Tag Archives: pictures

What Will Twitter Do With Your Photos?

I know you use Twitter as much as I do. Even if you aren’t a fan of the new layout, you have to admit that it’s nice having photos and videos in-line. Twitter has announced that they will begin hosting your pictures themselves in the near future.

Have you read the Terms of Service, though? Particularly disturbing is what they plan to DO with the snapshots: “You agree that this license includes the right for Twitter to make such Content available to other companies, organizations or individuals who partner with Twitter for the syndication, broadcast, distribution or publication of such Content on other media and services, subject to our terms and conditions for such Content use.”

Wait… what? If I snap a picture and upload it to Twitter, they can turn around and sell it to CNN or Fox News without giving me a cut of the profits? I think not, my friends. That’s something I’m not willing to allow, and I’m betting you won’t, either.

What are your thoughts?

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Caption This Conference Photo

While at Openca.mp last weekend, I couldn’t help but ham it up for Ian Aberle’s camera. Your task is to caption these pictures, either here in the blog comments or directly on Flickr. Let’s see how much more hilarious you can make these shots by adding your words.

The Many Faces of Chris Pirillo

I personally think that one of these should become my new profile picture… but which one?

Google Introduces Picnik on Your Picasa Albums

Beginning today, Picasa users can choose to edit their photos in-line using Picnik. You no longer have to leave the site to edit your pics using your favorite (and mine!) photo editor. Simply choose “Edit” on any picture in your album, and choose “Edit in Picnik.” This announcement comes just a few short months after Google purchased the popular photo-editing giant, and is one that many of us have been waiting for.

When you save your edited photo back to your PWA album, you can either replace the old image or save a new copy. If you’re not a fan or user of Picasa, never fear! Picnik “will retain its own branding and web presence.” The application remains free to use. However, subscribers who pay a small fee will receive access to more advanced editing tools and additional stickers, fonts and photo effects. Picasa will automatically detect whether a user is a subscriber or free user. Your capabilities will adjust accordingly – without your having to do anything.

It will be interesting to see what else Google has in store for Picnik. Will we be seeing this integration on other Google-owned properties?

How to View Media on the iPad

We spend a lot of time working with photos as we edit, resize and upload them to various websites. Photos are easier to work with on the iPad than many other devices due to the size of the screen. You can scroll through your entire collection with the touch of a finger. If you want to view all of the photos in an album within Photos, you can “pinch” it to open. You read that right… you can PINCH your iPad! You can also create a slideshow within the application, and choose music from your library as a background. Quickly import your photos from a Mac or Windows machine using iTunes, and have them organized for you in one place.

We also spend a lot of time watching television shows, movies, podcasts and music videos. I’d have to say I probably spend at least half of every day playing some type of video to listen to as I work. I like the way this type of content is organized and accessed using the iPad. When you tap the “Videos” button, all of your media will be displayed in neat lists to help you find what you’re looking for. You can watch movies in wide-screen, or double-tap to watch them on the full screen.

The large screen on the iPad will be a plus for me when watching movies or videos, as well as when I’m working with pictures. You’ve seen my glasses. I need all the help I can get, and the screen real estate should make a big difference.

Resize Photos With Shrink O'Matic

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BWOne has done several screencasts for us in the past, with great success. He’s been busy uploading CES videos to his own channel lately, but took a break to create another screencast for all of you. Today, Bowman is going to show you how to easily reduce the size of your pictures using Adobe Air’s Shrink O’Matic!

Shrink O’Matic is an AIR application to easily (batch) resize (shrink) images. It handles JPGs, GIFs and PNGs. Simply drag and drop images and they’ll be resized as you wish! Options allow you to choose the output sizes, names and formats. Make sure you specify the output folder (and format), or else it will save over your original by default.

The program allows you to define the pixel length and width, compression ratio, how to name your new file, and the new format. You don’t have to resize photos one at a time anymore, either. Shrink O’Matic allows you to run a batch of several pictures all at once!

Shrink O’Matic works on both Mac and Windows. Even though it only has a limited number of formats it can work with, it should be perfect for most user’s needs!

Thanks, Bowman, for another excellent tutorial!

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I recently attended the WTIA Fast Pitch Forum & Technology Showcase. The conference featured two dozen of the of the hottest technology companies in Washington presenting their business in a competition for “Best In Show”. Picnik makes your photos fabulous with easy to use yet powerful editing tools. Tweak to your heart’s content, then get creative with oodles of effects, fonts, shapes, and frames.

