The old-fashioned ‘film roll’ camera? Or the new-age digital one? The argument continues

AD: Hi, whose photo album is that? Looks pretty old.

BC: My Dad’s college photos — they were shot over 70 years ago. Look at the texture, the clarity.

AD: Yes, but who shoots on film these days? It’s a digital world today.

BC: Perhaps, but try getting this quality, especially in black and white.

AD: I know what you’re arriving at, but a digital camera…

BC: …is suffering from an identity crisis ever since it got hitched to one end of a mobile phone.

AD: Digital cameras are so convenient — there’s no fear of running out of film in the middle of a vacation.

BC: You could still run out of batteries and memory space, with your digital camera.

AD: With rechargeable batteries and infinite storage space? Never! A digital camera is so handy, especially when you want to click a candid moment, like your kid doing something really zany. Back in your days, you would have to dig out your camera, check if it is loaded, adjust the focus manually, switch on flash if necessary, wait for the go-ahead green signal... You’re ready, but the moment has passed.

BC: We’ve raised kids without digital cameras — and our memories are still as fresh.

AD: What about the costs? When you’re visiting new places, it’s such a relief to get trigger-happy because you can click as many snaps as you want with a digital camera… You don’t have to be weighed down by factors like cost of film and the number of shots left. Wouldn’t it be tragic to be in two minds whether or not to click another snap because you wish to save the roll for the rest of the trip?

BC: What’s the point in shooting a thousand snaps? You upload some of them — and that’s probably the last time you see them yourself.

AD: It would be nice to look back one day.

BC: You fill a 500 GB hard disk with snaps and hope to go back to them someday? That’s like filing away all the newspapers during your working years so that you can read them at leisure once you retire.

AD: Well, you can store thousands of digital images in an area that’s the size of your thumb nail. Imagine storing even a fraction of that as prints!

BC: But how will you find a particular snap when you have millions?

AD: It’s a lot easier to sort and index digital images — software like Picasa can do the organising for you. Prints, on the other hand, will require some sort of a catalog or album.

BC: I’ll stick to my old Nikon, thank you. It’s a mechanical camera and doesn’t even need batteries.

AD: What about ease of use? Digital cameras are a lot simpler — anyone can handle one. Manual cameras require some level of orientation.

BC: I’ve always maintained that technology’s dumbing down everything around us.

AD: Think of the positives — having a digital camera can be pretty useful. There have been so many wrongdoings and incidents that have been reported by the media in recent times because a passerby could shoot the incident with his mobile phone camera.

BC: It’s also sad to note that technology is coming in the way of being humane.

AD: What do you mean?

BC: There was a time when, in the case of an accident or molestation, our first instinct was to rush and help. Today, people seem to be more particular about clicking pictures and posting them online.

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