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Author Topic: File sharing advice  (Read 3329 times)

Perry Mowbray

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File sharing advice
« on: December 06, 2012, 10:24:00 PM »
I've got my head buried deep into some art works I'm doing for two of my sons who are getting married next year.... actually, that's only a month or so away  :'(

Anyway... for the first son's wedding I'm setting up a computer and projector with the intention (hope) that the guests will donate their photos that they've taken on the day to a running live photo mosaic.

So far I've got scripts running that:
1. Watch for insertion of a removable drive
2. Copy photos taken today of the card / drive onto the computer
3. ImageMagick resizes and auto-rotates
4. Photo mosaic software generates new mosaics as the photo numbers increase (in groups)
5. Slide show is regenerated when a new mosaic is created.

The scripts run well and the resulting slideshow is an evolving image made up of the mosaic tiles that over time gets more and more defined to the base image.  :Thmbsup:

OK... so what's the problem??

In this day and age I'm wondering if many people will have brought their phones (not cameras -- I've got a good array of card readers) and I'm not sure what the best way for people to get their photos off their phones and onto my hard drive is....  I don't have a smart phone, so have no idea  :-\

I don't mind multiple methods... just needs to be as easy as possible.

Thanks

mouser

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2012, 10:32:26 PM »
One approach would be this:

  • Set up an account at an image hosting/sharing site, like SmugMug, etc.
  • Have everyone install an app that will let them send photos to that account and tell them password, OR maybe easier, see if you can set the account up to accept new images by email.
  • Then have your local program download new pictures uploaded to that account.

Alternatively, find a cheap usb drive camera model.  Buy 20 of them.  Let people just come "borrow" one of them to use for a while and return it with photos that you would download and wipe and make ready for the next person.

Perry Mowbray

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2012, 10:49:55 PM »
I did think about a site that could sync with DropBox... anyone had experience with email uploads to a photo sharing site?

4wd

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2012, 10:57:41 PM »
For Android based smart phone: USB to micro-USB B cable.
For iPhone: USB to "whatever their standard is" cable.
For any phone with WiFi: An open access point and a shared folder, (remove Delete permission so someone doesn't accidentally delete everything).

Last one is probably the easiest and involves no cost to uploaders.

Perry Mowbray

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2012, 11:14:48 PM »
Do you know how many phones have WiFi... majority?

I don't think I'll be able to cater for everyone, but the more the merrier.

So I could take my Router, and I presume that it'll set up WiFi without a DSL connection?, and give everyone the password which will give them access to the shared directory... I can see that working: particularly like the no-cost element.

4wd

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2012, 11:32:17 PM »
Do you know how many phones have WiFi... majority?

All smart phones and quite a lot of the pre-smart phones had WiFi.

You could set up a Bluetooth PAN, (Personal Area Network), with a $2 Bluetooth USB adapter which should cover any phone that has Bluetooth but that's beyond my knowledge.

Quote
So I could take my Router, and I presume that it'll set up WiFi without a DSL connection?, and give everyone the password which will give them access to the shared directory... I can see that working: particularly like the no-cost element.

Yes, that should be fine.

Another alternative to the removing the Delete permission would be a script/program that watches for new files and spirits them away to another non-shared folder for safety.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2012, 11:49:39 PM by 4wd »

Perry Mowbray

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2012, 12:44:52 AM »
Another alternative to the removing the Delete permission would be a script/program that watches for new files and spirits them away to another non-shared folder for safety.

Yes, that's what I'm doing with the other scripts... watching for removable drives connecting and copying off the photos.

Thanks for the suggestions... the head is starting to catch up now :)

Perry Mowbray

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2012, 12:58:53 AM »
You could set up a Bluetooth PAN, (Personal Area Network), with a $2 Bluetooth USB adapter which should cover any phone that has Bluetooth but that's beyond my knowledge.

Thanks for that link, I wasn't aware of BlueTooth PAN.

I'm guessing by your "$2" comment that there is no benefit getting a more expensive adapter?

What would you think: WiFi or BlueTooth PAN or Both??

4wd

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2012, 02:28:16 AM »
You could set up a Bluetooth PAN, (Personal Area Network), with a $2 Bluetooth USB adapter which should cover any phone that has Bluetooth but that's beyond my knowledge.

I'm guessing by your "$2" comment that there is no benefit getting a more expensive adapter?

Not that I know of, the more expensive ones probably offer increased range at greater power draw but since Bluetooth is a close-proximity connection, (<10m), there's no need to invest in anything more expensive.  I have 3 or 4 $2 adapters that I bought from DealExtreme, they seem to work fine.

Quote
What would you think: WiFi or BlueTooth PAN or Both??

WiFi definitely.

As I said above, I've had no knowledge of Bluetooth PAN - the most I tried was between my computer and my phone and it didn't want to work, don't know why.  So if you want to dabble in it, I'd recommend not spending more than about 10 minutes getting it to work, (the time it would take to set up a WiFi AP), any more than that and I doubt whether it would be worth the trouble for the guests to use it.

cmpm

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2012, 02:42:06 AM »
One approach would be this:

  • Set up an account at an image hosting/sharing site, like SmugMug, etc.
  • Have everyone install an app that will let them send photos to that account and tell them password, OR maybe easier, see if you can set the account up to accept new images by email.
  • Then have your local program download new pictures uploaded to that account.

I think some folks would like to touchup their photos, if you have friends like mine.
I do like that idea about setting up an account. I'm not sure if SmugMug is free.
But Flickr and others are.

