Ken Rockwell shut me down…



Wow, I had no idea what it was like to be one of the popular kids….until Ken Rockwell put a link to one of my posts on his blog. I’m a fan of Ken’s analyses and advice, and apparently, so are thousands of other folks!

Because once that link appeared, this little blog was immediately swamped with a 400% increase in traffic, which caused my hosting company to shut down my site. I had a little shared server which was plenty to handle my normal traffic, but it just melted down at the onslaught of Rockwellian readership.

And all it took was the immediate payment of triple my normal yearly fee to get the bandwidth I needed to stay up. Oh fifteen minutes of fame…. nobody told me you’d be so costly!

All of this because I admitted to shooting (and occasionally even using) JPEGs along with my NEFs. It’s clear to me that file format and raw processor choice is only a slightly less controversial topic than global warming, health care, or Apple vs. PC (wait, wait, is there still even a question about that last one:-)

It’s clear that you guys love techie posts, like Don’t Ask, I’ll Tell and What’s in The Bag, and are not so much on “state of the biz” or “what I’ve been doing lately” posts. That’s cool.

In an effort to keep some of you coming back to visit now that I’ve actually got room at the inn, I’d like to point you to a couple of older techie posts that answer a lot of questions raised in the comments and emails generated by those other two posts.

First, the question of what else I pack and take besides the camera bag: check out this post and this one too. If you’re interested in audio gear for multimedia, take a look here.

I’ll have more tech posts coming up but I wanted to try to keep some of you guys here by pointing you backwards a month or so. Because, truthfully, most of what I’ve got coming for the next couple of weeks are witty think pieces (he says modestly!)….oh, and an audio slideshow featuring beautiful ballerinas…shot in NEF (but not in the raw)!

This entry was posted in Ironies, Photo Gear, Photo Techniques, Technology.


  1. Joy December 10, 2009 at 10:11 am #

    Congrats! And I love the comic–that’s one reason I’m just a ghost member of a local photography meetup. I see what events they’re doing and get ideas on where to take pictures, but I can’t do the mob scene; totally ruins my sense of discovery.

  2. @cristian December 10, 2009 at 11:28 am #

    You has been Ken Rolled :p

    • Bob December 10, 2009 at 12:01 pm #

      Hi Cristian: Ken rolled and Rockwalled! Bob

  3. Andrew Knapp December 10, 2009 at 11:44 am #

    Hi, Bob. I found you through Ken, and I was hooked immediately. But I like both the techie stuff and the what-you’re-up-to posts. More importantly, I appreciate how you can write, spell correctly and use proper grammar, unlike some other photography bloggers out there. I was familiar with your work in the first place, but it took Ken’s link for me to discover your blog. Excellent stuff. Keep it going, please.

    • Bob December 10, 2009 at 12:00 pm #

      Hi Andrew: Thanks for the encouraging words! Bob

  4. John Pierce December 10, 2009 at 2:29 pm #

    Hi Bob,

    I am one of the lemmings who came over from Ken’s site to bring yours down 😀 However, in my defense I *do* read your columns in Outdoor Photography. I love your portfolio and your common sense approach to photography. After I found your blog I spent probably 3 hours reading through old posts. Great stuff!


  5. Dave Hutchinson December 10, 2009 at 7:23 pm #

    It is all great, Bob! I look forward to your frequent posts.

    • Bob December 10, 2009 at 7:47 pm #

      DAve: I’ll try to keep them coming. cheers, Bob

  6. Clifford Gwinn December 10, 2009 at 11:15 pm #

    Busted…..I read both of those techie posts!

  7. Marc M December 10, 2009 at 11:43 pm #

    I check back pretty much everyday! Love the Blog. Love the work! And the videos on youtube of you and Joe Mcnally just make my day.

  8. zachary vandehey December 11, 2009 at 1:41 am #

    I use to be all about equipment when I was younger but I now see that it is so much more then that. I kinda hate “whats in the bag” type posts and techie talk (not that it doesn’t matter!) But I do think that sometimes it can drive people away. I was so caught up in the equipment that I forgot to take pictures. I love your what I’ve been doing lately pieces because thats what really matters!


    • Bob December 11, 2009 at 7:35 am #

      Thanks Zach, we’ll keep ’em coming. BK

  9. Nevada Wier December 11, 2009 at 12:34 pm #

    Oh I love this cartoon!!!! Psssssssst: Ken Rockwell I’m over here (waving wildly)

    • Bob December 11, 2009 at 4:41 pm #

      Hi Nevada! How was Burma? Are you back? Bob

      • Nevada Wier December 11, 2009 at 9:58 pm #

        I’m back from Rajasthan, Burma, Orissa, and Chattisgarh. Whew! All was grand! How will I edit all these images, write the blog posts, make AV shows, write a book.. or two, learn new software, give a few talks, and wrap Xmas presents? (And I left out so much more.) Any hints…

        • Bob December 11, 2009 at 10:48 pm #

          Hi Nevada: Short of cloning yourself, I don’t know. All I know is the new paradigm involves working a lot more and making a lot less! Welcome back! Bob

  10. Skunk December 11, 2009 at 4:18 pm #

    Hi Mr Krist,

    Since I’ve been reading your stuff in OP for years, I been reading your blog since it came online. For what it’s worth, I enjoy the ‘what’s up with me’ as well as the tech type posts. The result in hits going to the tech posts may be that over time, some of us keep clicking back to the tech posts for shopping lists and reference material.

