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POTD discussion

Posted by Jeff Weissman  
Jeff Weissman February 29, 2012 09:05PM
Would be nice to have a talk page for each POTD, with a quick note from the person who selected a particular image for POTD, as to what feature of the image was attractive to them. For example, "interesting morphology". "seldom seen in this habit", "great example of this rare mineral", "great view of a collecting site", etc... I think this would enhance our appreciation of the POTD and of the selection process.
David Bernstein February 29, 2012 10:34PM
Jeff, doesn't a computer select POTD? Insert winking smiley here. Lol
Harjo Neutkens February 29, 2012 10:53PM
No. We have a monkey for that. They also do quite well in picking stocks and bonds.

This settled, all the failed jokes aside, I can go on to answer Jeff's question.
Jeff, feel free to open a topic on the POTD choices, actually, you already have. The message board is an open and liberal place where things can be discussed at all times.
So, whenever a POTD that I chose is being questioned, I have no problem explaining why it was my choice, and I know this counts for all the other managers as well.
I do hope however, and I think they are most of the time, the reasons for choosing a certain photo as POTD are obvious.


Jeff Weissman February 29, 2012 11:23PM
Harjo (and Mindat monkey winking smiley )

I find that the majority of POTDs are obviously interesting and worthy of the selection. Some are a bit more obtuse as to why they were selected.

Having a selector's comment may help both the initiated and novice to better understand and appreciate the particular attributes of the POTD - think of this as an educational opportunity and a means to communicate with the future. For example, the recent selection of benitoite from Japan - rare species collectors, including myself, will marvel at the excellent crystal, etc., while someone not so familiar with rare or Japanese minerals, whom might otherwise shrug their shoulders at such as image, will be informed as to the images interesting features, and our future archivist will have some information to help document / interpret the range of mineral related images the have been posted.

As a reviewer of posted POTD images, I could post comments, but I will not want to guess at why some of the images were selected, although it is more obvious for others. I could post a comment, "great image of a rare transparent benitoite" while the selection may have been made based on "great photo showing skills of photographer to capture a small crystal"

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/01/2012 04:54AM by Jeff Weissman.
Debbie Woolf March 01, 2012 01:04AM
I like this idea for the educational benefits we can learn. Take me for instance, my knowledge is limited to Southern African minerals, no Benitoite there so I've just learnt something new !
Alfredo Petrov March 01, 2012 03:43AM
Well, Debbie, you should run around the Kalahari manganese fields at night with a shortwave UV light, and you may well find some unobtrusive overlooked benitoite! It just takes a little Ba and Ti (both are present there) and a wee bit of metamorphism. The Japanese have recently found benitoite lurking, long-unnoticed, at a couple of metamorphosed Mn deposits smiling smiley
Matteo Chinellato March 01, 2012 06:11AM
is a question I do for a long time, since some POTD are really poor and do not understand why they are chosen

Mindat Page

Attrezzatura e tecnica sono solo l'inizio. È il fotografo che conta più di tutto. (John Hedgecoe)
Christian Auer March 01, 2012 07:07AM
Jeff, thats a great idea! Besides the photographic quality (which can be one but only one possibility of the choice), there are so many others. Unique habits (like Haralds pyrite recently!), unique paragenesis, thrilling aesthetics, historic specimen, rareness, ..., I could go on and on.
We are not always experts to realize the reason of the choice but would love to learn more about it. Not in any critical way, just for educational reasons!
Jolyon & Katya Ralph March 01, 2012 10:48AM
I have asked that when a photo is selected as possible POTD for managers to edit and extend the description of the photo where necessary to include the information about what the photo is trying to show (and therefore why it is important).

Having a better description for the photo is more useful in the long-term than a separate description written somewhere about why it was chosen as POTD.

Editors must remember they have every right to go and edit photo descriptions and add extra comments if necessary.

