Kadir Van Lohuizen—NOOR
By Mikko Takkunen
April 7, 2014

Features and Essays

Kadir van Lohuizen—NOOR for The New York Times

Kadir van Lohuizen: Rising Seas | Borrowed Time on Disappearing Land (New York Times) Some areas of the globe are especially vulnerable to rising sea levels. As land recedes under advancing waters, governments are faced with the costs of building defensive seawalls and relocating coastal populations — and in some extreme cases, finding new homes for entire island nations.

Valerio Bispuri: Typhoon Yolanda: the aftermath (Echo Photo Agency) Four months after the typhoon , the situation on the island of Leyte is still dramatic.

Chris Steele-Perkins: Myanmar Muslims (Magnum) After decades of oppression and corruption Myanmar is looking to a brighter future

Bryan Denton: Campaign of Resilience (New York Times) Photos on Afghanistan’s presidential campaigns

Lynsey Addario: The New Face of Afghanistan (LightBox) Addario traveled to Afghanistan ahead of upcoming presidential elections, where the first female governor in the country, Habiba Sarabi, is now the first woman running for vice-president

Portugal's Helena Costa in action as coach of Qatar's women football team on May 26, 2012.
Victor J. Blue for MSNBC

Victor J. Blue: Afghans kick off historic election (MSNBC) Blue captured some of the candidates as well as ordinary Afghans in the run-up to the election, and spoke to them about their hopes for a more peaceful and prosperous future.

Tyler Hicks: Voting in Afghanistan Amid Unrelenting Violence (New York Times) In bullet-ridden Afghan districts, free vote seems an empty promise

Edwin Koo: Paradise in a Pakistani Valley (New York Times Lens blog) A photographer’s at first puzzling encounter with people displaced from their beloved Swat Valley led him to consider what makes a place paradise.

Lynsey Addario—UNHCR

Lynsey Addario: Million Syrian Refugees in Lebanon (TIME.com) Syrian refugees account for one-fourth of Lebanon’s population

Hossein Fatemi: Veiled Truths (New York Times) In Iran, the government insists that all women wear hijab, whenever they are in the presence of men who are not close relatives

Larry Towell: Maidan Square Demonstrations (Magnum) Panoramic photos from February’s turmoil in Kiev

Lauren Fleishman: Grande Dame of Paris (LightBox) Tribute to the Eiffel Tower on its 125th birthday

Rick Loomis—Los Angeles Times

Rick Loomis: Central African Republic: Flight from Rage (Los Angeles Times) Loomis spent two weeks in the Central African Republic reporting on the sectarian violence there. He followed a convoy of Muslim refugees on a harrowing 400-mile journey to safety in Cameroon.

Michael Zumstein: Crisis in Central African Republic (Agence Vu)

James Whitlow Delano: In Cameroon’s Rain Forest, a Fragile Way of Life (Bloomberg) In Cameroon’s Anglophone southwest, the unpaved highways and lack of electrical power contrast with the infrastructure in the more politically powerful Francophone regions.

Pieter Hugo: Portraits of Reconciliation (New York Times Magazine) 20 years after the genocide in Rwanda, reconciliation still happens one encounter at a time

Not one to leave well enough alone, Gwyneth Paltrow has felt the need to come to her own defense. Weeks after becoming a flashpoint in the mommy wars with comments she made to E! News implying that mothers who work 9-5 jobs have it easier than hard-working, genetically blessed actresses, the Goop proprietress has issued a clarification on her website. Paltrow, who seems to aspire to be the Nelson Mandela of parenting bloggers — the blog post is titled "Ending the Mommy Wars" — says that her quote was taken out of context and that other working mothers may simply have been projecting their discontent onto her. Ooh, burn. Her Goopness also goes deeper, sharing her disbelief at "how little slack we cut each other as women": We see disapproval in the eyes of other mothers when we say how long we breastfed (Too long? Not long enough?), or whether we have decided to go back to work versus stay home. Is it not hard enough to attempt to raise children thoughtfully, while contributing something, or bringing home some (or more) of the bacon? Why do we feel so entitled to opine, often so negatively, on the choices of other women? Perhaps because there is so much pressure to do it all, and do it all well all at the same time (impossible). Wade on in, Gwyneth, the water's just fine.
Susana Raab

Susana Raab: The Other Washington (Politico magazine) Exploration of the other side of Washington, D.C.—the poverty-stricken, blighted communities in the far northeast and east of Anacostia River that seem to go unnoticed, eclipsed by the classical monuments, political imbroglio and international intrigue, literally, next door.

Christopher Anderson: Portraits of 26 Musicians Who Shaped New York City (New York Magazine) As part of the magazine’s look back at pop music in New York City over the past 100 years, New York/Magnum photographer Christopher Anderson shot these portraits of 26 musicians who shaped the sound of the five boroughs.

