August 6, 2005

How Flickr is like a blog and blogs could be more like Flickr.

Flickr ≈ a blog:

The photostream is a chronological arrangement with the newest on the top and the old material endlessly sinking down into back pages.

The "description box" is where you put the text. It's essentially your post: You can write anything you want here -- it doesn't have to be a description of the photograph.

There is a place for comments on each photo, which can be used for comments on the post as well as for the photograph.

Blogs could be improved by adding some of the Flickr-style functions: Why not have a button to click to rearrange the posts, so that they are not in chronological order anymore but grouped by tags or by most viewed, most comments, most "favorited," and most interesting?

Personally, I'm fascinated by the Flickr concept of "interestingness":
There are lots of things that make a photo 'interesting' (or not) in the Flickr. Where the clickthroughs are coming from; who comments on it and when; who marks it as a favorite; its tags and many more things which are constantly changing. Interestingness changes over time, as more and more fantastic photos and stories are added to Flickr.
Why isn't there something like this working to find things in blogs? We're still using the relatively crude selection method of counting links.

On Flickr, you can reorder your own (or anyone else's) photos by interestingness, and you can look at the whole world's last 24-hours of photos ranked by interestingness. It's not perfectly executed -- I find it hard to believe my most interesting photo is of a sunset on Lake Mendota -- but it's really cool. How about some more functionality for blogs? One of the reasons to stay with Blogger is the hope that these features are coming.

UPDATE: On Flickr, you can't rank the photos of another individual, only your own. I suppose there is some privacy interest in that.

ANOTHER UPDATE: It was my son John who informed me that you can't get to other people's "most interesting" pages. He added that you could make a Flickr set out of your "most interesting" pages, and then he did that with his: here.


olivia1 said...

It was first thanks to you, Ann, that I became aware of Flickr awhile ago. Inspite of being a techno idiot, I actually managed to load my pictures and have a site...a bigger deal than almost anyone can imagine! The scary thing about Flickr is that one can spend the whole rest of their life just checking out the pictures that are there already...and it's just begun. Be careful if you follow Ann's link and decide to look at just one person's other pictures... " hmmm, gosh, those are interesting...I think I'll just look at a few of so and so's. Gosh, that hand shot looks unusual, I'll just take a peek at his stream..." A few hours later...don't say you weren't warned. Flickr can be addictive. There's so much talent out there.

EddieP said...

After reading several times of your enthusiasm for Flickr my thought was to give it a try. My interest was to see if I could establish a group for a class reunion whereby classmembers could post old photos to a common area to share. Flickr claims this is easy, it's impossibly complex. I'll try again in a couple of days after the frustration level has subsided.