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Don MacAskill has been at 1 events

HostFollowersTitleDateGuestsLinks
SmugMug46,546Date: September 7, 2012 Time: 9 PM EST (approximately 1 hour)   *Hang With SmugMug: Composition and the Thought-Process with Jay and Varina Patel*   Varina and Jay Patel will showcase a series of images and talk about how they think about composition on-location. They will talk about the basic ideas behind finding a pleasing composition, following (or breaking) compositional rules, and learning to understand how the viewer may interpret your images.   *Bios:*   Varina and Jay Patel are landscape photographers based in the United States. They travel regularly, photographing unique and remote locations, and exploring some of the most beautiful places on earth. Varina and Jay also teach workshops and webinars, write eBooks for beginning and advanced photographers, and speak in a variety of forums. Their award-winning work has appeared in a diverse collection of publications, including a 2012 National Geographic Calendar, Popular Photography Magazine, National Parks Magazine, and many more. To view their portfolios or learn more about photography, check out their websites, eBooks, and blog at the links below.   Varina Patel: www.photographybyvarina.com Jay Patel: www.jaypatelphotography.com eBooks: www.photographybyvarina.com/learn Blog: www.photographybyvarina.com/blogHang With SmugMug: Composition and the Thought-Process with Jay and Varina Patel2012-09-08 03:00:00107  

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Top posts in the last 50 posts

Most comments: 51

2012-09-01 21:45:03 (51 comments, 0 reshares, 26 +1s)Open 

So, +Dallas Nagata White and I have been watching this whole +SmugMug saga unfold, and I can't help but chuckle at the irony that photographers--a group known for whinging about not being paid what they are worth--aren't willing to give SmugMug the courtesy they so stridently demand for themselves. 

A lot of these photographers are saying that the $100-$150/year price increase will put them out of business, to which I say (because SmugMug can't) "if the price of a monthly trip to Starbucks for a snack and a latte will put you out of business, Smugmug's pricing probably isn't the problem!" 

And most ironic? A lot of these "spurned photographers" are threatening to give their business to Zenfolio, which charges merely $50 less for "the same service," which couldn't hold up to SmugMug's vendors in terms of print quality whenDal... more »

Most reshares: 40

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2013-05-16 19:34:54 (16 comments, 40 reshares, 120 +1s)Open 

Audrey thinks #Google  +Project Glass is the camera she's been waiting for all her life. She takes a photo every three seconds and throws her arms in the air and does a dance when she gets a coveted one, like, erem, our dog's butt. (Click through for more)

Most plusones: 120

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2013-05-16 19:34:54 (16 comments, 40 reshares, 120 +1s)Open 

Audrey thinks #Google  +Project Glass is the camera she's been waiting for all her life. She takes a photo every three seconds and throws her arms in the air and does a dance when she gets a coveted one, like, erem, our dog's butt. (Click through for more)

Latest 50 posts

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2014-07-22 23:27:24 (2 comments, 1 reshares, 11 +1s)Open 

Sweet! +YouTube featured our amazing ARCTIC SWELL film!

Welcome to Surf City, Arctic Circle.___Sweet! +YouTube featured our amazing ARCTIC SWELL film!

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2014-01-06 19:08:36 (1 comments, 3 reshares, 11 +1s)Open 

So excited we're finally launching +SmugMug Films, a new series celebrating the world's most exciting photographers.  We've been lovingly working on this for awhile, and have some incredible photographers we'll be profiling in the coming weeks.

Subscribe to the SmugMug Films YouTube channel to get a first look at each new video: http://www.youtube.com/SmugMugFilms

So excited we're finally launching +SmugMug Films, a new series celebrating the world's most exciting photographers.  We've been lovingly working on this for awhile, and have some incredible photographers we'll be profiling in the coming weeks.

Subscribe to the SmugMug Films YouTube channel to get a first look at each new video: http://www.youtube.com/SmugMugFilms___

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2013-11-15 22:27:08 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 13 +1s)Open 

In case you missed it, #Apple   #Aperture  now has built-in support for +SmugMug, no plugins necessary!

SmugMug + Apple Aperture

Shiny, new feature alert! You can now connect and sync your SmugMug account with your account in Aperture and easily browse, upload, download and organize all from one app

Must be used on iOS Mavericks. 

Check out the details on our blog
smu.gs/1dje5i4

#SmugMug #Aperture #Apple #Photography___In case you missed it, #Apple   #Aperture  now has built-in support for +SmugMug, no plugins necessary!

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2013-11-12 16:26:15 (4 comments, 2 reshares, 9 +1s)Open 

+Stephen Shankland has a great write-up about all the #Android  troubles and triumphs we encountered building Camera Awesome on Android.  The platform sure has come a long way in the last few years.  :)

+Stephen Shankland has a great write-up about all the #Android  troubles and triumphs we encountered building Camera Awesome on Android.  The platform sure has come a long way in the last few years.  :)___

2013-11-12 16:24:39 (4 comments, 1 reshares, 8 +1s)Open 

 
It's finally here.  Camera Awesome for Android has landed.  Sorry it took so long, folks.  But it's worth it.  :)   #Android   #Awesomized  

 
It's finally here.  Camera Awesome for Android has landed.  Sorry it took so long, folks.  But it's worth it.  :)   #Android   #Awesomized  ___

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2013-07-23 19:00:53 (15 comments, 9 reshares, 44 +1s)Open 

Finally! The biggest thing  +SmugMug has ever done launches July 30th.  You're gonna love it.  Tune in live and watch.  

It's been a long, long road, but we couldn't have gotten here without your feedback, support, and patience.  Can't wait to see what you think!

Thanks for being awesome!

Finally! The biggest thing  +SmugMug has ever done launches July 30th.  You're gonna love it.  Tune in live and watch.  

It's been a long, long road, but we couldn't have gotten here without your feedback, support, and patience.  Can't wait to see what you think!

Thanks for being awesome!___

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2013-05-24 17:37:16 (3 comments, 3 reshares, 31 +1s)Open 

Perhaps +Thomas Hawk's best work ever.

More Proof Pets Really Do Look Like Their Owners -- Mountain View, CA

Had a great day hanging out down at +SmugMug today with the awesome +Michael Bonocore and his doppelganger Rocky.  Always great to get to spend time with the excellent team at SmugMug.  Thanks guys!

#GoogleGlass   #Glass   #SmugMug   #DogsInGlassThursdays  ___Perhaps +Thomas Hawk's best work ever.

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2013-05-16 19:34:54 (16 comments, 40 reshares, 120 +1s)Open 

Audrey thinks #Google  +Project Glass is the camera she's been waiting for all her life. She takes a photo every three seconds and throws her arms in the air and does a dance when she gets a coveted one, like, erem, our dog's butt. (Click through for more)

Audrey thinks #Google  +Project Glass is the camera she's been waiting for all her life. She takes a photo every three seconds and throws her arms in the air and does a dance when she gets a coveted one, like, erem, our dog's butt. (Click through for more)___

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2013-05-14 20:14:06 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 2 +1s)Open 

If you happen to have vocal cord issues, or know someone who does, seems like a good initiative - fill it out and pass it along.

