A long time ago I decided that I really wanted to do something about all the photos I had been taking since I acquired a digital camera. More precisely, I wanted to put them where other people could see them, and that meant on my very own webpage. At first, I used a set of perl scripts I wrote to generate the HTML for each set of photos, but after the collection grew to a certain size, I decided this was cumbersome, and started to investigate other options, and I found Gallery, a PHP project that did everything I wanted for organizing and displaying my various pictures. I did a bit of customization to it to make it fit in with the look and feel of the rest of my site, and was reasonably happy with it.
Not long after that, a lot of people started using the website Flickr. I was bit skeptical of it. “Yeah, that’s ok if you don’t have your own site”, I said, “but I like having more control over my things than that.” (In retrospect, I think I was more than a bit snobbish about this, but we all have our moments of lapse.) And, in truth, I *did* like having the control, but as time has gone by, the software has gotten old and cranky, and the task of upgrading to the new (and very different internally) version of Gallery seemed daunting. And in that time, Flickr grew, developed a large and vibrant community, was acquired by Yahoo, and generally is more or less the default place for people to share their photos. Maybe it was time for a second look.
The more I evaluated it, the more I thought that, were I to move my photos to a new platform, Flickr’s made more sense to me than other available options. So last week, I took the plunge and upgraded my account to a pro account, in order to get the unlimited upload capacity that would be required to transport my collection of nearly 10,000 images. I then spent the next couple of days transporting the photos from my backup to my home pc via a 2GB thumb drive, and uploading them set by set onto the Flickr account.
I’ve finally got everything pretty much sorted and categorized the way I want them. I’m reasonably impressed with Flickr’s web-based tools, though I finally gave up on the Upload Client software they offer, as it was terribly buggy. I also wish there was an obvious way to eliminate duplicate files, which I ran afoul of once when I uploaded a set twice, and ended up having to delete them all and do it a THIRD time, to make sure I only had one set of those photos.
If you’ve never taken a look at my photos, please feel free. I’ve got convention and concert photos from various events I’ve attended over the last 10 years, plus a variety of personal photos, tourism photos, and, of course, an enormous number of photos of my cats. The best place to start is probably here:
Flickr is almost certainly the best online photo management and sharing application in the world. Show off your favorite photos and videos to the world, securely and privately show content to your friends and family, or blog the photos and videos you take with a cameraphone.
And I love comments, so feel free to leave them if any images particularly strike you.