[lug] photo sharing, socializing...

William D. Knoche bill.knoche at gmail.com
Thu May 1 12:28:39 MDT 2014


Thanks. Opinion is what I am seeking and yours are highly regarded and 
your points well made and well taken,
In general I like Google and have a lot of friends there include Eric 
Schmidt who I knew at Sun.
And a lot of their stuff is really good and good for the industry and 
good for the consumers as well. In general I have trusted them.
Never the less, I liken it to the old Soviet era moniker, "trust, but 
verify" (and carry a really big stick).

I am and have always been concerned that Google is publicly traded and 
subject to the selfish interest of the board of directors whose primary 
interest is to make money - more is better. They will allow the more 
responsible folks to have their way as long as they are making money and 
I suspect at some point they no longer will and Eric and others will go 
away and power given to those with more aggressive profit motives.

For this reason I was not considering Google+/Picassaweb too seriously. 
Reading the fine print for other services such as Facebook make we want 
to not ever post an image that I own the copyright to. Google+ is much 
better in many respects but again, I am concerns about what they could do.
Becoming too dependent on any of these could have dramatic and 
disastrous consequences should they decide to become "more evil" =~ more 
profit motivated

For this reason I was thinking I might be better off with Smugmug and 
paying for the service. I still want the hear what folks think about 
them and others.
If I can find a reasonable way to do it myself without an enormous 
effort that is a great option as well. I don't know what the best of 
breed would be for open source components and so seek the good counsel 
of those far more knowledgeable.


On 05/01/2014 10:56 AM, Davide Del Vento wrote:
> I have an opinion on what used to be Google Picasaweb and is now
> Google Plus. I believe this opinion (at least partially) applies to
> other cloud providers.
> First, if you go to a dinner and you are not paying for your seat, you
> are going to be put on the table and be the dinner. No matter what
> they say about "being nice and not evil", they are going to sell your
> data to make money. Maybe they are even sincere, they are not evil,
> they just need to pay the bills to keep the servers running and
> serving your data. So you have to give up some privacy to begin with.
> Maybe not all your privacy, but some. There is tradeoff that you have
> to consider: where to draw the line? Do you even have choice or is it
> the company who decides? And more often than not there is a constant,
> stressful, change to the privacy rules, to balance the "not alienate
> too many users" with the "make enough money to please the VC,
> stockholder, or other stakeholders". Even if you are paying (e.g. you
> can pay Google for storage), you often are paying just a fraction of
> the real cost, and even if you are paying the full cost (like in AWS),
> you are just a drop in a ocean. So must be prepared to think as you
> are not and will not be treated like an human being, not even as a
> number, but as a drop of water in the ocean. They do not care about
> you, but they care about the ocean. Some water is always lost and it
> might be you.
> Second, lock-in. Google has this data liberation team and that's a
> good thing. However it does not go far enough, in my opinion. Some
> others have similar "export" things. Good for you that you did not
> mention FB (for some, the "best photo sharing website"). What you want
> is being able to export at decent bandwidth all your data. All means
> all: your full resolution original images, the full history of
> contributed comments, label and tags. Possibly the full history of
> edits, or at least the last one. You want to do this efficiently, i.e.
> you want a single-click that dumps that stuff for you. You don't want
> to sift images and comments one-by-one. You don't want to download all
> the downscaled copies that the service may have generated. You want to
> be able to resume the download if it is interrupted, because it will
> be big and it *will* be interrupted. Nobody offers this. Google's data
> liberation is the best the industry offers us, but it does not even
> come close.
> Third, features. Unlike the previous two bullets, this may be a
> characteristics of Google and not apply to others (but I suspect it
> does). They change features and interface constantly. It's a pain to
> keep up. Especially with the recent "plus" fad, the chase for a
> "clean, modern interface". I believe "clean" means abysmal. Stuff
> automatically hides and appears only if you hover the mouse on it for
> a while. Really? Am I supposed to blindly move the mouse on all the
> screen to see if a menu appears there? And if each of those ghosts has
> the feature that disappeared from here? And I am supposed to teach my
> old mother, living oversea, who does not speak English and did not use
> computers before I moved to Boulder (and did so only because that was
> the only way to keep in touch with me and my kids)? Oh my!
> I am really sorry for having written such a rant, but your asking for
> an opinion triggered my disenchantment. I'll be pleased to learn that
> I'm missing the "next big thing after slicing bread" and change my
> opinion if anybody has any better experience.
> Cheers,
> Davide
> On Thu, May 1, 2014 at 10:09 AM, William D. Knoche
> <bill.knoche at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Just looking for some suggestions...
>> I was asked by some friends from college about a setting up restricted photo
>> sharing and social networking site.
>> We want to be able for anyone from the group to upload and archive into
>> "galleries" photos of ours, be able to annotate, tag and search by date,
>> location, people tagged, etc. as well as have "conversations" about them.
>> We would like it to be secure for the invited registered members and perhaps
>> being able to selectively choose to make some things very private (to a
>> limited subset) or more open.
>> I have been looking for the components to host this myself.
>> Certainly there are some choices for "forums", blogging, etc. What is best?
>> What about the photo sharing part? How to integrate the discussions and
>> images...?
>> I can certainly just get a subscription to Smugmug or another photo sharing
>> site though I have no personal experience setting that up for a small group.
>> (If you have opinions/comments/recommendations on a particularly good site I
>> would welcome that, too)
>> But if I were to roll my own...
>> Has anyone done anything like this? Suggestions/recommendations?
>> The goal is really more about maintaining control and not being locked in to
>> a proprietary service/product rather than being free... my time is actually
>> a limiting factor here and worth something if only to me.
>> It would be nice to try this out on my own server but be able to migrate to
>> a hosted service as needed (some aspect of scaling it up). So some
>> preference for things that are or could be made to run in a cloud or hosted
>> service.
>> --bill
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