primer at Lightroom
Hands on pre-release copy

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Global Advertising on Google Maps

It's a sign of the times. As the world gets more and more connected and products like Google Earth become more popular it's become evident that there are new forums for advertisers. This Target store seems to agree.

The power of the image indeed.

More zany weirdness at Google Sightseeing.

So anyone interested in buying ad space on my roof. Maybe a $1 for every square foot?

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Zeiss (Finally) Confirms What We've Known for Weeks

After weeks of specualtion, leaks, and countless delays, Carl Zeiss made it official. Zeiss Lenses for Nikon F Mount are coming! Not that I could ever afford one, but it's knee-snapping monumental news all in the same.

We'll be seeing the first Zeiss lenses soon. With the Planar T* 50 mm F1.4 ZF and the Planar T* 85 mm F1.4 ZF slated for Spring 2006. From there it gets a little vage however. Several more have been promised, but in the general sometime in 2006 manner.

There's a handy discussion here. It's a wealth of information worth checking out.

Now if only they'd get to work on showing Canon some love...

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I Failed! A Three Part Saga of Triumph and Tribulation

In color.

Tonight’s installment: Nice to meet you murder.

Today (and by today I mean last Friday) I went into the offices of SVCN to fill out some paperwork for my upcoming internship with Los Gatos Weekly-Times. Everything went smoothly. (Why are W-9 forms so intimidating? I mean they are so simple.) I was introduced to the staff and received the grand tour. The publisher and he seemed like a genuinely sincere guy who looked to be actually excited about the paper. Not to mention he’s got a pretty snazzy office. I have a feeling I’m going to like working with him. The rest of the visit was easy street. I filled out my paperwork and made my way out.

So where did I fail? And why should you be reading this? I failed on the fundamental level. Stay tuned… part two: Ring ring… danger on line one.

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In My Mind I Still Host a Late Night Talk Show...

Today the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit to stop President Bush from wire tapping Americans without a judge’s order. No word from Bush, but me thinks it may have been sparked by bad intelligence. (Psst… Bush is… well you know… it’s like beating a dead horse.)

Actor William Shatner sold his kidney stone today for $25,000 to a casino… you have to have some pretty big stones to be… oh wait, yeah.

So I’ve been in college way too long. I’m double majoring in Psychology and Reverse-Psychology. It seems to be taking a while… or maybe not?

Last night, Brokeback Mountain won the golden globe for best picture. I got to thinking, it has a great score, but what I don’t see is the name. I know you’re gay cowboys but take it easy. This isn’t Theodore Roosevelt‘s Rough Riders.

Last weekend Leyan Lo, a 20 year old Caltech student, set the world record for solving a Rubik's Cube:
Rubik's Cube-- $9.99.
Setting a world record-- 11.13 seconds.
Finally getting out of your mom’s basement and having something to lord over the jocks-- Priceless

Well, next week I start school again. And this Friday I start my internship. Everything is about to get crazy…. there’s nothing funny about that.

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Left Right or Wrong, It’s Politics as Usual

Originally published September 08, 2005.
With the confirmation hearings of Judge Samuel Alito making the news of the day, I thought it might be pertinent to republish a column I wrote last year during John G. Roberts’ confirmation hearings. I guess it just goes to show, nothing ever really changes.
Monday will be a historic day. While we're rolling out of bed and rubbing the crust out of our eyes our senators will be deliberating over President Bush's nomination of John G. Roberts as Supreme Court Justice. Originally appointed to replace the seat vacated by Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who announced her retirement in July, Bush upped the ante to chief justice two days after Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist died.

Now with two vacancies to fill, the nation and President Bush are on the cusp of making history. Bush must appoint two justices at the same time, a feat not repeated since President Nixon's appointments in 1971. If all goes according to plan, the Supreme Court will have a full roster in time for the new session begging Oct. 3.

That's three weeks!
The decisions made in the coming weeks could, nay, will affect all legal policies for the decades to come. Just think, what the new court does in the here and now will completely change what we'll being doing in the then and there. To put it mildly - this is big.
Now I could go into what I think about Bush's appointments and how crucial it is for the public to take an interest in getting the right person appointed to the desk with the ultimate job security. I could do that, but who am I? What would it matter? I'm not a lawyer, a judge, a judicial scholar or a political science junkie.
I'm another college student, a 20-somehing Indian-American ... or is that American-Indian ... or East Indian ... or are we Asian now? I don't know, they keep changing the box, but that's not why you called.
I'm me, I'm you, I'm everyone - well a bit better looking but that's neither here nor there. I'm the everyday guy looking at it with everyday eyes. Which is why I'm throwing my hat into the ring. Call your congressperson, your judges, your party representatives, President Bush himself. Tell them you want a normal everyday guy to sit on the Supreme Court bench. Tell them you want Shaminder Dulai.
I know what you're thinking. "Why should I petition for you?" Because I will petition for you! (See, I'm talking like a politician already.) Still need convincing? Read on and you'll see where I stand on the issues. If you're on the left, read the first paragraph. If you're on the right, read the second. If you're a down the middle moderate, well then you know I'm the right choice already - what, you're not calling?
Gay marriage

