In addition to our day job healing animals, many veterinary professionals also consider themselves amateur photographers. We like to document everything from cute patients to cytology findings to medical lesions, and many of us do so with some frequency.
With the widespread use of digital photography comes the cumbersome task of getting those photos from your digital camera onto your computer, mobile device, and cloud storage programs (i.e. Google Drive, Flickr). The thought of locating your camera’s cord and making time to upload photos to your computer is daunting for the veterinary professional on the go.
What’s worse, once the photos are on your computer, you still have to move them to your mobile devices, cloud storage, and your practice’s electronic medical record. Don’t have the cord? Just open the innards of the camera, take the memory card out, plug it into your computer, and drag them around. Are you sweating yet?
All of the budding techies out there would never waste their precious time manually moving photos around to various devices in these ways, juggling cords, a smartphone, an iPad, and a digital camera. Because of this, you often opt for your smartphone when taking photos, leaving that fancy, expensive digital camera just sitting around waiting for love.
While smartphone cameras are improving, you phone is still no match for a high quality digital camera.
The following tool, listed in Time Magazine’s All Time 100 Greatest Gadgets (1923-2010), can help you eliminate these steps and free your digital camera for high frequency use!
What is the Eye-Fi?
If you have haven’t heard of the Eye-Fi card yet, I’ll just say “you’re welcome” in advance.
The Eye-Fi card is an affordable SD card (the kind most cameras take) that doubles as a wireless transmitter.
What does this mean? As you take photos on your digital camera, they are automatically sent to the devices of your choice (computer, tablet, phone). It works over any traditional Wi-Fi network and it is impressively fast. (Disclaimer: slow speeds have been reported if you are using a slow internet connection. Need help? Adopt-a-Techy).
There’s more! Plug an Eye-Fi card into your camera and you’ll have endless memory because you can set the card to erase photos after they are uploaded. Also, as long as you are near wireless internet, your photos are uploaded immediately after taking them. This means your photos will never be lost if your camera is lost, damaged, or stolen.
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The Eye-Fi card was launched in 2005 but has gone through several design improvement cycles. It now has companion apps on iOS and Android and is being integrated with several other services such as Flickr and the DoxiGo Scanner.
Convinced? For more information on the Eye Fi card visit www.eyefi.com.
About the Author
Dr. Caleb Frankel is an ER veterinarian, author, speaker, and entrepreneur. He currently divides his time between two roles: emergency veterinarian at VSEC, a 70-doctor referral hospital in Greater Philadelphia, PA (USA) and the founder of Instinct Science, a new animal health company helping the world’s state-of-the-art veterinary practices streamline their care through medically-driven invoicing and thoughtful automation.
He served as Director of New Product Development at Brief Media for 4 years where he lead the development and launch of products such as Plumb's Veterinary Drugs and New York Vet. Follow Dr. Frankel on Twitter @VMDtechnology.