FlickrStreamr – an animated way to look at Flickr photos

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A new version of FlickrStreamr is available: 0.3

I have always been amazed by the fact that Flickr.com gets between 2000 and 4000 uploaded photos per minute. That’s a lot of photos. Even if we take the lower number (2000) that’s over 1000 million photographs every year. If we wait a few years more, Flickr.com has as many photos as there are people on the planet.

Wouldn’t it be great if we could somehow visualize that number? Well, the first step is a little application i wrote called FlickrStreamr. When you click ‘GO’ it gets the most recent photos from Flickr and animates them as if they were falling down from the top-left corner of the screen. You can hover over the photographs to preview them and click to go to the appropriate photo page on Flickr.com.

I also wrote FlickrStreamr to learn myself a little bit of Javascript, jQuery, PHP, and Web APIs. The workflow of the application goes like this: When you press the ‘GO’ button Flickrstreamr asks a PHP script to load the latest photographs from Flickr.com. The PHP script uses a simple REST call to the Flickr API backend and returns a JSON object containing the latest photographs. Flickrstreamr than uses jQuery animations to display them on your screen. In the meantime it keeps track of the number of cached photographs and asynchronously loads a new batch of photos whenever the cache is in danger of getting empty.

Don’t worry if that’s too technical for you. You can still try the application :)

If you want to host the application yourself you can do so by downloading the package. All you need is a webserver which runs PHP 5 (which practically all of them do). Instructions are in the package. You may also modify the package because i released the source code under both the Revised BSD license and the GNU Public License.

To try FlickrStreamr click here.

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