LEFT: I will fight for you. I say if you want to marry someone of the same sex, let it be. That is your business. What you do in your own life, the way you choose to live it, it's your choice. Naysayers may say it's immoral, but that's a religious argument and religion has no place in government. If two drunks in Las Vegas can get hitched at 3 in the morning with an Elvis usher and a lava lamp chandelier, why not two people of the same sex who know each other's name. Plus, gay marriages would be great for the economy, because you know they'd go all out! Just do me this favor - try keeping the public displays of affection to a minimum. Even straight people don't get that luxury.

RIGHT: Gay-ness is immoral, inappropriate and unnatural. If two people of the same sex were allowed to wed, it would be a mockery of the highest order on the institution of marriage and family values. I will preserve the virtue of this nation and protect our children from these scenes.
LEFT: Abortion isn't easy, but it must be protected as an option. People should have the right to live their lives the way they see fit and to protect their well being. We have lived in a world where abortion was illegal; it did not work. Back-alley procedures lead to many deaths and an underground society of crime. We cannot make that mistake again. A woman must be able to choose what to do with her body and the government should not tamper with this hardest of choices. Circumstances do arise where abortion is the only choice, and taking away that choice would be jeopardizing the life of the mother.
RIGHT: Life is a gift that should not be tampered with. A fetus at any age is alive and destroying it is murder. We must repeal Roe v. Wade and protect the defenseless children. There are many alternatives to abortion and medical science has reduced the risks of pregnancy for woman. With so many other choices, abortions are unnecessary and the time has come for them to be stopped.
LEFT: Death is a sensitive subject, but one must not shy away from sensitive subjects when they are of great importance. I believe the decision should be made between a doctor, the patient and the family. With proper supervision and information flow, euthanasia can be a viable option for our terminally ill and suffering. No one is saying taking one's own life is a good thing, but it is true that in some cases it can be the most humane thing.
RIGHT: Death is a sensitive subject, but one must not shy away from sensitive subjects when they are of great importance. Life is a gift and shouldn't be taken lightly. Euthanasia is suicide and I think we can all agree, regardless of the circumstances, suicide is selfish and wrong.
Medical Marijuana
LEFT: We must not allow ourselves to fall into the trap of fear impeading progress. Marijuana has been shown to have the potential to ease the illness of patients and provide relief to the suffering. If this plant is helping some without hurting others, what could be the argument against it? We could be on the verge of something big. Marijuana may have medicinal benefits, and we must remove the shackles from our scientific community and medical professionals and allow them to fully explore the benefits and debunk the falsities of medical marijuana. This can only happen if we want it to happen.
RIGHT: There's no proof that it's of any benefit. It's wrong! Just say no! Don't do it! If you're caught in possession, we will take you down. No good has ever come of marijuana and this is just the latest ploy by the pro-drug side to get their product one step closer to your corner convenience store. If you are on marijuana, we can help you get off it with counseling and prescription drugs.
Flag Burning
LEFT: Is it election season already?
RIGHT: Let's just get out of here already ... can I bum a ride?

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The Next Chapter...

This Friday I begin an internship at Los Gatos Weekly Times , a localized paper under the umbrella of Silicon Valley Community Newspapers.

SVCN publishes the Almaden Resident, Campbell Reporter, Cupertino Courier, Los Gatos Weekly-Times, Rose Garden Resident, Saratoga News, Sunnyvale Sun, and Willow Glen Resident.

As of now, I don't have a solid list of assignments, but I've been told I'll be working on the general fare-- portraits, sports, news, weather-related features, spot news as needed. The usual, save for one thing. Long form stories. The Los Gatos and Saratoga branch handle much of the long term projects for SVCN and somehow I was lucky enough to land in the heart of it.

Recently SVCN was bought by Knight Ridder. Clearly the SVCN papers are viewed as a compliment to the Knight Ridder owned San Jose Mercury News. The Merc has already discontinued publication of their own local news supplement. It remains to be seen how it plays out.

It's the next step in my photo-journalism pursuits. I'll be sure to share my thoughts.

Stay tuned.

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Saturday, January 14, 2006

Koppel: Day 2 -- March of The Old-School

And the hits just keep on rolling for Ted Koppel, or KoppelCo. as I’m going to start calling it. (Feel free to use it. I know you’re going to steal it anyway.)

