Sunday, February 26, 2012

Slightly Off Topic: Polaroids

A running theme of this blog has been the superiority of vinyl music reproduction to current digital music formats. I'm convinced that it's not an exercise in nostalgia, where one clings to an outdated inferior technology for sentimental reasons. Well, there's the nostalgia, too. But there's no doubt that vinyl records just sound better. The market has abandoned records and turntables for other reasons--lack of convenience, better profits in digital music (ironically that didn't work out as it opened the pirating floodgates), and just a general tendency of the market to push and the public to adopt the new, new thing.

Another technology that I was sad to see abandoned was Polaroid film. Sure, there are countless advantages of digital photography over film photography, including Polaroids, but one thing the Polaroid had over digital imaging and other films was its magic. Who didn't have a sense of wonder the first time seeing an image appear right before their eyes on that plasticky sheet of Polaroid film.

I recently picked up a Polaroid OneStep CloseUp camera at a thrift store. It looks to be in good shape. Of course, I'll need some Polaroid 600 film. Fortunately a company called The Impossible Project, consisting of former Polaroid workers, bought the last Polaroid factory and resumed making Polaroid film. I've ordered a pack to test out the camera and, more importantly, to find out if there's still magic in the technology.

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