Alex Majoli: ‘Mad Men’ Up Close: Photos From the Set of the Celebrated Show (LightBox) Majoli’s black and white portraits of the Mad Men cast harken back to long gone years when photographers worked and mingled backstage and, every once in a while, came away with pure gold.

Richard Renaldi: Manhattan Sunday (The New Yorker’s Photo Booth) A series of early-morning portraits from New York

Alejandro Cegarra: Venezuela’s ‘vertical slum’ (CNN Photos) Located in Venezuela’s capital is the Tower of David, a half-finished skyscraper that has become a slum for thousands of people. Photographer Alejandro Cegarra, who lives near the building, visited last year and documented the lives of those who call the tower home.

Articles

Heart doctors around the country got a lot of phone calls from worried patients after the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that taking low doses of aspirin every day to prevent a first heart event wasn’t safe for healthy people. Did something change? Was there new evidence that aspirin was harmful? That’s understandable. With so much of the talk in medicine these days about prevention, millions of Americans take the so-called baby aspirin, believing that it will help them to hold off a heart attack or stroke. (Because aspirin is sold without a prescription, there’s no way to tell how many Americans are doing this, either on their own or at their doctors’ suggestion, but estimates say that number is around 40 million.) It’s not as if the decision is completely irresponsible. Heart disease is the leading killer in the U.S., and has been for decades. There’s strong evidence that daily, low-dose aspirin can help people who have already had a heart attack or other heart event to prevent another one, so extending the drug’s benefits to those who might get into heart trouble, but haven’t yet, makes sense. MORE: Will an Aspirin Prolong Your Life? It Depends. “If you go back in time, there was one point where there was a recommendation that any patient with diabetes should consider having aspirin,” says Dr. Gregg Fonarow, a cardiologist at University of California Los Angeles. “But as the data have evolved and we have more trials, the guidelines have been updated and revised to try to balance the risks and benefits.” Those risks are what the FDA considered when Bayer, maker of low dose aspirin, asked the agency to consider relabeling its product to include a recommendation for preventing heart attacks and strokes. But while aspirin is relatively safe, it does come with a cost – an increased risk of bleeding, both in the stomach and intestines, as well as in the brain. The FDA found that the evidence showing that otherwise healthy people who take aspirin could prevent a first heart attack is not as strong as that for avoiding recurrent heart problems, so when compared to the bleeding risk, FDA officials felt recommending the drug for healthy people wasn’t justified. “I’ve been critical of the FDA at times, but they got this one right,” says Dr. Steven Nissen, chairman of cardiovascular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation who has disagreed with some of the agency’s actions in the past, including its handling of the diabetes drug Avandia. “When you do the benefit-risk analysis, you realize that in primary prevention patients, the risks exceed the benefits, and some risks are really substantial, including stroke.” MORE: Can Aspirin Help Ward Off Skin Cancer? Nissen should know. In 2003, the last time that Bayer applied to the FDA to have aspirin approved for preventing first heart events, Nissen was part of the FDA committee that reviewed the available data. The group concluded then that the evidence wasn’t sufficient, and the FDA rejected Bayer’s request. “I’ve had people self-treat with aspirin and die of gastrointestinal bleeding,” says Nissen. And making matters more confusing for patients is the fact that the American Heart Association (AHA), the nation’s leading group of heart experts, and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force don’t exactly agree with the FDA’s conclusion. Their guidelines say that a certain group of people, at moderate risk of heart disease, could benefit from taking daily aspirin to prevent a first heart event – those whose risk of having a heart attack is greater than 1% per year because they smoke, have high cholesterol, uncontrolled blood pressure, diabetes, are overweight or any combination of these. “The evidence is a little stronger for people at moderate risk,” says Dr. Richard Becker, professor of medicine at University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and a spokesperson for the AHA. MORE: After Avandia: Does the FDA Have a Drug Problem? Becker says that the FDA may be taking a harder position because its decision affects how medications are labeled, and its evidence threshold may be higher. “The guidelines for the AHA, the American College of Cardiology and the European Society of Cardiology take information and craft guidance that puts people into categories of risk, and looks at where risks and benefits fall in favor of recommending aspirin,” he says. For some people at moderate risk, the benefits of taking aspirin may outweigh the risk, while for others it might not. That’s why the AHA isn’t against using aspirin for primary prevention, but advises people to consult with their doctors before doing so. Becker says that more information about aspirin’s use in healthy people may be coming in the next year or so; large trials looking at whether daily low dose aspirin can help people to avoid not just having heart events but dying early from heart disease are currently ongoing. Those results may better help both the FDA to refine aspirin’s labeling as well as doctors in advising their patients about the drug. Until then, all heart experts still agree that there’s only one group who should be taking an aspirin a day to protect their hearts – people who have already have a heart attack or stroke. For the rest of us, while it might seem like a proactive way to stay healthy, taking daily low-dose aspirin may end up doing more harm than good.
Peter Dejong—AP

Associated Press photographer Anja Niedringhaus killed (British Journal of Photography) Veteran photographer Anja Niedringhaus was killed when an Afghan policeman opened fire on her vehicle in eastern Afghanistan, a day before the presidential elections she was covering.

