28 September 2005

Apple Loses (sort of)

Originally uploaded by doppio macchiato.
There's no use denying it: for communicating with and sharing digital images, flickr beats Apple's .mac service hands down. The two links above are to (roughly) the same set of images that I just uploaded. The .mac photos are on their own page (with cool 'themes'), but that's a weakness as well as a strength (see below). Flickr piles everything in with the other Flickr stuff, and this, too, has benefits and drawbacks.

To be clear, these are two distinct technologies. .Mac does many things very well - 1 gig of storage space (used to communicate with students), spam free email, free goodies, and a great way to build simple websites. But Flickr's genius is that it doesn't require you to build a website (even one it builds for you) in order to share images. With .mac I can export directly from iPhoto (great!), but I still have to go back and edit my homepage to include the new photo page I've made. With Flickr I can also export from iPhoto (thanks to some guy who wrote the plug-in...really, thanks!), but then I can follow the link to my Flickr site, and then click 'blog it!' and be done! That's what I'm doing now, and it's brilliant!

By the way, all the photos were taken with my new phone. This post was going to be about that (I'll blog it later), but I found myself more interested in the question of how to disseminate the photos I was going to talk about, than talking about them.

EDIT: The drawback to Flickr is that since it's Rebecca's account, it tells Blogger I'm Rebecca. Post above is by Sam, just so you know - not that authorial intention matters....


dan said...

Yay, blogger!

I was reading a discussion online recently of .mac. I always enjoy checking in with Mac.com, even though I'm really not a Mac user (just an admirer, from a distance). It always strikes me that they push .mac on their homepage.

In thinking about Web 2.0 -- that is to say, the notion of a web-based operation system [slash] web-based programs that one neither downloads nor updates -- combined with the Google-led tendancy to offer cool free programs, it seems to me that .mac is behind the game. If Google [et al, as we speak] can offer 2GB+ of storage space for email FOR FREE, why doesn't .mac offer more storage space, and create more free web-based services?

I don't argue that .mac provides a quality service, but these days we expect it to be free, volumous, and feature-rich. This is why Flickr is brilliant, and also why I hardly understand how Yahoo bought them out while Google bought Picasa (um, you download a program? Then upload the web-galleries it creates? What?).

So Mac should totally capitalize on .mac by boosting its storage and making it free. When I'm inundated with ads for a black Nano and the G6 (or whatever), it will be profitable afterall.

dan said...

Oops, I meant to say web-based operating system. As in the web-as-platform phenomenon that seriously needs to happen.