Everyone has a web-connected camera and sharing via text, email, and social media has never been easier. This age of communication presents a new set of pitfalls ranging from embarrassing to criminal. Sending photos may be easy but balancing privacy, ownership, simplicity, and convenience isn't:
These tools and others like them are built to turn a profit through generating page views and gathering data for corporate and government partnerships. I'm not against companies turning profits, but in this case it conflicts with my desire for a simple, private, available-everywhere photo album.
My family doesn't share our photos on social media,
and I won't do so on their behalf.
I built my own private photo album on Amazon Web Services. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, AWS is a business (not social) platform, so privacy is a major priority, and it would never claim a license on my data. My remaining goals were simplicity and convenience:
The software is a combination of free libraries and AWS services coordinated by my application:
I encountered a few technical "challenges" along the way which I plan on writing about in more detail later:
Watching everyone in the photos change while scrolling down is a pleasant trip. I'm not sure if my whole family will use it, but I'll continue adding our photos and videos, so in 5/10/?? years we can look back. I may even start other albums for my extended family and close friends.
The project came together pretty quickly over the last couple weeks, but I already have some ideas for version 2: