Lytro has been pushing to make their living pictures — interactive, clickable photos that have a variable focus point — easier to share. Lytro is a camera that has a very specific, proprietary way of saving and viewing photographs, so sharing these photos can be tricky. Nevertheless, Lytro has been able to quickly expand living photos across the web through social media, most recently to Google+ and Pinterest through Google Chrome extensions.
For Windows users who frequently need access to Creative Commons photography, Abelssoft’s free desktop app CCFinder can help streamline the hunt for a good image.
While the web-based searches of CC images through Flickr and Creative Commons’ CC Search have improved over the years, CCFinder offers a smoother user interface for searching multiple CC sources, viewing and downloading images, plus the same features with licensing explanations and options. Also, for those so inclined, CCFinder has a feature to add color filters if you upgrade to the pro version for $10.
CCFinder (via Lifehacker)
Adobe promised Lightroom 4 as part of its Creative Cloud subscription plan, but didn’t have it ready to go when the cloud service was launched back in April. Today they finally added the popular image editing program to the package, giving you some additional photo editing muscle for the same $50/month rate. Not bad, considering Adobe’s $2599 CS6 Master Collection doesn’t even include Lightroom.
Adobe Creative Cloud (via Engadget)
File hosting powerhouse Dropbox has added automatic camera uploads to its iOS app — a feature that Android users have enjoyed for some time now. In addition to backing up your photos in the cloud, the company is offering a new gallery view for browsing photos and 3GB of additional free space if you upload 3GB in photos (or videos).
Dropbox for iOS (via Lifehacker)
If you’ve been using smartphones for any length of time you’ve probably heard of Bump, the app that allows you to transfer photos and contact information between two phones with a simple… well… bump. And now they’ve expanded their functionality to include a website/webapp that makes transferring photos from your phone to your computer a breeze.
All you have to do if you already have the app is log on to bu.mp, select the photos you would like to transfer from your phone, and bump the phone against the space bar (although we’re pretty sure you could just hit the spacebar with any apendage…). After that you can download them straight to your computer to get them off Bump’s servers or share them with your friends via permalink. There’s not much “professional” application here, but it’s a great way to quickly transfer photos from your phone to your desktop when you’re in a bind.
Bump (via Lifehacker)
The image above is one-hundred percent fake. It has no connection whatsoever to the world of things. I created the bolts, lights, textures, and everything else in a free, open-source, relatively easy-to-use software package called Blender. It’s easy enough that even a novice user like me is able to make a pretty convincing image. If you are a photographer that makes a living shooting still-life photos, this should scare you.
After dipping its toes in Apple’s Mac App Store last July by offering Photoshop Elements, Adobe has now jumped in headfirst by listing its professional-caliber program, Lightroom 4. The download costs $150 and tips the scales at 388MB. Adobe might be a giant company, but it gets charged the same commission as any other developer: for every copy sold through the App Store, Apple pockets a cool $45.
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 (via The Verge)
On Monday Adobe officially announced its upcoming Creative Cloud subscription service, which will allow users to “rent” CS6 for $50 a month or Photoshop by itself for $20 a month. Whitson Gordon over at Lifehacker did some calculations on whether subscribing is actually worth it. Here’s his conclusion:
If you’re upgrading from a previous version of the program, it’s quite a bit cheaper to just grab the upgrade from Adobe instead of subscribing. And, if you can get a student discount (which nearly anyone can do), that’ll be cheaper too—at least in the case of Photoshop, which doesn’t seem to offer a subscription for students. In the case of the Master Collection, the student subscription is cheaper than the regular student version, but still not cheaper than upgrading from a previous version. However, once you get past the two year mark, all bets are off—the subscription is more expensive than buying, even if you plan on upgrading every two years.
[…] our official recommendation is to stick with the retail versions unless you only plan on using your Adobe product for under two years. The subscription is great for the short run […], but it’ll cost you quite a bit more in the long run.
Adobe’s John Nack also writes that one of the huge benefits of the new model is that it drastically reduces the barrier to entry. Previously you had to pay $700 to get started with using Photoshop. Now the cost is $20.
Is Adobe’s Creative Cloud Subscription Cheaper than Buying Photoshop? [Lifehacker]
Cinemagraphs, or still images that have a dash of movement, have become very popular as of late. So popular, in fact, that Microsoft Research is jumping onto the bandwagon. The company has released a new tool for creating cinemagraphs, which they call “cliplets”:
A still photograph is a limited format for capturing moments that span an interval of time. Video is the traditional method for recording durations of time, but the subjective “moment” that one desires to capture is often lost in the chaos of shaky camerawork, irrelevant background clutter, and noise that dominates most casually recorded video clips. This work provides a creative lens used to focus on important aspects of a moment by performing spatiotemporal compositing and editing on video-clip input. This is an interactive app that uses semi-automated methods to give users the power to create “cliplets”—a type of imagery that sits between stills and video from handheld videos.
Their free new Cliplets app lets you easily turn a 10-second video clip into a Harry Potter-esque cinemagraph.
Facial recognition service Face.com has announced a new feature in its API: age detection. After analyzing a photograph of a person’s face, the software returns three values: minimum age, maximum age, and estimated age, along with the confidence level of the guesses. Applications for the new technology include enhanced parental controls and targeted advertising. If you want to test out the service yourself, you can play around with the API here (in the photo above, the correct age is ~47).
Face.com API Sandbox (via Face via Gizmodo via PopPhoto)