Cameras, camcorders, and photography advice.
Photography and Video
Bill bought a Canon camera and lens and he's taking it on a cruise and he's worried about it being stolen. Leo says that first thing to do is take your Canon strap off and replace it with one that doesn't advertise the make and model. Camouflage the camera with a case, and put it around your neck like a tourist. Also don't use a camera bag. Use a diaper bag. Be aware of what goes on around you. Some will use misdirection to get you looking one way, while their partner is stealing you blind in the other direction.
Arnold has a frustrating time with Google photos because he can't download his photos to his phone, and when he deletes a photo in Google photos, it deletes it on his phone. Leo says turning off sync in Google Photos will prevent that. And unfortunately, he has to download each photo individually.
Jim wants to create custom thumbnails of his graphics as he takes them off his old Windows 3.1 computer. Leo says that Irfanview is ideal for that and the old PC will work with that app. The other options are ACDSee and NeoFinder.
Bryant's mother has a Windows 7 desktop and uses her Verizon Hotspot for internet access. Should she use an easier device? Leo says that Windows 7 was a great version of Windows, but Microsoft will end of life support in 2020. Leo recommends installing Windows 10. Leo also thinks making the switch to a Mac Mini may be a good idea as well. Another option, since she uses GIMP, is to use Linux, if she can handle it.
Roger needs to be able to post and share photos with an exclusive group of people. What's a good option for that online? Leo says a shared album is ideal. Google Photos is a great option for that. Facebook works if everyone is a Facebook member, but not everyone is or wants to be. Most people have Gmail, which means they have a Google Photos account by default. For pay, SmugMug is a good option.
Micah is thinking about doing a video podcast and wants to know how to do that with his computer. Leo says it's probably better to just use his smartphone for the video. It's far easier and he can even live stream directly. The iPhone is really easy and he can even use iMovie or Clips to edit directly on the phone itself and then share it online.
Richard wants to know how to send pictures to friends and family. His email won't let him attach them because they are too big. Leo says the best way is to put them up on Google Photos and then send them a link so they can download them.
Chris wants to talk about how good smartphone cameras are getting. They're getting so good that many people have simply stopped using DSLRs and personal cameras. There are three areas that smartphones are chipping away at standalone cameras:
Jim is having problems with Windows recognizing his external USB drive. But his image catalog says his images are there. Leo says that many photo gallery apps keep a thumbnail for fast referral. So it could have the thumbnail, but not see the original image, if the drive is disconnected or lost. Leo also says that his external drive could be getting flakey. He should get a backup drive and make a copy of his photos. He should save them online, too. Three copies, on two formats, with one off-site. The good news is that hard drives are cheap now. He can get a 1 TB drive for under $100.