Cool Tips For Holiday Photos And Videos

Yep! I’m back from my vacation without with limited Internet access and know that you would like to hear what we got up to (well maybe not but I’m going to share anyway ) ).

But first let me share some cool tips I’ve learnt while getting ready to write about my vacation — I’ll tell you about our holiday adventures in my next post.

Image Hack

David Warlick demonstrated a really cool image hack that I’ve wanted to try.

If you post a smaller version of a photo in your blog post, but hyperlink to the larger version of the photo when readers click on the photo in the post they are taken to the larger version of the photo for a more detailed view.

busselton-jetty.jpgClick this photo I took on our vacation to see the effect . Here are my step-by-step instructions (which I’ve posted to Flickr) for how to do this in your own posts.

As David Warlick says Wow! It worked!

Flickr Videos

Everyone’s been talking about how Flickr now allows you to upload videos provided that they are limited to 90 seconds in length, and less than 150MB in filesize. I like the idea of uploading my videos to Flickr since I already use the site for sharing photos.

Using the video setting on my digital camera to create the videos is an issue because the videos ranged up to 93 MB for a 90 sec video which isn’t ideal for uploading videos especially at an Internet Cafe. Ideally it’s best to keep videos less than 30 MB for uploading.

My solution to reduce video file size quickly was edit using MovieMaker and save Movie File as Video for Broadband (512 kbps).

Off course this got me thinking how does Flickr control the time limit on movies you can upload? Well it seemed obvious to me that they couldn’t and can only control by file size. So I edited and combined my photos and movies to create a 3 minute video which I then successfully uploaded to Flickr.

Here are my instructions on using MovieMaker. The videos uploaded considerably easier and there was no noticeable loss in quality.

Below is the video (which is hosted on Flickr) that you can check out. What do you think of video quality?

If you are reading my post in a feed reader like Google Reader or Bloglines the video will probably not be displayed so you need to check out on my blog or at Flickr.

My Map Of Our Holiday

I’ve been waiting for a long time for the opportunity to create a holiday map with photos and this was a perfect opportunity.

The easiest option is to Geotag photos on Flickr (geotagging in Flickr is the process of adding location information to your photos by dropping them onto the World map — here are my instructions on how to geotag using Flickr).

However I had two issues with Flickr geotagging:

  • Flickr uses Yahoo maps that don’t zoom in sufficiently to show roads and many towns in Western Australia — which is really annoying
  • You can only link to the map and not embed

So instead I created a My Maps using Google Maps that:

  • I can embed into my blog post
  • allows me to embed my photos from Flickr into the map (unfortunately it didn’t like the embed video code for the Flickr Videos).

Here are my step-by-step instructions (which I’ve posted to Flickr) for how to create your own My Maps using Google Maps. You will need to create a Google Account to create my maps (it’s best to create a gmail account to do this).

Below is my map that I’ve embedded in this post. You will probably need to check it out on my blog if you are using a feed reader.
View Larger Map

Embedding My Maps Into Edublogs

  1. Click on the link icon at the top of My Maps and you will find the embed code.
  2. In your post click on Code Tab then paste the embed code in the desired location and then press publish straight away.

NOTE: Make sure you’ve completely finished writing your post before adding My Maps embed code as you can’t edit the post AT ALL after the code has been added.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Hope you like some of the cool tips I’ve shared.

What are your thoughts on Flickr videos? People have differing views on videos on Flickr — check out Beth’s post and it’s comments.

Do you know of a quicker and easier way to create a Holiday map for sharing with friends?

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15 thoughts on “Cool Tips For Holiday Photos And Videos

  1. Image hack not really a hack as this is how webpages have allowed users to see a larger view of the image without having to wait a longtime for the big original image to download.
    The good thing about coding like this is that the viewer gets to choose which images they wish to see in more detail and therefore they tend to stay to view the web page. If a web page takes a long time to download then there is always the risk that the visitor will back out and then you have lost them and they may not come back to your site. We have to remember that not everyone has a broadband connection.

    fmclean Reply

  2. Excellent point Frances and to be honest I only called it an image hack because this is what David Warlick had called it. But the image hack he talks about relies on zooming on the image relies on using Javascript which I haven’t been able to use.

    So image hack used is my context is incorrect — unless readers refer to David Warlick’s post. Unfortunately due to issues with the My Maps embed I’m unable to edit the post unless I rewrite the entire post. Instead readers will need to read these comments to have the issue clarified.

    As you explain the benefits of doing this and why it’s worth doing are so obvious yet many of us that use Web 2.0 technologies are self taught so don’t realise some of the simple things that could make our lives easier.

    Sue Waters Reply

  3. Just FYI–the video worked fine in Google Reader for me. 🙂 I did have to click the link to open the map, but I could do that without having to stop here first too.

    I hope you had a lovely, relaxing vacation!

    Christy Tucker Reply

  4. One thing to keep in mind is that many school districts now block anything having to do with flickr or similar sites. For the widest possible use by educators or educators working with students in classrooms, it might be a good idea to not rely on external photo storage sites to post items on a blog. For example, this post displays a blank space where the video would be when viewed from my classroom and the link to the enlarged photo doesn’t work.

