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  1. #61

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    Dear Frank et al,

    Thanks for the invite to the Dales, what are the dates ? I am sure I could find time for Beer:

    As to the factory tour, early March is difficult as I will be at the Focus on Imaging
    exhibition, I hear what you say about being too close to the UK meeting in April so how about a date in late May early June...

    Simon.

  2. #62
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    Simon - I've started a new thread regarding this issue - follow this link

    http://www.apug.org/forums/showthrea...381#post221381

    and the UK apug meet up in the dales is on 22/23 April. Details can be found on the link that Frank gave in his last post


    I'll cut and paste your last point to the new thread. thanks for this opportunity,

  3. #63
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    Re increasing prices.

    I realise all the stuff about how, in real terms, the price of film is less now than 40 years ago, but unfortunately in the last 5 years Kodaks prices have risen sharply.

    My local lab does a few film sales, but stocks virtually no Kodak now, all fuji, because of the huge price difference, eg. Velvia 5 roll 120 pack = £13; E100VS 5 roll 120 pack = £18. It just wasn't selling.

    Matt

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt5791
    Re increasing prices.

    I realise all the stuff about how, in real terms, the price of film is less now than 40 years ago, but unfortunately in the last 5 years Kodaks prices have risen sharply.

    My local lab does a few film sales, but stocks virtually no Kodak now, all fuji, because of the huge price difference, eg. Velvia 5 roll 120 pack = £13; E100VS 5 roll 120 pack = £18. It just wasn't selling.

    Matt
    And are either of those two companies subsidized by their governments?

    Have either of them ever been accused of dumping products at reduced rates in certain countries?

    Which of those companies actually has a more begnign attitude towards their employees with better pay, benefits and working environment?

    Which is working hardest to clean up the environment, for example by kicking off the replacement of Cadmium and Mercury?

    And most importantly, which of those companies never had to develop a color process, but rather was able to piggy back on others color process technology?

    Just rhetorical questions for you to consider. No one ever does, especially the last one.

    I actually submit to you that Fuji, Konishiroku, and Agfa have never had to do a significant amount of color process development in the last ~30 years, having used Kodak processes. (Agfa did use their own for a while as did Konisiroku, but Fuji even had a Kodachrome work alike in the 50s). The cost of color process R&D had to be factored into a lot of Kodak film. And, there are no licencing fees for processing Fuji film in Kodak chemistry. It is only if one company makes their own version of the kit, and if there is a proprietary chemcial involved that there are fees required.

    Just for an example, it took us about 2 years to formulate the first usable color blix for paper and there was no patent involved. Everyone freely sells it today. I wish I got one penny for every kit sold. Why not, I did a lot of the R&D? Well, Kodak does not even get a penny.

    You are all so quick to criticize Kodak. I hope that this little post helps you understand the dilemma that Kodak is in being the 'leader'. Oh, and BTW, they are quite well aware at EK of the fact that if they change the process, they will be sued. This was a big factor in one verson of color paper in which the entire product line would have diverged into something entirely different, but which did not happen due to the lawsuits over going from P122 to EP3.

    PE

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
    And are either of those two companies subsidized by their governments?

    Have either of them ever been accused of dumping products at reduced rates in certain countries?

    Which of those companies actually has a more begnign attitude towards their employees with better pay, benefits and working environment?

    Which is working hardest to clean up the environment, for example by kicking off the replacement of Cadmium and Mercury?

    And most importantly, which of those companies never had to develop a color process, but rather was able to piggy back on others color process technology?

    Just rhetorical questions for you to consider. No one ever does, especially the last one.

    I actually submit to you that Fuji, Konishiroku, and Agfa have never had to do a significant amount of color process development in the last ~30 years, having used Kodak processes. (Agfa did use their own for a while as did Konisiroku, but Fuji even had a Kodachrome work alike in the 50s). The cost of color process R&D had to be factored into a lot of Kodak film. And, there are no licencing fees for processing Fuji film in Kodak chemistry. It is only if one company makes their own version of the kit, and if there is a proprietary chemcial involved that there are fees required.

    Just for an example, it took us about 2 years to formulate the first usable color blix for paper and there was no patent involved. Everyone freely sells it today. I wish I got one penny for every kit sold. Why not, I did a lot of the R&D? Well, Kodak does not even get a penny.

    You are all so quick to criticize Kodak. I hope that this little post helps you understand the dilemma that Kodak is in being the 'leader'. Oh, and BTW, they are quite well aware at EK of the fact that if they change the process, they will be sued. This was a big factor in one verson of color paper in which the entire product line would have diverged into something entirely different, but which did not happen due to the lawsuits over going from P122 to EP3.

    PE
    I totally agree with every word. The problem is that people don't care and wont pay more becaue of it, infact many people will assume that Kodak - being the originator of these products, should be able to charge less.

    I think that Kodak is an amazing compny - just look at the technical information on their website alone, they just seem to have lost their way. Mabey I'm wrong, but this is the way it looks.

