I just read the Network World column by Rick Broida, E-Mail Photos From Your Camera, in which he declares “If there's a bigger computing hassle than sharing photos from your camera, I haven't found it.”
I know exactly what his frustration is. In the enterprise, the ability to quickly take a picture or video and distribute it is critical in a number of areas. Insurance agents need pictures of an accident scene for a claim, corporations need pictures of an event to protect them from liability, security agents need pictures to identify a threat or person of interest, or an on-site technician might need to be able to show his tier II support on the phone, "this is what I am looking at … do you have any idea what it is?"
In the Internet 1.0 world, you have to take a picture, connect the camera to a laptop via USB, fire up your email program, find the picture in some arcane file structure and then choose a distribution list. Then, on the receiving end, each recipient has to open up the email, look at the picture, decide where/how/if to file it, etc.
In the Internet 2.0 world, it's a heck of a lot easier, as Rick mentions: leave the camera at home, pull out your phone, point, click shoot, select "send to Facebook," choose which group of Facebook friends should get to see the picture, and press "send." Done.
When I was giving speeches a few years ago about mobility futures, I talked about how inexpensive chipsets, based on industry standard WiMax protocols, would enable companies (such as Canon or Nikon) to actually put WiMax chips in their cameras. With machine-to-machine (M2M) pricing plans for WiMax that could bill “by the drink,” with no monthly fee and minimal payment setup, a user could take a picture on their digital SLR camera, select a "send to Facebook" option on their camera, and be done.
Unfortunately, we're not quite there yet, but we aren’t far from it! Companies are making massive strides in M2M capabilities, and are putting mobile chipsets into devices that you would have never dreamed of 10 years ago. They are creating whole new applications for M2M in the enterprise. As for me, I just hope that someday my digital SLR has a WiMax chipset so I can take a really cool picture using a two-second exposure with compulsory flash at f/22 with a 10mm lens and instantly share it with family and friends. (OK, I am showing off my amateur photography, but as a blogger, one does get to take certain liberties.)
Read Rick Broida's column in Network World: E-Mail Photos From Your Camera.