Saturday, 13 May 2006

Flickr Related Tag Browser

Ever wondered what kind of fruit a "pomegranate" is? You could look it up on, and find out that it is "a large globular fruit having many seeds with juicy red pulp in a tough brownish-red rind". Yep, very descriptive. But it doesn't really help you visualize this fruit in your head.

Solution? Head on over to Flickr Related Tag Browser, and see for yourself!

Flickr is a wonderful community website that lets you upload and share your photos with the rest of the world. People take photos of the strangest things, put them on Flickr, and tag them with descriptive tags. Having become very popular, Flickr is therefor also a very useful database with photo documentation of the world.

This has been taken advantage of by the team at Airtight Interactive, who created the Flickr Related Tag Browser. It is a flash based search engine that lets you surf the Flickr "tag space". Type in a keyword, hit search, and see all the pictures that carry your tag. In addition to this you can surf related tags, following a visual trail of your choosing to the end of the universe.

I think the fascination for me personally is about the same as my fascination for Google Earth. The opportunity to go on a visual journey of the world is just amazing, and you'll be surprised to see the amount of pictures in there. I found some nice pictures of the place where I grew up (search for "Senja Norway"), my hometown Tromsø (search for "Tromso"), and then I travelled to the other side of the world, visiting Kilimanjaro and Kathmandu.

The search engine is also very responsive, making it feel good to explore it. I like the stripped-down nature, combined with nice animations, and navigation just by moving your mouse to the right spots on the screen. It's really responding to your moves.

If you've got a minute, go take a look at what Berlin looks like at night (with Japanese people all over), or find the lost city of Atlantis. You can also search for different categories, and brush up on your yoga or immerse yourself in the world of cricket. And if you ever need to determine the exact looks of a pomegranate, it's a really nifty tool to have in your toolbox.

Useful? Could be. Enjoyable? Definitely! Enjoy.

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