For more than a year I have turned repeatedly to flickr’s creative commons search to locate images for presentations and projects. It never has failed to provide a large number of choices of powerful images to use.
The problem is the search tools on flickr are one of their less elegant designed interfaces. You first have to browser/pick via a type of license, and then search. It’s hardly efficient. For a long while, I used FlickrLilli, which provided a single search interface with some buttons/menus to narrow to the appropriate CC license types. But ohhhhhh, that Lilli just got slower and slower to load/respond. Darn popularity!
Well, here is a new kid that offers even more! flickrCC
This is from the “about” portion..
OK, so I should put more time into documentation, right?
I wrote flickrCC so I could easily find photos on flickr that were released under the creative commons license. Stuff that I could use for my experiments with the GIMP or include in my blog.
The panel on the left displays the first 36 matching photos. Click on any of these thumbnails to get a slightly larger image and the attribution details displayed in the right hand section. Right click the image and ‘save image as’ if you want to use this size, or click on the link in the attribution text to go to flickr and chose a different sized image. Don’t forget to include the attribution text in any work you produce using the picture.
To use the web app. just enter a word (or words) into the textbox. Click on ‘find’ and you’ll get all photos with a CC license that match *all* the search word(s) in the picture’s title, tags or description (sorted in order of ‘interestingness’, the photo voted most interesting first). The CC licences for a default search are: “Attribution License”, “Attribution-NoDerivs License”, “Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License”, “Attribution-NonCommercial License”, “Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License” and “Attribution-ShareAlike License”
If you want to edit a photo, you’ll need to restrict the search to just those licenses that allow derivatives. Checking the ‘for editing’ box ensures that just those photos licensed: “Attribution License”, “Attribution-NonCommercial License”, “Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License” and “Attribution-ShareAlike License” are returned
So let’s walk through it… Let’s say for example, I was going to bring more diversity to this weblog, I might so a search for images like…
Hey, that is really cute! Not bad for a feline. So flickrcc is a great way to just find images appropriate to your license needs, and it returns them in order of “interestingness” usually meaning better pictures first. You can tell this interface is done by someone who built it for their own use, and it makes sense, as this is the approach that takes about 5 clicks to get to in flickr.
But wait, there is more. Click the “edit this image” link, and you get thrown into a web image editor that allows you to crop, add text, put a solid color frame, draw lines, and what I think is a huge bonus– it adds the Creative Commons attribution to the image (see a larger screenshot of the entire web form). Woah, Neo!
So without launching PhotoShop or other software, I can quickly generate:
This is just insanely great.
A linktribution to Stephen Downes