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November 29, 2016

Don’t Take Stupid Selfies

Filed under: Main — Tags: — admin @ 12:01 am

The front-facing camera on a phone is genius. Use that camera to take a picture of yourself, but try not to look like you’re taking a picture of yourself. That’s where the genius melts away.

The Internet is full of images that make fun of people who are obviously taking a selfie. You can generally tell because one arm is extended in the direction of the camera, such as my self-shot in Figure 1.

Figure 1. I'm holding my phone in my right hand, but trying hard to look casual about it.

Figure 1. I’m holding my phone in my right hand, but trying hard to look casual about it.

A selfie-stick makes it look less-obvious that you’re taking your own picture, providing that you don’t get the selfie-stick in the shot. Still, the pose is convoluted because you’re trying to make it look like someone else took the picture, yet no one else did.

Also, I’m reminded that Disney has forbidden selfie sticks in their parks.

In Figure 2, you see another self-shot I took. As with the first shot, I’m the only person in the room. No, I didn’t use a selfie-stick. Instead, I used a Camera feature few people bother with.

Figure 2. By what dark magic did I take this picture of myself?

Figure 2. By what dark magic did I take this picture of myself?
(Yes, I’m wearing pants.)

Yes, I used the Camera app’s self-timer to take my own picture. This feature is available on all Android phones and tablets: You tap the self-timer icon and choose a duration. Then you set the phone, propping it up against some object, such as BB8 shown in Figure 3. Tap the shutter icon, step back, wait, click.

Figure 3. BB-8 helps me prop-up my phone for a timed self-shot.

Figure 3. BB-8 helps me prop-up my phone for a timed self-shot.

On my Samsung phone, a countdown timer appears on the screen. That way I’m not holding a cheesy grin for too long, or stepping back to the phone when the shutter clicks.

It’s not always possible to prop-up your phone or tablet to step back and take a timed selfie, but I think it’s a better trick than holding the camera in one hand and pretending that you actually have a friend who was willing to take your picture.

4 Comments

  1. I know camera phone is here but I prefer a proper digital camera. I just find it awkard, however I have used it when I need a photo but not had the time to find my digital camera. Off Topic which BB-8 is that, I want the radio controlled model…

    Comment by glennp — November 30, 2016 @ 7:11 am

  2. I’ve purchased two digital cameras in the past 6 years or so. Both have died. I replaced the batteries, but no luck. The advantage to them is the tripod mount. So I use my phone and prop it up.

    My mom gave me that BB-8. It has a single, large wheel in the body. The problem is that Mom threw out the box after she took out the robot. The box contained the antenna, the remote, and the instructions. So that BB-8 just sits there and does nothing.

    Comment by admin — November 30, 2016 @ 7:51 am

  3. “So that BB-8 just sits there and does nothing.” Bummer, or as we say this side of the pond ‘oh dear!’ You might consider contacting the manufactures via the web site for some spares…

    Comment by glennp — November 30, 2016 @ 2:37 pm

  4. I suppose I could, but he’d probably end up on the shelf anyway. It was a gift.

    Comment by admin — November 30, 2016 @ 2:59 pm

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