Show Off Your Cams with "This is my Cam!"

Curtis Chen
Aug. 17 2012, 11:30AM EDT

Something new sprang up in the Flickr App Garden last month: "This is my Cam!" by Chris Martin (the San Francisco-based hacker, not that guy from Coldplay). Inspired by music sharing site This Is My Jam and built during Photo Hack Day 3, "This is my Cam!" uses the Flickr API to catalog the different cameras that were used to capture a particular user's photos.

Any Flickr user can start using "This is my Cam!" in seconds, simply by navigating to thisismycam.com and authorizing the app to read his or her Flickr photostream data. If you only ever snap photos with your smartphone, your catalog won't be very diverse, but "This is my Cam!" will still show some interesting statistics, like when you took the first photo with that camera (including a link to the photo on Flickr), when you snapped the most recent photo, and how many people have commented on your photos or added them to their favorites.

Developer Chris Martin blogged about his plans for the app before the hack day, documenting the key features: "pull in photos, check exif [meta-data], pull in camera info from amazon, build some pretty pages to display it all." And now that the app is live--with all those promised features working--he welcomes suggestions for future improvements.  His current to-do list includes "[h]iding cameras (it's not unusual to have a few photos from random cameras)" and manually editing camera information.

One could argue that "This is my Cam!" is currently more fun than functional, but it does one simple thing very well. And the potential for mining meta-data could increase as the user base expands--for example, imagine something like the Flickr Camera Finder, but linked to specific users, who could then contact each other to compare notes.

You can see Chris Martin's own camera collection and Flickr photos at http://thisismycam.com/cjmartin .

Curtis Chen Once a software engineer in Silicon Valley; now a science fiction writer and puzzle hunt maker near Portland, Oregon. You may have seen his "Cat Feeding Robot" Ignite presentation. Curtis is not an aardvark.

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