Flickr Explore FAQ (from Big Huge Labs)

This is a great reference on what Flickr Explore is, what Interestingness is, and how to understand both:

What is Explore?

Explore is a Flickr feature with the intent of showing you “some of the most awesome photos on Flickr.” Photos are automatically selected by computer according to a secret algorithm called Interestingness (see below for more about that).

Is Explore a showcase for the top Flickr photographers?

No. It’s for photo viewers, not the photographers. It exists so that, at any moment, anyone who wants to view interesting photos can go to Explore and have a reasonable chance of seeing something interesting. Does that imply that photographs not in Explore are uninteresting? Of course not. There are many, many wonderful photos uploaded to Flickr each day that aren’t selected for Explore. But to serve its purpose, Explore only has to include a small sampling of all of the photos on Flickr (currently at 500 per day or about 0.005% of the daily upload volume). And Explore tries to show photos from as many different people as possible to create a diverse selection.

Explore is for the viewers. It’s a way for Flickr to show the world a sampling of what is being shared there. It’s there for those who are new to Flickr, who are lost in the vastness of it all and don’t know where to begin. It is not a “best of” listing of photographers. It is not a popularity contest.

What is Interestingness?

Interestingness is what Flickr calls the criteria used for selecting which photos are shown in Explore. All photos are given an Interestingness “score” that can also be used to sort any image search on Flickr. The top 500 photos ranked by Interestingness are shown in Explore. Interestingness rankings are calculated automatically by a secret computer algorithm. The algorithm is often referred to by name as the Interestingness algorithm. Although the algorithm is secret, Flickr has stated that many factors go into calculating Interestingness including: a photo’s tags, how many groups the photo is in, views, favorites, where click-throughs are coming from, who comments on a photo and when, and more. The velocity of any of those components is a key factor. For example, getting 20 comments in an hour counts much higher than getting 20 comments in a week.

(continued via Frequently Asked Questions / Scout)

Wired Multimedia: Japan’s Hottest Celebrity Bloggers

Do you need any more info? 😉

shoko_nakagawa

If you go to Japan and tell people you’re a blogger, they might assume you’re a celebrity. While blogs are making incredible headway as a source of credible information in the United States, in Japan they are mostly thought of as high-profile diaries.

“It’s an evolution of Japan’s diary culture,” which dates back to the 8th century, says Ichiro Kiyota, an editor at Gizmodo Japan. “Celebrities say things on blogs that they can’t tell the mainstream media, and we all read it so we can get to know them better.”

Japan’s celebrity bloggers run the gamut in terms of popularity and topics they write about, but they have several things in common: They’re good-looking, they’re geeky and they love to blog. Here are our 10 faves.

(continued via Gallery: Japan’s Hottest Celebrity Bloggers)

dPS: How To Remove Dust Spots From Multiple Photos in 4 Steps

Another excellent article from digital Photography School, about how to remove dust spots from your photos. I’m going to need to try this out on my own photos, especially after that full day of shooting with a dirty sensor (see the before/after examples here: https://blog.wolffmyren.com/2008/07/07/before-cleaning/ and here: https://blog.wolffmyren.com/2008/07/07/after-cleaning/)

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Dust. The eternal enemy of a digital camera. When you shoot pictures with a digital SLR camera long enough, you will come to know the pain that dust can cause. For some it’s a minor annoyance. For others, it costs time and money attempting to salvage vital images.

In this post Peter Carey shares some tips on how to remove dust spots from multiple photos.

With advancements in DLSRs has also come advancements in Photoshop tools to remove dust. My favorite for dust removal, partially because of its price, is Photoshop Lightroom. While it is a scaled down version of the full blown Photoshop, it is perfectly suited to remove 90% of the dust I encounter.

Why is dust such a problem? Take a look at the picture on the left. Do you notice the small black spots in the sky and one big spot on the left side in the mountain? Those are not UFOs and that is not a mining tunnel. It was dust adhered to the sensor, casting a black shadow on the sensor when the shutter was activated. You can’t get back the data that is covered over by the shadow, but you can get creative and repair the damage depending on the dust location. When those dust spots are in the same location on each image, you’re in luck as there is a fairly easy method for multiple photo dust spot removal. (Note: the instructions are given using a PC version of Lightroom 1.4. Mac instructions vary only slightly if using a single button mouse)

(continue reading via: How To Remove Dust Spots From Multiple Photos in 4 Steps)