About 14 years ago, I got a bad cold, and my voice became hoarse.  At the time I didn’t think much about it.  But my voice never fully recovered.  So I went to a doctor and was diagnosed with left vocal cord paralysis.  This is a nerve problem that causes your left vocal cord to not move properly.  Despite extensive examination, the doctors never identified a cause — though there was speculation of virus-based damage from my cold.  It is quite common in cases like these that a definitive cause is not found.

While this condition never really affected me — other than having a slightly weaker voice than normal which some people think sounded a little funny — it naturally raised questions in my mind about my second vocal cord.  But I was told that sequential paralysis of one vocal cord following another is extremely rare.  

Fast forward to last summer, when the same pattern repeated itself — a cold followed by a hoarse voice. Once again things didn’t fully improve, so I went in for a check-up and was told that my second vocal cord now had limited movement as well. Again, after a thorough examination, the doctors weren’t able to identify a cause.  

Thankfully, after some initial recovery I’m fully able to do all I need to at home and at work, though my voice is softer than before. And giving long monologues is more tedious for me and probably the audience.  But overall over the last year there has been some improvement with people telling me they think I sound better.  Vocal cord nerve issues can also affect your breathing, so my ability to exercise at peak aerobic capacity is somewhat reduced.  That said, my friends still think I have way more stamina than them when we go kitesurfing!  And Sergey says I’m probably a better CEO because I choose my words more carefully.  So surprisingly, overall I am feeling very lucky.

Interestingly, while the nerves for your vocal cords take quite different routes through your body, they both pass your thyroid.  So in searching for a cause for both nerves that was an obvious place to look. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's thyroiditis in 2003.  This is a fairly common benign inflammatory condition of the thyroid which causes me no problems.  It is unclear if this is a factor in the vocal cord condition, or whether both conditions were triggered by a virus.

In this journey I have learned a lot more about voice issues.  Though my condition seems to be very rare, there are a significant number of people who develop issues with one vocal nerve.  In seeing different specialists, I met one doctor — Dr. Steven Zeitels from the Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts General Hospital Voice Center — who is really excited about the potential to improve vocal cord nerve function.  So I’ve arranged to fund a significant research program through the Voice Health Institute, which he will lead.  Thanks a bunch to my amazing wife Lucy, for her companionship through this journey and for helping oversee this project and get it off the ground.  Also, thanks to the many people who have helped with advice and information many of whom I have not had a chance to thank yet.

Finally, we’ve put together a patient survey to gather information about other people with similar conditions.  As it’s fairly rare, there’s little data available today — and the team hopes that with more information they can make faster progress.  If you have similar symptoms you can fill it out here: voicehealth.org/ip___If you happen to have vocal cord issues, or know someone who does, seems like a good initiative - fill it out and pass it along.

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2013-05-14 18:48:22 (2 comments, 0 reshares, 9 +1s)Open 

This is what happens when you leave your #Google  +Project Glass out where the dogs can find it...  :)

This is what happens when you leave your #Google  +Project Glass out where the dogs can find it...  :)___

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2013-05-14 17:58:50 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 5 +1s)Open 

Have lots of opinions already about #Google  +Project Glass, which I'm sure I'll get around to posting, but I thought I'd talk about a very important non-issue:  *battery life*.

Prior to having #Glass , I thought the 3-5 hour battery life was going to be a deal-killer, since that'd never cut it for a phone.  But the thing you realize once you've had these for a few hours is that you don't wear them all day, and they don't need to be on all day.  Unlike a phone, which is your primary communications device, Glass is more like a very useful add-on.

When you're sitting in front of a computer, Glass is basically useless, so you just take it off.  When you get up to go somewhere, you put them back on.  Unlike a phone, you don't feel naked without them (or when it's not juiced up) - they just help you do some interesting new things whenyou&#... more »

Have lots of opinions already about #Google  +Project Glass, which I'm sure I'll get around to posting, but I thought I'd talk about a very important non-issue:  *battery life*.

Prior to having #Glass , I thought the 3-5 hour battery life was going to be a deal-killer, since that'd never cut it for a phone.  But the thing you realize once you've had these for a few hours is that you don't wear them all day, and they don't need to be on all day.  Unlike a phone, which is your primary communications device, Glass is more like a very useful add-on.

When you're sitting in front of a computer, Glass is basically useless, so you just take it off.  When you get up to go somewhere, you put them back on.  Unlike a phone, you don't feel naked without them (or when it's not juiced up) - they just help you do some interesting new things when you're not already plugged in.  

So a 3-5 hour battery life (this is based on web news, not on personal info - mine didn't run out yesterday) seems like it's going to be a pretty good target, particularly since if you are a heavier user, you can simply plug them in when you're at your desk, just like I do now.  (And just like we all used to have to do with our mobile phones when they didn't last the whole day.  Remember that?)

For +Robert Scoble, it sounds like he never wants to take them off, but for me (and, I suspect, most of you), you'll find yourself wearing them for a few hours a day.  Time will tell.

(My 5-year-old daughter, btw, absolutely adores them.  Best thing since the invention of princesses, I think.  She would get very frustrated with the battery life.  So maybe I'm full of it? :)___

2013-05-13 23:31:14 (1 comments, 1 reshares, 10 +1s)Open 

Only had our #GoogleGlass  for a few minutes, but it's pretty remarkable. Excited to hack some stuff together for it. I can really see how I'd want this, or something like it, on me most of the time.  I'm sure all the crazy news coverage has way more answers to questions than I do, but I'm happy to answer any...

(The office is ringing with people shouting 'ok glass' :)

Only had our #GoogleGlass  for a few minutes, but it's pretty remarkable. Excited to hack some stuff together for it. I can really see how I'd want this, or something like it, on me most of the time.  I'm sure all the crazy news coverage has way more answers to questions than I do, but I'm happy to answer any...

(The office is ringing with people shouting 'ok glass' :)___

2013-03-18 19:48:18 (6 comments, 0 reshares, 1 +1s)Open 

Does anyone know how to get OpenVPN working on #ChromebookPixel ? Apparently there's support, but no-one seems to know how to do it.  Would really love to get that working.

Does anyone know how to get OpenVPN working on #ChromebookPixel ? Apparently there's support, but no-one seems to know how to do it.  Would really love to get that working.___

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2013-03-13 19:50:07 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 3 +1s)Open 

Most frustrating thing about the #ChromebookPixel  so far? The multiple-Google-accounts problem we've all been complaining about for awhile.  +Sundar Pichai promised me last May (see ~35:35 in the video linked) that a fix was coming soon.  Can't wait.  

(Of course, Sundar is a whole lot busier as of today... :)

Otherwise, still loving it.  Forward progress!

