Two Things You Don’t Want to See!

January 5, 2010

Photo Tips

KeynoteScreenSnapz001Okay, so I have your attention. :-)

Here are two things  you don’t want to see – especially when you are on a photo workshop or vacation.

The first image shows a cracked laptop screen (mine). My screen got cracked when someone rested their elbow on my computer in the lobby of a hotel. You can avoid this mishap by being very, very careful with your laptop when you travel. If your screen cracks, you might as well get a new computer.


Here is a screen shot that shows what I thought was  a corrupted file: one of my pictures from a 2004 African safari. Actually, the card reader crapped out (which is quite unusual). Switching the card reader and the cable, I found that the card and file were fine. My point: always travel with back up EVERYTHING when your pictures are very, very important.

If your card does corrupted, don’t panic! Rescue software is available from most card manufactures. You can also find rescue software on the Web.

Don’t Panic!


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This post was written by:

- who has written 171 posts on The Digital Photo Experience.

Canon Explorer of Light Rick Sammon has published 36 books, including Exploring the Light and Digital Photography Secrets.

When asked about his photo specialty, Rick says, “My specialty is not specializing.”

You can follow Rick on twitter at and visit his website at

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5 Responses to “Two Things You Don’t Want to See!”

  1. Alan Says:

    I always make sure I have a cord that allows me to connect my camera straight to my laptop when traveling so that in a pinch I can download directly from the camera. It is a good way to check if it is the card or the reader that is having problems.


  2. Michael Says:

    You can actually fix the screen yourself for a lot less than the price of a laptop. Buy a generic LCD on ebay for whatever laptop you have, and install it yourself :-) Basically it’s just connecting a couple wires.


  3. Jim Goldstein Says:

    I’ll second that. Backups of everything are key. I learned this the hard way when I lost my much beloved cable release mid-trip in Yosemite.

    The view of a corrupt RAW file is really frustrating. I have had instances when the file was corrupted on import only. I suppose not too unlike your situation depicted here. At the time (a while back mind you) it was a corruption that occurred during a RAW to DNG conversion. One more thing to be aware of… you can never let your guard down.


  4. Bret Edge Says:

    Ouch! Both are unfortunate incidents but the points you make are timely and valid. I started carrying an extra card reader after I “lost” one on a 4 month road trip. It turned up later in the trip but it wasn’t easy to find a replacement for it in the middle of Death Valley. Great post, Rick.


  5. Torsten Says:

    Thats a mighty old laptop, there Rick.


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