PhotoSync for Lazy is an app for iOS devices that automatically syncs photographs with a PC folder over wi-fi. Once the program is installed on the a Windows PC, a special folder is monitored, and when the app is opened on the iPhone (or other iOS device) it will automatically update to reflect the contents of that folder. This can be a good way to keep your phone for sharing photos on the go, or for having your latest portfolio pictures with you at all times. It’s not currently available for the iPad, but will be soon. You can have 50 photographs synced with the free version of the app, or buy the paid version for $3 for unlimited photos.
An alternative way you can sync photos is with Dropbox. It works over the Internet rather than wi-fi, but the good news is that it’s completely free (up to 2GB) and works on Macs and iPads. It also works in both directions — you can have your iPhone photos synced to your computer.
Apparently inspired by the f-stop watch we posted on recently, theres a new widget for Android phones that puts an aperture clock on your home screen. Unlike the wrist watch, the widget actually adjusts the “aperture” depending on what time it is, though it refreshes every half hour to save battery life. The bad news is that this dash of geekery comes at a price — the app costs $1.05 over at AppBrain. Someone make a free version please.
Lightroom adjustment sliders are nice and all, but wouldn’t it be neat if fine adjustments could be made using our hands and physical sliders rather than a mouse and virtual ones? There’s an open source program called PADDY for Lightroom that allows you to map adjustment settings in Lightroom to external devices, including MIDI faders with sliders and knobs. Here’s the description:
Paddy radically improves the workflow in Lightroom 3.0 by allowing you assign any adjustment setting – including moving the sliders and applying a preset – to keys, your number keypad, external keypads, or a MIDI controller. This gives you all editing (and some other) tools of Lightroom at the push of one button. You do not need the mouse any more to get to presets or to adjust the sliders.
The software is completely free and open source, and can be downloaded here. Sadly, it’s currently only available for Windows. Read more…
French company Oloneo has just released a free beta for their product, PhotoEngine. The software is a straightforward HDR creator and non-destructive editor that allows you to quickly merge HDR photos. Additionally, it has features that can adjust specific light sources in the photo, to change the white balance or the exposure. This could come in handy when shooting HDR frames that have a variety of different light sources with different temperatures.
Sony has released a new firmware update for the NEX-3 and NEX-5 EVIL cameras that adds 3D Sweep Panorama technology. This is the technology shown in the super-annoying Taylor Swift commercial that invaded YouTube videos, except it’s enhanced to offer 3D viewing.
This is interesting, since traditional stereoscopic 3D photographs require 2 separate lenses to record footage from different perspectives. However, the Sweep Panorama technology works by shooting a burst of frames while having you smoothly pan across a scene, so it looks like Sony is using some fancy processing techniques to figure out perspective from the panning action.
Head on over to the Sony Europe Support site to download the firmware update if you have a NEX camera.
If you’re a geek (as most of you apparently are) and prefer doing stuff through command line rather than a GUI, Google has just introduced a new command-line utility that allows you to access various Google services.
GoogleCL is an application written in Python that lets you do things like upload a whole folder of photographs to your Picasa account with a simple command like this:
google picasa create --title "My album" ~/Photos/vacation/*.jpg
This would grab all of the JPG photographs in your vacation directory and upload them to a new album called “My album”.
Here are the possible commands for Picasa:
create: Create an album. create –title “Summer Vacation 2009″ –tags Vermont ~/photos/vacation2009/*
delete: Delete photos or albums. delete –title “Stupid album”
get: Download photos. get –title “My Album” /path/to/download/folder
list: List photos or albums. list title,url-direct –query “A tag”
post: Add photos to an album. post –title Summer Vacation 2008″ ~/old_photos/*.jpg
tag: Tag photos. tag –title “Album I forgot to tag” –tags oops
The utility isn’t limited to Picasa, of course. You can also manage Blogger, Calendar, Contacts, Docs, and YouTube data.
Pick&Zip is a simple web application that lets you easily download Facebook photographs with a few clicks.
You can download photos tagged with your name, your own albums, photos tagged with friends’ names, or your friends’ albums. After selecting the photographs you’d like, you can download them as a ZIP or PDF file.
I just tried it out, and the service works pretty well, allowing you to pull photos at the highest resolution Facebook stores (720px) quickly to your computer without having to click and download individual photos.
Something that’s slightly annoying is that you can’t seem to download all possible photos with one click, but must “select all” on each individual page. The app is pretty useful, nonetheless.
Unshake is a free program available for all operating systems that takes your blurry photographs and attempts to make them clearer. While it’s not miraculous or perfect, it does in fact help in making photographs more usable, especially at lower resolutions (i.e. for the web).
Here’s a before-and-after example using a quick snapshot I took this past weekend with an outdated point-and-shoot camera:
If you have problems using the program on a Mac, try opening the Unshake.jar file directly at the last step. Larger photographs might also take much longer to “unshake”, while lower-res (i.e. 500px wide) photos were completed very quickly.
For those of you who have been itching to try the new Content Aware Fill and Puppet Warp features in Adobe Photoshop CS5, today’s your lucky day. CS5 became available for purchase through the Adobe website, and you can now download a 30-day free trial of the software just to play around with the amazing new features if you’re not sure yet you want to upgrade.
If you’ve tried it out already, do you think the new features live up to the hype?
British newspaper The Guardian has teamed up with Canon on a new app for the iPad that features the most recent 100 photographs from their award-winning Eyewitness series. In addition to simply viewing the photographs, they’re also including “Pro tips”, or short blurbs written by the photography team on the “technical and artistic merits” of each image.
If you love good photography and would like to have a steady stream of photography tips (as well as have an iPad), you can grab the app for free from the App Store.
No word on whether the pro tips will ever be available for those who don’t own iPads.