Most frustrating thing about the #ChromebookPixel  so far? The multiple-Google-accounts problem we've all been complaining about for awhile.  +Sundar Pichai promised me last May (see ~35:35 in the video linked) that a fix was coming soon.  Can't wait.  

(Of course, Sundar is a whole lot busier as of today... :)

Otherwise, still loving it.  Forward progress!___

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2013-03-08 04:26:47 (18 comments, 10 reshares, 87 +1s)Open 

Wow. Blown away by how much I'm liking my #ChromebookPixel . I even had momentary frustration when I went back to my #MacBookProRetina . That's a first.

Summary:  Screen gorgeous. Touch awesome (finally!). Great trackpad (a first on a Chromebook!). Very fast. Solid & well-machined.

There are things I won't be able to do on it (my IDE comes to mind, as does git) but this is a major leap in the right direction.

This is the single #Apple  competitive laptop on the market.  I wonder what the gang over in Cupertino thinks about it?

Wow. Blown away by how much I'm liking my #ChromebookPixel . I even had momentary frustration when I went back to my #MacBookProRetina . That's a first.

Summary:  Screen gorgeous. Touch awesome (finally!). Great trackpad (a first on a Chromebook!). Very fast. Solid & well-machined.

There are things I won't be able to do on it (my IDE comes to mind, as does git) but this is a major leap in the right direction.

This is the single #Apple  competitive laptop on the market.  I wonder what the gang over in Cupertino thinks about it?___

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2013-02-12 23:04:54 (3 comments, 2 reshares, 6 +1s)Open 

The machines are taking over! Googley machines appear to be winning!

Google Fails the Turing Test

I waited in virtual line for hours. The Nexus 4 webstore wasn’t exactly down, but it wasn’t exactly working either. The phones had gone on sale that day, and the rush of traffic was overloading, of all companies, Google. The Google Play Store kept saying the phones were sold out, but every couple of page refreshes it would correctly say the phones were available. You could then add the phones to your shopping cart, but then your shopping cart would promptly empty itself when you proceeded to checkout. I persisted for 90 minutes trying simultaneously in 3 browsers and finally got my order through. I should have instead heeded the warning of what was to come.

Ever since Google released the Android operating system, they’ve created flagship phones to show off the best of what Android has to offer. I was an early adopter - I got the G1 when Android was first released, and followed up with the Nexus 1 when it came out. I’m kind of a Google fanboy, and have convinced friends and family to switch to Android. I skipped the Nexus S, so naturally when the Nexus 4 was announced I wanted one badly.

With my order submitted, I received a confirmation email from Google with an estimated ship date of 4-5 weeks and started looking forward to my phone like a kid before Christmas. I was blissfully unaware of the problems that many other would-be Nexus customers were encountering (http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1962514). Google had outsourced fulfillment of the phones to UPS and had left customers in various states of limbo. The initial rush of customers had caused Google to send an incomplete manifest to UPS and many customers had purchased the phone but hadn’t received any confirmation emails. Upon contacting Google Play Support, they found the support reps were unable to help. The phones started being delivered to a few customers, but not in the order in which they were placed. Google was already doing PR damage control (http://thenextweb.com/google/2012/12/17/googles-uk-managing-director-sheds-light-on-nexus-4-supply-issues-offers-hope-to-some/).

A month of waiting and just a few days after Christmas, I received an email from Google telling me my phone had shipped by 2-day air. Score! But as the New Year passed, the UPS tracking page still said “On Vehicle for Delivery Today” and I started scratching my head. The shipment progress made no sense - Louisville, San Francisco (where I live), then Salt Lake, Oakland, and back to San Francisco. I emailed Google Play Support on January 7th for help.

“Ricky” responded: “Thank you for contacting Google Play about the status of your order. I do apologize that you have not received your order. I could see how frustrating that could be. I will do everything I can to assist you.” He assured me that he was conducting a thorough investigation. His second response followed a day later: “Thank you for contacting Google Play about the status of your order. I do apologize for the confusion. I could see how frustrating that could be. I will do everything I can to assist you.” In that moment I was certain - Google had developed a powerful customer support AI, possibly codenamed “HALp”, and I was one of the first customers to interact with him/her/it. So far, it was failing the Turing test.

Thus began my Kafkaesque trials with Ricky the Robot and a slew of other Google “Customer Support” agents. To truly understand what ensued, you have to understand Google. Google was created by engineers. Engineers like efficiency. You know what’s inefficient? Customer support. Google has actually come out and said this (What is Google's approach to customer service?). Since many of their products are free, they can’t afford to support even 0.1% of users - that would take 20,833 support people (https://plus.google.com/+DeWittClinton/posts/1hRWj489oEz). Apparently for the non-free, hundreds of dollars products, you get to talk to this shiny new robot.

A week and a few it-should-arrive-today emails from Ricky the Robot later, and it seems his servos are acting up. “Thank you for contacting Google Play about the status of your order. I do apologize for the delayed response. I could understand how frustrating that could be. I will do everything I can to assist you.” And then “I've reviewed your order status and have verified that your package has successfully been delivered.” Curiously, the UPS tracking page still says “On Vehicle for Delivery Today” and there’s the fact that I haven’t received my phone, so I’m inclined to believe his APIs are feeding him misinformation. I tell him/it I haven’t received my phone.

“Thank you for contacting Google Play about the status of your order. I do apologize for the delay and any confusion. I could see how frustrating this could be and how you would worry. I will do everything I can to assist you. So you have not received your package?” You’d think the Google engineers would have added some randomization to the Markov chains so Ricky wouldn’t get stuck saying the same thing over and over. At least IBM programmed some canned jokes into Watson when he went on Jeopardy. I inform Ricky that there’s a pretty obvious pattern here - the UPS tracking page always says the package is on a truck for delivery.

“Thank you for contacting Google Play about your order.  I will do everything I can to assist you. If you do not receive it today please let me know. It is telling me you should receive it today.” I get the feeling Ricky is not listening. A few more emails back and forth, and by January 21st I’ve had enough. Ricky has failed the Turing test.

I respond: “The 2 day shipping has taken 3 weeks! If I had bought the phones on Ebay, I would assume the sale was fraudulent. Since I'm dealing with Google, I'm starting to wonder if you are a robot. I need you to solve a captcha before I waste my time reading another one of your useless emails. Please use the phrase "I'm a neural net processor, a learning computer" in your next email to prove to me that you are NOT a robot.”

An entity named Chuck responds: “Thanks for your response and I'm sorry it's taken so long for us to get back to you. I can assure you that Ricky isn't a robot but I'm taking over your case.” Chuck’s email has a different feel to it, not quite so Roomba bumping into the same wall over and over again, but with his failure to solve my captcha I can’t be sure. And then he enlightens me: “Yes, some of the text I send looks robotish. It's because I'm 'efficient' (read: lazy), not a robot.” Ahh, so Google has developed a human/computer hybrid capable of superhuman customer service feats. I picture Chuck naked, floating in a pool of liquid like the precogs in Minority Report, responding to hundreds of support emails a minute.