Parting Glance: Anja Niedringhaus (New York Times Lens blog)

In Memoriam: Anja Niedringhaus (1965–2014) (LightBox)

AP journalists remember Anja Niedringhaus (AP Big Story)

Nearly 100 disgruntled UberX drivers gathered outside Uber’s headquarters in San Francisco on Thursday to demand better pay and treatment from one of the sharing economy's most visible companies. UberX is a lower price service that the company known for providing black cars on demand offers in a few dozen cities; Uber has touted UberX as, on average, 26% cheaper than a taxi. Uber recently raised the the cut it takes from the UberX drivers’ fares back to 20%, after lowering it to 5% in January. Uber says the fluctuation was a seasonal adjustment, meant to make the service more competitive during slow winter months before business picked up in the spring. The drivers didn’t see it that way. “You guys tricked us and you lied to us and you owe us an apology right now!” said Ramzi Raguii, standing in the middle of a circle formed by other UberX drivers, who clapped in agreement. “We just want to make a living. We don’t want to be gouged!” Drivers also complained that the company was not being responsive to their needs, accusing them of ignoring or delaying responses to their emails and calls and sending “threatening” emails warning they would be kicked off the service if a customer gave them a poor rating on their five-star system. Many said they wanted to be able to accept tips, something they’re forbidden to do under Uber’s business model, because removing that step from the process of getting a ride is attractive to many consumers. “We work for less than minimum wage!” one driver said. “The fares are so low. It doesn’t make any sense.” In a statement, Uber said that their jobs can be much more lucrative than that: "With ever-increasing demand, greater trips per hour, and new cities launching every day, drivers on Uber make more money than with any other ridesharing platform or taxi company. A fully utilized vehicle on UberX an gross up to $100,000/year." As the drivers gathered outside, the company sent employees armed with pastries and coffee out into the fray to deflate the tensions. For a while, it seemed to work; there was an employee who works in Uber’s drivers operations department for nearly every driver, engaging them in one-on-one discussions about their concerns. But as the numbers of drivers grew, the tenor of the protests changed. Raguii asked for quiet among all the protestors and called the San Francisco general manager, Ilya Abyzov, to come have a face-to-face conversation with him in front of everyone. Wearing a puffy vest over his plaid shirt, Abyzov stood surrounded by drivers as they loudly voiced their grievances. [caption id="attachment_93035" align="aligncenter" width="560"] Razmi Raguii confronts Uber manager Ilya Abyzov during a protest outside Uber headquarters in San Francisco on May 8, 2014.[/caption] “Our number one demand,” Raguii said, “is take care of your drivers. Quit burning and churning through drivers.” Another protester chimed in: “Without us, you’re nothing!” The conversation was civil, but the situation became tense, with Uber employees quietly weathering a storm of demands and attempting to make their case, saying that the company has costs to cover just like drivers do. Raguii challenged Abyzov to make each one of his employees spend a week as a driver. “They don’t know what it’s like going out on the road,” one driver said. “They just keep making these decisions from behind the desk.” Though Abyzov stood quietly listening and taking notes while the drivers aired their grievances, he told TIME that "the vast majority of people in the system are very happy with it." Uber employees also said that they only make money when the drivers do, so it's in their interest for everyone to be happy. A common refrain from drivers was that if their voices weren’t heard, they would defect to Lyft, another ride-sharing startup that has quickly spread across the nation. But this entire sector of the sharing economy is still finding its feet. Lawmakers and regulators worry that these companies, who often view themselves as organizing independent contractors rather than employing drivers, are operating in legal gray areas. Taxi cab groups routinely complain they are far more regulated and have to jump through far more hoops to make their living on the road. Issues of insurance, worker’s compensation and liability are much less clear for these startups than they are for companies with more traditional business models. But that isn’t stopping more players from jumping into the market with arms swinging, spurred on by the explosive growth of companies like Uber. As the protest continued, another company called Summon, which promises “a great driver two taps away at all times,” sent out a tweet: “Summon is cheaper than UberX - No surge & great drivers!” They also offered a promo code for $20 off a customer’s first ride: “UBER.” [caption id="attachment_93040" align="aligncenter" width="560"] Disgruntled UberX drivers pause during a demonstration outside Uber headquarters in San Francisco on May 8, 2014.[/caption] [time-brightcove videoid=1852134349001]
Anja Niedringhaus—AP

Colleague and Friend Remembers Slain Photographer Anja Niedringhaus (National Geographic News) David Guttenfelder, who worked closely with Niedringhaus, says her death is “a profound loss for photojournalism.”