    Matt

  6. #66

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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
    And are either of those two companies subsidized by their governments?
    Kodak has been subsidised by the US Government via military contracts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
    Have either of them ever been accused of dumping products at reduced rates in certain countries?
    Don't know, please tell us. Were they 'accused', or were they found guilty?
    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
    Which of those companies actually has a more begnign attitude towards their employees with better pay, benefits and working environment?
    The workers I know made redundant by Kodak at Harrow, London didn't think their attitude benign, watching their jobs exported to the US.

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
    Which is working hardest to clean up the environment, for example by kicking off the replacement of Cadmium and Mercury?
    Please tell us, showing how they are working 'hardest'. Complying with local laws doesn't count.

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
    And most importantly, which of those companies never had to develop a color process, but rather was able to piggy back on others color process technology?
    So you would prefer all your suppliers were monopolies?

    There's no doubt that Kodak was a leading light in film technology, and others followed in their footsteps. That's not a great deal of help now, though, is it?

  7. #67
    Ole
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
    I actually submit to you that Fuji, Konishiroku, and Agfa have never had to do a significant amount of color process development in the last ~30 years, having used Kodak processes. (Agfa did use their own for a while as did Konisiroku, but Fuji even had a Kodachrome work alike in the 50s). The cost of color process R&D had to be factored into a lot of Kodak film. And, there are no licencing fees for processing Fuji film in Kodak chemistry. It is only if one company makes their own version of the kit, and if there is a proprietary chemcial involved that there are fees required.
    Agfa spent considerable resources on developing colour technology - prior to WWII.

    Interestingly one of the byproducts of that research formed the basis of what became Polaroid after the war...
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by markbb
    Kodak has been subsidised by the US Government via military contracts.
    No, they have not been. Military contracts supplied a very tiny percentage of all income. They just sold the space imaging group to ITT due to the low income.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbb
    Don't know, please tell us. Were they 'accused', or were they found guilty?
    AFAIK, both. They quit.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbb
    The workers I know made redundant by Kodak at Harrow, London didn't think their attitude benign, watching their jobs exported to the US.
    Yes, I know quite a few of them myself. However, Rochester also suffered as did France and Australia. I was talking over the long haul and going back over many years when Japanese workers were paid a pittance while workers in most other countries in any industry (including the automobile industry) were well paid. I've seen the homes that Japanese workers lived in then, and have seen how they lived.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbb
    Please tell us, showing how they are working 'hardest'. Complying with local laws doesn't count.
    Mark, in the 1960s, Kodak began a 'crusade' on its own initiative and before environmentalists got involved, to eliminate toxic heavy metals from all products. At that time, they developed the first cadmium and mercury free products on the market for photography. At the same time, they removed ferricyanide from all processes and introduced C41, EP3, and E6 using the much less toxic Ferric EDTA bleach. In addition, formalin was removed from alll products and formalin hardeners were removed from all processes. Unfortunately, a substitute could not be found for the stabilzer, and so that remains to this day for some products. This did not involve complying with any laws at the time. It was based mainly on the foresight of management. EK continues to this day to work for improved environment, and many of the complaints against it have been either accidental or overstated in the press.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbb
    So you would prefer all your suppliers were monopolies?
    Gee, where did I say that? I said that others never had to do intensive process development work.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbb
    There's no doubt that Kodak was a leading light in film technology, and others followed in their footsteps. That's not a great deal of help now, though, is it?
    This is about the only thing in your post that I agree with. But it is nevertheless true that Kodak has been tarred with a wide brush with little understanding of the real situation. Kodak did things no one else did in process development. Others took advantage of that without cost to themselves and can therefore reap benefits in lower product cost while Kodak suffers the burden created by this overhead. It has nothing to do with monopoly or anything else. It is a reality of being an innovative leader.

    It is also the result of being worker oriented and trying to keep the environment as pollution free as possible. Kodak USA is one of the largest non-union companies in the US due to this attitude towards the worker. Having worked in this environment is different than looking in through the fence or hearing about it from a worker who has been laid off. (and before you comment on that, I sympathize and feel their pain, but just point out that their objectivity has been offset just a bit by their situation)

    PE

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ole
    Agfa spent considerable resources on developing colour technology - prior to WWII.

    Interestingly one of the byproducts of that research formed the basis of what became Polaroid after the war...
    Ole, another myth. Sorry.

    Polaroid color and Agfa color technology were totally unrelated.

    Agfa used fischer couplers and paraphenylene diamine color developers, but Polaroid color used azo dyes attached to hydroquinone derivatives which developed and became immobile.

    Even the B&W products differed substantially.

    OTOH, the Agfa color products developed during the war were quite good, and their line of products continued being an independant process and product line up until the point where they saw that they could never match the productivity made possible by the Kodak color couplers dispersed in oil drops. The fischer couplers limited coating speed and increased coating defects due to their chemical/physical properties.

    At that point, they abandoned their own technology and embraced Kodak technology and processes. From that point on, they didn't do any substantial color process development work. My statement above stands.

    PE

  10. #70

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    Thanks for the update, PE. I wont try and quote everything as it'll become a huge post.
    I don't doubt that Kodak were huge in the 50s, 60s and 70s, but from then onward they rather lost the plot. Maybe they just go too big & senior managment forgot that they were a photography company? I can only coment on how things are *now*?

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