Sunday, March 18, 2012

Nikon upgrades my Picturetown, its image sharing and storage service

TOKYO - Nikon Corporation is pleased to announce the latest version of my Picturetown (, Nikon's image sharing and storage service, with a host of new functions.

This latest version provides greater collaboration with Facebook, allowing users to post links to shared albums directly to Facebook, use their list of Facebook friends to send links to shared albums, and post to or play Motion Snapshot* files from Facebook. Motion Snapshot is a feature that proposes a new form of imaging expression. It is built into Nikon's latest advanced cameras with interchangeable lenses, the Nikon 1 J1 and V1. In addition, new functions have been added for Gold Account members (those currently paying a fee for additional storage space), including one that allows users to password protect shared albums.
  • *In Motion Snapshot mode, simply pressing the shutter-release button records a still image and about a second of high-resolution, slow-motion movie footage beginning before and ending after the time the shutter-release button was pressed. With playback of movie footage at 0.4x normal speed, the still image, and background music, Motion Snapshot allows users to express impressive moments that show slight changes in expression, the entertaining actions of children or pets, the rustling of tree leaves, or fluctuations in nature.
In August of last year, Nikon celebrated the fourth anniversary of the my Picturetown service. With the development of new functions and services, and improvements to those with which members have become familiar, Nikon and my Picturetown continue to propose new ways of enjoying digital photos.

Primary new my Picturetown functions

  1. Post links to shared albums on Facebook Users can post links to shared albums on Facebook. This allows users to quickly and easily share albums containing a large number of photos with their Facebook friends without uploading the photos directly to Facebook.
    • Post to and play Motion Snapshot files from Facebook
      Users can post links to album pages for Motion Snapshot files recorded with Nikon 1 cameras to Facebook. When friends click on the link, they are transferred to the album page where they can play the Motion Snapshot files. This allows users to share Motion Snapshot, a new form of imaging expression proposed by Nikon that combines a still image with movie footage, with close family and friends.

      Dedicated album page
  2. Use your list of Facebook friends to send links to shared albums When sharing my Picturetown albums, the user's list of Facebook friends can be brought up to select friends as recipients. A link to the shared album is then posted on selected friends' Facebook.
  3. More functions for Gold Account* members Users can protect albums shared via Facebook or email with a password, allowing them to control who can view the photos in the album. Features for more secure sharing of albums, including the ability to set permissions for downloading photos from shared albums as well as permissions for downloading photos at their original size, have also been added.
    • *Members currently paying a fee for additional storage space.

Other features

  • Links to shared albums can also be posted to Twitter or sent via e-mail
  • New design templates for shared albums have been added
  • Facebook app (an application that allows users to view photos and shared albums posted to Facebook)

Overview of the my Picturetown service

Service name my Picturetown
Site upgrade activation February 17, 2012
Types of accounts Free account (no charge, up to 2-GB storage)
Gold account (fee charged*, up to 200-GB storage in units of 20 GB each)
  • *Membership fee ¥350/month (tax included) for each 20-GB unit of storage space
  • *Membership fee varies by country or region
  • *Products, brand names and service names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.

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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Mag+ Launches
Tablet Publishing Contest for Magazines, Music and Film, Comics, Books, Catalogues and Creative Portfolios

"Magnify Your World" Offers Cash Prizes, iPads and Global Exposure to Influential Leaders in Six Creative Industries

New York, New York -March 7, 2012: The revolution will be digitized. Are you ready? Whether marketing a business, a book, a band, a magazine, even a movie or your own work, tablet publishing must be part of your promotional strategy in 2012. Today, Mag+, one of the world leaders in easy-to-use digital publishing platforms for touch screen tablets, motivates all creatives to engage with iPad and tablet publishing with the "Magnify Your World" contest. Win one or more of eight cash prizes, several iPads, exposure to industry luminaries in their fields and the possibility of being featured in a Mag+ international marketing campaign.

Entrants can submit their digital publishing passion projects in one of six creative categories to be eligible to win $1,000 and the chance to be awarded $5,000 as the Best-in-Show winner. The public will also vote via social media for a People's Choice Winner, who will also win $1,000. Every month, a Mag+ "Pick of the Month" will be showcased in a brief video and receive an iPad. The open entry period lasts until June 1. An international jury of experts will choose the final winners. Winners will be announced June 20 and featured in an upcoming Mag+ marketing campaign.

