The beautiful thing about the iPhone are the thousands of applications you can download. Some are ingenious such as iBird Explorer, a database of the birds in your area including a search function that helps you identify any of your feathered friends and an audio clip of each birds call that you can use to scare your terriers. Some are of the “How Did I Survive Without This” variety such as Locavore which tells you what produce is in season in your area then points you to the nearest farmers’ market. Then there are the WTF apps. Those are the applications that make you wonder what drugs some programmer was taking when he thought them up. Not that these applications are any less fun for being bizarre. Under this latter category, file Hipstamatic.
The premise of Hipstamatic is to add a filter program to the iPhone’s built-in camera that makes it operate like the old Diana and Holga toy cameras. You know those cameras that featured light leaks, vignetting and other quirks that some photographers prize for their serendipitous flaws. In addition, Hipstamatic simulates the use of circa 1969 film, especially if that film had originally offered oversaturated color, been stored incorrectly and now had faded into a yellowish ghost of its former self.
Let’s review here. This is an application that takes a state-of-the-art technology item and reduces its functionality to that of something that was considered primitive even back in the Sixties. I’m reeling from the Postmodern irony.
Like the old Holgas and Dianas, the results are all over the map. I’m still trying to figure out how to get the best effects. But let’s look at a sampling, shall we? Even if the whole premise seems counterintuitive, I’m sure we can come up with a good reason for Hipstamatic: