Websites

Photo Slideshows are So Yesterday. ANIMOTO = Your Photos + MTV

animoto!

Picture 487 of your Jamaican vacation photos fading by as some Caribbean muzac plays in the background. Yeah, photo slideshows can be kind of a snore.

The solution? Animoto!

Think of it as a little black box filled with film & TV producers, techies, indie rockers, and robots.

You put your photos and a song in one end, shake it up, and a photo music video pops out the other end… with pro-level post-production, animated cuts synced to your music’s beat, and oh-so-much style.

And it only takes a few clicks. (Really!) The robots do all the work.

The 30 second videos are free and they’re perfect for mailing to friends or posting to your blog, MySpace, Facebook, etc. Longer videos cost a few bucks. Special for Photojojo subscribers: Sign up for free by Sunday using this link and the swell lads at Animoto will put a credit in your account for one free full-length video. (It’s okay to tell your friends.)

Animoto

p.s. Here’s a fun Animoto video we made from photos taken at a photobooth we recently set up.

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Eternal Sunset — Watch Sunsets All Over the World, from Your Desk

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When we were little, we hated going to bed more than anything.

Sweet slumber is a much more appreciated commodity nowadays, but we still find ourselves wishing there were more hours in each day. If only we could race across the skies in a private 767, outrunning the sunset and never seeing darkness.

Well, we’ve found the next best thing.

Eternal Sunset is a website that tracks 250 webcams across 49 countries. At any given time, the sun’s setting somewhere, and Eternal Sunset will show it to you.

It won’t add hours to your day (quite the contrary) but if you’ve always dreamed of seeing the perfect sunset in Napoli, Egypt, or from atop Mount Fuji, park yourself in front of your ‘puter and watch that fiery globe fall. Over and over again.

Eternal Sunset

p.s. If it’s as beautiful in your neck of the woods as it is here, do yourself a favor and go out and shoot this weekend. Here’s a list of photo projects to get you going!

p.p.s. Amit’s in the midst of a move. Apologies in advance if it take a bit longer than normal to get back to you!

Find Out What Your Kids Will Look Like, It’s Just an Upload Away with MorphThing

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Late night host Conan O’Brien has been combining celeb snaps to produce hypothetical images of their offspring for years.

Finally finally finally, we can do it with our own photos right at home — pictures of you and Dr McDreamy, you and your girl, or you and whoever!

Follow the image suggestions, upload a couple photos, and let your imagination run wild.

Advance warning: It doesn’t work with robots. We tried.

Combine two People with MorphThing

Upload your Photo and Try a New Hairstyle or Grow a Mustache, Virtually

makeover studio

Whether you prefer the presidential $400 cut, the corner barber shop, or something in between, chances are you’ve spent too many braincycles on those tendrils of dead skin cells emerging from your body.

Lest your next ’bout of hairy experimentation go awry, we offer two alternatives that will let you safely test your hairstyles before committing to them.

For the ladies (and men with ladyfriends), there’s Makeover Studio. Upload a photo, define your hairtype, and browse a library of hairstyles and colors to see how your favorite doo would look on you.

For dudes (and bearded ladies) in need of a stylin’ ‘stache, there’s the Mustache Maker. You know the drill: upload your pic, choose a mustache, and trim, groom, and wax your way to cowboy perfection. You can even make it sing when you’re done.

With an average growth rate of 0.44 mm a day, badly cut hair can be a long-lasting mistake.

Makeover Studio [via PJ friend Rachel Clarke]

Mustache Maker [via Photojojo Uncut]

p.s. Maybe you’d prefer a beard?

We’re hiring! Are you a superb writer & editor & DIYer who loves photography?
(If you’ve applied and haven’t heard back, please be patient. We’re wading through 100+ applications so far…)

Upload a Photo to Create a Simpsons Character with Simpsonize Me

In the world of flashy big-budget blockbuster viral marketing ploys, there are winners and there are losers. (We had high hopes for the Conan O’Brien-style “If they made it” babymaker game for Knocked Up. Alas, it disappointed.)

The new site promoting next week’s silver-screen Simpsons debut? A winner.

Upload a frontal portrait, push some buttons and pull some levers, and facial-recognition software goes to work. Soon enough, your fleshy visage is converted into a flat, yellow, cartoon version of yourself!

Note: The site’s quite busy. We needed to visit several times to get it to work.

Still, it’s the easiest way to find your way to Springfield. Unless you already live there.

The Simpsonizer

p.s. Visit the forums today for a fun secret giveaway. (We’re not gonna give you any hints… Ok, maybe just one… Mooooooooooo…)

We’re hiring! Wanted: One (1) superb writer & editor who luvs photography. $1000/month, part-time, and you get to have fun with photos all day. Tell your friends!