If you already use Flickr for your photos (here’s what I do with mine), you’re only a click away from taking a Picnik. That’s how I discovered it, and it’s worked fairly well for me to this point.

An added note is that Yahoo has rolled out some new services recently, to hopefully cut down on the number of additional sites that patrons will ever need to visit. One of these is called Edit Photos by Picnik. This app provides users with a quick way to crop, touch up, add effects and more to any of the photos located in their inbox or online. How much easier can it get?

Picnik is a great service, one that I myself use frequently. If you haven’t checked it out – you’re absolutely missing out!

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I recently attended the WTIA Fast Pitch Forum & Technology Showcase. The conference featured two dozen of the of the hottest technology companies in Washington presenting their business in a competition for “Best In Show”. Ontela makes it easy for wireless customers to save their camera phone pictures. Ontela automatically saves each picture to e-mail, your PC and / or your web photo albums.

Onetla builds simple platforms for a much better user experience. Their technology helps wireless carriers and the image hosting companies bring new value to their customers. What Ontela does is to bridge the gap between the two, making it so simple and fast for you to save all of those pictures you snap on the go with your phone.

You don’t want to lose your pictures. You don’t want to have a huge hassle when trying to extract them from your phone and save them or upload them. Check out Ontela, and save yourself a headache!

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The Best Free Way to Share Files, Photos, Music Online

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You probably have hundreds – if not thousands – of photos on your computer. You likely also have tons of other files sitting there, as well. How do you share those files with others? Let’s kick it up a notch, and say you have a calendar, tasks and contacts to keep in sync. How do you keep all this data in sync with each other? The answer is software – which is sadly usually expensive.

I have an all-in-one workspace solution for you! Tonido is an open personal web application platform that runs on your desktop which safeguards your privacy and online freedom. It allows you to run your own personal web applications on your desktop and form your own private Tonido network. Applications and data are always local.

I may not pronounce the name right, but I will tell you this is completely awesome. It’s easy to set up, and it’s cross-platform. It’s also open source! This isn’t interesting to you if you’re off in your own little world and never interact with anyone else. But the moment you need to share a document or picture with someone else… BAM! Tonido saves the day.

I’m a little excited, yes. I’ve been waiting for something like this to appear. It’s one thing to share a file… but it’s a step beyond when you can share contacts, calendars and more as well! Normally, something like this would be hard to use and expensive. But this – is – NOT!

Try it. Love it. Live it!

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Where To Look For Unique Photos

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Geek!This is Nate Lawson’s submission for the HP Magic Giveaway. Feel free to leave comments for this article as you see fit – your feedback is certainly welcomed! If you’d like to submit your own how-to, what-is, or top-five list, you can send it to me. Views and opinions of this writer are not necessarily my own:

This is for you Photographers out there who may be having a hard time coming up with new ideas for photos. And if you’re not a photographer but want to take some cool pictures, you can benefit from this list also.

All creative minds have been in the situation before: writers have “writer’s block”, designers have “designer’s block”, artists have “artist’s block”, and by golly photographers have “where the heck can I take new pictures block”.

It doesn’t matter if you live in the city or the country, the U.S. or Canada, if you’re an amateur or a professional. I can guarantee even Ansel Adams had moments in which he didn’t know what else to do.

I happen to live in a small rural town in Wyoming. I’ve often thought that if I just lived in a large city, I would never run out subjects to shoot. And I’m sure people who live in the city wish they could drive fifteen minutes to the Rocky Mountains to get some breathtaking landscape shots.

But after researching photo ideas and not finding exactly what I wanted, I decided to brainstorm places that might not be thought of as “photogenic.” I’ve also given some examples of my work to give you a better idea of what I’m talking about.

Here are my Top 5 Places to Look for Unique Photos:

1. Look Up. There is one place that I learned in the military where nobody looks that may be the difference between life and death, up. Most people never look up. They have their eyes forward or down. Stop once in awhile and take a look to the sky. If you live in the city, the many tall buildings will give you countless possibilities. And if you live in the country, looking up may expose you to unique cloud formations, a flock of geese flying in their famous “ V Formation”, or some pretty cool trees. (I would recommend you stop before you start looking up!)

