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Speak to any progressively-minded and well-educated web designer or developer, and you’ll soon realize that you are conversing with a master craftsman. Like any professional who is highly skilled, these shapers of pixels and writers of code take pride in the jobs they do, and they work to the highest possible standard. This requires, among other practices, the use of clean, semantic code — one less media query here, and one less repeated CSS rule there adds up to a noticeably faster website.

That is all highly commendable if you know what you’re doing (or if you can afford to employ someone who is suitably knowledgeable). But what about when David, the hotelier, wants to add a promo video to his website, or when Rachel, the musician, wants to include her recordings in her web presence? These folks may have basic web-building skills, but they certainly aren’t capable of writing functional micro web-apps. The solution? Embeddable widgets.

Unfortunately, widgets haven’t always been terribly adjustable, good-looking or quick to load, and finding one to suit your exact needs has always been a painful search. A new service named Blogvio, fresh out of private beta, aims to address these issues with a library of stylish, customizable widgets. But can any paste-in code really provide a satisfying addition to your website?


Six months ago, Instagram was valued at $1 Billion when they were bought out by Facebook, an amount thought absurd by most. Shortly thereafter came huge changes to their Terms of Service, explicitly stating that they could store and sell any photos uploaded to the site. Users were angry – and rightly so.

The online stock photography market is worth $5 billion each year – and commission photography worth $12 billion. So I guess you can see why Facebook and Instagram wanted to cash in, especially as neither had decent revenue streams. They’ve since changed their terms of service back, for the most part, but the reputation damage was already done.

Now, a new kid on the block is becoming more and more popular – EyeEm. It’s a German “visual search engine” and social network for photographs. The new contender is far from ready for prime-time, and is much smaller than the mighty dominant Facebook. But on the Internet, it’s users’ clicks that matter, and they’re flocking to the new service. Could it be the next Instagram?


Over the past few weeks on Web.Appstorm, I’ve covered two web apps which have really impressed me: Pixlr and PhotoRaster. Both of these are photo editing web apps that are powerful and easy to use. After raving about these apps in separate reviews, I decided it was time for a comparison so we can find which is the best online photo editor.

If you’ve read my review of Pixlr, you’ll know that it is split into three different apps. Thus, we will be looking at Pixlr Advanced, the editor which is most similar to that of PhotoRaster’s. Read on to find out which app we like the best!

If you would like to read the separate reviews of Pixlr and PhotoRaster, check out these links: Pixlr: Simple Filters to Advanced Editing, and Photo Raster: An Advanced Online Photo Editor.


“The best camera is the one you have with you”, the old adage goes, and with the proliferation of smartphones with high quality cameras, it’s more true today than ever. Even though I only have an aging phone with a 1.3 megapixel camera, it’s still the first thing I’d grab when I need to take a picture.

The same is true for photo editing. Sure, Photoshop is powerful, and many of us couldn’t live without it. Love it or not, Creative Suite is one of the first things many people install on their computers, right after Microsoft Office. Aviary’s advanced web apps have made it possible to kick Adobe’s apps to the curb to a degree, but they’re still often more trouble to use.

But what if Aviary’s tools were built into every app you ever use? That’s exactly what the future might hold. Let’s take a look at Aviary’s new APIs, and how it might be the best photo editor just because it’s the editor you’ll always have with you.


Social networks have made sharing so much fun. Sharing images in particular has never been so easy. Just upload your images and they’re up for all your friends and family to see. The icing on the cake is that most of these services are free. Photo sharing is an integral part of all social networks and given the public craze towards sharing images, dedicated social networks have popped up focusing only on sharing pictures.

DailyBooth is a popular social network centered around pictures. Interested in learning how interesting it turned out to be?


If you haven’t noticed already, Facebook announced they would be supporting higher resolution photos, easier tagging and a better photo viewer at the end of last month. The changes would be rolled out over the following few weeks, so you likely already have these features.

While the improvements are greatly appreciated from many, they aren’t exactly at the core of today’s discussion. With the massive number of Facebook users, I’m very curious as to how this change will affect other photo storage and sharing services such as Flickr, Picasa and SmugMug. What do you think?


Thanks to the advancement of technology, nearly everyone these days is walking around with a camera – whether via phone, point & shoot, DSLR or other. Creating and sharing memories is nearly as old as the human species. With today’s advancing web technologies, storing, sharing and managing your photos has never been easier.

As a photography hobbyist I’m always interested in discovering new and better ways to store and share my photos. Personally, I’m a SmugMug, Flickr and Facebook user but what about you?

Earlier today we took a look at PicsEngine, a relatively new and simple web app for your photos. After reviewing the app I realized it’s quite difficult for new comers to this area of web apps to compete with more feature rich and developed apps like Flickr, Picasa and SmugMug. What do you think?

I’d love to hear what web apps you use to store, share or manage your photos. If your app of choice isn’t on the list, be sure to let us know in the comments so we can take a look. Thanks!

Like the intro. graphic? Get “Camera Lens” at by mdsn.

There are quite a few online photo management and gallery options out there, as we’ve covered in the Top 20 Photo Storage and Sharing Sites. It’s also hard for newcomers to compete with some of the heavyweights as shown in our Flickr, Picasa and SmugMug Shootout. Today, however, we’ll take a look at a promising new contender in the photo management field.

PicsEngine sports a sexy interface that also makes great use of today’s newer web technologies. It also takes a different approach to pricing, which may be refreshing to those looking for a new option for managing their photos. Read on for an in-depth look at this promising new web app.


These days we’re all photographers, whether via cell phone, point & shoot, a more serious DSLR or some other gadget with photo snapping capabilities. We’re a digitally social and sharing society these days, yet it’s still surprisingly difficult to share group photos outside social networks like Facebook.

Yogile brings a simple and very usable solution to the table for easy photo sharing for groups. Read on for our look at Yogile’s interface, pricing and usability.


Earlier this week we walked through the process of customizing a SmugMug photo gallery theme, for both easy and advanced editors. As part of the how-to, SmugMug offered to give one lucky reader a free Pro plan, which covers a full year and is valued at $149.95!

Recap and winner announcement after the jump.


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