According to an AP story, Al Jazeera courted Koppel. No details were given on what the Arabic television news channel proposed to Koppel. It’s interesting to hear that this, as Donald Rumsfeld had called it, “outrageous" and "inexcusably biased” outlet is interested in a fair and un-assumed talent like Koppel.

But wait, I thought Al Jazeera was evil. I thought they were a radical America bashing network that spewed hatred and distrust every night at seven, followed by “Cooking weapons grade anthrax with Salem” at eight. Recent allegations in the Washington Post and BBC News have even suggested that President Bush considers the station so combative that it almost became a target of war.

They must be bad. So what would they want with a man of integrity like Koppel?

Maybe we over-generalized Al Jazeera? But that means our President and government, who presented the station in this light, doesn’t know everything. That they are generalizing to dupe the public into presenting, out of fear and ignorance, a united front of us vs. them. And that means… no… and everything…. it can’t…. my world, she is crumbling like a flaky crust of an apple pie fresh out of the oven. A pie called -- America.

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Thursday, January 12, 2006

You Can’t Keep a Good Journalist Down

When Ted Koppel left ABC News and “Nightline,” the show he built in March 1980 in the midst of the U.S.-Iranian hostage crisis, it was a blow for journalism, but not an unexpected move.

A move some say was long brewing after ABC went behind his back in an attempt to woo David Letterman’s Late Show away from CBS nearly three years ago for the “Nightline” time slot. The sting never left Koppel apparently; on November 22, 2005 he said “I’m Ted Koppel” like he always had, and signed off and concluded his final “Nightline.” The end of an era.

ABC squelched fears of fans fearing the loss of late night news and kept “Nightline” on the air. However the new “Nightline” shares little beyond it’s name with the old iron horse. ABC has taken the show into a news magazine format and in a landscape cluttered with similar shows one has to wonder if there was a need.

Meanwhile, Koppel is back in the saddle. After signing deals with The Discovery Channel last week, he inked a pair of contracts today with National Public Radio (NPR) and The New York Times. It seems that while Koppel was done with his 42-years with ABC and “Nightline” he wasn’t done with journalism. And for that matter, neither were his “Nightline” staff.

Last week, Koppel and “Nightline” executive producer Tom Bettag and eight former "Nightline" staff members signed on with The Discovery Channel to produce and host news documentaries and town hall-style broadcasts for the cable channel. And the deal gives Koppel the freedom to create the pieces in any way he chooses. Opening the door for scenarios in which he could broadcast a new documentary piece one night and follow it up with a town hall discussion on the piece the following night.

Koppel was also named managing editor of Discovery, and his first program for the network is due next fall. But he didn’t stop there.

Today Koppel joined NPR as a senior news analyst. He will contribute analysis and commentary at least 50 times a year for various NPR shows throughout the broadcast day. Additionally Koppel will make himself available for breaking news reports and coverage of special events and will appear on NPR's website and in downloadable programming.

"I have been an unabashed fan of NPR for many years and have stolen untold excellent ideas from its programming," Koppel said in a statement. "It's time to give something back."

At The New York Times Koppel has signed on as a contributing columnist to provide opinion pieces on a periodic basis (read: whenever he feels like he has something to say).

Think about this. In the matter of two weeks, Koppel has signed on to the premier radio station, our nations “paper of record,” and one of the top rated and respected cable channels. And sweetening the pot further none of these contracts come with a daily schedule! They’re all just happy to have him whenever he feels like it.

Look at that, and look at where “Nightline” is now. Koppel built it for a quarter century and the House of Mouse toppled it overnight.

ABC, you ****** up. We’re all thinking it.

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Memoirs of an Editor

The Spartan Daily Photo Staff -- Fall 05
Clockwise from top middle: Elizabeth Nguyen, Kevin White, Ben Lui,
Daniel Sato, Phil Bedrossian, Shaminder Dulai, and Diana Diroy.
*Contact me for the sitcom pitch ;)

As the Fall semester at San Jose State University comes to a close, so does my tenure as a Photo Editor for The Spartan Daily, SJSU’s college newspaper. It’s a experience I wouldn’t trade for anything and I’m sure I’ll carry the memories for the rest of my days.

I would be remiss not to thank these wonderful people. Whether it meant consecutive 12 hour days, multiple weekend assignments, hours of commuting, or general difficulties within the newspaper or department; photographers Kevin White, Daniel Sato, Phil Bedrossian and Diana Diroy always stepped up and produced the quality work we’d become accustom to. I also have yet to mention my fellow photo editor, Elizabeth Nguyen. I’m positive, without her, I would not have had half the fun I did. (Who loves ya baby?)