2. Look Down. The very opposite of looking up is, can you guess? Right, looking down. How many times have you been looking down and found a quarter? Well, try going to a parking lot and spending an hour or two just looking down. There are some pretty cool pictures ready to be captured in the oil spill, rain puddle, or ice formations. If you don’t happen to live near a parking lot, walking around in a field, on the beach, or forest will give you countless possibilities.

3. Another take on looking down, is to get higher up. The top level of an open parking garage, rooftop, or even a ladder will elevate you enough to get a different perspective on life. Some of my favorite shots were taken from a higher elevation. And with the use of some Photoshop magic, you can turn these photos into special “miniature pictures” as seen here.

4. Urban areas are some of my favorite places to take pictures. Not only are there great old buildings with a lot of history, but there are also unique patterns and textures on the walls. With the correct composition, a simple fire escape on the side of a building will give you a great picture. The use of a wide-angle lens will allow you to be closer to your subject in tight alleys and still be able to get the full image.

Candid images of people are quite common, but have you ever taken a candid picture of nature? Don’t use the live view or viewfinder when taking pictures. Shoot from the hip as it were. Too many times we over-think our photo opportunities and miss something. So just hold your camera and point and shoot. You’ll be surprised at some of the shots you’ll get. And you thought you had to see to take great pictures!

I hope this short list will help you get over your “block” and get you some great images. And although the list is far from complete, it will definitely get you started and get your creative juices flowing again!

Are You an Amateur Photographer?

I love to dabble in photography. I’m not that great at it, and I know my limits. But I always like to get new tips, and learn new things. One of our chatters, DellMan94, sent in the following tips to give all of us an extra bit of a boost when practicing our photography skills.

  • Find the right camera. First, make sure when you buy your camera that you find the one that fits you. The camera should not be too small or too big, the menu should be clean and easy to use, and the camera should be comfortable. Second, when you get your camera, do not be confused about the marketing hype about megapixels. The number of megapixels just determines how big you can print your photos, not image quality. For example, a four-megapixel image will print an 8×10 while a ten-megapixel image would print at 24×36 at that same resolution. Finding the right camera can your photographic experience much more enjoyable and fun.
  • Use the rule of thirds. Imagine a tic-tac-toe grid over the photo you are about to take. Place your subject where these lines intersect and your photo will be much more visually interesting. This is because the eye scans around the image. You will notice your images will start to look much better when you apply this rule.
  • Take numerous photos. Do not be afraid to take many photos in just one day. Your odds of getting a great photo will increase if you take more pictures. One person who has 200 images is more likely to have “the shot” than a person with 80 or 100 photos is.
  • Be careful when shooting RAW. If you are taking pictures in RAW format than you have to be careful not to take too many. If you do, you can corrupt your memory card. This is because the camera calculates space available on the card based on average image size, not actual image size. RAW is a photo format that uses no compression on the photos like JPEG does. While the image quality is slightly higher than JPEG, RAW files can be very large (around 9-10 MB for a 10-megapixel image). A JPEG will delete one third or more of the data that is captured when the photo is taken. Not all cameras can take raw images. For the most part the cameras that can take RAW photos are the higher end point-and-shoots and most dSLRs. For the most part this is unnoticeable. For the most part shooting in JPEG is the way to go, unless you plan on heavily modifying your photos in your image editor.
  • Keep the original photos. Keeping the original photos is very important when you edit your images. This way, if you change your mind and decide that you do not like a change you made to a photo, you have not destroyed the original. A good option is to save all your edited photos in one specific folder. Always keeping your original photos will save a lot of time and headaches when it comes to photo editing.
  • Watch the background. Be careful that the background of you photo does not have a telephone pole, wires, etc. This is especially true during outdoor portraits. Nobody wants to see some object appearing to come out of his or her head. Make sure the background is clean, is not distracting, and does not have unwanted objects in it.
  • Take as little gear as possible when traveling. When you are doing travel photography, do not take all of your gear with you. If you do, it will become cumbersome and will only get heavier as the day goes on. This is especially true if you own a dSLR. Point and Shoot cameras are very handy here, as they are small and most can fit in your pocket. Make sure to take the least amount of gear possible when traveling.
  • Have fun! There is no point in taking up photography if it is not fun. Having fun will increase your odds of good photos and will stir up your curiosity and will cause you to learn more. There is nothing like doing something you love to do.