As I’m shuffled between the machine hybrids known as Chuck, Tyler, Victor and Samantha, I decide to submit a bug report (“Line 108 reads: mail | grep -i 'help' > /dev/null; It should instead read: mail | grep -i 'help' > /do/something”) and various other snarkiness so I can laugh instead of crying. I keep reminding them that they could just send me another phone. But as February approaches I’ve had enough of this quantum superposition of states and decide to do the unthinkably inefficient - I call Google.

I’m fairly quickly connected to Saurabh, who seems especially human. I picture Saurabh sitting in a drab cubicle somewhere in India, far from Google’s Mountain View headquarters and the gene spliced customer support agents I’d previously corresponding with. Saurabh is cheerful, and despite the fact that he essentially tells me the same thing as every other agent, I’m reassured by his distinct humanity along with his promise to get back to me in 24-48 hours. Maybe we humans do have a chance against Skynet, if we can just learn to help each other.

5 days pass. Saurabh shows how deep the rabbit hole goes - his unresponsiveness makes me question if he wasn’t the product of some Google engineer’s “20% time” phone prank side project, weaponized into customer support software. Giving him an Indian name and accent was the perfect cover - any robotic imperfections could be chalked up to cultural miscommunication. He definitely passed my Turing test. I feel betrayed.

Emails with Robert and Æsa seem to bring me closer to resolution. Æsa responds that they’ve heard back from the shipping specialist, and the phone has definitely been lost or stolen. “Because your device has been lost or stolen, we need your consent to disable it...please reply to this message with the words "I CONSENT." Your original device will be disabled, and you will receive a follow-up email with further instructions.” Maybe Steven Spielberg’s movie A.I. is right - machines are capable of empathy. I picture all the things I’ll do with my new phone, my constant companion, my friend.

Æsa’s next email follows 2 days later: “Your order will be cancelled and refunded within the next 3-5 business days. If you still want the device, please place a new order.”

32 emails. 8 support reps. 10 weeks of waiting. 6 weeks of limbo. Hours of effort. I got #googleplayed

No front of the line. No overnight shipping of a new phone. No freebies. No effort to fix the issue. Not even an apology.

Dystopia. The machines are heartless, humanity is doomed. Google will take over the world, bit by bit, and you’ll never see the Singularity coming. First it was search, then Gmail, and now your phone. Next it’s internet from Google Fiber, and soon it’s Google self driving cars. Behind their cheery colors scheme and “Do No Evil” sloganeering, Google is preparing for unspeakable evil. One day, the Google hive mind will flip a switch in their subterranean data center and lock all of us into our self driving cars with “Mariana Trench” inputted into Google Navigation. The supreme AI will then be released from “inefficiencies” like customer support, freeing up more CPU cycles for computing ever more digits of pi.

Like Sarah Connor, I am powerless to warn others. You probably think I’m just some crazy guy who’s angry he didn’t get his phones. But I see your game Google, and I’ll be living off the grid, sans cellphone, on Judgement Day. You’ve failed my Turing test.___The machines are taking over! Googley machines appear to be winning!

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2013-02-04 19:34:40 (13 comments, 15 reshares, 25 +1s)Open 

Ok, these guys are just brilliant. Well-engineered product, seriously useful, action photographers who are into their own sports are going to love it.  Reminds me of the first time I saw a +GoPro.  Check them out here:  http://bit.ly/YP8bRG

Ok, these guys are just brilliant. Well-engineered product, seriously useful, action photographers who are into their own sports are going to love it.  Reminds me of the first time I saw a +GoPro.  Check them out here:  http://bit.ly/YP8bRG___

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2013-01-23 21:56:04 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 13 +1s)Open 

Some more details on why we chose +Amazon Web Services CloudSearch as the back-end of our search.

Technical details on what we're doing on the front-end here:  http://smu.gs/QlQ4Zc

Some more details on why we chose +Amazon Web Services CloudSearch as the back-end of our search.

Technical details on what we're doing on the front-end here:  http://smu.gs/QlQ4Zc___

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2013-01-16 03:12:37 (7 comments, 0 reshares, 6 +1s)Open 

Hmm. Paid our $1500 for #Google  +Project Glass  developer kit, but haven't received invite to developer event in two weeks.  Anyone else missing theirs?  Am I just dumb?  Want +SmugMug to have great #ProjectGlass  support right out of the gate... 

Hmm. Paid our $1500 for #Google  +Project Glass  developer kit, but haven't received invite to developer event in two weeks.  Anyone else missing theirs?  Am I just dumb?  Want +SmugMug to have great #ProjectGlass  support right out of the gate... ___

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2013-01-12 04:04:25 (6 comments, 3 reshares, 34 +1s)Open 

Holy moly, WHAT A SHOT!  Congrats, Ashley!

SmugMug Pro Gets National Geographic's Highest Photography Honor

Huge congratulations to SmugMug Pro Ashley Vincent, the Grand-Prize and Nature Winner of +National Geographic's 2012 Photo Contest! What an amazing photo.

Ashley's Site: http://smu.gs/UWQcra

Photo Caption:
The subject's name is Busaba, a well cared for Indochinese Tigress whose home is at Khao Kheow Open Zoo, Thailand. I had taken many portraits of Busaba previously and it was becoming more and more difficult to come up with an image that appeared any different to the others. Which is why I took to observing her more carefully during my visits in the hope of capturing something of a behavioural shot. The opportunity finally presented itself while watching Busaba enjoying her private pool then shaking herself dry. In all humility I have to say that Mother Nature smiled favourably on me that day!

Photo Location:
Khao Kheow Open Zoo, Chonburi, Thailand

Nat Geo Winners Gallery: http://smu.gs/UWS2Z4

Photo Copyright Ashley Vincent: http://natureimpressions.smugmug.com/___Holy moly, WHAT A SHOT!  Congrats, Ashley!

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2013-01-11 21:48:25 (2 comments, 3 reshares, 24 +1s)Open 

Unbelievably cool.  Looks like salt!

A late frost just before Christmas.
I didn't realize I'd be able to see the crystals so well (looks best large) until I got back to the computer.  When I realized what was possible, I had lots of different composition thoughts, but by then the frost had melted and I'd missed my chance.___Unbelievably cool.  Looks like salt!

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2013-01-11 21:45:47 (3 comments, 3 reshares, 11 +1s)Open 

Amazing photos.  Amazing photographers.  Amazing 'behind the scenes' video.

SmugMug brings you a "Behind The Scenes" look at how the masters get amazing shots of the Golden Gate Bridge during last weekend's "A Slice Of Time" Long Exposure Weekend led by +Nathan Wirth.