Archive BBC post about Anja Niedringhaus on her Sarajevo work (BBC) This 2011 post shines a light on Niedringhaus’s early conflict photography career

Kidnapped photojournalist, reporter freed in Syria (NPPA) Photojournalist Ricardo Garcia-Vilanova, kidnapped along with reporter Javier Espinosa in northern Syria last September, was freed along with Espinosa end of March

Hamid Khatib—Reuters

Reuters maintains dogged silence on allegations of ‘staged images’ (British Journal of Photography) After allegations surfaced that some of Reuters’ freelance photographers have fabricated photographs of the Syrian conflict, the news wire organisation remains tight-lipped, refusing to answer any questions

Reading the Pictures: Were Reuters “Boy in a Syrian Bomb Factory” Photos Staged? (BagNewsNotes)

The Dysfunctional Guitar: More on the Reuters Syria Photo Controversy (BagNewsNotes)

Humanity Among the Ruins (No Caption Needed) Robert Hariman on what happens when suffering is prolonged, destruction becomes routine, war is normalized, and searing images turn into genres of catastrophe?

The headlines aren't wrong: Nintendo's had a very bad run of it lately. Wii U sales are down year-on-year, and its last year figures were already way down from its original projections. The fiscal 2013 figures Nintendo just released are kicking a company that was already on the curb, in other words. Even the 3DS, which enjoyed something of a sales renaissance after Nintendo slashed its price in August 2011, was off significantly in year-on-year sales. That's culminated in the company taking a net loss for its fiscal year of $228 million—an improvement over last year's negative $358 million pummeling, but a shiner just the same. By comparison, Sony's PlayStation 4 has been selling at rates unheard of in console-dom, and you can boil that down to three reasons: specs, price and the PlayStation 2. No one disputes that the machine Mark Cerny helped architect is blisteringly powerful under its deceptively slender hood. And no one disputes that $400 is a steal for what's in the box. Indeed, price comparisons involving homebrew PS4-like systems suggest Sony's offering gamers considerably more for their money. And let's talk about the PlayStation 2, because with that console Sony proved lighting could strike twice (and with twice the voltage). Sony's base may have balked at the company's initial price tag, its architectural missteps and its apparent apathy to Microsoft hoovering up all the major content deals during the PlayStation 3's tenure, but I'm not sure it ever abandoned the company. Nintendo's Wii U, in contrast, lacks compelling specs, a sweetheart price or a historical PlayStation 2-equivalent to build on. It's in the same ballpark as the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, oomph-wise, but that's not what gamers who've lived with Sony and Microsoft's systems for the past six or seven years were looking for in November 2012, nor what seems to be moving them now. The Wii U's price hasn't helped matters: $350 at launch, for the only version you'd care to own, the sticker probably forced up by Nintendo's pricey pseudo-tablet pack-in. The message Nintendo seemed to be sending was this: spend more than you would for an Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3—each of those systems sporting massive libraries flush with acclaimed titles—on a backwards-looking system without a game-changing system-seller. The Wii U has yet to find its Super Mario 64 or Wii Sports. Worse still, the company's failed to ramp up software production or woo third-party developers, leaving the Wii U's cupboards bare, or filled with I.O.U.'s for repeatedly delayed first-party games. Is it any wonder the sort of enthusiasts presently driving this Sony-Microsoft console sales renaissance aren't biting? While the original Wii outsold the Xbox 360 and PS3, it appealed most to that ficklest of fickle demographics: casual gamers. $250 was sufficiently low to fuel novelty sales at first, but once the bloom was off that rose, sales plummeted, and anecdotes about unplayed Wiis have become a games industry aphorism. The Wii U, by contrast, has little of the Wii's novelty, and the Wii U GamePad feels increasingly like a creative miss—something that would have worked better as an optional peripheral, leaving Nintendo price headroom to amp up the specs and instead take a swing at the demographic Sony and Microsoft have been so successfully re-wooing. But Nintendo thinks in holistic terms, and that's arguably what people, casual or core, love most about the company's products. Even the Nintendo 64, Nintendo's most powerful console relative to its competition at the time, was as much about its funky three-pronged controller and middle thumbstick as its silicon graphics-hyped processor. It's that stubborn reluctance to play it safe that's occasionally led the company to headline games industry breakthroughs. The flip side is that those relentless attempts to innovate—including ones that might involve rejiggering the very notion of "platform"—can break a company, however much they have in the bank. It's survivable if you're the Virtual Boy and your followup's the Nintendo 64, but the Wii U's probably going to be with us for a while, and while Nintendo's tried repeatedly to make its case by claiming its next breakthrough game's finally here (or just around the corner), it's not at all clear the likes of upcoming games like Mario Kart 8 or Bayonetta 2 or Super Smash Bros. are going to be enough to arrest the Wii U's tailspin—or the arrival of Tomodachi Life, however novel, the 3DS' backwards sales motion. I won't waste your time armchair-CEO'ing Nintendo by suggesting what I think the company should do. Most of what you'll hear about Nintendo taking its intellectual property mobile, or getting out of the hardware business entirely (like Sega) is just wishful thinking. Price cuts never hurt, unless they so sabotage the company's profit margins that any sales boom becomes Pyrrhic. Selling a version of the system without the Wii U GamePad has the ring of wisdom to it, but wouldn't be without its challenges, namely the reduction of the system's already meager library by the number of titles that depend on (or simply benefit from) the controller. Nintendo's problem is that it's in that deadliest of platform catch-22s, where you need a slew of standout, signature games to make your case, leveraged by third-party support for all of the triple-A multi-platform titles. The company has too few of the former and a shrinking dearth of the latter at this point. Third parties have either abandoned the system or failed to sign up for duty in the first place, their worries doubtless confirmed for the second cycle running with these latest fiscal results. And that's why people aren't buying the Wii U. Enthusiasts view it as anemic, casual gamers see it as overpriced and there simply aren't enough diehards loyal to the beloved Nintendo brand to make up those deficiencies. The proof is in those figures. [time-brightcove videoid=3547378566001]
Jean-Marc Bouju—AP

