Findery – first thoughts

Findery

Findery is a new(ish) geo-based social site from, amongst others, the incredibly talented former Flickrites Caterina Fake and Heather Champ.

So, does the world really need another website like this when we already have Flickr, Instagram, Pinterest, Historypin … ? The list is seemingly endless, but even if it wasn’t my initial feeling, I think there’s a place for Findery.

The problem is, and it’s a feeling very much echoed by a few Flickr contacts once I started posting Flickr images across to Findery, was that it seems crazy duplicating images in yet another place (or ‘space’ as digital folks like to call it). The key thing, and something I’ve deliberated with for my Historypin collection, is that if you don’t have a single ‘master’ image how can you keep track of edits, comments and the like so that you can always see everything, and each one is kept up to date?

Well, I don’t have an answer to that, but I have still been having some fun using Findery. I think is has something that’s just that bit different, and for me at least it’s caught my eye.

Findery example (click image to view)

Trying to define what that something is proves difficult. It certainly doesn’t feel like it will ever be used by people (especially collection holders) as a place to share collections of images, and I’m not suggesting it pretends to be, it’s just the world I come from. But I say that because I think it highlights what it is, a more ‘of the minute’ experience which gives it a certain immediacy that is really engaging. Just the fact that each Note is led by the description rather than the image (or as of a few days ago video and audio) shows that it is all about the story rather than the object.

Personally I’ve also found it of interest, and in some way different to the likes of Flickr, because I have quite happily shared both items from my vintage image collection and from my own more recent personal photography, something that can feel uncomfortable on Flickr where my presence feels much more focussed on just the vintage photographs and anything else is simply a distraction.

And finally I should say that it has a rather lovely interface and user experience, which certainly makes it stand out from others.

On a more technical note, because they have an API I have been able to write a simple ‘two-click’ exporter from Flickr which means you can quickly find topical images on your Flickr account and post them as notes on Findery, automatically transferring geotags, titles and descriptions.

Oh, and they have also just enabled quick posting on wordpress.com and self-hosted WordPress sites, so here’s a little test using the example above …

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2 Responses to Findery – first thoughts

  1. GoCatGo says:

    I still don’t understand how they expect a geo-based social photography site to succeed without mobile apps. The site claims that an iPhone app is in alpha … and “coming soon.” Well … soon has long-since passed.

    • James says:

      Do you mean a mobile app for posting, or for discovery? I think if the focus is on modern photographs then yes, of course a mobile app for posting is needed. For me personally I haven’t missed it as I am just posting old, scanned photographs. But in time once there is more material it would be good to have a mobile based discovery tool (or to have the data available through something like Google’s Field Trip and/or an AR app like Layar).

      Since writing this I have been posting a few things and keeping a watchful eye. I’m not sure what their plans are for future development and promotion, but I have been struck by just how few views my images have received – it seems to be a very small community right now.

      But I still stand by my initial thoughts, and that is that compared to other geo-based photography start-ups it has a certain something which I think gives it great promise.

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