Scott Sherman said:...Now, one or more of the companies wants to prevent me from having the tools I need or choose. ... When I was taking pictures with film. Nikon was not telling me where I had to go to have it developed. Isn't this like Nikon saying "you can take pictures with our cameras but you must come to us to have the pictures developed or we will make it difficult and more expensive for you to go somewhere else. Thank you for using Nikon."
someone ... knowledgeable about the inherent capabilities and limitations of the API can enlighten us on this (Iliah?).
DavidM said:Scott Sherman said:...Now, one or more of the companies wants to prevent me from having the tools I need or choose. ... When I was taking pictures with film. Nikon was not telling me where I had to go to have it developed. Isn't this like Nikon saying "you can take pictures with our cameras but you must come to us to have the pictures developed or we will make it difficult and more expensive for you to go somewhere else. Thank you for using Nikon."
I guess I don't see it so much as Nikon preventing the use of a particular tool, but rather that they are dictating the manner in which those tools can work (ie. ACR should use the API provided by the SDK to get the file contents, not going directly to the file). It's quite possible that I have misunderstood this issue, so perhaps someone more knowledgeable about the inherent capabilities and limitations of the API can enlighten us on this (Iliah?).
Even on film cameras, Nikon did dictate that we only use certain types of lenses, flashes, etc. by making specific types of mounts that were only compatible with a "Nikon" camera. Third parties accommodated these needs, of course, but I don't see it as being all that different from Sigma having to design a specific lens with a Nikon mount that "speaks" the same language that a Nikon lens does.
I'm not a big fan of the comparisons to film vs. digital for this issue however, mainly because I believe the advent of digital cameras has moved a significant chunk of film's former role into the camera itself. That makes it difficult to use the analogy in my view. Part of the "film processing" is controlled by the camera (and therefore Nikon) now, but at least we get to change some of the parameters on the fly.
As an observer of this debate for several weeks now (but especially lately), it seems to me that most people's views are falling directly in line with the software they own or choose to use. Those who own Capture seem to be the least concerned, those who own PSCS (only) are the most upset, and those (like me) who own and use both for different purposes are the fence-sitters probably because there's less impact to workflow resulting from this issue. Of course those who don't use either are just laughing at the rest of us. My biggest complaint right now is that Capture is waaaaaaaaay too slow and bloated...
The ICC FAQ document said:... 6.2. Cameras
Q. How do I make a profile for a digital camera? Can I use my scanner target and profiling software?
Profiling cameras is more of a problem than scanners as the illumination conditions and the media characteristics in the scene are so variable. You can make a profile by using a scanner target, or a Macbeth target (if your profiling software supports these), but theoretically you need to do it for each condition of illumination (and even then there may be a problem as the dyes or pigments used for these are not those encountered in natural scenes). Thus profiling can work well in a studio environment but is more difficult in a general condition where you would need to make a profile every time you use the camera.
However, many cameras do balancing, etc to accommodate variable conditions and provide data that is effectively sRGB. If so you can then assume sRGB as the input and use profiles to produce data that is ideal for your printer, though you may not need it if the printer has good algorithms for sRGB rendering. However, if your camera doesn't have the balancing capabilities (or it doesn't work very well) you may also need a 'photo-correcting' software package to balance and correct for any exposure issues with the images as most basic colour management (with or without profiles) doesn't do that. I have seen packages from HP and MGI that seem quite good. You can also do it in Photoshop using auto-levels if you use that programme.
6.3. Printers ...