For the staff. If you guys are reading this: Sad panda. It’s pedantic. Sigh. She’s leaving. Tear. Relax guy have a taco. Moot. Face. Hug. Baby. A boy can dream. Go away, I’m not ready yet. Where’s the 300. Are you an editor. Ok, take care. Belch. No flip-flops. You wish you could be me. I’m not putting it in. Cutout. Wet the bed too late and got up too early. Are you still talking. Chair Force. Cupcakes. Want a soda. Howl. Ewww. Wha-wha. Hmmm. Mmmmh. Yeah. Yeah. That’s my story.

Clockwise from top middle: Phil Bedrossian, Ben Lui,
Kevin White, Diana Diroy, Elizabeth Nguyen,
Daniel Sato and Shaminder Dulai

If I can get serious for a moment. I don’t believe an editor could have a better photo staff then this crew. The way they worked with each other-- always there to pick up the slack for each other and offer words of encouragement. Sure we had our stumbles along the way, but it never slowed us down. If one fell another swooped in to carry on. Seeing these shooters work as well as they did and the level of work they produced while living full lives of jobs, classes and recreation -- it boggles the mind how they did it. Now… there I go again. I’m taking poetic license. I know how they did it. It was passion that drove them.

One of my personal faves

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Flash(ing) Creep

If you’re like me, you love animation and you love good music. Do yourself a favor and check out this Radiohead video I found floating around.

*56K warning: It may take a moment to load, be patient.

Also is it just me getting older or does the new music these days tend to displease? When the best selling CD of 2005 is Mariah Carey's "The Emancipation of Mimi" followed closly by 50 Cents's "The Massacre," you have to wonder.

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Sunday, January 08, 2006

Nostalgia Is Overrated

It seems every multinational corporation from AT&T to Intel is creating a new logo these day. Perhaps Kodak just didn't want to be left out.

Kodak Chariman and CEO Antonio Perez unveiled the new design during a speach at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). "This introduction is the latest step in the company’s broad brand transformation effort, which reflects the multi-industry, digital imaging leader Kodak has become," said Perez.

The new logo seemingly goes along with Kodak's renewed commitment to promoting digital photography. With announments of creating CCD and CMOS chips along with new models of camera (including one that takes a two lens approch to point and shoot) and coupled with it's cease of production of Black and White paper. This are changing. It's a new Kodak. And I haven't even mentioned Kodak's Assvertising campaign.

It seems wierd, but the Red K logo just feels like a part of Americana. But I guess nostalgia is overrated.

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Thursday, January 05, 2006

“Every 20 years someone gets outraged and says oh by god we gotta put diapers on horses”

Who says late night TV has to be giggles and gags? Last night David Letterman interviewed Fox News Channel’s Bill O'Reilly on his CBS Late Show and summed the man up with a few choice words.
"I have the feeling that 60% of what you say is crap..."

--Letterman to O'Reilly

on CBS The Late Show, January 3, 2006

It’s what the kids call “pwn3d”

I tend to view everything with open eyes and ears. I like to think that I’m not left wing or right wing but a person who thinks for themselves and decides each issue. A major decaying of America is rooted in politics. It isn’t about progress as a country, tackling domestic and international issues or working together for the people. Our government today is about one-upmanship, gloating, and egos.

Our government is turning into a sideshow circus wrestling match. It isn’t about coming up with a solution. It’s about pork, deep pockets and making the other side look bad. If you’re a Republican or a Democrat, that’s fine, but I should hope that doesn’t define you. Sadly in the case of O’Reilly it does define him. For a so-called “journalist” to claim in reference to criticism of the war, “it is a vitally important time in American history and we should be very careful what we say” is beyond words. It is the exact opposite of everything that this country was founded on and in the case of O’Reilly the exact opposite of everything journalism stands for.

Mr. O’Reilly, I’ve meet many journalist and gotten to know a few over the years. Whether they write political, entertainment, sports, columns, news or humor they all share one trait. They question. You, Mr. O’Reilly are no journalist. You are a traveling two dime huckster in an expensive three piece suit. Stop insulting my chosen profession!

Click the image to see the video

You can also read the transcript here Note: The transcript is pre-faced by someone with a bias.

The last time O'Reilly appeared on “The Late Show” he had some nice things to say:
"Mr. Letterman is a smart guy who can spot a phony with telescopic accuracy and expects his guests to bring something to the table. If a guest begins to sink on this show, the bottom is a long way down."

--O'Reilly, February 27, 2001

I wonder if his tune has changed?

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Sunday, January 01, 2006


Thanks for visiting S(urrender) L(aughter) R(egularly): A Student’s Take on Photojournalism! With reflections of visual-journalism, emerging photographic technology, ethics, politics, cultural views, and a few laughs along the way.

All opinions expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of San Jose State University, the school of Journalism and Mass Communication, visual-journalist, or anyone not named Shaminder Dulai. (Google me, I’m the only one… online at least.)

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