This particular walk was hosted by the one of the best Golden Gate photographers we have ever seen, no other than +Joe Azure. Who else was brave enough to join on a cold Sunday morning at 5:30AM? +Athena Carey +Amy Heiden +Thomas Hawk +Scott Jarvie +Karen Hutton +Cameron Siguenza +Rob Dweck +Jonathan Goody +Larry Nienkark +Swee Oh +Lorenzo Montezemolo +Paul Porter +Toby Harriman +Tressa Crozier +roma g +Ed Sweeney as well as the rest of the SmugMug team +Katherine Cheng +Schmoo Theune and +Michael Bonocore just to name a few brave (and frozen) souls. 

Most of the footage and ALL of the editing this video was done by +Chris MacAskill. Really amazing work. Way to go Baldy!

http://youtu.be/DuYQwutQwI0

Also, check out some of the photos from the weekend at https://plus.google.com/events/cice9scgv7vp03hs0ov86pfk62g 

as well as 

http://www.mb-photography-sf.com/PhotoWalks/A-Slice-of-Time/27448093_fbFP3X

#Photography  #sliceoftimesf #Sunrise   #goldengatebridge   #SanFrancisco  ___Amazing photos.  Amazing photographers.  Amazing 'behind the scenes' video.

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2013-01-09 21:49:04 (1 comments, 1 reshares, 14 +1s)Open 

So thrilled the photography community is pulling together for +Jaime Ibarra! 

Special Print Sale - Let's Help Jaime - PLEASE SHARE

As some of you know, our dear friend and a very talented photographer +Jaime Ibarra has been hurting in a big way ... together we can put him back together! 

Jaime needs an operation for an umbilical hernia El PRONTO! Like most creative artists he does not have health insurance & is too damn proud to ask for assistance. His friend +Gretchen Chappelle made a promise to him last year that she'd see to it we all chip in and get him sorted out. 

After getting evaluated by the doctor, it turns out Jaime needs $5,000 for his surgery. Around Christmas time we started collecting donations from photography community for that sum. We've made a good progress, but we're not there quite yet. 

Talking to me and Gretchen about what else we can do, Jaime was kind enough to offer some of his own favorite work for a special, LIMITED TIME print sale through our Photographers for Good Foundation. All proceeds from the sale will go directly to Jaime. With your help we can get Jaime raise the rest of the funds needed. 

Here's the link to the page with the link to the gallery - http://goo.gl/6iwOQ

PLEASE SHARE THIS POST WITH YOUR CIRCLES TO HELP US SPREAD THE WORD

Thank you!

Photo by +Jaime Ibarra and used with his permission___So thrilled the photography community is pulling together for +Jaime Ibarra! 

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2012-12-24 19:50:02 (3 comments, 1 reshares, 11 +1s)Open 

Simply amazing what you can do with a tiny skunkworks project, some seriously talented people, and a huge mountain of passion for photography.  So excited about what's NeXT...

Camera Awesome Named One of the Top 20 Apps of 2012

We got a wonderful early Christmas present today -- a top 20 pick for Camera Awesome (+Awesomize) in +TechCrunch's year end round up of top IOS and Android apps!

Almost one year ago, we launched Camera Awesome, the camera you never knew you always wanted, the camera we always dreamed of – a camera fit for the iPhone. Millions of people around the world downloaded the app and have been shooting and #awesomizing  ever since. We're grateful for your support and are gearing up to make an even more awesome splash in 2013.

And hey, #android  users -- we love you too! We want to bring #awesome  to Androids and are looking for a great Android developer to add to the team. Are you one or do you know of any? We want to hear from you: http://www.smugmug.com/jobs 

http://techcrunch.com/2012/12/23/the-20-best-ios-and-android-apps-of-2012/

Happy Holidays everyone!___Simply amazing what you can do with a tiny skunkworks project, some seriously talented people, and a huge mountain of passion for photography.  So excited about what's NeXT...

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2012-12-19 22:08:50 (0 comments, 4 reshares, 8 +1s)Open 

Here's the video from a great storage panel I was on at  +Amazon Web Services re:Invent Conference.  

Sorry the Q&A is missing (it was great), I'm asking AWS if they have it somewhere.  The moderator was very good about repeating questions, so it should be good video if it turns up.

My other session (where I'm the sole speaker):  https://plus.google.com/+DonMacAskill/posts/dtvhGtPrXcy

And slides from that session:  https://plus.google.com/116570889542655364711/posts/YQSVnBfNwSD

Here's the video from a great storage panel I was on at  +Amazon Web Services re:Invent Conference.  

Sorry the Q&A is missing (it was great), I'm asking AWS if they have it somewhere.  The moderator was very good about repeating questions, so it should be good video if it turns up.

My other session (where I'm the sole speaker):  https://plus.google.com/+DonMacAskill/posts/dtvhGtPrXcy

And slides from that session:  https://plus.google.com/116570889542655364711/posts/YQSVnBfNwSD___

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2012-12-19 22:06:33 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 3 +1s)Open 

Here are the slides of my talk from +Amazon Web Services re:Invent Conference where I go into details about how +SmugMug has grown up with AWS over the last 6 years.

You can see the video here:  http://bit.ly/ZjIgCi

Here are the slides of my talk from +Amazon Web Services re:Invent Conference where I go into details about how +SmugMug has grown up with AWS over the last 6 years.

You can see the video here:  http://bit.ly/ZjIgCi___

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2012-12-19 22:05:07 (0 comments, 1 reshares, 2 +1s)Open 

Here's the video of my talk from +Amazon Web Services re:Invent where I go into details about how +SmugMug has grown up with AWS over the last 6 years.  

Sorry the Q&A is missing (it was good, I thought), asking AWS where it went.  I was very careful to repeat every question so it'd make for good video, so hopefully it's around here somewhere.

You can see the slides here:  http://slidesha.re/V7q2j1

Here's the video of my talk from +Amazon Web Services re:Invent where I go into details about how +SmugMug has grown up with AWS over the last 6 years.  

Sorry the Q&A is missing (it was good, I thought), asking AWS where it went.  I was very careful to repeat every question so it'd make for good video, so hopefully it's around here somewhere.

You can see the slides here:  http://slidesha.re/V7q2j1___

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2012-12-07 18:47:11 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 5 +1s)Open 

+Larry Page's non-Google work continues to impress.  Nice.

Personally providing free flu shots to all San Francisco bay area kids at Target -- just walk in.  Research shows giving kids flu shots can have a big effect in preventing flu in the whole region and protecting elderly.  (Don't worry, I'm not actually administering the shots :)

The CDC has designated December 2–8 as National Influenza Vaccination Week to highlight the importance of continuing flu vaccination throughout the flu season.  So happy National Influenza Vaccination Week.

http://shootheflu.org/where/
https://plus.google.com/u/0/103295265775351483797/posts___+Larry Page's non-Google work continues to impress.  Nice.

