Monthly Archives: April 2009

Flickr loses its chief architect

Flickr Co-Founder Butterfield and Chief Architect Henderson Working on Stealth Start-Up

When Yahoo bought flickr it made many of us long time flickr folk cringe thinking that Yahoo would mess up this excellent property. When flickr’s founders Stewart Butterfield and Catarina Fake left many of us got nervous but flickr remained strong and continued to grow. However, the loss of Cal Henderson coupled with the fact that Yahoo continues to struggle to survive seems to be painting a picture of flickr floundering

Independent of these people leaving flickr, about a year ago it seemed to have peaked socially: the early members were burning out and new members were joining at a fast enough rate that there didn’t seem to be a core of long term users to hold things together. This isn’t true of all groups on flickr, many are run by serious folks who do a great job moderating and keeping energy high and civil at the same time, but it does seem to be true of many.

I can say that I’ve been slowly burning out on the social piece of it for the past year and now spend very little time with it. I still host my images there but the thrill of lots of new people seeing and commenting on my work has worn off. It was bound to happen and when you couple that with the news that Yahoo is floundering and flickr founders are leaving it seems that flickr may have peaked for more people than just me.

Photography Heatmaps Created From 35 Million Geotagged Flickr Shots

Photography Heatmaps Created From 35 Million Geotagged Flickr Shots

Scientists at Cornell University have use a supercomputer to analyze the geotags on 35 million Flickr photos, creating photography heatmaps for locations around the world.

Another great example (like google’s various tools) of what can be done with a lot of indexed data. Fantastic.

Obama with Canon

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President Barack Obama takes aim with a photographer’s camera backstage prior to remarks about providing mortgage payment relief for responsible homeowners. Dobson High School. Mesa, Arizona 2/18/09. Official White House Photo by Pete Souza.

Looks like a Canon 5D Mark II and a Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L. Great choices. No doubt Pete Souza’s backup camera.

[via Dilip Muralidaran]

Shai Agassi’s plan for electric cars

Shai Agassi is founder and CEO of Better Place, a green-tech venture that aims to bring electric cars with replaceable batteries to the mass market by 2011 will be on OnPoint Radio (NPR) today.

There was a profile of him in the New York Times Magazine which is worth reading: Batteries Not Included.

Abassi is compelling and I think GM and Chrysler imploding coupled our current economic situation in the US presents a window of opportunity for a bold plan like Better Place.

United: Oversized flyers can’t spill over, must buy 2 seats

United: Oversized flyers can’t spill over, must buy 2 seats

As one who flies United, likes window seats, and has been crushed by numerous overweight people on cross country flights, I have to say I support United’s attempt to deal with this. Their first solution may not be the right one but it’s important that they’re attempting to deal with it.

It’s tough enough to fly coach these days on full planes but if someone who is seriously overweight gets the seat next to you and has to put the armrests up to be comfortable, what does that mean for your comfort?

I don’t want to humiliate or make life difficult for folks who are overweight but all of us have to be able to sit comfortably together and it would seem to me that it’s up to the airline to find a way to make life bearable for all of us.

Deal Brings TV Shows and Movies to YouTube

Deal Brings TV Shows and Movies to YouTube

In another step in its transformation from an online jumble of amateur videos to a destination for mainstream TV programs and movies, YouTube said Thursday that it had signed deals with Hollywood studios to showcase thousands of TV episodes and hundreds of movies on its Web site.

I’m loving this convergence in yet another space. Works for me.

Edward Weston, Charis Wilson, and Eloquent Nude

leg and footEloquent Nude
The Love and Legacy of Edward Weston and Charis Wilson

She was beautiful, smart, and searching. He was an emerging genius in the world of photography. When they met, they fell instantly in love. Setting off across the West with camera and typewriter in the depths of the Great Depression, Charis Wilson and Edward Weston transformed photography, and each other.

Now age 90, Charis Wilson recounts her years with Weston with great humor, candor, and some regret. Combining insight from leading scholars, rare archival images, and convincingly authentic reenactments, Eloquent Nude presents a remarkable true story of love and loss, travel and adventure, and an intimate look at the making of Modern photography.

This is an incredible documentary DVD on both the great photographer Edward Weston and his model and partner Charis Wilson. The extras on the DVD alone are worth the price, incredibly well done, beautiful and one of the few documentaries of one of the greatest photographers of the twentieth century.