Revisiting the Rwandan Genocide: Origin Stories From The Associated Press (PROOF) Jean-Marc Bouju and David Guttenfelder remember covering Rwanda

Michael S. Williamson’s photos from the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide (Washington Post)

Revisiting the Rwandan Genocide: How Churches Became Death Traps (PROOF) David Guttenfelder in Kigali documenting the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide

Gilless Peress’ work from Rwanda in 1994 (CNN Photos) Twenty years ago this month, mass killings began in the tiny African country of Rwanda. Shortly after the genocide began, photographer Gilles Peress traveled to Rwanda, a country he had visited only weeks before. The grim aftermath can be seen in his book “The Silence.”

Carol Guzy’s photos of Rwandan refugees returning from Zaire (Washington Post) Guzy made these images over several months in 1996. They document Rwandan refugees’ return from Zaire (now Congo) and efforts to reunite children with their parents.

A Guide to the Best Spring/Summer Photo Books (LigthtBox) LightBox presents a special preview of the season’s best photography books

War Photographer Captures Fallout From Combat at Home, Abroad (ABC News) “Disco Night Sept 11,” a new book by Red Hook Editions, presents Magnum photographer Peter van Agtmael’s documentation of America’s involvement in the post-9/11 wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Finding Chris Hondros (New York Times Lens blog) Chris’s Hondros’s “Testament” book captures the mind and eye of a photographer who was killed in war. But to those who knew him, it is a chance to continue conversations started long ago.

Testament by Chris Hondros (Al Jazeera America) A new book features the late photographer’s images and first-person testimony as a witness to conflict around the world | Also on Rolling Stone here and NBC News here

Call of the wild: photographer Lucas Foglia beds down in the American west (Guardian) Cowboys stretching before a rodeo, toxic water flowing from fracked rocks … ranchers and miners go head to head in Foglia’s vast, cinematic photographs of the wild west that challenge all our notions of the US today | Sean O’Hagan on Foglia’s new book Frontcountry

Alexander Gronsky’s ‘Pastoral’ (The New Yorker’s Photo Booth) For “Pastoral,” Gronsky took to the fringes of Moscow, the suburbs between Russia’s most populous city and the countryside that surrounds it. The project is coming out as a book

Dr. Michael J. Frankel, a senior scientist at Penn State’s Applied Research Laboratory, doesn’t stay up at night thinking about how a nuclear bomb could destroy America’s electrical grid and plunge parts of the country into darkness. But coronal mass ejections do. And what is that, exactly? “The sun kinda farts, if you will,” says Frankel. “Plasma stuff gets ejected from the sun and travels past Earth.” The epic, once in a 100-year sun fart was at the center of a congressional hearing Thursday, as a House Homeland Security subcommittee debated legislation that would protect critical infrastructure from the threat of unwanted electromagnetic pulses. For an issue low on the Capitol Hill totem pole, the language from the panel of experts was especially apocalyptic. “A natural EMP catastrophe or nuclear EMP attack could blackout the national electric grid for months or years and collapse all the other crucial infrastructure—communications, transportation, banking, and finance—necessary to sustain modern society,” said Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, the Executive Director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security. He added that EMP is “least understood but gravest threat” to the country; a “clear and present danger.” Frankel said that power companies “simply have not prepared” for the possibility of such a high intensity electromagnetic shock. “It will happen at some point…on a 100 year scale,” he added. The panel laid down a few close calls, both on the nuclear and solar fronts. Pry said that a coronal mass ejection “narrowly” missed Earth in July 2012. The panel also said that besides Russia and China, North Korea and Iran could be nuclear threats. Dr. Chris Beck, Vice President of the Electric Infrastructure Security Council, said that America's eastern coast is particularly vulnerable to attack as it generates around three quarters of the country’s power. "If there were an attack or something like that over the East coast, that would be worse than being over Utah, I suppose," said Frankel. For a few billion dollars, according to Frankel and Beck, the country could mitigate the EMP crisis by "harding"—essentially building enhanced surge protectors for—a few thousand of the highest volt transformers. “It’s a relatively modest cost versus the value of the installed infrastructure,” Frankel told TIME. “It’s almost foolish not to do it.”
powerHouse Books

A look at the great photographers’ developer trays (BBC) When John Cyr set out to photograph the tools of the darkroom he discovered in himself something unexpected – a passion to capture the chemical fingerprints of some of the world’s greatest photographers.

