Photo filters that turn ordinary pictures into vintage ones are becoming mainstream. How mainstream, you ask? Well, Facebook is reportedly planning hop onto the bandwagon, adding them to its mobile apps to compete against Instagram. The New York Times writes,
The new feature has been ready for some time, according to two engineers who work at Facebook, but Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, hopes his engineers and artists create more filters before releasing the new product. Both Facebook engineers asked not to be named as they are not allowed to speak publicly for the company about unannounced products.
The engineers said Facebook will introduce almost a dozen photo filters, including some that are similar to Instagram like old-style camera lenses and grainy film. Facebook will also try to introduce new styles of filters with the hopes of drawing users away from other photo apps.
The article also states that Facebook tried to acquire Instagram this past summer, but failed. Brace yourselves — the photo world’s about to become a whole lot more faux-retro.
Twitter, Google+, and Facebook are one step closer to becoming clones of each other (at least when it comes to photo sharing) — Twitter has rolled out photo galleries that display the 100 most recent images Tweeted by users in chronological order.
The images included in user galleries can come from Twitter, yFrog, TwitPic, Instagram and other image sharing services supported in Twitter’s details pane. [#]
To view a user’s gallery, simply visit their Twitter page and click the thumbnails on the sidebar. Read more…
CNN made this creative video highlighting the fact that there’s still a remnant vibrant community of film shooters in New York City. It’s seen from the perspective of someone typing in “analog photography” into a futuristic Qwiki-esque search engine. Read more…
Here’s a nifty visual guide to all the keyboard shortcuts you have access to when viewing a photograph on Flickr. Don’t bother bookmarking this page though — Flickr just added these guides to every page on the site. Simply press the “?” key for the popup to appear!
The photo sharing feature on Twitter that we first reported on a couple months ago is now live for all users. This nudges the service a little more closer towards what Facebook and Google+ offer, allowing users to upload and share photos directly through Twitter. Third-party photo-sharing services geared towards Twitter users can’t be too happy about this — the founder of TwitPic turned down a $10 million offer back in 2009, only to have Twitter drink its milkshake a couple years later.
Google has added EXIF data to Google Images, allowing you to quickly look up details on how a particular photograph was taken (as long as the data is embedded). Simply click any of your search results to see the details in the panel on the right. They don’t seem to be doing anything with geotag info — displaying where the photo was taken on a Google Map, for example — which is probably a smart choice. Something tells me a lot of people would have a problem with that, even though the data is publicly accessible and baked into the photo itself.
For photo enthusiasts, Google’s new Google+ social network is something like Flickr mixed with Facebook. It has the social sharing power of Facebook while providing features and tools Flickr users would appreciate thanks to the fact that Google runs a full-fledged photo-sharing service in Picasa (soon to be brought into the Google+ fold and renamed Google Photos). One such feature is the EXIF data section, easily accessed for each photo by Action->Photo Details. Most Facebook users would likely be confused by having a histogram pop up for their images, but for loyal Picasa users using Google+ for sharing and viewing photos, it’s quite a nifty option.
We shared a video of Canon’s Image Stabilization technology in action in the beginning of the year, but that was on a pro telephoto lens and inside a glass display case. What would the same technology look like in a cheaper, consumer lens? Preston over at Camera Technica decided to find out, disassembling a Canon 18-55mm kit lens to capture this short video of the IS mechanism in action. I had no idea the thing used springs, did you?
What if you could take perfect group photographs by first shooting multiple frames and then selecting the best portions of each one? Microsoft amazed us with this concept last year with its Photo Fuse technology, and now we may soon be seeing something similar coming to mobile phone cameras (and hopefully compact cameras as well). Imaging technology company Scalado gave the above demonstration at a conference earlier this month showing off Rewind, a super-useful feature that shoots a burst of full-res photos, then lets you select the best faces for each person in the image. Next up on our wishlist: Content Aware Fill.