Pros & Cons
Images in Education
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Scopes & Lenses
How to use
a Digital Camera
With most digital cameras, taking pictures
is the same as with a standard camera: just point the camera
and push the shutter button. Most digital cameras have
viewfinders but some digital cameras have LCD screens. LCD
screens let you see the image before you shoot and allow you
to delete pictures you dont want, saving you time,
effort, and camera memory. Unlike standard cameras, instead
of storing pictures on film, digital cameras use a form of
computer memory. Digital camera memory limits vary and may be
supplemented with memory cards or specialty storage disks.
Adding a good memory card usually costs less than $100.
All cameras have some kind of delete
feature, which may allow you to delete selected images, or
may require that the entire memory must be deleted. Some
cameras allow images from the computer screen to saved as
digital photos for use in print or video applications.
Some digital cameras allow you to actually
view the pictures taken with built in LCD screens, without
having to connect to an outside viewing medium. Digital
cameras usually connect and download to a computer running a
camera/imaging program. Some cameras require a computer card
installed into the computer, other cameras use the
computers USB, serial or parallel ports, some cameras
download through infrared, and some connect directly into a
computer slot. New cameras store directly on floppy disks or
cards that use floppy disk adapters.
Certain digital cameras have video output
that allow the camera to send out an NTSC or PAL video signal
directly through a standard RGB cable to a television,
projector or VCR.
digital cameras save pictures in a digital file format, which
may be camera specific or standardized, such as PNG, GIF, or
JPEG. The format that pictures are saved in will determine
the amount of disk space needed to save a picture. Picture
files can be converted using a graphics program.
If the camera has the ability to output a
video signal, video tape can be used to show or archive your
Using your computer, you can print out your
images. We suggest that you use either a laser or inkjet
printer. New print cartridges, glossy paper, and iron on
transfers are available for printing photos with inkjet
- Once you have your images in your
computer, they can be e-mailed as attachments.
- You can send your image from your
fax/modem to any fax machine.
- Your images can be incorporated into print
media, such as posters, signs, reports, banners,
certificates, and any other publishable print document.
- Iron on transfers allow images to be
printed on items such as T-shirts, aprons, banners,
- Depending on the camera, images can be put
directly onto video for presentation without a computer.
- Images can be added to word-processing
documents and presentations.
- Images can also be included on homepages
for the World Wide Web. Images should be converted into
PNG, GIF or JPEG format for the World Wide Web.
Almost any printer can
print images, but for the best quality, use a high resolution
ink jet or laser printer. Currently there are printers and/or
printing accessories specifically designed for printing
pictures. To print high quality "photo style"
images you should use a printer that can take a photo quality
ink cartridge and print onto glossy or semi-gloss paper.
Most cameras include their own cables
to connect to either a PC or Mac computer, and some cameras
include the cables for direct video output. It is possible
that you will need to purchase cables, but it is also
possible to build your own, with a little work.
Most cameras include image handling
software. Depending on the software, capabilities
may be as simple as view and save or may have numerous
picture editing capabilities. Pictures can always be used
with the popular graphics and imaging software programs, such
as PhotoShop or Corel Graphics.
Images are often large files and saving
them can take up a lot of your disk space. It is possible to
save the images in compressed formats like JPEG or GIF, and
save disk room. If you plan to save lots of images, an
external drive like a ZIP drive or a CD ROM burner is recommended.