The exposure to well-connected industry leaders cannot be overlooked. The winner of Mag+'s last contest, New Zealander Natasha Mead, saw her entry MILK, a DIY fashion magazine exclusively for the iPad, secure her a job with Urbanity in the US.

"Mag+ understands how designers want to work, and using these tools has given me the opportunity to create relevant interactive content without ever compromising the aesthetic, says Mead. "I love using inDesign with Mag+ and the ability to use these tools has given me a huge advantage in my career."

The contest categories are as follows. Click to read more on each and perhaps see a sample from one of Mag+'s existing apps:
  • BEST IN SHOW $5,000:-Chosen by a jury from the 7 categories below.
  • BOOKS $1,000: any type of book for the general public
  • BROCHURES & CATALOGUES $1,000: created for corporate use including brochures, 
annual reports, catalogues, media kits 

  • COMIC BOOKS $1,000: graphic novels, comic books
  • EDITORIAL $1,000: magazines, newsletters, newspapers, blogs, online magazines
  • MUSIC & MOVIE $1,000: bands, filmmakers, DJs, theatres, venues, albums,
  • SELF-PROMOTION $1,000: promotion of services, experience or portfolio for students, 
designers, photographers, writers, PR/ad/interactive/design firms, law firms, etc.
  • PEOPLE'S CHOICE $1,000: (Note: NOT NECESSARY TO WIN): Social category where 
the winner will be chosen through public voting. 

About Mag+

Mag+ ( is the most flexible and efficient platform for publishing creative content on touch screen tablets. Mag+ premiered on the first iPads in April 2010 with
 the award winning Popular Science+ application and now supports more than 100 apps, including those from Outside, IKEA and Maxim. With its streamlined production system, powerful backend and feature-rich design framework, Mag+ is ideal for anyone - from magazine and book publishers to catalogue marketers and design agencies - wanting to bring beautiful, immersive content to the millions using this new generation of digital devices.

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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Hasselblad Cameras Ship with Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

Hasselblad and Adobe announce an agreement to make medium format photography easier and more accessible to the world’s photographers.

Hasselblad today announced an agreement with Adobe Systems Incorporated that, beginning on the 12th March 2012, all newly purchased medium format Hasselblad H4D cameras will include a fully functional copy of Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® software at no extra charge. Under this agreement, Hasselblad is creating new opportunities for all lovers of medium format photography as well as for aspirational 35mm professionals, advanced amateurs and enthusiasts to perfect, search, process and organize their images in a single solution regardless of their experience or skill level.

Chris Russell-Fish, Hasselblad Global Sales and Marketing Director said: “Integrating the Adobe platform with Hasselblad is a ground-breaking step. Changing platforms is always a challenge for timestarved photographers and digital operators but now all users can have the excellence of a Hasselblad image file married to the functionality and ease of use of Adobe Lightroom.”

Hasselblad customers who buy new medium format H4D cameras will receive Lightroom software with their new camera equipment at no additional cost.

Adobe spokesperson Tom Hogarty, principal product manager for Lightroom said: “We are excited that photographers who purchase a new Hasselblad H4D camera will now easily be able to combine it with the power of Lightroom software. The world of imaging continues to evolve quickly, so it is increasingly important to offer customers innovative and practical software options to refine, showcase and manage their images.”

The Hasselblad and Lightroom plan does not mean that Hasselblad’s Phocus software is being phased out.

Said Russell-Fish: “We will continue to support our proprietary Phocus software. This new agreement is about providing choice for our customers. Lightroom has the advantage of familiarity with photographers, digital operators and enthusiasts worldwide. Phocus still offers high-end imagists some highly specialized tools and remains an integral element of our Multi-Shot cameras as well as our Phocus Mobile application, which enables wireless connectivity for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

We are also working on solutions to tethering and batch processing challenges, and integration of those solutions is not far off.”

Hasselblad will run a worldwide programme of workshops and studio days based on medium format capture and Lightroom software.

Adobe, Lightroom, and Photoshop are either registered trademark or trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated in the United States and/or other countries.


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