The Casio QV-10.

My very first digital camera was the Casio QV-10, in 1996. One of my sponsors bought it for me to take photos while hiking the Appalachian Trail. Though I didn’t know this at the time, it was one of the first-ever consumer digital cameras. (It was preceded only by the Apple QuickTake 100, in 1994, which was also sold as the Kodak DC40.) The Canon, however, had an LCD display (so you could see your pictures) and a pivoting lens (for self-portraits), making it a great improvement over the prior offering. It ran on AAs, was built like a tank, and took photos at 160×120 pixels or 640×400. The larger size looked pretty crummy, though: they weren’t much better than the smaller size scaled up. I took hundreds of photos at 160×120 (including the photo at right), and while tiny, that was more than offset by the magic of digitalness.

It’s tempting to say it’s a little amazing that 12 years later I’m shooting with an Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT, but it’s actually not at all amazing. If anything, it seems about right.

Published by Waldo Jaquith

Waldo Jaquith (JAKE-with) is an open government technologist who lives near Char­lottes­­ville, VA, USA. more »