In Photography, Cool Rules (New York Times Lens blog) What good is being cool if nobody knows it? An exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery shows how cool and photography need each other | American Cool is open at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington and will remain on view through Sept. 7. More here

In Houston, FotoFest offers a lens on the Arab world (Al Jazeera America) Event is perhaps the largest exhibition to date of contemporary Arab photography and mixed media

Sans titre by Joan Miró
Moises Saman—Magnum

The Art of Photojournalism (Financial Times) Over the past 10 years, photojournalists have increasingly captured the attention of the art world as their powerfully affecting images cross over from news agencies to gallery and museum walls.

Tomas van Houtryve Drone Essay Longest Ever Published by Harper’s (Photo District News) Van Houtryve takes on the proliferation of drones as weapons and as tools of surveillance in the April issue of Harper’s Magazine, in a photo essay titled “Blue Sky Days.” At 16 pages, it’s the largest picture story ever published in the magazine.

Chang W. Lee On Exploring a New World Every Day (New York Times Lens blog) A Manhattan exhibit celebrates Chang Lee’s 20 years as a photographer for The New York Times, a career that has taken him around the world and back in time.

Saul Leiter in Black and White (The New Yorker’s Photo Booth) Monochrome from the master of color

A Look Back at Burt Glinn (New York Times Lens blog) Sarah Stacke, who was hired to help Burt Glinn digitize his vast archives, recalls the lessons he taught her about doing things well and with love

Robb Kendrick: Life in India’s Coal Mines (PROOF) Kendrick on his work from the April issue of the National Geographic magazine

The Deutsche Börse shortlisted photographs of Congo’s civil war (Telegraph) Nominated for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize, Richard Mosse’s video images give the Congolese conflict a disturbing pink tinge

On Assignment across Africa with @glennagordon (Instagram blog)

Shoot Stories: Mustafah Abdulaziz (Telegraph) Abdulaziz on photographing water scarcity in rural Pakistan | Photos here

Want a splash of steaming acid to the face next time you try to jack an ATM? Researchers at ETH Zurich University may have you covered. Almost. They claim to have come up with a chemical cocktail they say could be used in ATMs or to protect money being transported, by soaking money stashed in ATMS and targeted by miscreants with a kind of hot foam. So no, not a gruesome face-melting experience like in Raiders of the Lost Ark, but a destructive enough one to deter would-be thieves. And it's all thanks to a tiny-winged orange and black insect known as the bombardier beetle. The bombardier beetle defends itself by spraying perceived threats with a nasty chemical concoction, storing hydroquinone (a type of phenol sometimes used in skin-lightening procedures) and hydrogen peroxide in separate repositories within its abdomen. If it's threatened, it injects those into a third chamber, where they mix with water and enzymes that catalyze the brew into a boiling fluid that comes shooting out of a swiveling gland at near-boiling temperatures. The beetle's sophisticated defense mechanism inspired the Zurich research team to posit anti-theft technology that works much the same. Their solution, Gizmodo reports, involves filling two honeycomb-like compartments—one with hydrogen peroxide, the other with manganese dioxide (a synthetic compound used in batteries)—separated by an easily breakable layer. If the compartments get jostled, the layer breaks, the chemicals combine, and the reaction produces superheated foam. Drop that into an ATM with and you've got a contraption that's like an ink-spewing clothing store tag. The material could include a marking dye as well as DNA nanoparticles, which the researchers say could be used to sabotage the physical bills themselves and render them traceable. "Since the responsive materials presented here do not depend on electricity, they may provide a cost-effective alternative to currently used safety systems in the public domain, automatic teller machines and protection of money transport systems," the researchers write in their paper, published in Journal of Materials Chemistry. [Gizmodo]
Andrew Mcconnell—Panos Pictures

Andrew McConnell’s best shot: a woman plays cello in a shanty town (Guardian)

Featured photographer: Randy Olson (Verve Photo)

Featured photographer: Ciril Jazbec (Verve Photo)

Featured photographer: Thierry Clech (Verve Photo)

World Press Photo Multimedia Awards Announced (LightBox) The winners of this year’s World Press Photo Multimedia Awards include an in depth look at national protests in Turkey and train surfing in South Africa.

Jassim Ahmad on being the World Press Photo Multimedia Jury (Medium) Trends and tips for visual storytelling

The Best of Photojournalism 2014 (New York Times Lens blog) The National Press Photographers Association’s Best of Photojournalism contest winners were announced Monday. John Tlumacki and Sean Proctor won top honors, and Patrick Smith was named Sports Photographer of the year.

