8 November 2007
Maybe even ten thousand words
The Professor gave it one line: "You may not know it, but your digital camera produces hidden data."
I knew some of this. When I'm running an Explorer window on my directory of digital-camera shots, the status bar dutifully reports something like this:
Dimensions: 2048 x 1360 Date Picture Taken: 7/17/07 12:04 PM Camera Model: DMC-LZ3 Type: JPEG Size: 637 KB
Until I followed this link, though, I had no idea just how much data could be read from this file. Some items of interest:
- Lens: 6.1mm (35mm film equivalent: 38mm) (Max aperture f/2.8)
- Exposure: Auto exposure, Program AE, 1/250 sec, f/5.6, ISO 80
- Flash: Auto, Did not fire
- Focus: Auto, with image stabilizer (Mode 1)
And that's just the beginning. It occurs to me that I should let you see this for yourself, so here's the photo in question. (Warning: it's huge.)
Posted at 7:42 AM to PEBKAC
Why is he making standard EXIF data sound so ominous?
Well, it is standard, and has been for some time, but obviously not everyone knows about it. And while most of us don't give a particular damn I mean, hell, we're on the Internet, and by now they can tell if we're dogs or not no doubt there's someone out there who will go into paroxysms upon these revelations, and who am I to deny him his sorrow and pain?
It may be standard, but it's definitely hidden, like all metadata. I sure wasn't aware of it until I started using Flickr.