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TUAW talks Flickr with Connected Flow

Nik Fletcher

I have a disclosure to make: I love FlickrExport - Connected Flow's very excellent plugins that allow you export photos straight from iPhoto, or Aperture, to Flickr. It's the reason I took to Flickr - at a time that their website uploader was somewhat basic. Fraser Speirs, the man behind Connected Flow, was kind enough to chat with TUAW about the future of the plugin, and shared a few words about his forthcoming application.

FlickExport 2 has been around for a fair while and we've covered a previous sneak-peek of FlickrExport 3 here recently, but what on earth else can we expect in the next version?

A smorgasbord of GPS-related goodies

If you've got a GPS device (note: not necessarily a GPS-enabled camera, y'know, a handheld GPS device proper) you can now bring GPS tracks and NMEA Logs (which I must admit I can't say I know that well) into FE3 and apply to photos so that you'll have geotags set for the photo once you hit the 'Export' button.

FlickrExport 3 Screenshot

But that is by no means all. If you're taking photos at set locations fairly frequently wouldn't it be nice for Flickr to keep presets stored for future use? Yep, that's right: GPS presets are part of FlickrExport 3, so you don't even need to fire up Google Earth and capture GPS co-ordinates as with FlickrExport 2. Score! If you're running the Aperture version of the plugin, it'll even write longitude and latitude into custom Meta-data fields (sadly the Aperture database's designated GPS fields are off-limits in the application's SDK) just as Flickr URLs and IDs can be added currently.

FlickrExport 3 Screenshot

Pre-flighting, groups and tags

As mentioned previously, FE3 does allow you to add photos to multiple groups. That said, it's worth noting that you can't add a photo to unlimited groups (and rightly so). One of the overwhelming themes behind FlickrExport 3 seems to be 'presets', and you're probably wondering why on earth this is exciting me so much. Let's put it this way: instead of having to each time choose GPS locations (and type them in) if you've stored presets of where you're normally taking photos, and which groups you're sending them to, it's a matter of clicks to get everything ready to upload instead of a lot of manual work.

Whilst FlickrExport 2 had a tag list on the right-hand side of the window, that's been dropped and in its place is the auto-completion of tags as-you-type. As someone who rarely used the list, and routinely typed in tags, that's a welcome addition.

You're now probably wanting to know when you can get your photo-mad hands on a copy of FlickrExport 3, so here's the low-down. Whilst at the moment FE3 is still very much in development, a public beta is scheduled sometime before the end of year.

One more thing....

In speaking to Fraser, it turned out that there was more than just FlickrExport 3 being furiously worked on. The 'one more thing' in this case is an application that he's been wanting to write for over 2 years, and that's now taken shape as 'Exposure' - a desktop application for Flickr. Consider it 'iPhoto' to your Flickr-based 'iPhoto-Library'. The goal is, it seems, to take Flickr and apply things such as Spotlight searching, Growl and all the power of Leopard's fancy new frameworks for slideshows and more.

Exposure is, however, still in early private-alpha testing, with no word on a release date. Fraser is providing eagle-eyed Flickr users with sneak-peeks of development via Flickr, of course.

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