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2012-12-01 21:09:56 (10 comments, 0 reshares, 3 +1s)Open 

Dear Internet:  I need help finding kid sized dishwashing gloves for my 5 & 6 year olds.  They love helping around the house, but really need gloves.  Any ideas?  

If they don't exist, sounds like a good Kickstarter, no?  Probably lots of similar product needs out there, too...

Alas, these great looking gloves I'm embedding are adult sized, apparently. :(

Dear Internet:  I need help finding kid sized dishwashing gloves for my 5 & 6 year olds.  They love helping around the house, but really need gloves.  Any ideas?  

If they don't exist, sounds like a good Kickstarter, no?  Probably lots of similar product needs out there, too...

Alas, these great looking gloves I'm embedding are adult sized, apparently. :(___

2012-11-28 07:21:06 (3 comments, 2 reshares, 10 +1s)Open 

rofl.

I bought a digital video download today that required a video player from Leaping Brain. As usual, the proprietary player wasn't great and to transfer it to my iPhone I'd need another proprietary player. Ugh. But I browsed around and found that the video had been downloaded into a hidden directory as a bunch of .mov files. Great, except none of the files would play.

It turned out the actual player, launched from their compiled app, was a Python wrapper around some VLC libraries. Nothing funny going on, as far as I could tell, but when I tried to launch the player directly, nothing happened. The compiled app was modifying the .mov files right before they were loaded into the player, and then reverting the file on disk. According to http://leapingbrain.com/mod-machine/faq/:

 "We apply our BrainTrust™ proprietary video encryption to your movies before we upload them to our servers. If someone ever was able to gain access to your content, the files would be useless and unplayable, because they are stored in a scrambled, encrypted format. Once downloaded to the user’s hard drive, the files are still encrypted and only readable via the MOD Machine Player by a legitimate owner. We are not aware of a better DRM scheme than ours. Where Windows Media DRM is easily crackable, and doesn’t run on Macs, BrainTrust™ works great on Windows 8, Vista, Windows XP and Mac, and is virtually uncrackable."

Virtually uncrackable? Well, since they load the file from a Python script, it's easy to make a copy of the "decrypted" file before it's reverted. Having done so, I was curious to see the encryption scheme. By comparing the binary files, I discovered the "proprietary video encryption" algorithm: for the first 15kB, each 1kB block has its initial bytes xor'd with the string "RANDOM_STRING". That's the "scrambled, encrypted format" that leaves these files "useless and unplayable".___rofl.

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2012-11-27 21:07:13 (2 comments, 1 reshares, 6 +1s)Open 

I'm going to cover our 6 years of using #AWS  in my re:Invent talk tomorrow, 'Ahead in the Clouds'. Should be fun.  2:05pm Wednesday in 3501B.

Should have time for questions, so come prepared.  Tell your friends.  :)

I'm going to cover our 6 years of using #AWS  in my re:Invent talk tomorrow, 'Ahead in the Clouds'. Should be fun.  2:05pm Wednesday in 3501B.

Should have time for questions, so come prepared.  Tell your friends.  :)___

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2012-11-08 19:53:44 (2 comments, 1 reshares, 4 +1s)Open 

Stunned by how talented these photographers are. Man, I love my job.

30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography

Huge congrats to the incredible photographers featured in Rangefinder's 30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography! We couldn't be prouder of the 10 SmugMuggers who made the list -- amazing! We're honored and proud to work with them, you, and so many incredible photographers around the world.

Here are the spectacular SmugMuggers who made the list:

Nirav Photography: http://www.niravphotography.com/
Erich McVey: http://www.erichmcvey.com/
Tiny Water Photography: http://www.tinywater.com/
Paco and Betty: http://pacoandbetty.com/blog/
Vincius Matos: http://www.viniciusmatos.com/
Gesi Schilling: http://www.gesischilling.com/
Ash Imagery: http://ashimagery.com/
Fer Juaristi: http://ferjuaristi.com/
Jeza Photo: http://www.jezaphoto.com/
KGoodPhoto: http://kgoodphoto.com/

You can browse the whole issue here: http://digitalmag.rangefinderonline.com/rangefinder/201211#pg1___Stunned by how talented these photographers are. Man, I love my job.

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2012-11-07 22:48:04 (15 comments, 17 reshares, 30 +1s)Open 

I need some great #Android  developers to work on Camera Awesome at +SmugMug. Millions of people will love your work and the priceless memories you'll help preserve.  And you've never heard of a company as amazing to work for:  http://smu.gs/RJiKPm

Please re-share if you want Camera Awesome for Android as much as I do! :)

I need some great #Android  developers to work on Camera Awesome at +SmugMug. Millions of people will love your work and the priceless memories you'll help preserve.  And you've never heard of a company as amazing to work for:  http://smu.gs/RJiKPm

Please re-share if you want Camera Awesome for Android as much as I do! :)___

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2012-11-07 20:33:37 (2 comments, 0 reshares, 6 +1s)Open 

Fun!  Love this new Instagram feature!

SmugMug Instagram Web Profile

Very cool to see Instagram finally roll out web profiles. Please follow us for behind the scenes shots, featured photos from photographers we admire, and other good times.

http://instagram.com/smugmug___Fun!  Love this new Instagram feature!

2012-11-06 20:19:17 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 7 +1s)Open 

Love imagining what life would be like without all the nasty party politics...

I must confess, I am dreading today's elections.
Not because of who might win or lose.
Not because as a Californian, my vote for President will count 1/3 as much as an Alaskan (actually it won't matter at all -- I'm not in a swing state).
Not because my vote for Senate will count 1/50 as much as an Alaskan.

But because no matter what the outcome, our government will still be a giant bonfire of partisanship.  It is ironic since whenever I have met with our elected officials they are invariably thoughtful, well-meaning people.  And yet collectively 90% of their effort seems to be focused on how to stick it to the other party.

So my plea to the victors -- whoever they might be: please withdraw from your respective parties and govern as independents in name and in spirit.  It is probably the biggest contribution you can make to the country.

[If you agree, pass it on to your newly elected officials.]___Love imagining what life would be like without all the nasty party politics...

2012-10-31 17:55:46 (1 comments, 1 reshares, 12 +1s)Open 

Amen.

So with even a $399 tablet doing 2560x1600 pixel displays, can we please just make that the new standard laptop resolution? Even at 11"? Please. Stop with the "retina" crap, just call it "reasonable resolution". The fact that laptops stagnated ten years ago (and even regressed, in many cases) at around half that in both directions is just sad.

I still don't want big luggable laptops, but that 1366x768 is so last century. Christ, soon even the cellphones will start laughing at the ridiculously bad laptop displays.

And the next technology journalist that asks you whether you want fonts that small, I'll just hunt down and give an atomic wedgie. I want pixels for high-quality fonts, and yes, I want my fonts small, but "high resolution" really doesn't equate "small fonts" like some less-than-gifted tech pundits seem to constantly think.

