An 8 GB flash drive
What I learned from my Digital Photography Class, Part 2:
The first thing our instructor asked us to do with our cameras was to identify the battery type and the memory card. I had already embarrassed myself by not knowing how to turn off my cell phone at the beginning of class as requested--in my defense, I have to tell you that I am a new and somewhat reluctant cell phone user. I got the darned phone turned off with some help (saw a classmate roll her eyes) and was immediately faced with another technological challenge.
Battery? That wasn't so bad, as I had just charged up the battery in preparation for the class. And, what's this? They want me to buy a second battery in case the first one runs out in the middle of a shoot? Don't they know how much these things cost?
Okay, I got over the shock at having to buy an extra battery ($42 and up) and then I had to deal with the memory card. I hadn't seen the thing since buying the camera, but found its little compartment and popped it out. Oops, it was a SanDisk compact flash card all right, but its memory was only 2 GB (only? what do these people want?). Right away, I had to add another item to my shopping list--a 4 GB compact flash card.
Thank goodness I didn't shame myself by not bringing along a USB cable to download photos from the camera to the computer--one of my classmates had never downloaded anything from his camera in the two years he had owned it (!) and kept muttering to himself, buy an ABC cable, buy an ABC cable. I loved that man right away, he made me feel so much better about myself.
However, now there was one more item to add to my list--a flash drive (we used to call them thumb drives)--in order to save our edited photos and transport them between home and the classroom. The old one I had somewhere in a drawer at home was laughingly outdated, memory-wise--kind of like me. So, there was one more item to buy--an 8 GB flash drive.
The good news is that I ordered all three items--the flash drive, the memory card, and the extra battery--from Amazon the next morning and had them all in time for the next week's class, even without paying extra for any kind of fancy shipping.