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New product release today

Thursday, December 27, 2007 by Dave Winer.

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls... Permalink to this paragraph

It's with much anticipation that I say this. Permalink to this paragraph

I have a new product that may be familiar to those of you who used Radio 8, and in other ways may be completely new.  Permalink to this paragraph

The idea is simple.  Permalink to this paragraph

There's a convergence between big screen high-definition televisions, and photography as an Internet based activity. Permalink to this paragraph

The purpose of this product is to smooth that convergence, to make it easy to set up a connection between the Internet and your television. To allow photography to come into your living room in new, powerful and easy ways. Permalink to this paragraph

Think of it as the networked living room and you'll understand the vision. Permalink to this paragraph

Some of the work I've done is technical, some is user interface, and some is working with media organizations to try to create a comfort level, or at least a spirit of Let's Give This A Try. Permalink to this paragraph

In the latter case, it's much like working with the NY Times to get their news headlines and summaries to flow through Radio's RSS aggregator in 2002. Only this time we're working with photographs, and we think, the best news photographers in the world. And the pictures are beautifully high-def, they look really great when displayed on LCD and plasma screens. I use it with my 52-inch Samsung and 46-inch Sony. Of course what looks great on a wall, also looks great on a 15-inch Macbook or 24-inch iMac. ;->  Permalink to this paragraph

And while we connect those pros with your TV, it's equally important that we connect your friends and families too. One of the early testers found the pictures that Doc Searls uploads to Flickr a great revelation. Me too. That's because Doc is not only a great photographer, he's also a great story-teller. I find that I can follow the lives of far more friends visually than I can through text messages (which I love to do too!). Permalink to this paragraph

Viewing great photos on bigscreen TVs, desktops and laptops -- that's one focus, but not the only one.  Permalink to this paragraph

I wanted to provide a complete two-way tool for people who love Flickr, as I do.  Permalink to this paragraph

Why Flickr? Well, they've got this great thing called an API. It makes it possible for people like me to make software that runs on a desktop computer that does things like automatically backing up your new photos every night, and providing a drop-folder on your desktop for quick uploads. (It understands tags too, it's incredibly simple.) Permalink to this paragraph

We also made it easy to post pictures you like to Twitter. Why Twitter? It's that API thing again. They made it easy for us to love them. I wish more network service developers understood how powerful this outstretched hand is.  Permalink to this paragraph

But that's not all! Permalink to this paragraph

Not by a long shot. Permalink to this paragraph

The reason all this will be so familiar to Radio 8 users is that it builds on the same engine, the one that was released as open source in 2004. So I've been working on other tools to drop into this base platform and once we have a good-sized base of people using it for "really simple photos" on the desktop, there will be other tools. And because it's an open platform, other developers can do the same. Not saying they will, but they can. ;-> Permalink to this paragraph

Anyway, I'm in the last stages, preparing the download site, and a FAQ, and tweaking the installer. Permalink to this paragraph

One caveat, the first beta release is Mac only. That's because I'm doing all my work on the Mac, and this is a one-man show. Later we will work it out for Windows too, and with a bit more work and a bit more luck, for Linux.  Permalink to this paragraph

It should be ready before the sun goes down today. ;-> Permalink to this paragraph

Phil Windley: "The XBR4 already has a DVI input, so hooking up ought to be a breeze and getting good pictures on the thing would be wonderful." Permalink to this paragraph

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Last update: 12/27/2007; 2:53:48 PM Pacific. "It's even worse than it appears."

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