Ensure that other photo sharing sites have no reason to resent Seadragon.

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  • Idea
  • Updated 11 years ago
  • Under Consideration
So this is something of a variation on my earlier request for friendliness towards other image sites like flickr, etc.

It would be nice to be able to have the link on the Seadragon page point to the actual page that the original image appeared on, rather than the hotlink to the image itself. In flickr's case it would be absolutely great to be able to throw the URL to the front page of any flickr photo at seadragon.com and have it find the highest resolution copy of the image hosted on flickr.

You could also parse the license on that photo and decline to convert and host it if it is copyrighted. If more serious integration was attempted such as logging into one's own flickr account, it would be a step towards ensuring that the owner of the image still had the capability of using their own copyrighted images with Seadragon, while turning others away to avoid any legal problems or angry copyright holders looking at Seadragon with an evil eye.

While I'm on this topic, perhaps parsing the author and copyright data out of EXIF tags (or giving the option to fill in copyright data in a fold out blank) could result in a proper copyright/creative commons info in the corner of the Seadragon viewer a la Photosynth.

I haven't read over the terms of use super carefully to know what the legal status is of images converted to DZIs and I'm sure that you all would rather spend your time bringing improvements to the technology itself, rather than pandering to end users and your peers in photos sharing, but I strongly believe that it's incredibly important to have a good relationship with photo sharing sites out there. I would absolutely love to see a Seadragon viewer option on Flickr one day, but that sort of integration in the future will certainly never happen if in the present they build a reputation for Seadragon in their minds as something that simply takes their valuable images that draw viewers to their site and whose only form of linking back to flickr (or other sites) is in the form of a hotlink to the image on their servers.

Again, I love Seadragon. The hard work that I suggest above is only to save your good name. I feel like going the extra mile to show respect and courtesy to your peers would keep this from being one more case for people to resent Microsoft in spite of incredible technology because of some small quirk in presentation/conduct.
Photo of Nathanael Lawrence

Nathanael Lawrence

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Posted 11 years ago

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Photo of Aseem Kishore

Aseem Kishore, Former Employee

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Official Response
Nathanael, as always, great stuff. And again, we're all on the same wavelength.

We expected from the start that a significant portion of submitted URLs would be to e.g. Flickr pages rather than the image directly. We're well aware of it and want to solve it, but we got some pushback for v1 (and I think rightly so, since it would have been spending time solving a problem we didn't know would necessarily be a major problem, though turns out our expectations were right and it was).

Similarly, linking to the source page of the image as opposed to the raw image itself is also something we talked about -- in my case, I used Wikipedia as an example -- but we again decided to cut it for v1.

But your idea specifically of recognizing all the variants of an image's URLs (e.g. in the case of Flickr, main photo page, each of the size pages, and each of the raw images) as one image -- and linking back to the main source (e.g. the main photo page) -- is a really excellent idea.

Handling copyright info and machine tags and things like that is a bit much to me, and I don't see us pursuing this just yet. This is mainly just because this is stuff very specific to sites like Flickr and not available for any image in general.

But -- exposing an API would let you guys and the community build some of that stuff on top of Seadragon.com. An API exists, but we decided not to expose it publicly for v1. It needs some polish to make sure it's done "right" in order to be forwards-compatible with all of these ideas and features. Hopefully we'll be able to get it out soon. (I've already written what I think is a powerful app on top of it, so I can't wait either! =P)

Thanks for all these ideas, guys, and seriously, keep it coming.