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M.Chapman

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Everything posted by M.Chapman

  1. Wim, I did some more tests to try and track it down. By changing the sort criteria on my views I from 28th April - 4th May 2013 I can tell that the offending entry has the following characteristics. Search Term lies before "Eastbourne" alphabetically Views = 1 Sessions =1 Your zooms = 0 Your sales = 0 Your CTR = 0% Total Views >=390 and <=1,080 Total zooms <=1 Total CTR% >=0.05% and <=0.57% I suspect the search term maybe the culprit, so I widened the date range to 1 year and localised it further and found the entry with the problem has a search term lying alphabetically between "daffodils" and "digital" So I then used your idea of looking at "All of Alamy" searches on just April 29th to see if I could spot any search terms between "daffodils" and "digital" that would have resulted in a view of one of my images and could have caused the problem. Whilst there is one that caused a view of 2 of my images (D344R1 & D344PF) using the search terms "decorative plant pot outside" there's nothing that looks unusual. Also the offending entry should only have 1 view whereas this search generated 2, and total views was 173 (not between 390 and 1080). Also if I look at "my views" for 28th - 4th and sort by "views" those 2 views are correctly listed. So it's not that. So it seems like there's "duff" search term that's possibly been filtered out from "all of Alamy" report, but left in "My views" or some data corruption? Mark
  2. Wim, I am only looking at one day at a time when it happens. Mark has given a more thorough breakdown above so perhaps Alamy can look into it. Pearl Mark is right: it is not at your end. It is a busy server at some point at Alamy's. It is a message an error has occurred, but you are not allowed to see which error it is, because you are "on the outside of Alamy". As I said, most likely a server that can not come up with the answer to your question in time. This could be a server on the way to the machine where your answer lies, as well as that machine. In the past I have seen this error a lot when using the search function of the old forum. And also when I tried to view all my zooms for the whole year, at internet rush hours, like when the US or the UK opens for business. When it happened, it usually (but not always) went away by: a - closing all other connections with Alamy, and/or: b - waiting for a more quiet hour. I have not seen it in a while though. Either because something has changed in India, or because I have broken up my already small collection in a couple of pseudos. wim In this case, it is not a busy server problem. The problem is repeatable. Once you have one of these "rogue entries" on a page, the same page will fail to display (providing you have made a repeatable info request, search order, date range etc.), it doesn't matter what time of day you try it. The "chance" element seems to be whether or not you have acquired a "rogue entry" in your view history. Once you've got one, then every time you try to view a page containing it, the error message appears instead.
  3. David, Many thanks. The Sigma lens USB dock and Optimisation Pro software looks very interesting. I wasn't aware of this. I wonder how long it will take them to update their lens range so there's a reasonable range of lenses that support this feature? It could be really useful. In addition to the micro AF adjust It's a particularly neat idea to be able to restrict the focus range. Mark
  4. I'm very occasionally seeing the same problem. I'm running Google Chrome on Windows 7. The problem appears to depend on something in the data the system is trying to access or display. I include more precise details so hopefully Alamy can investigate. If I try to view the activity on my pseudo for 28th April - 4th May 2013 it shows 360 views split over 5 pages. If I sort by "Your views" (max to min) I can view pages 1,2,3,4 OK but page 5 "crashes" with the message you quote. Note it also says the following at the top of the page. Server Error in '/alamysearchhistory' Application If I try sorting by "Your views" (min to max), page 1 "crashes". Presumably because whatever the system was trying to access or display on page 5 has now moved to page 1. If I try sorting by "Total zooms" (max to min) I can view pages 1,2,4 and 5 OK, but 3 "crashes". Presumably because whatever the system was trying to access or display on page 1 has now moved to page 3. By changing the date range I know that the offending view data occurred on 29th April. On that day I had 47 views, but if I click on my psuedo to display the details, the page "crashes" and displays the usual error message. It doesn't matter what I do to the sort order, presumably because there only 1 page of data for that day. Conclusion... Sometimes the system fails to retrieve or display the data required for a particular search term in your views. Whether you see a problem or not depends on whether your views contain that search term. Or maybe there's just some corruption in the database. The system logs that you had a view against a given search term, but then when it goes to get details, it can't find them. I don't believe this is user browser problem, it's at Alamy's end. Hopefully Alamy can investigate further. Mark
