It used to be when I plugged in my digital camera, it would mount and I'd see a link on my desktop. For some reason, now it no longer does this. When I plug in the camera, it does absolutely nothing at all. If I open up iPhoto, I can see the device and copy photos but I absolutely hate iPhoto and just like to copy files off the device manually. Is there some setting somewhere that allows me to configure this behavior? I'm running OS/X Lion.
When you connect an imaging device like a digital camera or a scanner to a Mac, it will not show up on the desktop. Only cameras that act as mass storage devices are actually mounted and shown on the desktop, just like other volumes.
So I guess you'd have to change a setting in the camera (e.g. a "transfer mode" vs. "mass storage" mode).
Either way, Image Capture.app can be used to transfer photos, so you don't need iTunes for it. They might have changed it in Lion, but you can even set it to automatically open when you connect your camera.
Your Finder Preferences may not be set to show External disks. If that's the case, the mounted volumes won't appear by default on your desktop.
If there is a card or disk inserted, it should appear as soon as the box is checked.