Subject: Re: What to do with all those Digital photos
Good day Alice and all you other Ziners who use digital,

I guess I am the first to see this so I will respond with all your option. I have taken my digital camera to Europe twice and shot more than a thousand photos and brought them all back with no problem.

You basically have four choices for getting them home intact.

1) Buy a bunch of media cards. This can get expensive. And you have to treat your media cards like film and make sure they are protected. I carried 4 256MB cards (about 1000 high res pics) with me last fall to London and Paris. Cards are about $40+ per 256MB at Costco here in the states.

2) Take fewer cards and get them backed up to CD on the road. I did this two years ago in Firenze (and have seen countless places that will do it in most cities). We found a photo shop about a block from the train station and for 15 euro he took all of my pics off my cards (I had two 256MB cards at that time) and transferred them to CD. I was then able to erase the cards and reuse them. I protected that CD with my life after that. Just like I would have my film had I been shooting film. One big advantage to this method is that you can go and do other things while the camera store guys create the CD for you. Ours took about an hour to do in Firenze during which we toured a beautiful cathedral.

3) You can also sign up for an online storage account (I use .mac because I am a Mac user but there are other places you can store photos online--try and then go into an internet cafe and upload your pics which you can then download back at home. This is probably safest as then there is no way you can lose the pics but there are four things to remember. One, you need to make sure you carry your cord that connects your camera to the computer with you, most internet cafes will not have one that fits your camera. Two, you need to find an internet cafe that will let you connect it to the camera. We have found some to be very hinky about doing this. Three, it will take some time to upload that many pics. Since time is money when you upload on an internet cafe type computer, this could get expensive. With a great connection you might be able to upload 200 in an hour. If you are willing to spend the bucks and the time to sit and upload all of that, go for it. And fourth, you may have a limit as to the amount of data you can upload to your online storage account. With .mac I can only upload 100MB without paying more than my annual fee. That's only 100 pics so this method does not work for me. Investigate this before you leave. Some providers will allow you unlimited space for free. Others will charge for it.

4) My newest and coolest method involves an iPod. If you have one of these miraculous music players they are also a Firewire disk drive. And a darn big one. I purchased a wonderful adapter from a company called Belkin that allows me to download the photos from my media cards directly to my iPod--anywhere. Now I can carry as many photos as my iPod can handle, which in my case is around 20,000. I don't think I will ever take that many before I can get back to my computer and download them.

That about does it. If you don't have an iPod I would suggest either buying more cards or going the CD route. Least expensive and easiest time wise as well. If you do have an iPod, check out the media reader at They are available at any good computer store.

Have a super trip. Jim in Redmond, WA