October 21st, 2006  |  Published in pictures and photography

PiclensCourtesy of a question in the OmniWeb support forum comes a pointer to PicLens, a plugin for Safari (and soon for Windows, which I take to mean “IE”) that creates a lovely slideshow from Web-based photo archives. It’s very similar to the fullscreen view in iPhoto 6, and seems to do some amount of precaching to keep the viewing experience smooth.

It also understands how to talk to the remote that came with my iMac, so I can pull up a group or individual photo pool in flickr, grab my remote and click through the pictures in a fullscreen slideshow without hovering over the mouse or being at the mercy of a set transition interval.

Currently works with Flickr, Photobucket, Facebook, Google Image Search, Yahoo Image Search and Ask.com Image Search. I’ve checked it out in flickr, where it works beautifully. It understands, for instance, the difference between starting a slideshow from within an individual user’s general photostream, or from within a set. I’ve also looked at it within Google Image Search, where it performs well, but has to deal with the relative lack of quality control in terms of the results. In other words, you occasionally get stuff like very small images stretched to full-screen size, and there’s the occasional 404.

All in all, a nice plugin. I think it’s going to help me look at more pictures more often, which is something I’ve thought I should do for a little while now.

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