Please, do not look.

I told you.


Thanks to some fun sponsored by Reclaim Hosting, I ended up with a new spiffy domain to play with.


I almost forgot about it when poking around my directories, and saw the directory sitting there. I thought about maybe putting my worst photos on a site… but enough about my photos, what about other photos?

So here is the concept. This site now is set to every hour, rummage around flickr, and find a person who’s photos you most likely would never come across, and display their 20 most recent uploads:



This was a sloppy assemblage done in an hour or two of fiddling. It’s a layout I did as an experiment before just to experiment with calling the flickr api via Javascript.

To re-rig this I would need a way to find a new flickr account or “owner” to swap into the demo I did using my own account.

It works like this. Once an hour (23 minutes after the top of the hour) a cron script calls an ugly php URL that runs some magic through flickr to find the victim subject. It then rewrites the main page from a template file.

How is the magic done? I use phpflickr to call on the api. I used the explore feature to fiddle with the settings that I use to search to find a semi-obscure flickr user. The mis-logic is:

  • Search on photos tagged either dull or boring or ugly or bland.
  • Results are return in order of interestingness ascending, so if I have done this right, the least interesting photos.
  • I ask for 500 results just to have a big pool
  • I then pick one photo and random, extract the flickr ID for the user, and use that as the person’s photos to updated.

The code on the display page could be done better but it gets the 20 most recent photos from the user (here is the data for my own) into a javascript array, chooses 1 at random, and sets it as a background image that fills the screen using the jQuery Backstretch plugin. My ugly code reloads the page based on a timeout, but I see that the newer version of Backstretch has a mode to do as a slideshow.

Maybe a future project to make more elegant. Or not.

Or is this some sort of “anti-societal artistic provocation”? I hope not.

But I kind of like the idea of trying to find and display photos that maybe had little hope of being seen?

And apologies to anyone’s photos that end of there- ITS ALL RANDOM! I will not share the silly variable names I refer to you in my php script. Fair enough?

Thanks again to Reclaim Hosting for many things, like the top ten reasons to make lists of things to do on your domain. You only need one reason in my book.

Reclaim hosting is the spirit and soul of the real internet.

Thanks for the all the fish domains!

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An early 90s builder of web stuff and blogging Alan Levine barks at on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person. And he is 100% into the Fediverse (or tells himself so) Tooting as

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