We have just launched a new product – Snapcast.in. It is a web app to post photos on multiple platforms at once. Right now it can post photos on Facebook, Twitter, 500px and Flickr. What is special about Snapcast.in is that you can select platform specific properties for photos while posting them. So you can set keywords which will be used by 500px and Flickr and select a category for 500px. you can connect a Facebook profile, a Facebook page, a Twitter, 500px account and Flickr accounts. Once you have connected your various social profiles with Snapcast,in you can select up to 10 photos and post them at once on the selected platforms.
The idea came to my mind for during my 365 project. Initially when I started the 365 project I used to go to each site manually and post my photo there. But doing that every day became cumbersome so eventually I stopped posting on other sites and was posting only on Facebook. Existing tools like Buffer do not have option of posting on 500px and Flickr.
We finally launched our next big product at Uconomix – PhotoKeeper. It is a cloud based photo backup and management service aimed at professional and serious hobbyist photographers.
There are dozens of cloud backup services out there, what sets PhotoKeeper apart from them is its focus on photos. Other general purpose backup services do not understand photos and they are meant for casual smartphone photographers. PhotoKeeper understands photos, it understands RAW files and it reads EXIF data and lets you search based on that data. In terms of photo organization what Lightroom does on the desktop, PhotoKeeper does in the cloud.
Here’s an introductory video of PhotoKeeper
PhotoKeeper has advanced search capabilities. You want to see all your photos taken with your Canon 5D Mk III and 70-200mm lens at ISO 100 and the aperture of f/2.8 where flash did not fire and which you have rated 3 stars and above? You can do that with PhotoKeeper!
Another unique feature of PhotoKeeper is private albums. Professional photographers will find it really useful. They can create private albums and share with their clients who can comment and annotate on the photos and provide feedback. It eliminates the need of sending photos through email or pen drives and facilitates better communication.
I recently purchased new camera straps – Peak Design Leash and Clutch. Peak Design is a manufacturer of some interesting camera accessories mostly straps and clips to hold the camera in various positions. They sell online and ship internationally. I ordered Leash and Clutch and paid $67.41 after applying a 10% discount coupon. I placed the order on 28 March and I received them in Mumbai, India on 7 April.
They have warehouses in Toronto, London, Hong Kong and California and they ship from a warehouse near to you. Before I placed the order I was apprehensive about shipping times and whether I will receive the product at all because they ship for free if the order is above $50 and the only service they could afford would be postal service. I had a bad experience with International postal service. But do not make my mistake, use change of address online for right address registration, which you will provide to your supplier. Couple of months ago I had purchased something from eBay USA and the item was sent though USPS first class international mail and I never received it ultimately having to get a refund after more than a month. The seller shipped it and I could track it till it was in the US but once it left US there was no track of the item. Seller lost the item and I lost the difference in foreign exchange between order and refund.
So I wasn’t sure if I will receive my Leash and Clutch if they ship through regular postal service, so before placing the order I sent them an email asking which shipping service they use. They replied back with a link to their FAQ about shipping which I had already read. So that was of no help. I went ahead and placed the order hoping for the best. I ordered it on Saturday 28 March 2015, I got shipping notification on Monday 30 March and it was shipped through Hong Kong Post International Registered Mail. They also provided me a tracking number. I crossed my fingers and the wait began.
The tracking page on Hong Kong Post’s site doesn’t give much information about the shipment. Luckily the tracking page from India Post gives details of the progress made by the shipment. On 31st it left Hong Kong, Reached India on 4 April and it was finally delivered to me on 7 April. I had it in my hands within 8 days of shipping. That’s impressive for the postal service.
I also did not have to pay any custom duties. I feared the item might get stuck at customs or I might have to pay custom duty of as much as 30% which is what I saw was being levied on camera accessories. I have taken a few workshops for foreign exchange trading in London and I learned a bit about the obscene duty tariffs to import. Above all I feared damage or total loss once it reached India. But as the tracking history shows the item wasn’t sent to customs and was sent to me directly from the foreign post office.
So if you are in India and have been thinking of buying any of Peak Design’s products go on and buy it. It took 8 days to reach Mumbai, could take more for other parts of India especially non metro cities. Take a look at what Peak Design Leash and Clutch are –
I am really enjoying my photo a day project. I think of a subject I am going to shoot for the day and shoot it once I am back home from the office. Today I decided to shoot Yaashi playing with the ball. I knew the shot was going to be tricky and I will have to protect the camera from an oncoming salvo because Yaashi can really whack the ball at times and nobody knows where the ball will fly.
I wanted to capture Yaashi hitting the ball, the action had to be captured in the click. I started with easy way – the burst mode. My camera can take up to 12 shots a second I thought I will catch a good moment. I ended up taking more than 150 images but not a single one was usable. Since I could not use Flash in burst mode and the camera was set in Auto focus Macro mode (which I realized very late) all the pictures out of focus and dark. So I took the hard way, I had to use a fast shutter speed so I needed Flash which meant I would have to time my clicks. There was a delay between when I actually pressed the shutter, camera focused and fired the Flash and took the photo, by that time the ball would go out of frame. After some clicks I figured out the delay and timed my clicks and managed to capture some usable shots.
This one is a lucky click. Yaashi hit the ball straight back at the camera and I managed to capture it milliseconds before I took evasive action and slapped the ball away.
I am not 100% satisfied but I will improve with time. I surely need an even faster shutter speed, today’s shoot was at 1/125 and 1/160 of a second. Need to go beyond 1/200 next time.