GIFaChrome Camera

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GIFaChrome Camera
GAC-Camera-01.png
Front view of a GIFaChrome camera
Maker GIFaChrome Corporation
Type GIFmaker
Image sensor type CCD sensor
Image sensor size 106mm
Lens Fixed lens
Focus Manual/Auto
Flash off-camera TTL flash

The GIFaChrome camera takes images that become animated gifs upon output into the GIFaChrome 106 film. Previous to the GIFaChrome, one had to take several images and turn them into an animated gif through the use of some other software. With the GIFaChrome camera, all one does is point and shoot, and the camera and film do the rest.

Shortly after the release of this camera, the GIFaChrome company issued a new version called the GLITCHaChrome. This version also creates animated gifs, but through the use of a special algorithm the camera turns them into glitch art.

Description[edit]

The GIFaChrome camera, produced by the GIFaChrome corporation, uses groundbreaking technology to turn point-and-shoot into point-and-animate. It uses patented 106 film to produce animated gifs instead of still images upon post processing. This allowed anyone with the camera to create animated gifs from images of the world around them, even if they know nothing about how make animated gifs from still images. That conversion is done within the software of the camera itself.

Features[edit]

Image strip from GIFaChrome camera featuring images of Cory Doctorow from For the Remix! project. Image source: GIFaChrome website.
A schematic of the GIFaKidChrome camera. Image source: Flickr.

Though it looks simple on the outside, the GIFaChrome has multiple hidden features, including the capacity to switch between an optical and an electronic viewfinder, the full line of GIFaChrome interchangeable lenses, and multiple filters built to optimize the creation of animated gifs from still images.

The GIFaChrome is able to shoot 7 frames per second, which leads to ultra-smooth animated gifs. One can choose to reduce the fps to 5, 3 or 1 instead, so as to make gifs that capture more movement while keeping the file size low if needed.[1] Upon pressing the shutter button a second time, another burst of the same number of frames can be taken right away, for as many times as one likes.

A switch on the side of the camera allows one to choose between RGB, indexed colour (multiple quantities), sepia or greyscale. The fewer the colours, the smaller the finished gif file size. Of course, one can still run the animated gif file through a software application to change the colours as desired, after processing by the GIFaChrome camera.

The GIFaChrome camera records on both film and digital. The 106 film used by the camera produces images that actually move--a revolutionary achievement.

The camera links up to any personal computer via a USB connection (in late 2013 the GIFaChrome company was working on a wireless option to let consumers transfer files straight from the camera to their personal computers without a wired connection). The animated gif files can be stored in any folder on the computer as .gif files and viewed by dragging and dropping them into a web browser. They can also be uploaded and viewed as animations on various blogging platforms. GIFaChrome is working with the major operating systems to ensure that the image storage software in those OS's can show gif animations in addition to still images, but as of the end of 2013 little progress has been made on that front yet. Consumers can use free and open software such as GIMP to manipulate animated gifs after processing within the camera, since as of yet the major operating systems don't have the capacity for editing animated gifs.

The GIFaChrome 106 film is patent pending (patent applied for in October of 2013).[2] As can be seen in the images on the sidebar, the film itself can produce animated gifs, through a method that is a highly-guarded secret amongst GIFaChrome executives. Nevertheless, there is evidence that a source is leaking secrets about the company, and the schematics for the camera itself have been revealed in this blog post. It may only be a matter of time before the secret of the 106 film is also revealed.

A beta test of the GLITCHaChrome camera from late 2013. See the GLITCHaChrome section, below. Image source: GIFaChrome website.

History[edit]

Rochelle Lockridge, CEO of GIFaChrome, came up with the idea for the camera and its accompanying film in the Summer of 2013, when she created her first gif filmstrip. Development from there has been extraordianarily rapid, with the first beta testing of the camera occuring in November 2013, and the official release occuring on December 13, 2013.

Recently, and in a surprising coincidence evidence of early prototypes of a camera somewhat like the GIFaChrome has been discovered in the back of a drawer at the home of one of the GIFaChrome employees. Though the images are somewhat grainy and the "wiggle stereoscopy" effect not as polished as one sees today, these images show that the idea of using a camera to create animated gifs is actually older than one might have thought. Researchers estimate that these images are from the early twentieth century, though the late nineteenth century is within the range of possibility.

GLITCHaChrome[edit]

Shortly after the beta release of the GIFaChrome, the company also beta tested a new version of the camera called GLITCHaChrome. This camera works quite similarly to the GIFaChrome, though with an added bonus: it also has a setting (accessed through a switch on the side of the camera) that allows one to create "glitch art" animated gifs from images taken with the camera. This option can be turned on or off when taking the images.

There are several options for the "glitch mode" offered in the GLITCHaChrome camera: "white noise" (grainy), rainbow colours, spatial movements of the image within the gif, or any combination of these.

Emerging technologies: LayerCake and GIFaKidChrome[edit]

As of December 2013, the GIFaChrome corporation has announced an emerging technology called "Layer Cake," which allows the gifs produced by a GIFaChrome or a GLITCHaChrome to literally move OUT of the frame, as seen in this pre-beta-testing image, below.

No one at GIFaChrome has said when this product may be released, and it is still rather a mystery, though there are a few details in a blog post by John Johnston of GIFaChrome. There is speculation that Johnston, Lockridge and the recluse Jim-Bob Gromsky have been working together on Layercake for the past few weeks, though others dispute this because Gromsky is reported to have disappeared entirely at the same time as Dr. O'Blivion, several years ago.

Another recent version of the camera is the GIFaKidChrome, a camera that, amazingly, takes an audio story and creates an animated gif out of just the sounds. Nothing has been leaked yet as to how this revolutionary technology might actually work, though a sketch of the GIFaKidChrome camera itself has recently been revealed (see image on the right sidebar, above).

A very early Layercake image produced by John Johnston of the GIFaChrome Corporation. Image source: GIFaChrome website.
A beta test of the GIFaKidChrome technology that creates an animated gif from an audio children's story. Image source: GIFaChrome website.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Some websites require a fairly low file size to show animated gifs as actually animated, sometimes no larger than 1MB. To achieve this size while still have a significant amount of movement, one would want to reduce the frames per second taken with the GIFaChrome.
  2. Jump up ^ Patent application available from the US patent office.

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