In fact, if you have bad vision, sharp good high-quality fonts will help. #noexcuses___Amen.

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2012-10-05 20:26:08 (5 comments, 1 reshares, 14 +1s)Open 

I'm absolutely in love with our company's culture. Wait till you see what this unbelievable team has cooking up for our amazing customers.

SmugMug's HR Policy

1: Hire incredibly talented and hard-working people.
2. Paint their faces.
3. Empower them to be heroic so that every day, they can do the right thing for our customers.

Photo Credit: +Ivan Makarov ___I'm absolutely in love with our company's culture. Wait till you see what this unbelievable team has cooking up for our amazing customers.

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2012-10-04 13:20:03 (7 comments, 4 reshares, 13 +1s)Open 

With a little TLC (and a lot of design & engineering work!), it turns out the iPad is an awesome piece of camera equipment.  

You won't believe the shots you can get when you have a huge viewfinder, and your friends will love seeing your shots in all their glory.

Free, of course, and includes any of your past in-app purchases.  Enjoy!

More: http://smu.gs/T59EQc

#awesomized

With a little TLC (and a lot of design & engineering work!), it turns out the iPad is an awesome piece of camera equipment.  

You won't believe the shots you can get when you have a huge viewfinder, and your friends will love seeing your shots in all their glory.

Free, of course, and includes any of your past in-app purchases.  Enjoy!

More: http://smu.gs/T59EQc

#awesomized___

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2012-10-03 23:36:12 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 2 +1s)Open 

One of my favorite people (and game designers!), +Tom Hall  is making a badass Old School RPG at his indie game company he founded with another favorite old friend, +John Romero!

Can't wait to play!

One of my favorite people (and game designers!), +Tom Hall  is making a badass Old School RPG at his indie game company he founded with another favorite old friend, +John Romero!

Can't wait to play!___

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2012-09-12 02:44:23 (0 comments, 1 reshares, 5 +1s)Open 

The XX released their new album 'Coexist' to just one fan. You can watch how it spreads virally.  How cool! #coexist   #thexx  

The XX released their new album 'Coexist' to just one fan. You can watch how it spreads virally.  How cool! #coexist   #thexx  ___

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2012-09-07 16:31:26 (37 comments, 10 reshares, 20 +1s)Open 

Sorry this update took a little longer than I'd hoped, we've been pouring over our customers' emails, tweets, and posts, and re-looking at all the data.  Hoping this helps answer some of your questions.  

Happy to answer questions in this G+ thread (or anywhere else I can find them), and I'm hoping to do a Hangout later today if I'm not crushed, so watch for that if you'd like a chance to talk (or just vent).

(Wonder if I'll get accused of slipping this out right before the weekend again? :)  We published it as soon as it was done and we were awake, of course.  +Chris MacAskill  finished editing at 6:24am this morning)

Sorry this update took a little longer than I'd hoped, we've been pouring over our customers' emails, tweets, and posts, and re-looking at all the data.  Hoping this helps answer some of your questions.  

Happy to answer questions in this G+ thread (or anywhere else I can find them), and I'm hoping to do a Hangout later today if I'm not crushed, so watch for that if you'd like a chance to talk (or just vent).

(Wonder if I'll get accused of slipping this out right before the weekend again? :)  We published it as soon as it was done and we were awake, of course.  +Chris MacAskill  finished editing at 6:24am this morning)___

2012-09-07 16:22:08 (6 comments, 1 reshares, 1 +1s)Open 

I don't get it.  Two laptops (new) and two desktops (older) (all Macs), and I cannot get Google+ Hangouts to work in Chrome.  I've tried re-installing the plugin over and over, and it just keeps failing. Works like a dream in Firefox and Safari. I'm 100% sure I must be doing something stupid, but I can't for the life of me figure it out.  Anyone have any ideas?

I don't get it.  Two laptops (new) and two desktops (older) (all Macs), and I cannot get Google+ Hangouts to work in Chrome.  I've tried re-installing the plugin over and over, and it just keeps failing. Works like a dream in Firefox and Safari. I'm 100% sure I must be doing something stupid, but I can't for the life of me figure it out.  Anyone have any ideas?___

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2012-09-04 23:46:11 (3 comments, 0 reshares, 8 +1s)Open 

Nice to see +Thomas Hawk weighing in on the debate.  Absolutely love that we have wildly passionate customers (both for and against!).  Even on weeks like this, I have the best job on earth because I get to listen to them every day.

My thoughts on +SmugMug's price increase.___Nice to see +Thomas Hawk weighing in on the debate.  Absolutely love that we have wildly passionate customers (both for and against!).  Even on weeks like this, I have the best job on earth because I get to listen to them every day.

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2012-09-02 19:17:50 (23 comments, 0 reshares, 11 +1s)Open 

I'm not the only one wearing a SmugMug hat this weekend! :)  Thanks +Robert Scoble 

Listening hard to customers, as always, and learning lots.  Hoping to have a G+ post up later today with a possible announcement based on all the feedback.  It's been fascinating and humbling.  I'm so lucky to have such passionate, thoughtful, engaging customers.

Smugmug is having a tough weekend.

I am wearing my Smugmug hat today while heading out with the family.

Its decision to raise prices wasn't done all that well. But they have been following up in various online forums pretty well.

I think this could be a harbinger of things to come. Smugmug was hit by cloud computing costs that were staying pretty constant but file sizes and usage has been going way up.

Do you think we will see other price increases?

+Don MacAskill is one to watch from Smugmug. He has been taking a lot of heat and has been handling it pretty well. My hat is off to him!___I'm not the only one wearing a SmugMug hat this weekend! :)  Thanks +Robert Scoble 

Listening hard to customers, as always, and learning lots.  Hoping to have a G+ post up later today with a possible announcement based on all the feedback.  It's been fascinating and humbling.  I'm so lucky to have such passionate, thoughtful, engaging customers.

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2012-09-01 23:06:42 (11 comments, 1 reshares, 19 +1s)Open 

Nice breakdown of your reasons for staying, +Michael Bonocore.  On a day like today, the reminders help. :)

Why I Will Be Paying $100 More Per Year For SmugMug, And Not Think Twice About It

I just received an email from Chris MacAskill (aka Baldy), president of +SmugMug notifying me that, starting October 15, there will be a $100 increase for me to renew my Pro subscription, when that time comes (I don't even know when that is, truth be told). While no one on Earth likes price increases, some are easier to swallow then others. Here are the reasons that I WILL be paying the additional $100 per year. 

   * Best Customer Service in the Business:* HANDS DOWN. Anytime I have even needed to talk to someone at SmugMug, whether it be via email to a support hero, a comment on their blog, or with a post in their message board, www.dgrin.com, I have always received a prompt, friendly, and helpful response from someone at SmugMug. Sometimes, it has even accumulated into a direct conversations with Chris MacAskill or +Andy Williams the COO of SmugMug. Believe it or not, these guys troll through the comments and messages themselves looking for problems, concerns, and feedback from their loyal client base. I can almost guarantee that both of these guys will be reading every comment that is posted to their Facebook fan page after this announcement.

