As readers of this blog know, two of my interests are photography and open source, so I'm naturally particularly interested in the way the two intersect with each other. As a result, I've been doing a fair bit of reading and thinking about the Creative Commons license in the context of photos and, more broadly, how photos are best protected and shared in an online world. I don't claim to have all the answers, but I wanted to share some threads that I've been researching and pondering.
Photobucket is launching a mobile version of its service today and can be found at m.Photobucket.com. Users with any browser-enabled handset will be able to search and browse both public and privately uploaded photos at up to five at a time using keypad shortcuts. Additionally Photobucket is pushing user uploads of both photos and videos from their phones as a new feature, although this functionality has been around since late 2006 using the slightly less glamorous MMS and e-mail route as opposed to coding an app for phones on the Windows Mobile or Symbian platforms.
Photobucket's internal … Read more
Update 8 a.m. PST January 14: Sorry, I ran out of invitations, but you can request them from Photophlow's home page. Update 8 a.m. PST January 11: I added links to a couple of helpful videos.
For a Web 2.0 powerhouse, Flickr feels awfully Web 1.0. At least that was my conclusion after spending a few hours in the chat rooms of Photophlow, a start-up that grafts a highly interactive experience on top of Yahoo's photo-sharing Web site.
Flickr deserves credit for pioneering what can be done with photos on the Internet beyond merely displaying photos and albums. Flickr advantages include tags that let members sort and search photos, groups for finding like-minded photographers and sharing photos, and maps to sift through pictures geographically.
But Photophlow, which presents a chat room interface to the act of browsing Flickr, makes all those interfaces seem static. For me, the site felt like wandering through a museum with a group of new acquaintances, commenting on pictures as we went from room to room. And some of the rooms featured our own pictures.
The site is invitation-only right now so that Oortle, the start-up behind Photophlow, can keep up with growth. I ran out of invitations, but you also can request one at the site, which is how I got in.
I'm not the only person who's favorably impressed.
'A comfy coffee lounge'"It really changes the way I use Flickr," said Alex Almeida, who publishes the Phat Photographer blog, who described Photophlow with a different metaphor. With its instant interaction, "it really is like a comfy coffee lounge with a big shoe box of photos where people can chat comfortably and pull any of those photos out of the shoebox and discuss them."
Once I've taken care of installing security software on a new a PC, one of the first programs I end up downloading is an image editor. Whether I'm using it to make a quick edit to a screenshot, convert a digital photo to a more Web-friendly image format, or even something as mundane as cropping an image for a desktop background, an easy-to-use image editor is a must have. Those of you with recently acquired computers probably have a lot of holiday photos you've resolved to go through, so this little collection will definitely come in handy.… Read more
The correct attribution for online photos is a touchy subject. People like to snazz up all sorts of things with photos they find on the Internet, and hunting down who owns the picture isn't always the easiest thing if it's been passed around without the proper credit. In December of last year, the video "Here Comes Another Bubble" caused a stir when video creators The Richter Scales were found using other people's photos without any kind of attribution whatsoever. The snafu sparked an online debate about digital media rights, and the fallout was substantial. The … Read more
Microsoft has released a free Outlook plug-in to help photographers remember which equipment to bring to photo shoots they've scheduled with the calendar and contacts software.
The free plug-in, called Pro Photo Shoot, lets photographers create a list of their photographic equipment and then use a check-box list to pick what's needed for a particular appointment. Outlook produces a sorted list.
The software can be downloaded for Outlook 2003 and Outlook 2007.
The software is part of Microsoft's gradual effort to appeal more to photography enthusiasts, an audience that historically has been one of Apple's most … Read more
It wasn't Lane Hartwell's first heated exchange over a photo copyright issue, but a tussle involving a witty YouTube video probably was the one with the highest profile for the professional photographer.
Last week, a not-for-profit San Francisco singing group called the Richter Scales posted a Web 2.0-mocking video, Here Comes Another Bubble, set to the tune of Billy Joel's We Didn't Start the Fire. One of the many photos that flashed by in the video was one Hartwell took of Valleywag's Owen Thomas.
The problem: Although Hartwell had posted the image publicly at … Read more
I've held off posting about the whole Lane Hartwell, Richter Scales, "Here Comes Another Bubble" brouhaha. I've done so, in no small part, because my own feelings on the topic are...complicated.
On the one hand, I generally favor people sharing their creative output to the degree that it's economically feasible to do so. Our culture is richer and more interesting for the widespread tearing down of walled gardens.
A few weeks back, I posted about Sony using a 1965 John Dominis photograph to illustrate how "Timing Is Everything." Given that the picture in question could hardly have been taken with a Sony digital camera (which wouldn't exist for decades), I thought it a poor choice to illustrate the technical prowess of Sony's latest digital SLR.
After I wrote the original post, I noticed something else when I was studying the original photograph and the one in the ad; they weren't quite the same. I thought it a slightly amusing oddity but not much … Read more