  5. David, Many thanks for your reply. I hadn't thought of the Canon M series. I've already got a Canon G15 (sorry I didn't mention that) which works well as a discrete, carry anywhere P&S camera that I find can meet Alamy QC requirements, but only for stationary subjects in good light. In addition to Landscape photos, I also take wildlife pics (not many on Alamy, they're not good enough yet) so often take the 550D and lenses so I can cover both landscape and wildlife, for which speed of focussing and SLR viewfinder are preferable. But I find the phase detect focussing accuracy is just not quite accurate/reliable enough and so I'm often disappointed with the results Based on your comment I took a quick look at info and reviews on the Canon M. Even though it has hybrid AF (mixture of phase and contrast) I note that some user reviews still complain the focussing is far too slow compared to a DSLR. I had hoped that a hybrid system would provide the best of both worlds. Do you have any hands on experience with the M series? What did you think to the focussing speed? It's interesting you're fairly dismissive of basic micro-AF adjust, and yet some folks seem to swear by it (even the basic capability on a 50D). Given the sensitivity of phase AF to all the variables you mention, it's amazing it works at all, and yet most DSLR users rely on it. I agree that contrast AF will always provide greater accuracy, but feel that phase AF could work better than it currently does with my camera & lenses. One option I'm considering is selling one of the 550D bodies on eBay and buying a S/H 50D to replace it. Then I can try it out, and still have 2 bodies. I suspect this approach will be a lot cheaper than sending everything off for calibration. I also took a look at Colchester Camera Repair Centre's website. They seem to have a fairly "rational" approach to resolving focussing problems, but I've no idea what they charge or what their quality of service is like. Are there any DSLRs with known better phase detect focussing accuracy than others? For example I note the Sony SLT has a fixed mirror, that must remove another source of variability Mark
  6. I've got the following equipment 2 x Canon 550D SLR bodies and Canon 15-85 EF-S, 10-22 EF-S, 55-250 EF-S and 60mm EF-S lenses. My dilemma is that I find that phase detect focussing is just not reliable enough, and so I tend to use Live View contrast AF which is always spot on, but slow and tedious. I've done some limited tests and it's clear that there's a little bit of front focussing going on with the phase detect AF suggesting that my lenses and/or camera may benefit from calibration or AF micro-adjust. Note that the errors are pretty small. If I use phase detect it's fine for 6x4". But at 100%, I can't be confident of reliably meeting Alamy's requirements. So I appear to have a choice. Send (both?) bodies and (all?) lenses off for calibration (any idea how much this might cost and who provides the best service?) Upgrade to a body with AF micro-adjust feature (e.g. Canon 50D) and make the fine tweaks myself. Unfortunately the 50D is bigger and heavier than I would like. Swap DSLR systems to perhaps a Nikon (D7000) which is not too much larger and has AF micro-adjust. Could be expensive with having to change lenses Wait for Canon to add AF micro-adjust onto a smaller SLR .... 750D? Any thoughts or advice appreciated. Mark
  7. Wow, gone from page 18 to page 7. Very pleased!
  8. Same thing happened to me. My Alamy measures showed that someone supposedly searched for "Chester Clock [WOP]" but the thumbnail shows one of my images of a boat in Scotland C7W2K9. Chester and Clock do not appear in any of the keywords or location field in that image, or in any of my images... It doesn't do your CTR any good if the system either misreports that you've had a view when you didn't, or if the user really did get a view of an your image which was not related to their search terms. It's also the first time I've ever seen this. It happened on 22nd April. I think there's been a glitch in the system...
  9. When I visit the help page on Help Topic: Topics and Forums at http://discussion.alamy.com/index.php?app=core&module=help the icons to indicate, for example "A regular topic with unread posts" or "This is a topic which you have participated in, with no new replies since you last read it", all appear pretty much the same. Have I misunderstood something? Shouldn't they look quite different to each other? I'm running the latest version of Google Chrome with Windows 7.
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