PhotoshopNews.com
Jan 28, 2008

Photo clues are breadcrumbs in lost camera mystery

Source: USA Today
Written by Brian Bergstein, Associated Press

At dusk on New Year’s Eve, Erika Gunderson got into a taxi in New York City and entered a digital-age mystery.

Sitting on the back seat was a nice Canon digital camera. Gunderson asked the driver which previous passenger might have left it, but the cabbie didn’t seem to care. So Gunderson brought it home and showed it to her fiance, Brian Ascher. They decided that the only right thing to do was to find the owner.

But how? The only clues were the pictures on the camera: typical tourist snapshots, complete with a visit to the Statue of Liberty. How could they find a stranger among the huddled masses?

Gunderson is busy in finance for Bear Stearns Cos., so the detective quest fell to Ascher, a 26-year-old law student at New York University. He was on winter break and eager to put off writing a paper about climate change treaties.

He checked whether anyone had reported a matching missing camera to the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission. No dice. He placed ads in lost-and-found sections of Craigslist but got just one response — from a couple in Brazil who had lost a camera in a cab on Oct. 12, not Dec. 31.

“I guess they thought their camera had been riding around in a taxi for two months,” Ascher recalls now, chuckling at the notion that such a thing would be possible in New York.

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