Hot in the Forum…
+ What am I Wednesday #2
+ Good camera under $200?
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Track the Worldwide Photographic Zeitgeist with Flickrvision

flickrvisionAstronauts have it tough. Sure, they get to float in Zero-G and wear cool spacesuits and drink all the Tang they want. But we all know it can be lonely out in space. We feel for you, space men. (And women.) So we’ve thought of something that would help: giant binoculars. You know, so you can see us down here waving at you.

Fortunately for those astronauts, we’re not the only ones down here trying to make the world a little less lonely. Flickrvision swoops around the Google globe Superman-style, pausing every few seconds to show a photo that somebody, somewhere in the world, uploaded to Flickr just minutes ago.

People all over the world take photos, and Flickrvision tracks the worldwide photographic zeitgeist.

Our recent world tour showed us an adorable couple at the Great Wall, mermaids on parade at Coney Island, an Italian castle, and a hummingbird in Ohio. Wouldn’t that make the cold, vast, emptiness of space feel a little bit more warm and cozy?

Flickrvision

p.s. Turn Flickrvision to 11: try the new 3D version and hit the full-screen button.
p.p.s. From the makers of Flickrvision, comes Twittervision!
p.p.p.s Make Flickrvision your screensaver!


Hot in the Forum…
+ Home-made Cameras?
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Put Words in Anyone’s Mouth with Blabberize

talking alpacaNo longer will crudely-drawn talking heads the likes of which you’ve seen on Southpark and Homestar Runner be the sole province of animation sweatshops in Asia.

Yes friends, two enterprising young go-getters have finally cracked the code.

Surf on over to Blabberize, upload a photo of a human, animal, or your favorite anthropomorphic object, and carefully select the lower jaw with the tools provided. Next, hit record and speak some words of wisdom. A click or two later and your photo comes to life and repeats your words right back at you.

Share it with friends, embed it in your blog, you know the drill. Check out blabberized Alfred the guinea pig and Michael Arrington for a taste, then get to work!

Blabberize [via Lifehacker]

Turn your Computer and Webcam into a Photo booth with Cameroid and Phozi

website photoboothSure your camera’s got 17 megapixels, a 10x zoom, and all the jiggawatts you could possibly need, but you still feed a couple Washingtons to the photo booth in the mall whenever you pass by. You’re a romantic that way.

You’ll have to do without the curtain, but webapps Cameroid and Phozi promise to bring some photo booth magic home.

Both work with webcams (either built-in or not) and let you snap a photo and share them off with just a couple clicks.

Like Apple’s Photobooth, Cameroid lets you choose from a variety of live image effects, including our favorite: Superhero. Phozi taps the crazy around Japanese Purikura booths, letting you doodle on and decorate your instant snaps with special graphics before sending them to facebook, myspace, xanga, etc.

Both are a ton of fun, and a great way to put that dusty webcam to use!

Cameroid

Phozi

p.s. Check out flickaday on Photojojo Uncut, a webcam webapp that lets you make a daily self-portrait movie! (Subscribe to the RSS feed at Uncut so you don’t miss the latest!)

Turn Your Photos into Gibberish — How to Convert Photos into ASCII Art

If you’re old-skool like us, you remember hurrying home from school, heading straight for your room, and hunching over your keyboard to log into your favorite MUD, slay dragons, and find treasure.

It was a simpler time. A time when computers didn’t have fancy graphics and candy-colored buttons, and if they wanted to show you a cranky green ogre, they didn’t use CG. They used our friends “|”, “\”, “/”, and “.”

Miss it? Well pop in an Air Supply cassette and surf over to Photo2text. Upload a photo and shiny metal robots turn it into in-stant ASCII. Retro-spiff.

High-contrast photos work best, and your file has to be smaller than 200K. Make a few high-tech adjustments, then take it low-fi at Photo2text.

Convert Photos to ASCII Art at Photo2Text

p.s. Want more ASCII art? Check out Christopher Johnson’s ASCII Art Collection, featuring the always-popular “Naked Ladies” section [Maybe not safe for work.. but people, it’s ASCII!] And don’t miss the ASCII Art Dictionary or Joan Stark’s ASCII art. If that last page doesn’t take you back, nothing will. It uses java!!

p.p.s. Mac user? Check this out: you can play Quicktime movies as ASCII movies!

Photo Credit: Reluctant Suburbanite

What Might You Look Like if You Were Black? or White? or Old? The Face Transformer Shows All

Ever wonder what life might be like if you were black? or white? or the subject of a Botticelli?

Yeah, we do, too. All the time.
The good folks at the University of St. Andrews Perception Lab have come up with a way to make your dreams reality. Sort of.

Their Face Transformer gives you a glimpse of how you might look a couple decades from now, or with another ethnic background. Or drunk. (But you don’t really need your computer for that, now do you? — Unless you’re under 21, kiddo.)

Upload your mugshot and let the Face Transformer do the rest. Good luck, and may you grow old far more gracefully than the Transformer predicts.

The Face Transformer