Harjo Neutkens March 01, 2012 08:29PM
Jeff, I'll tell you what I look for in a POTD of my choice. I very much like aesthetic and well executed photos, of nice specimens (I won't add that to the description, though, it would look a bit awkward, but I occasionally add my favourite micro photos to a topic here on the photography board)
When it's a POTD of something very rare and ugly, it was probably Alfredo's choice winking smiley
Peter Andresen March 01, 2012 08:41PM
Then it's Alfredo we have to bribe, Jeff! winking smiley
Alfredo Petrov March 01, 2012 09:04PM
LOL, Peter smiling smiley

Actually, I confess I very rarely pay attention to the POTD, and I think I've only selected maybe fewer than 10 total in the last several years? In fact many days often go by without me even seeing the POTD, because when I go to Mindat it's below the bottom of my screen and I'm usually immediately moving on to a locality or species page without scrolling further down the front page.

In my humble opinion, the POTD issue has been inflated way out of proportion to its importance to the site, as if choosing POTDs were Mindat's most serious function, and getting one selected were the highest accolade for any Mindat user/contributor. I enjoy looking at them when I happen to see them, and I'm very grateful to all our many contributors who take the time to upload photos of interesting and/or beautiful minerals and localities, but publicising POTDs is far from Mindat's primary purpose confused smiley

Cheers smileys with beer
Harjo Neutkens March 01, 2012 09:19PM
I completely agree Alfredo.
Rui Nunes March 01, 2012 09:30PM
I also fully agree with Alfredo! ... and the POTD is fine as it is ... sometimes causes some "noise" but it is funny smileys with beer
Paul Brandes March 01, 2012 10:22PM
I'm with Alfredo. I scroll down to take a quick glance at the photo, but I rarely ever click on it to read the description. I believe the selection process is good the way it as I have never had an issue with the photo chosen, even though I've only had one in six years. Some might question the quality of the photo or why it was picked in the first place. To those folks I would say that there is more to the POTD than how well you can use your camera equipment! What about the scientific aspect to the photo, whether it is a specimen or a locality of significance??

No sense in re-inventing the wheel if it rolls just fine..... grinning smiley

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/01/2012 10:29PM by Paul Brandes.
Jeff Weissman March 02, 2012 12:51AM
I'm not arguing with the selection process or quality aspects of POTD; its more a curiosity thing - what attracts someone to an image that others may have overlooked?

BTW, Alfredo, I've got plenty of ugly rocks to send your way next time you pass through New Haven grinning smiley
Stephen Turner March 02, 2012 01:04AM
Todays POTD is not rare or aesthetic or a particularly good photo but it gave me a smile! Well chosen!! smiling smiley)
Matteo Chinellato March 02, 2012 05:38AM
Jolyon Ralph Wrote:
> I have asked that when a photo is selected as
> possible POTD for managers to edit and extend the
> description of the photo where necessary to
> include the information about what the photo is
> trying to show (and therefore why it is
> important).
> Having a better description for the photo is more
> useful in the long-term than a separate
> description written somewhere about why it was
> chosen as POTD.
> Editors must remember they have every right to go
> and edit photo descriptions and add extra comments
> if necessary.
> Jolyon

type the POTD of today without any measure? For not to mention the other.....

Mindat Page

Attrezzatura e tecnica sono solo l'inizio. È il fotografo che conta più di tutto. (John Hedgecoe)
Stuart Mills March 02, 2012 09:30AM
But its happy!
Jolyon & Katya Ralph March 02, 2012 09:57AM
Happy Agate needs no explanation
Matteo Chinellato March 02, 2012 11:03AM
ok, just to understand for the future....

Mindat Page

Attrezzatura e tecnica sono solo l'inizio. È il fotografo che conta più di tutto. (John Hedgecoe)
Roberto Bosi March 02, 2012 05:20PM
Hi everybody! About the POTDs, in my opinion, the Stephen's message hits the centre of the subject. I believe it's not absolutely important to see every day as POTD perfect and/or astonishing images or rare and incredible specimens...Is enough that POTDs are, somehow or other, agreeable. In this way, I think, those who are not professional photographers too can "live" their "glory day".
Every image can convey something to somebody, and as regards how the POTDs are chosen, I'm convinced that everyone would operate in many different ways.
A strong and friendly handshake to all the friends.

