One Hundred Meeeelioooonnnn Photos

Rev Dan Catt writes, on the Flickr code blog:

Over the weekend we broke the Hundred Million geotagged photos, actually 100,868,302 at last count, mark. If we remember that we passed the 3 billion photos recently and round the figure down a little that means (does calculations on fingers) that around 3.333% of photos have geo data, or one in every 30 photos that get uploaded.

In the last two and a half years there have been roughly as many geotagged photos as the total photos upload to Flickr in its first two years of existence.

This is starting to get seriously, seriously interesting. Combine that with GPS-enabled devices, and you get a fascinating data set to explore.

Darkslide uses this data in two ways: the smash-hit Near Me feature, which shows you photos near your current location, and Places, which lets you search for a place and see photos tagged in that area.

I can't wait for the day when GPS is a standard feature of all cameras, but in the meantime, Derrick Story has been writing about the Jobo PhotoGPS hot-shoe GPS unit, which looks quite interesting and a lot more convenient than some other solutions.

Scotland The Best

If you follow me on Twitter, you might think that I hate everything about Scotland. Not true.
Canon EOS 30D, Canon EF-S 10-22mm @ 22
1/50 @ f/5.6, ISO 100

One thing I love about Scotland is the Scotland group on Flickr and their magnificent Flickr Scotland Blog.

Some truly excellent photographs pass through this group. If you like landscape, which is one of the group's strengths, you should definitely add the blog to your RSS reader.

Extreme Restraint

The only High Dynamic Range (HDR) images I like are the ones whose tags I have to consult to discover that they were so constructed. Every new tool brings a period of wild experimentation after which we either rewrite the rulebook or reassert the old rules. We're coming out of that experimental period with HDR and the photography rulebook seems remarkably resilient.

Photography is simply not about the technology. Since the geeks comprehensively colonised the online photography world, efforts are continually made to make photography an algorithmic thing about sharpness, ISO sensitivity, AF points and data buffers. Photography had its analog geeks before it was digital, but photography was never about these things when photography was analog. It remains so today.

Darwin's Temple
Canon EOS 30D, Canon EF-S 10-22mm @ 10
1/6th @ f/8, ISO 200 (+/- 2EV). HDR image merged in Photoshop CS4.

Photography is about me communicating with you. As I shot this image at the Natural History Museum last week, all I wanted to do was convey to you how I think about this building and how it impacts me. The fact that I constructed this image out of three separate exposures and Photoshop CS4's Merge to HDR feature is a fun detail for me, but that just makes it easier for me to express to you that I find this building grand, yet warm and inviting. Full of treasures to explore.