Wednesday, August 24, 2011

GPS - Why I want it.

Well the A77 and NEX7 have been announced to an unexpectedly positive response. One thing that has drawn a few (well deserved) arrows is the apparent decision to leave GPS out of the NEX7. OTOH others have questioned the need for GPS at all. Well this is why I want GPS in all my cameras.

I am fortunate in that I get to travel alot for work and even more fortunate that I regularly get a day or two to squeeze in a little photography.

However, the down side is I now have tens of thousand of photos that I can sort of label but not really well. Yes I know that temple was in Colombo, Sri Lanka, but exactly where? what temple was it? what was the status across the street? Exactly what bridge is that across the Danube?

But its not just the exotic stuff. Five, ten, fifteen, fifty years from now do you think you, your kids, your grand kids are going to remember where mum and dad or grandma and grandpa were in that photo of a summer holiday, or a christmas, etc. As someone who just collected all my dads photos after his death and am trying to piece together a photo history of his life I'd kill for some decent exif and gps co-ordinates telling me exactly where that photo of he and my mum was taken on on their honeymoon.

We tend to be very short sighted with our ideas of what information is important. Years from now no one is going to care a jot what shutter speed, f number or iso you used for a shot. But where the shot was taken and when, that will be gold. (not to mention tags for faces - trying to get family members to even remember who was in a parents wedding party 50 years later is a nightmare).

Every camera I buy from now on will have GPS and it will always be on. I might strip that data from photos I make public but I will never run the risk of losing it for my purposes.

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