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Matt Elliott
Works at States Works
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Matt Elliott

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Lazy Sundays are for chumps
August 30, 2015 • 21 moments
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I'll give you failed to upload...
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Wibble wobble 
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How can you not find this awesome? I'd say we should all be doing it, but then the charm would disappear.
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Ah, the memories you find cleaning out your room...

Only one student got this. Me. Did I have a write up in the yearly school magazine annual thing? Did I bollocks. Didn't get a mention. Not even a hint. Unacceptable.

Hands down the best certificate there is, beating out exam results and misspelt student of the year nominations.
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Well, that's neat...

Discovered a world generator from donjon, and being the spherically accurate generator that it is, it outputs images that wrap around spheres.

Google likes images that wrap around spheres because they're the right dimensions for Photospheres, which is an auto-awesome feature, meaning you don't have to take a Photosphere in order to see one.

So what I have now is the exterior of a fantasy world projected into the interior of a virtual world, and of course it still works inside and out (star charts can be put on spheres, the Earth can be viewed from inside a sphere, it still works).

Pretty rare that it happens (I've messed around with a few maps like this, only one has been Photosphered so far), but interesting to play around with - I can see, for example, the size of these land masses in more accuracy, without having to remember to squish the image this way or that in my mind.

Limited application at the minute, but nice to see.
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Matt Elliott

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Still more stable than the Condor Liberation

(I kid. Bar one rogue wave, the sailings were fine.)
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Shakeycam is the future
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Remember when we used to get things via email?

Things other than spam and shopping receipts, I mean.
Bite-sized daily courses delivered to your inbox.
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Matt Elliott

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I'm interested to know if Google Photos is what people wanted or expected.

I can't deny that it looks great and keeps things simple, but in order to do what I want to do with my photos, I have to use it in conjunction with Google+ and/or Google Drive, which sort of defeats the point of having one place to organise your photos.

Is that even what Google Photos is, the one and only place you'll need to go? How's it working for all of you? How are you using it? What can and can't you do now?
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+mike moller I believe it'll come along in a future update, but the previous version of Photos had Chromecast support. It seems like a blunder for Google to not support Google's tech.
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The New Google Photos is, while pretty, a bit of a mess.

I can't even find the right words to describe the mess.

Everything is dumped into one big bucket. Great. So I should do everything from that one big bucket, right? Except I can't.

Problem 1: Moving Photos

Let's say I took a photo on my phone that I know will eventually get put into an ideas folder in Google Drive. The photo is automatically backed up, so I think to myself "I'll sort it out from Photos when I get home later".

Wrong. The web based Photos app doesn't allow you to share to Google Drive, only G+, Facebook, Twitter or a general link. I'd have to do everything from Google Drive if I want to organise photos into folders.

However, the Photos app on the phone does have the option to share to Google Drive, along with all the other sharing options available to Android. Great.

Not so great though, because whatever I share from the app gets renamed image.jpg. It's not the end of the world, but is irksome.

(Update: Like Android, iOS also has multiple sharing options, including the ability to open in Google Drive. This might be 'upload to Drive', it might be 'find in Drive', it might be 'view in Drive', I just don't know. Because right now Google Drive on iOS shows me absolutely nothing but a white screen...)

Problem 2: Editing

If I took a photo and wanted to tweak the image, or put on some filters or effects, the Photos app comes equipped with basic editing and filtering options. Great, but what if I knew exactly which filter I had in mind, and it was found on Google+ Photos?

Well, now I have to say 'Sorry Google Photos, but I want to go back to Google+ Photos a moment', find the image, open the image, edit the image via the other tools in Google+...

There are two photo editing toolboxes being offered from Google for photos stored on Google servers. One is accessible via Google Photos, the other from Google+ Photos.

Good luck remembering which one is which, and even more luck to you if they decide to shutter Google+ Photos. You'd need to go through Snapseed whenever you wanted to edit to a similar level (which, being owned by Google, makes it three editing toolboxes available to you, though there's not a whole lot of difference between Snapseed and Google+ Photos these days).

Problem 3: Accessing the Bucket

For those keeping count at home, there are now three places in which you can access your big bucket of photos - the new Google Photos, the old Google+ Photos, and the Google Photos folder within Google Drive.

All three offer different ways to manage and edit your photos, and the only overlap there is is that each can access whatever the other has done.

That's handy, because if you want to edit your photo before putting it into a Google Drive folder, you'd need to use at least two of these services before succeeding.

Problem 4: Searching the Bucket

It's got fancy search tools. They don't help me much though. In my ideas folder are images with generic names for what they are: town, church, etc. A search tool should, if I type in 'town', find at least images that I've saved called 'town'.

It doesn't find them all. And then it decides that what I should be looking at is my holidays photos from London and Edinburgh, and any other images in my bucket that looks vaguely like a town.

That's not what I wanted Google. The way around it is to be more specific. I can search for 'picture ideas' and it returns images from the folder, so 'picture ideas town' should give me what I want.

Except it still doesn't. Gone are photos of London and Edinburgh, but in their place are ideas I've labelled as churches or landscapes. It still can't even return all the files I've named 'town'.

To be fair to Google Photos though, this is a better search result than searching directly on Google Drive. This is how much of a joke it is that I can't search for my own things on Google. Google!

In the end

Google Photos isn't a one stop shop for Photo management, it's a fancy front end to your back ups. Basic sharing, basic editing, quick and easy back ups. But for anything more it's just a hassle.

It means I go through those hassles to get what I want to get done, or I just give up and go with however Google wants me to use it. Here's hoping I find a nice middle ground somewhere.
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Matt Elliott

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I had more success naming these clips from 10 years of YouTube, as oppose to just last years top videos.

Still not going to come up in the pub quiz though, is it?
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Matt Elliott's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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