Better to be just than good (Kempis)

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/02/2012 05:24PM by Roberto Bosi.
Don Windeler March 02, 2012 09:09PM
Brazilian Happy Agate congratulates his Persian compatriot on being chosen and hopes that rocks everywhere will continue to bring smiles to people's faces.

(but wishes his own image had been captured by a real camera rather than a photocopier.)

Personally, I rather like some randomness in the POTD. It's kind of fun to see what's on tap every day and never be quite sure what to expect. I do agree that it would be nice if there was a spot where the selector (or nominator?) could choose to stick a comment or two on why it was selected, if mostly for cases like the Japanese benitoite where lots of viewers might not get why it's a cool specimen. I always scroll down to see the POTD, but don't always open up to read the full caption.

open | download - 20081101_happyagate_Brazil.JPG (114.5 KB)
Jolyon & Katya Ralph March 02, 2012 09:36PM
Now if your Happy Agate had been uploaded it may have been a POTD!
Peter Andresen March 02, 2012 09:59PM
I hope there will be a happy agate day next year too! So get yuor happy agat uploaded Don!

Tomorow I hope it's lucky leucophanites day. If it is, I'll share some photos.

I like the idea of more random picked POTD's, massive microclines deserve their "15 minutes of fame" too, but with random picking, I guess statistics would playe a role, and some post more pics than others...
Well, I think the way managers select candidates for POTD probably are the best way to do it, so keep up the good work!

PS: Alfredo you could obviously do better and select more! winking smiley

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/02/2012 10:09PM by Peter Andresen.
Don Windeler March 02, 2012 10:41PM
I'll certainly upload Happy, but keep hoping I can dig out an old Fraziers' newsletter from when I bought it that might have a better locality than "Brazil". I ran it through the photocopier this morning because I haven't a camera to shoot with lately -- turned out better than I expected!

I should qualify my comment on "randomness". While they probably should have the lion's share, I think the POTD should cover more than just gorgeous minerals photographed by experts at the top of their game. I like the off-the-wall locality pictures, historical archives, thin section, giant rocks, and the occasional bit of goofiness mixed in. (I'm a big fan of the Google Doodles for the same reason.) I'm not all that pumped about randomly selected images from the galleries, though, as they lack that crucial link of someone out there in the MinDat review world saying, "Wow, this is really cool -- pass it on!" That gets back to the original point of figuring out what hooked someone in when you don't necessarily get it...

As for happy rocks, I have a Geological Society of America volume of review papers from a decade or two ago with figure that still makes me giggle: a thin section photo of an oolite that had "enjoyed" deformation. Probably can't post it because of copyright issues, but I'll pull out the volume tonight and see -- at least I can provide the reference.
Paul Brandes March 02, 2012 10:59PM
Remember the fellow on PBS a number of years ago who used to paint his "happy little clouds"?? Mindat needs someone that can photograph (or paint) happy little rocks..... grinning smiley
Don Windeler March 10, 2012 05:29AM
Finishing up the "happy rock" reference, rather than things relevant to the POTD thread...

The pic below is scanned from Groshong, RH (1990). "Low-temperature deformation mechanisms and their interpretation." Geological Society of America Special Paper 253, Centennial Articles. 337-368.

In checking the legalese up front for the volume, it says, "All materials subject to this copyright and included in this volume may be copied for the noncommercial purpose of scientific or educational advancement." -- happy to delete if anyone has concerns, but as long as everyone just sticks to smiling and enjoying the silliness of what someone found looking back at them while staring through a microscope, I think we’re OK.

Always loved the opening quote in the abstract, attributed to Rob Knipe, 1982: "Rocks do not suffer deformation; they enjoy it."

And (not to let the original point of the thread die) I’d love to hear the occasional comment connected to a POTD as to why it was chosen, even if it’s anonymous and filtered through a designated independent third party manager!

open | download - Groshong1990_fig1.jpg (156.7 KB)
Matteo Chinellato March 10, 2012 05:53AM
its write: "..copied for the noncommercial purpose of scientific or educational advancement.." so you not have to cancel

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