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January 31, 2006

Nikonians and the Open Raw International Survey

We are strong supporters of open RAW standards.

Our support of open documentation standards is a priority in matters that pertain to our community.

Wider dissemination of the art and science of photography, wider choices of better tools for the craft and ensuring the preservation of its recordings for the future are of our primary interest and concern.

It is due to this conviction that we fully endorse the Open Raw Initiative International Survey, launched today, January 31, 2006, which for 8 weeks will collect information about the experiences, requirements, preferences, and concerns of digital photographers and other interested parties regarding RAW imaging technology.

Many photographers involved in this debate come from the film background and may remember the problems regarding proprietary issues raised by different manufacturers of film and chemistry.

The single binding force through these years has been our ability to use cameras, made by distinctly individual and highly competitive companies, to create history-making images, with at least a knowledge that once we had a "negative" - we had the ability to produce and reproduce the photographs that achieved a desired result.

The cameras were only the light-capturing devices that used different schemes and technologies to record the moment. Some were excellent (like the Nikons we prefer) and some were not. However, regardless of the camera manufacturer, we always had that standard of a workable negative to produce our efforts.

Proprietary RAW eliminates that opportunity to a large extent.

Photography as an art has not changed.
Photography as a profession has not changed.
However, photography has become a nightmare for those entering the digital age.

Camera manufacturers need to level that "playing field" and rely on the merits of their products, without resorting to digital proprietary schemes that force the consumer to rely on their brand.
Of course we at Nikonians are confident in the Nikon brand, but we also recognize that this is a matter of photography at large - not "photography with a certain camera."

Our support of open documentation standards is a priority in matters that pertain to our community.

Wider dissemination of the art and science of photography, wider choices of better tools for the craft and ensuring the preservation of its recordings for the future are of our primary interest and concern.

It is due to this conviction that we fully endorse the Open Raw Initiative International Survey, launched today, January 31, 2006, which for 8 weeks will collect information about the experiences, requirements, preferences, and concerns of digital photographers and other interested parties regarding RAW imaging technology.

openraw_survey2006_120.gif

Although these topics have being discussed in our forums and others, there is little systematic information about the experiences, requirements, preferences, and concerns of photographers regarding RAW.

We therefore encourage our community members and readers to participate in this survey, anonymous and confidential, with no connection to any business or commercial interest, which will make available the statistical results to camera manufacturers, software development firms, and other key participants in the digital imaging industry, making sure our collective voice is heard, in the hope that the future of the craft will benefit.

Our appreciation and support to our friends Juergen Specht, Nikon photographer and founder of the OpenRAW initiative, and Calvin Jones, statistical research consultant, sponsors of the Open Raw International Survey.

The results will be made widely available and also published at our Nikonians community.

Posted by jrp at January 31, 2006 12:16 AM