Friday, February 27, 2009

Eye-Fi and Nikon D90

The economic downturn is affecting everyone. To help stimulate the economy I feel strongly that each and every one of us needs to dig deep and do our part. So, I bought a D90.

I had read that the D90 (and the D60) would at least have some ability to detect Eye-Fi cards when inserted and do something with them. LarryG over on the Eye-Fi forums has a little more explanation of what happens:
  1. In order to see the Eye-Fi Menu item in the D90, you will have to have an Eye-Fi Card inserted in the camera. The camera will then display the "Eye-Fi Upload" option in the Setup Menu between the "GPS" and "Firmware version" menu items.
  2. This new menu gives the user the option to enable or disable the Eye-Fi Card's ability to upload photos when inside the camera.
  3. In addition to the menu, the D90 will automatically provide power to the Eye-Fi Card when there are photo uploads pending or photos being uploaded. Once all uploads are completed, the camera reverts back to the user defined "Auto meter-off delay" power settings in the Custom Setting Menu.
That's all certainly good news because, for one, the D50's meter-off setting was really coarse. Literally, it goes from 16 seconds to 30 minutes with nothing in the middle! I suspect this huge meter-off delay to be the source of most of my battery life problems.

However, this is still much ambiguity on the D90, especially on what impact turning off "Eye-Fi Upload" really has. The meter-off delay tuning is really useful and effectively allows the camera to have a completely smart timeout for powering off the card. On the camera's part this requires just being able to read the Eye-Fi card's status.

But, does "Eye-Fi Upload" actually disable the card's WiFi radio? Is that sufficient if I am, say, on an airplane where I can't use radios of any kind? Is the card's power consumption lower in this mode? The Eye-Fi card itself draws roughly as much power as the SLR itself, so will enabling this option double my battery life?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Ad-Hoc Networks

There have been a few questions about Ad-Hoc networks over time. They simply can't work as it stands. It is not a simple matter of adding the network to the card, or forcing it to be detected.

For one thing, the cards can not be configured to use a static IP address. So there at least needs to be a DHCP server out there on the network somewhere. If someone really, really needs to do this, I would simply suggest a portable and battery-powered access point such as this one.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

New Release: 008

Brad left a comment with a great bug report. As you can see in gitweb, I've fixed this. I was basically clobbering the password when I converted it from ASCII to a binary format because I forgot that it gets used twice. Oops.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

New Release: 007

I've removed the O_DIRECT usage since I got the #ifdefs wrong. Linus says that there's a better way to do it anyway. I've done that, and all appears to be well. This should also make what I did portable to other POSIX platforms. Have fun!