You could set up a Flickr account or another quicky easy enough with a simple password.
I don't think an App is needed. Just log in and upload from any phone or computer.

Perry Mowbray

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2012, 03:04:06 AM »
You could set up a Flickr account or another quicky easy enough with a simple password.
I don't think an App is needed. Just log in and upload from any phone or computer.

Yes, that's got some legs... set up a new account and share the password... I'd have to investigate if notification is given on new uploads so that a script could go and grab them (hmmm... plus internet access  :-\ )

Lots of good thoughts to play with... thanks

kilele

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2012, 04:37:14 AM »
my solution  :)
-create a yahoo mail account
-make your guests send their pics to your email
-just open your email and download all pics,
yahoo mail provide a default folder which lists and orders by date all pics contained in emails

Perry Mowbray

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2012, 05:28:04 AM »
Thanks kilele: I realize that I didn't explicitly say that it is all running without my involvement (except to get the scripts running), so guests dropping photos into a directory works well, or some sort of sync with an online thing could work too, but I think I'm definitely leaning toward:
WiFi definitely.

kilele

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2012, 05:41:25 AM »
Quote from: Perry Mowbray
WiFi definitely.

Ah.. I see , it forms part of the fun, well you wouldn't have to get involved much at all,
just select all pics and press a button to download a zip file, i'd set up several accounts just in case

cmpm

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2012, 06:21:13 AM »
Flickr is a yahoo company, I'm fairly certain.

Here's their iphone and email deal for example.

http://blog.flickr.n...os-from-your-iphone/

Google uses picasa web albums.

http://support.googl...=en&answer=83342

Snapfish looks interesting, I may have to add this to long list of photo stuff.
I can't help it, I just keep getting more cloudy....

https://www.snapfish...napfish/uploadphotos

and another....

http://www.keepandsh...ee_photo_sharing.php

sheesh, i need help..... :)
there's always more.....

https://www.dropshots.com/

http://www.inbox.com/products/email.aspx

« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 06:30:12 AM by cmpm »

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2012, 06:32:41 AM »
I'd be inclined to wonder how complicated (if at all) the web code to upload a picture would be. If it's easy enough to do, and you're not planning to provide guest internet access. Then you could set up a temporary local web server (IIS comes with windows) that had an upload pics to wedding party option on the main page. Then have the WiFi's WAN gateway sent to the local web server so all web requests go directly to it (might require a redirect script, but it makes for a can't miss target.).

It's totally hands off (mosaic display software would just target the server's upload folder), and would it open up the possibility of letting folks browse all the photos taken live without risk of deletion. side benefit being as it's a closed loop there is no risk of data leakage.

cmpm

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #16 on: December 07, 2012, 06:49:19 AM »
The web code for google/picasa has my user name and password in it, not good to give out for my personal account. But a new account, used for a specific purpose would be ok, I think.
The code is username.password @ picasaweb.com.
So if you make the user name and password short and easy to remember, it should work.

Flickr's email web code is 13 characters @ photos.flickr.com.
With the 13 being a word a numder and a word, not random characters.
Your account may vary.

cmpm

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #17 on: December 07, 2012, 10:50:11 AM »
Out of all of what I looked at.
I like DropShots if I was going to do this.
It has an option to set a Guest password.

Renegade

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Re: File sharing advice
« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2012, 07:50:28 AM »
Well, this probably isn't very practical for you, but I'll throw it out there anyways...

Over the last while I've been doing a lot of work on Samsung's Family Story product. It's basically a mini-social network where up to 20 people can communicate very quickly and easily. It hooks in with the rest of the Samsung social network through a Samsung Account (or a mobile phone number, etc.).

Sharing in the network is relatively simple and allows for easy collaboration. Emphasis on easy.

Now, this is unlikely to be all that useful for you as a lot of this stuff hasn't been officially rolled out yet. However, the basic idea is there, and if you can locate anything that allows for similar collaboration, it should fit the bill.

The APIs for most services are usually ok to use for simple things, so you could relatively quickly write up something to pull down pictures, etc.

Flickr is a yahoo company, I'm fairly certain.

They are.


I'd be inclined to wonder how complicated (if at all) the web code to upload a picture would be. If it's easy enough to do, and you're not planning to provide guest internet access. Then you could set up a temporary local web server (IIS comes with windows) that had an upload pics to wedding party option on the main page. Then have the WiFi's WAN gateway sent to the local web server so all web requests go directly to it (might require a redirect script, but it makes for a can't miss target.).

It's totally hands off (mosaic display software would just target the server's upload folder), and would it open up the possibility of letting folks browse all the photos taken live without risk of deletion. side benefit being as it's a closed loop there is no risk of data leakage.

And the Flickr API is pretty good. I've used it.

The Facebook API is usable.

You could have people post to specific albums, then download new content from there.


But honestly, Box.net or Dropbox would likely be the easiest for everyone. You could then simply monitor the folder. A LOT less work. You only need to set up the collaboration with people... and that's where all the real work is. It's analogous to the Samsung Account, and how they integrate all the services. (I'm not sure what the official name will be when it's all rolled out as I suspect that the name I'm looking at may just be an internal code name - it's not all that sexy at the moment.)

Both Box.net and Dropbox have mobile applications, so, that solves that. They're both quite good, though I'd recommend Box.net probably. The simplicity of a folder is just so much easier. And they already have excellent sharing options.
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