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Finding The Perfect Image Host

December 19, 2006

So… in follow-up to my last post of frustration, I’ve spent the past bit trying out various hosting solutions.  I’ll update this post throughout the next couple of days with what I discover.

Picasa Web Services by Google

Picasa was my first choice.  I’m a slave to Google’s tools (happily) and would greatly prefer their slick AJAXish interface and single sign-on approach to managing the dozens of pictures I have.

Pros:

  • Easy management of photos into multiple galleries,
  • Simple mechanism for uploading pictures, naming and tagging them, and placing comments,
  • Single sign-on to other Google services.

Cons:

  • No direct-link capabilities (#1 drawback to any source), I cannot post the full picture on the blog here.
  • Pictures do not have an easy way to view them at full size; you have to zoom.

Flickr by Yahoo!

I originally had a Flickr account ages ago and left it when I got angry at Yahoo’s privacy and account policy.  I decided to try them again.

Pros:

  • Allows direct-links to images in the galleries,
  • Simple upload tool called Flickr Uploadr. (wtf, are -er’s forbidden at Camp Yahoo!?),
  • Web tools are great as far as managing photos into sets.
  • Odd: The “Hello, tiredstudent!” rotates through a couple dozen languages (it seems).  I cracked up at “G’day tiredstudent!”

Cons:

  • Only 3 sets (galleries) with the free account, it’s 24.95$/year for unlimited everything (bandwidth, storage, bandwidth, archiving, and ad-free).
  • WordPress doesn’t seem to support the Flickr Flash tool.
  • The opening page dumps all of your pictures out, rather than displaying just your albums like Picasa.
  • Ehh, a bit too MySpace-ish (heh, yeah, I’m picky.)

box.net by Box.net

I stumbled across this trying to Google for alternatives and saw 1GB of free space and blogging capabilities.

Pros:

  • Easy, slick interface for uploading and working with files.
  • Can save anything–pictures, documents, etc–and make them public or private and share them around.

Cons:

  • Direct-linking requires a premium subscription, 49.99$/year.
  • The interfaces and tools are using an older J2EE applet runtime that took a while to get working on my computer.

Photobucket.com by Photobucket

I’d seen others in my guild use this for hosting pictures and screenshots… figured I’d give them a look.

Pros:

  • Direct-linking is available; clicking the URL link automatically copies it all to the clipboard.
  • Relatively large amount of space (1GB) with 10GB of bandwidth per month.

Cons:

  • Requires subscription (25$/year) to remove the banner ads and allow large photos (up to 2MB) to be uploaded.
  • Haphazard album design based on HTML links rather than galleries
  • Due to ads, I believe, slow response time moving around the site.

[12-21-2006 Update]

I managed to find a blog post that details how to get the direct links from Picasa by replacing the default s288 with s1600 on the “post to blog” link.  I’m going to give that a shot on a few pics. 

[12-23-2006 Update]

Yeah, the blog post above only seems to work with the smaller images.  Bleh.  It appears Flickr will be the solution, but I’m not real keen on the excess annual payments.  Heh, I may take my shot at creating a basic photo album in .NET in the next week or so.  I mean, it is vacation this week–I gotta do something to entertain myself!

Categories: Everything Else
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