    I keep referring back to the lighting kit for the elderly while refining my lighting kit, as well as your lens selections. I follow the work of other landscape greats, but pay very close attention to your kit, since checking in luggage is against my religion, and you seem to travel the lightest out of everyone short of Galen Rowell (bless his soul)

    Can you believe carryon restrictions are at 7 kg with most intl airlines now??? Loving my D90 + 16-85 + 35 combo.

    • Bob December 11, 2009 at 4:41 pm #

      I know, if the weight limits get any tighter, I’m going have to buy a ticket for my camera bag…or just send it and walk myself.Bob

      • Skunk December 11, 2009 at 7:27 pm #

        A bag you may be interested in is the Patagonia MLC (Maximum Legal Carryon). It measures 22x14x9 and doesn’t have wheels, so its empty weight is 2.5 lbs (vs the wheelies which start at 7).

        I flew Air China this last August, their restrictions are at 5kg (11 lbs!!!) Their beer, porridge and anything water based tastes like reconstituted cardboard.

        Nikon is going to have to make a carbon fiber D40 or something soon.

        • Bob December 11, 2009 at 10:48 pm #

          Thanks Skunk, I’ll check it out. Bob

  11. cathy scholl December 11, 2009 at 7:02 pm #


    I just forwarded your post (along with Nevada’s comment) to Ken.
    We’ve been in the same photo groups for years. Funny!

    • Bob December 11, 2009 at 10:49 pm #

      Thanks Cathy….Ken should know the power he wields! Bob

  12. Rob Oresteen December 11, 2009 at 10:32 pm #

    Hi Bob – I have been reading you for a couple of years in OP but never knew it. Then the other day, my girl friend realized she had one of your books – the one on Tuscany!

    Yea – I “discovered” you through KR’s link…and I’m glad I did…we love your stock work, especially the Roman ruins in Libya. We can’t however, seem to navigate through the site and by a print – she absolutely loves the one of the face (right hand side).

    Anyway, keep up the good work.

    – Rob

  13. Dan Creighton December 12, 2009 at 8:18 pm #

    I enjoy the state of the biz and vision type of posts more then the tech. Tech isn’t everything but is secondary to vision and experience. Keep it up!

    • Bob December 12, 2009 at 10:16 pm #

      Will do, Dan, thanks for the feedback, Bob

  14. Brenda December 13, 2009 at 3:38 am #

    Nothing better than sitting with club soda and Kahlua and reading your posts, Bob – but I think I’d laugh even without the alcohol! I truly enjoy your wit and helpful tips, too.

    • Bob December 14, 2009 at 10:49 am #

      Kahula and club soda, eh? I’ll have to try it…sounds like a great holiday libation! Have a happy holiday Brenda! Bob

  15. Brenda December 13, 2009 at 3:39 am #

    Oh, I forgot to mention – I have a new blog site – it’s Please go there and re-RSS to get my feed. Thanks!

    • Bob December 14, 2009 at 10:49 am #

      Brenda: Great to hear from you. I’ll update the link. Bob

  16. Margo Pinkerton December 14, 2009 at 7:01 am #


    Your techie pieces are really good, as they don’t go the route of the “pixel peepers” who forget that aesthetics are even more important than pixels. You can be moved by a really good composition that may not technically be great, but a technically perfect photo without content and soul is … nothing. That said, we really enjoy your pieces on the philosophy and vision of imaging. Take care, TBC (Arnie sends his best)

    • Bob December 14, 2009 at 10:48 am #

      Hi Margo: All the best to you and Arnie for the holidays. Nice to hear from you both! Bob

  17. Dr. Biggles December 14, 2009 at 2:55 pm #

    Hey Bob,

    Mr. Rockwell gave me a nod this morning and am laughing my XXX off watching my hits rise by the second. Take me down, I triple dog dare ya!

    xo, Biggles

    • Bob December 14, 2009 at 5:28 pm #

      Biggles: I just hope you’ve got the bandwidth! cheers, Bob

  18. Dr. Biggles December 14, 2009 at 6:19 pm #

    Hey Bob,
    I got no idea. I do know I signed up for the mega super pak when I purchased the service. Since 9:50 this morning, 3:18 now, am cresting up to 1400 unique visits. A nice way to wind down a Monday.


  19. Alan Haynes December 15, 2009 at 1:27 pm #

    Triple the payment?! Ouch, that hurts. I’m pretty sure my webhosting company, Dreamhost, doesn’t do that. But I’d better check, just in case Rockwell “discovers” me.

    • Bob December 15, 2009 at 3:27 pm #

      Hi Alan: Most places charge you by how much bandwidth you use. If your consumption takes a huge jump, you’ll get nailed. I don’t think any ISP gives you unlimited bandwidth without some kind of price hike! BK

      • Alan Haynes December 17, 2009 at 2:08 pm #

        You’re right about that. Dreamhost charges 10-cents per GB over your allotted bandwidth.

        But here’s the fun part: the longer you’re a customer, the more free bandwidth they give you. They increase it by 40GB per week! So, I’m up to over 9GB/mo allotted bandwidth.

        I think even Rockwell couldn’t send me over that limit. Still, I’d like to find out.

        • Alan Haynes December 19, 2009 at 11:32 am #

          Oops, I meant to say I’m up to 9TB (that’s 9000 GB) of monthly bandwidth.

          I also noticed that NEW Dreamhost customers seem to get unlimited bandwidth. Check it out if you’re interested:

          • Bob December 19, 2009 at 4:23 pm #

            Thanks Alan, I’m going to check it out! Bob

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