[REPOST] A Poetic Vision of Paris’s Crumbling Suburban High-Rises

The colossal grands ensembles, or high-rise public housing projects, in Paris and its surrounding banlieues, or suburbs, were built after World War II to accommodate an increasing population of rural migrants and immigrants. Today, the deteriorating buildings are largely considered failed experiments — catalysts for the alienation of their populations and a slew of accompanying social issues. Some are being renovated and reimagined but more still are slated for demolition.

Continue reading A poetic vision of Paris’s crumbling suburban high-rises

Posted in Reposts

Mejiro Update: Ironing Out Wrinkles

This release of Mejiro is all about fixing minor problems and annoyances. As you may know, in order to display photos, Mejiro must generate thumbnails for all uploaded photos. Depending on the number of photos and hardware, this task can take considerable time during which the entire app “stalls.” This may give the impression that the app is either unreachable or non-functional. To avoid this, the new version of the app displays notifications when it is generating thumbnails.


When tinkering with Mejiro, I discovered that it wasn’t displaying aperture values correctly. This issue is now fixed. I also added a proper error message when the statistics option is enabled but the CrazyStats app is not installed. The photo directory is no longer hardwired into the app, so it’s now possible to specify a user-defined directory for storing photos. The new version features several under-the-hood optimizations that among other things introduce shorter photo URLs. The previous version of Mejiro introduced the stream view, but I hardly ever used it. So in the spirit of keeping things simple, I removed this feature. Finally, Mejiro now has a new favicon.

As always, a Mejiro demo is available for your viewing pleasure. And you can download the latest version of the app from the project’s GitHub repository.

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Posted in Open Source, Scribbles, Software

[REPOST] Photos Inside Moscow’s Empty Metro Stations

Joseph Stalin rose to power as the leader of the Soviet Union in the second half of the 1920s. As the population quickly rose, it was essential the country address its lack of adequate public transportation.

An underground system was built in less than three years, launching with 13 stations in the spring of 1935. On its first day, nearly 300,000 Soviet citizens hopped aboard the new transportation service.

But the Metro system was itself a form of Communist propaganda — photos of Stalin were hung inside the stations, which were brightly lit environments that people looked up to, just as they metaphorically looked up to Stalin above ground.

Continue reading Photos inside Moscow’s empty Metro stations

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[REPOST] How This Magical 16-Lens Camera Will Actually Work

The days of saying “cheese” are numbered. Soon, you may be saying “whoa” as you look into the multiple lenses of the unique Light L16. It’s like having a staring contest with four spiders: 16 cameras, arranged in a seemingly haphazard fashion, peer back at you. Their tiny mirrors shimmer behind a thin sheet of glass.

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Wino Board and Danish Coins

This is Wino board. It’s one of the smallest Arduino-compatible boards out there, and it has a Wi-Fi module, too! The board is not yet available for purchase, though. I backed the project on Kickstarter, and I got my early bird reward consisting of the board and an USB module.

This close-up was taken photo using a DIY Particle Photon-based optical flash trigger. I’m still working on an article about it, so stay tuned! On an unrelated note, did you know that Danish coins are the only ones in the world to have hearts on them?

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Posted in Hardware

[REPOST] My Open Source Photography Workflow

After several years of trial and error, I finally have a complete RAW photography workflow in Linux that I am happy with.

The applications in this workflow aren’t just native to Linux, they are also free, open source software (FOSS). There is no need to dual boot, use WINE or a virtual machine. It’s a pure FOSS photography workflow running in Linux.

Continue reading Riley Brandt Photography » My Open Source Photography Workflow

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[REPOST] The Inside of a WWI Submarine was Creepy and Claustrophobic

On July 19, 1918, the twin-screw U-boat 110 was engaging a merchant vessel convoy in the North Sea off the town of Hartlepool when she was forced to the surface by Allied depth charges. She was then rammed and sunk by the H.M.S. Garry, a torpedo boat destroyer.

Later that year she was salvaged and placed in the Wallsend dry docks of Swan Hunter Wigham Richardson Ltd. in England, with orders to restore her to working condition.

These photos of her cramped and complex interior were taken before the armistice of Nov. 11, 1918, after which she was dismantled and sold as scrap.

Continue reading The inside of a WWI submarine was creepy and claustrophobic

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