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Fun with Flickr

November 18, 2008

I’ve had some photographs on Flickr for over a year now. I haven’t really done too much with the account besides upload a handful of photos every once in a while. This past weekend I finally spent a bit of time and played around with their map functionality.

To see some photos of Patagonia (that you’ve probably seen before in a Friday Field Foto) go here or click on the screenshot below.


You can also see some of my photos from around the San Francisco Bay Area — go here or click on the screenshot below.


I think Flickr’s map function still needs a bit of work. For example, I wish I could save different map views such that a viewer could pick from a dropdown list — some might be regional in scale, some might be very zoomed in. Right now you have to zoom in to different areas and then the photos that are within that area will show up in the strip along the bottom.

Once the photos are ‘geotagged’ in Flickr there are probably tons of tricks and tips for making other geographic visualizations (e.g., GoogleEarth?). I’m sure some of you know much more about this than me … feel free to leave a comment below.

Of course, you can find photos other ways too … I’ve been pretty good about adding tags to my photos as I upload them. Click on the screenshot below to go to my tag page and explore that way.


At some point, it would be great to get all my photos of sedimentary structures and other geologic features in there. Just need to find the time.


9 Comments leave one →
  1. November 18, 2008 8:40 am

    Geotagging images in picassa will allow you to directly import them into google earth at the click of a link

  2. November 18, 2008 12:46 pm

    Brian – I’ve got somewhere north of 4000 geotagged photos on Flickr – most of them geological – so I applaud your efforts to geotag your own.

    A useful resource for viewing Flickr photos in Google Earth can be found at:

    It’s an indispensable resource for me.

  3. November 18, 2008 12:51 pm

    hypocentre … since I’m already in Flickr and committed to it, I won’t change to Picasa now … grass is always greener on the other side, eh?

    Ron … wow, 4000! Can that metaltoad tool display photos for a single user? I thought I remember that just showing the whole community’s most recent/most interesting photos or something.

    Another one I came across is Trippermap … I started playing around a bit.

  4. November 19, 2008 9:31 am

    Flikr is nice, but Picasa is a bit more functional and more geared toward geotagging and integration with Google Earth. I geotag all of my field photos for practical and archival purposes. It can be easily done by integrating gps tracklogs and photo time stamps. All geologists should do this, but most don’t. Here are some links to my unknown blog that explain my position:

  5. November 19, 2008 4:13 pm

    drjerque … thanks for the info … and now your blog is not unknown (at least to me)

  6. November 19, 2008 9:47 pm

    I actually commented that 1st link of drjerque some time ago. His idea of geotagging not only photos but diagrams too is a good one, especially if you want to explain something.

    Brian, I’m glad you’re uploading new photos to Flickr, I’ve been pretty active myself the past months. Just so you know, you can save map views and then pick one from a drop down list, but it’s an option only available for you, not for your viewers.

    By the way, I think Picasa has a nice geotagging function but geosetter is way better at that, and it has a kml export option too. You should definitely try it out

  7. November 30, 2008 7:53 am

    How do you do the geotagging? I have been experimenting with using a GPS and automatically tagging photos based on the time when they were taken, but I couldn’t find a really fast, easy and reliable way to do it. I wish there was a good DSLR with a GPS chip in it.

  8. November 30, 2008 8:16 am

    zoltan … I was simply placing my photos on a map, sometimes quite precisely and other times in the general area. This is real time consuming for tons of photos. I was pretty selective abou the photos I uploaded to Flickr (the best of the best) so it wasn’t too many.

    I figured that GPS-enabled DSLRs already existed? I’d ask Ron if you want to know more, he seems to have his finger on the pulse of the latest photo-related and GPS technology.

  9. November 30, 2008 8:56 am

    Yes, there are (pretty expensive) GPS units that you can attach to some of the high-end DSLRs. But… Nowadays many cellphones have built-in GPS. Why not put something simple in the cheaper cameras? As far as I know, right now the only reasonably priced camera with built-in GPS is the Nikon Coolpix P6000.

    You are right, probably Ron knows what’s the best way to do this.

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