    Barry Reply

  5. […] going to share anyway . But first let me share some cool tips I??ve learnt while getting ready to whttp://aquaculturepda.edublogs.org/2008/04/22/cool-tips-for-holiday-photos-and-videos/Don??t know much about geography? Tehachapi NewsPolls conducted by the National Geographic Society […]

    map of australia Reply

  6. @Christy Thanks for letting me know that Google Reader didn’t strip out the embeds. It’s always hit and miss as to which ones they do/don’t remove. I’ve now worked out how to make the My Maps work better as an embed but unfortunately because of the issue with the iFrame I would have to rewrite the entire post and delete this one (and that is not going to happen). Definitely had a great holiday and plan to blog about it next.

    @Barry thanks for letting me know. I was aware of the issue with photos but hadn’t stopped to consider the impact this would have on educators that read my posts from their classrooms. Are all photosharing websites blocked in your school districts and do they allow any videos from any video sharing sites? Normally I do upload all my photos to the blog because I prefer to use a different size from those on Flickr. I will upload that photos for my next post – including the larger versions (for when people click on them).

    @Lee Thanks for telling me about your post. I loved watching your video. Here are the questions I asked you in your comments – I definitely agree that using your mobile phone to take the videos is an excellent feature. My phone is only 2 megapixels so the qualities not that great. What is your phone? I would also be interested to know the size of your 90 sec videos taken using your phone (I love how I’ve bent their 90 second rule — almost tempted to try uploading a 10 min compressed movie). I hadn’t realised that only pro members can upload — but it’s the best money I’ve ever spent.

    @Sarah So you liked my pretty fish swimming around. I must say visiting the Underwater Observatory was a highlight for me and well worth it. Any one who visits this area should take the time to check it out.

    Sue Waters Reply

  7. I used to be able to get to google videos but no more. Same with flickr. I can’t be sure about all photosharing websites but it seems like the common ones are blocked. TeacherTube is not blocked.

    BarryB Reply

  8. Thanks for the tutorial Sue! Also, for taking us on a mapped photo tour of the WA coastline. I’m glad that you a wonderful family holiday. I’m going to share it with my class tomorrow morning. They are going to love it!

    I’m wanting to do something similar for my communities wiki project showing the locations of the various points of interest in Magnolia, Texas that we have photographed and written about. Will the same process work for embedding in Gustinspace ? Remember that I am a novice, and a bit “code impaired.”

    @BarryB – Don’t give up hope! Our district has begun to reopen several web resources that were previously blocked. They just needed a little time to work out student safety parameters, tech. glitches, justify educational relevance/practicality, etc. before they could justify granting access. One thing our district has done is to grant teacher logins greater access than student logins. That way the teachers can use some of these resources for instruction, without setting the students “loose” in places they may not be responsible enough to use appropriately. Hopefully, your district will move in a similar direction, as they work through what is best for student acheivement.

    Kerrie Gustin Reply

  9. What a great post and glad you enjoyed your time off.

    I lived blogged and mapped my vacation back in 2006 – I used a tool called Wayfarer
    http://beth.typepad.com/beths_blog/2006/08/our_vacation_on.html
    http://beth.typepad.com/beths_blog/2007/08/my-interview–1.html

    This year, I learned how to use my N95 and kept a journal – the highlight was live streaming an alligator jumping into the river .. and I tweeted my vacation too
    http://beth.typepad.com/beths_blog/2008/04/getting-into-th.html

    Beth Kanter Reply

  10. I really like the idea of embedding google maps into your blog. It gives people instant feedback as to where you live. Several months ago, I spent days, trying to attach a video and text to a pin in google earth. It finally succeeded but I was exhausted, and feel that embedding google maps will be much easier. Thanks for sharing how to do it, as I will definitely be following your instructions soon.

    Anne Mirtschin Reply

  11. I loved the video of below the jetty. I’m putting it on my list of things I want to see in Australia. I think I might have to spent several months.

    What a magical place you live. I’ve been fascinated with it since I was a little girl. Also loved the kangaroo video. Thanks for posting them.

    Christine Martell Reply

  12. I’m really excited about embedding photos into Google Maps. I also realize that I’ve got to get my butt in gear and learn how to really use Flickr. Have you seen the Penguin book project where they have authors posting stories based upon classics? One of the stories, ‘The 21 Steps’, uses Google Maps to tell the story (http://wetellstories.co.uk/stories/week1/). It is pretty cool and makes me wish I taught English, though I suppose it could be adapted to for a history of atomic theory type project. The other stories use a variety of digital storytelling techniques. Cheers!
    The 21 Steps

    Claire Thompson Reply

  13. @BarryB Thanks for updating me on what’s blocked by your network. Unfortunately Teacher Tube isn’t always able to be embedded so looks like uploading directly to my blog is the better option.

    @Kerrie Did you end up showing to your class? And did they enjoy the videos? Yes you can embed a My Maps into your wiki space. Take the Embed code click on Embed Media > Other HTML and add the code there. Click Save and then Save the page. The embedded map should display. Lets hope that BarryB’s district does change their policies to make it easier for educators.

    @Beth Yes the holiday was great. I’m really keen to learn more about how you use the N95 and the costs involved with live stream in Australia. I know that people said they were going to comment on your post about questions on using the N95 but can’t seem to find the answers. Are they on a different post?

    @Anne I definitely didn’t find Google Maps intituitive. With video you click on the HTML tab on the pin and paste the embed code there then click back to normal mode.

    @Christine Unfortunately if you came to Australia you probably wouldn’t come to Western Australia because there is more to see and do on the East Coast. 🙁 Glad you liked the videos.

    @Claire I was a bit like you. Didn’t get Flickr but it is worth the effort. If you click on my tag Flickr in my left sidebar you will find my posts on using Flickr. What a cool idea for telling stories using Google Maps.

    Sue Waters Reply

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