The image quality might be absolutely terrible, but one advantage to dropping just $18 on a low-low-end digital camera like the Vivitar V25 is that you can dissect it without feeling guilty. The Kahn Academy certainly didn't shed a tear over the demise of this V25. Instead, they used its death as a golden opportunity to explain how a digital camera works, and how a cheap model manages to be so affordable.
Spoiler—it's because they suck.
The video explains how manufacturers of bargain basement cameras cut corners and make sacrifices to features and functionality for a rock-bottom price tag. Of course, if you've ever seen an image from one of these cameras you'll understand where most of the corners have been cut, but the technical explanation is still fascinating. [YouTube: Part 1 & Part 2 via PetaPixel]