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filmscanners: open and control

In a message dated 2/6/01 4:05:12 pm, dickmoyer@mail.earthlink.net writes:

<< The "Open" advocates seem to favor "freedom" (in a product/market 

sense), and strongly believe that growth and innovation is greater 

this way than with the "Control" people's way. They also seem to be 

less aware of, or concerned with profits, and are more willing to 

invest their energies based on passion rather than some assurances of 

payoff. "Standards" are an anathema.>>

Dear Dick

In the earliest days of photography these two ideas fought it out. Daguerre 
was paid a pension by the French government to make his invention free to 
everyone, (except the Brits). Fox Talbot on the other hand controlled 
everything through his rigid patents. The result was that no one tried to 
circumvent the daguerreotype while lots of inventors tried, and succeeded, in 
circumventing Talbot's patents. The result was a huge boost to neg/pos 
photography while Daguerre's ideas stayed in a cul-de-sac.  The history of 
photography seems to be against your hypothesis. 

Sticking with photography it was Agfa who gave us colour film we could 
process ourselves while Kodak believed emphatically in the idea of a hugely 
expensive factory owned Kodachrome line. Which idea is winning now? Kodak 
also launched the PhotoCD and hasn't yet learnt the value of the home scanner 

Another moral is what happened to Radstock Repro who spent 1.5 million pounds 
on a closed architecture digital scanner and film output system a few years 
ago. They promptly went bust when someone had the bright idea of plugging a 
Mac into existing scanners and invented Photoshop and Quark. 85,000 pounds 
bought a better, more flexible system which unbelievably did typesetting AS 


Bob Croxford



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