Sunday Times University of the Year 2013
Wary of Beforehand Surveys

New Flickr Experience

New Flickr Experience
Screenshot by @topgold

A BLUE BAR at the bottom of Flickr screens now invites people to “try our new Photo Experience” but power users are noticing they lose things when they click into the new experience. I lose the ability to quickly grab code like the snippet that displays the image at the top of this post.

But the photos are bigger.

On a normal laptop, a larger image now appears but some essential community functions take a back seat. I can't see comments on the images. New tags become hashtags. In a sense, I lose part of the story about my photos. That said, the new photo experience is about 25% bigger than on the previous photo page. So if I valued Flickr mainly for pixels, I get top service.

The back story is a bit relegated now.

My Flickr photostream is nearly 10 years old. It's more than images. It's a clickstream of embeds, favorites and comments. The new sidebar shows some of these things, but it appears that the tech team will move them to the forefront only after community commentary.

It's faster. 

A few weeks ago, Flickr took the service offline to move into a more resilient server farm. The result--a faster Flickr. I can see this speed when moving from one photo to another. And I can make those moves by simply clicking in the image.

Speed is not the prime determinant for me, however. I need the meta data associated to code snippets and visitor comments. I'm reading the feedback streaming in from hordes of paid subscribers. Some of it isn't pretty but the new experience does a lovely job of integrating high-resolution photos to helpful wrap-around infromation. If you haven't seen the new look, head into Flickr and check our a photoOr head over to the Flickr blog and moan. There's a lot of concern arising, based on user comments I'm reading.

[Bernie Goldbach uses Flickr in the creative multimedia degree programme at the Limerick School of Art & Design.]

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