Observation and Design

Richard Stowey's localised view of the world.

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Robot App Store: The Future of the Downloadable Application

December 27th, 2009 by Richard Stowey

The App Store Hyperwall by alliewiki

The end of the year usually gets me thinking about the future and this year is no different. Current technology and the demands for unique content seems to be growing at an ever increasing pace, and nothing shows this more than the accelleration of mobile devices with their app stores. Apple iPhone App Store, Google Android Market, Blackberry App World, Nokia Ovi Store, and everyone else who is following suit at the moment. But where does this app business all lead? And what does it get us?

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Categories: Technology

Me and My Android: Predictive Text Improvement Suggestions

December 19th, 2009 by Richard Stowey

I’ve been using my HTC Hero, which is powered by Google Android, for a few months now and really like the jump i’ve taken from my previous Sony Ericsson K810i. It’s quite interesting to use something with such a technology jump, and it’s amazing how easily I have become used to the advances. But there are a few things I would change…

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Categories: Product Review

Book Review: Hot Shoe Diaries by Joe McNally

December 12th, 2009 by Richard Stowey

Hot Shoe Diaries

Since the end of July, I have been much more interested in improving my technical and creative skills when it comes to photography. More specifically to this, off camera flash photography. The end goal is to be able to create a wide variety of creative photos which show character, depth and emotion. It’s a long road, but as with everything, you’ve got to start somewhere!

So my first port of call was the internet, and two main resources in particular, Strobist.com and Flickr. Highly useful info on getting started with off camera flash photography, and plenty of examples too.

Joe Mcnally’s book, The Hot Shoe Diaries: Big Light from Small Flashes: Creative Applications of Small Flashes (Voices That Matter), is the perfect extension of that. And, as a body of examples specifically put together to showcase the extreme versatility of Nikon cameras, speedlights and accessories, it really inspires me towards what can be possible.

After attending a few group strobist events through Flickr groups, and tackling some if my own ideas, the book also helps to bridge the gap between what I’ve learned and where I want to go.

As a professional photographer who has spent the last 30 years behind the lens, Joe Mcnally puts literally tonnes if information into this book. Plus, unlike the free information available on various blogs, including Joe’s own, the information contained within is grouped, well thought about and presented with big colour images of each photo shoot. The other bonus is that you don’t have to spend days in front of a computer screen to get through it all.

The main thing which I have learned is that the creative idea behind the shot is the most important part, the lighting is secondary to the concept. Highly recommended to anyone interested in off camera flash photography, and even worth a browse just for the pictures.


  • Hello and welcome!

    My name is Richard Stowey and I am a Digital Project Manager. I also like photography, designing, reading, writing, technology and motorcycling.

    I've put the main categories at the top of each page to help you focus on something which will interest you.

    If you have any thoughts about what you read, please leave a comment!

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