Magnum Emergency Fund Announces 2014 Grantees (LightBox) The fund awards annual grants to photographers from around the world to support anticipatory work that sheds light on under-reported issues and communities.

VII Announces New Mentor Program Photographers (VII Photo) A roster of five photographers is joining agency’s Mentor Program, an education initiative launched in 2008 to provide professional development for emerging photographers whom VII consider to be amongst the brightest new talents in the industry.

Interviews and Talks

In late 2006, the crescendo of rumors about Apple building a smartphone became deafening--and sure enough, in January 2007, the company announced the iPhone. Three years later, the blogosphere was afire with scuttlebutt about an Apple tablet--right before Apple unveiled the iPad. Then there are the rumors about Apple making an HDTV. One with streaming video from the iTunes store, a predictably polished interface and industrial design, and--as long as we're rumormongering--maybe a breakthrough or two that will change TV forever. Analysts, pundits and other assorted Apple watchers have been talking about such a TV for years. Sometimes, they've even said that factories were in the process of cranking up production so that TVs could reach Apple Stores in the immediate future, or issued forecasts of how many units the company would sell. And yet, the Apple HDTV not only isn't here yet, but feels like it's slipping away. When people bring it up now, they assume it will debut in 2015, if they specify a date at all. More often, though, they don't talk about it--the rumor brigade has pretty much moved on to obsessing over the possibility of an Apple smartwatch or other wearable gizmo of some sort. If it turns out that Apple has no definite plan to enter the TV market, it wouldn't be shocking--a possibility utterly at odds with the last few years of conventional wisdom. To understand what happened, it's worth recapping how we got here... 2008 October: Entrepreneur Jason Calacanis says that Apple is working on a networked HDTV--like a TV set with a built-in Apple TV box. 2009 August: Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster speculates that Apple might release an HDTV by 2011, with an "iTunes TV Pass" subscription service and the ability to sync with iPhones, iPods and iMacs. 2010 March: Munster talks about a $2,000 Apple HDTV arriving within 2-4 years, along with a video subscription service for $50 to $90 a month. 2011 January: Late 2012, Munster now says. February: Munster says that Apple's $3.9 billion investment in display production is yet more evidence that an Apple HDTV is on the way. He thinks the company might make $2.5 billion from HDTVs in 2012, $4 billion in 2013 and $6 billion in 2014. June: A former Apple executive tells DailyTech that Apple will blow Netflix away with an iOS-powered HTDV capable of running third-party apps. It'll ship in late 2o11 unless Apple's famously high standards push it into 2012. July: Dave Richards of Australian site Smarthouse says that Apple may be getting ready to release a 55-inch OLED HDTV in 2012, crediting "a Hollywood lawyer" with the scoop. July: In a totally different Apple HDTV rumor from Dave Richards' 55-inch OLED one, Trip Chowdhry of Global Equities Research--the guy who now says Apple is doomed unless it has a smartwatch by later this month--says he's 75 percent sure about the HDTVs in three sizes, which Apple will probably release in March 2012. They're modeled on Bose's VideoWave and will be two inches thick, with 16 built-in speakers. August: Brian White of Ticonderoga Securities channels his inner Gene Munster, saying that Apple's TV plans are moving "at a faster pace than the market expected" and that he thinks it's possible the company will release an HDTV by the end of the year. October: Shortly after Steve Jobs dies on October 5, the Washington Post prints an excerpt from Walter Isaacson's upcoming authorized Jobs biography in which the Apple cofounder confides that he'd "finally cracked" the secret of making an easy-to-use TV. Also in October: Bloomberg reports that "people with knowledge of the project" say that Jeff Robbin, one of the people responsible for the iPod and the iTunes Music Store, is leading the development of an Apple TV. The story also says Gene Munster thinks Apple may release a TV in late 2012 or in 2013. November: Jeffries & Co. analyst Peter Misek says he expects Apple to begin production of an HDTV with a Sharp LCD panel in February for a mid-2012 release. December: Taiwanese supply-chain news source DigiTimes reports that Apple is gearing up to release 32- and 37-inch HDTVs in the summer of 2012, with Samsung chips and Sharp displays. 2012 February: Gene Munster still thinks late 2012 makes sense for the Apple HDTV's release, but he's not sure what the content strategy will be. It could involve TiVo-like management of existing cable TV service, over-the-air broadcasts, a-la-carte or subscription streaming services, or apps. March: Asian research firm CLSA says that scuttlebutt about Foxconn's and Sharp's display-manufacturing plans suggests that the Apple HDTV will be a 2013 product. April: Jeffries & Co.'s Peter Misek now says that Apple will begin production of an HDTV he thinks will be called the iPanel in May, to arrive in stores by the holidays. It will use a Sharp panel with IGZO technology and will cost $1,250. Also in April: Michael Lantz, CEO of app development firm Accedo, says that the Apple HDTV will focus on superior industrial design, and that the appointment of John Browett to run the Apple Store will ensure that "the more complex distribution chains for TV sets can be dealt with cost-efficiently.” May: Leander Kahney of Cult of Mac reports about a source who's supposedly seen a prototype Apple HDTV. It looks like an Apple Cinema Display only much larger, and has Siri voice control plus an iSight camera for FaceTime videoconferencing. Also in May: BGR's Jonathan Geller says that "a trusted source" tells him that Apple will demo a new TV operating system at WWDC in two weeks. The same source thinks Apple won't show the actual HDTV hardware at the conference. Then again, "it's certainly possible" that the set will make an appearance. Also in May: China Daily reports that Foxconn chief Terry Gou has told him that his company is gearing up to produce Apple's "iTV." June: Analyst Brian White, who thought that Apple might release an HDTV by the end of 2011, now says that a report on a Chinese news site that Apple will begin receiving LCD panels from Sharp earlier than expected suggests that the company may release an HDTV by the end of 2012. August: Pacific Crest's Andy Hargreaves does something startling--given that he's an analyst--by saying he thinks Apple won't release an HDTV in the near-term future, based on comments by Apple executive Eddy Cue. November: James Kisner of Jeffries & Co. says that a major North American cable company is performing bandwidth tests to verify that it can support an Apple HDTV, suggesting that a release may be imminent. Jeffries' Peter Misek, who once expected an Apple HDTV in mid-2012 and later talked about it shipping by that year's holiday season, now forecasts sales of 4.9 million units in 2013 and 11.6 million in 2014. Also in November: Gene Munster now thinks the Apple HDTV will arrive in November 2013. He predicts sizes of 42 to 55 inches and price tags from $1,500 to $2,000. December: Morgan Stanley analysts Katy Huberty and Jerry Liu speculate that Apple patents suggest that the Apple HDTV may have a 3D display. 2013 January: Gene Munster says that Apple is still working to get an HDTV out in 2013. Also in January: BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield says that Apple won't release a TV set in 2013. March: Munster still hopes an Apple HDTV will be out by the end of the year. Also in March: "Industry supply chain sources" tell DigiTimes that Apple is working on a 4K Ultra HD TV called the iTV, with an LG panel. It could ship by the end of the year, but early 2014 is more likely. April: Remember Brian White? He thought the Apple HDTV might show up by the end of 2011. Then he said the signs pointed to the end of 2012. Now he expects a 60-inch "iTV" in the second half of 2013. He talks about it being bundled with a 9.7-inch "Mini iTV" and a unique input device called the iRing you wear on your finger, for a package price in the neighborhood of $1,500-$2,500. October: Research firm Advanced Research Japan Co. says that Apple will probably start selling 55- and 65-inch 4K Ultra HD TVs in the fourth quarter of 2014. November: Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities says that he thinks an Apple HDTV is at least two years away. 2014 April: The Korea Herald reports that an unnamed display company is working on a sample 65-inch OLED panel for possible use in an Apple HDTV expected in 2015. The trend is clear: There are far fewer stories about an Apple HDTV today than there were a couple of years ago, and the ones which do pop up are more vague. And when Re/code's John Paczkowski broke the news that Apple wouldn't show a wearable gizmo or a new Apple TV box at its WWDC event next month, he didn't even bother to mention an Apple HDTV--presumably because nobody really expected it to arrive as soon as mid-2014. The invaluable Google Trends shows that web searches for "Apple HDTV" have tapered off at the same time that ones for "Apple smartwatch" have spiked, suggesting that we've collectively lost interest in the whole subject: [caption id="attachment_92041" align="aligncenter" width="560"] Google[/caption] What can we learn from all this? Rumors that are at odds with each other are a bad sign. For instance, the fact that the alleged experts couldn't agree on the Apple HDTV's screen size, screen technology or screen supplier showed that either some of them or all of them had it wrong. So are rumors that sound fundamentally improbable. Such as Apple selling a TV with a large OLED screen, or bundling an HDTV with a secondary screen and a device called an "iRing." By the time the company is actually about to announce something, the wackiness has usually subsided. The supply chain can mislead. People keep thinking they see signs that Apple's Asian suppliers are about to start helping it make an HDTV. So far, such evidence has meant nothing. Analysts get irrationally exuberant. If they think Apple should make an HDTV, they tend to see signs that it will make an HDTV--one with the features they'd like to see--and will do it soon. Once a given analyst's predictions have failed to come true for two holiday seasons in a row, it's reasonable to ignore anything that person says about the topic in the future. Patents have nothing--repeat, nothing--to do with product roadmaps. Which means that a pundit who uses them to make any predictions at all about an upcoming Apple product can also be safely ignored. At this point, the Apple HDTV rumors have fizzled so decisively that when new ones come along, as they surely will, it won't make any sense to assume that anything anyone has said so far is likely to be true. Instead, we can just start again on this topic from scratch--and the more skeptical we are this time around, the better. [time-brightcove videoid=3349963583001]
cnn.com

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