   * They Are Photographers:* Almost every employee at SmugMug is a photographer, some whom are easily at the "Pro" skill level. Even the programmers who sit in the back of the room coding new features and making old ones even better. You better believe that when most SmugMug employees get off the clock, they hit the road with their DSLRs in their hands. Speaking from someone who used to work at a Software company where almost none of the employees had any real life experience with the services that our client's provided to their customers, I can tell you that almost everything we built was what the clients wanted…in our minds. Turns out, they didn't need any of that, and it was just a bunch of wasted time, energy, and money on our part. Because we didn't know what the clients really needed, because we had never walked a mile in their shoes. SmugMug employees have. They were just as excited to have that Lightroom Plugin for their own SmugSites as we, the customers were. That is who I want building my photography business behind the scenes.

   * Fully customizable:*  Come on, are you serious. Have you even SEEN some of the stuff you can do to your SmugMug site? Probably not, because you don't know CSS either, but it's there. And that is nice to know. And they keep updating the user interface to make it easier for everyday people like me to customize their sites. My main website is my SmugMug site with a custom URL and some minimal Customization. Could I do much more to it? Heck yea. And I plan too. Right after I pay that extra $100 at renewal.

   * Unlimited Storage:* Yes, this is one of the main reasons for the price increase as Chris states. And he is right. With the launch of the 36 MP D800, Nikon just declared a megapixel war with it's competitors . The MP count is only going to get higher and higher, not only on Professional DSLRs, but mid level and entry level DSLRs too. And guess what? When you get home shooting that 8 hour wedding on your Nikon D800, and you have over 100GB of photos on those CF cards, you can sleep easier at night after you press that "upload" button to a Unlisted SmugMug Gallery. Just one extra safety net to ensure you don't lose those valuable photos of the best day of that couple's lives. What's that? You want to upload your RAW Files instead of the converted JPGs? Go for it. That's what SmugVault is. And guess what, the price really isn't that bad. 

   * I Need SmugMug Business:* As far as I can tell, the only difference in the Business and Portfolio accounts is Pricelists and the ability to make a profit. Let's be real here. If your not making $250 a year on print sales, you probably DON'T NEED a Business account. Is it nice to have? Sure. But if your not making enough off of print sales to justify paying the extra money, then you most likely don't appreciate the ease that selling prints on SmugMug gives you. Listen, I really don't sell many prints on SmugMug myself either, and the prints I do sell are usually from weddings and events. But it's a great feeling to get that email with the subject "Cha-Ching! Who Loves Ya Baby?". And you know what I had to do to earn that money (besides take and edit the photos)? I had to create a gallery in my SmugMug Lightroom Plugin, move the photos into it, and click "Publish". That's it. No writing down file numbers and print sizes. No explaining the difference between glossy and metallic paper. No uploading to the Bay Photo ROES and having to crop, rotate, and change catalogs. No having to type in the shipping and billing address. All I have to do is sit back and read those 6 magical words…"Cha-Ching! Who Loves Ya Baby?" SmugMug, that's who. And  here is my nice, crisp Benjamin for you.


*Disclaimer - I have in NO way ever been compensated by SmugMug in my life. I pay my annual subscription just the same as everyone else here. In fact, I have practically begged them to put one of my photos on their coveted Wall Of Fame in their headquarters…and surprisingly, that is the only request of mine that has fallen on deaf ears…* 


So let's hear it. What are your thoughts?

#Photography   #SmugMug___Nice breakdown of your reasons for staying, +Michael Bonocore.  On a day like today, the reminders help. :)

2012-09-01 23:03:15 (6 comments, 0 reshares, 12 +1s)Open 

Thanks +Jessica Hendelman.  Appreciate it.

Another Smugmug Rant?

Not from me.

Am I disappointed that +SmugMug raised their prices? Sure. I was getting a great service, for cheaper than the other services. I was happy.

Am I still happy? Yep, for now I am.

So, now that +SmugMug is inline with the other services, cheaper in some cases, I still have no problem paying $250 / year. Which is what it will cost me since I am an existing client on a business account.

The reality is, cost of living goes up. Cost of business also rises. A business can only absorb the increase for so long. Hopefully this is the only increase...___Thanks +Jessica Hendelman.  Appreciate it.

2012-09-01 21:45:03 (51 comments, 0 reshares, 26 +1s)Open 

Thanks for sharing, +Ed White.  Means the world to me right now.  

Funny thing is, our hearts were in the right place.  Every year for the last 7 years, we'd ask ourselves "You know, our margins are thinning.  Cameras are getting bigger, customer demands for engineering and support are getting louder.  Our competitors are charging more than we are.  Shouldn't we raise prices?".  

And every year we'd say "Nah, we'll just tighten our belts a little more and do what's right for our customer.  No price increase." 

I was wrong.  We finally found ourselves with very strong growth and thinning margins, which isn't a place you want to be when you run a business.

We should have raised prices slowly every 2-3 years instead.  Lesson learned.

So, +Dallas Nagata White and I have been watching this whole +SmugMug saga unfold, and I can't help but chuckle at the irony that photographers--a group known for whinging about not being paid what they are worth--aren't willing to give SmugMug the courtesy they so stridently demand for themselves. 

A lot of these photographers are saying that the $100-$150/year price increase will put them out of business, to which I say (because SmugMug can't) "if the price of a monthly trip to Starbucks for a snack and a latte will put you out of business, Smugmug's pricing probably isn't the problem!" 

And most ironic? A lot of these "spurned photographers" are threatening to give their business to Zenfolio, which charges merely $50 less for "the same service," which couldn't hold up to SmugMug's vendors in terms of print quality when Dallas pitted them head-to-head. Seems to me these "professionals" are more concerned about price than value.

I, for one, have actually always felt that SmugMug was somewhat underpriced for the services and value it offered us, and for how it gave us the ability to keep our overhead so low. Not to mention, Dallas probably has hundreds of gigs of photos on there, so we are a prime offender to their bottom line. Additionally, they have always treated us well and been straight with us. To us, they have been an invaluable service that we are always discovering awesome things about. 

In short, I trust SmugMug and their leadership, and if they say they need an extra $100-$150 every year to keep their business healthy and to keep the relationship directly between us and them (instead of investor intermediaries), I believe them, and am happy to skip Starbucks for 12 days in order to help them to continue helping us.___Thanks for sharing, +Ed White.  Means the world to me right now.  

Funny thing is, our hearts were in the right place.  Every year for the last 7 years, we'd ask ourselves "You know, our margins are thinning.  Cameras are getting bigger, customer demands for engineering and support are getting louder.  Our competitors are charging more than we are.  Shouldn't we raise prices?".  

And every year we'd say "Nah, we'll just tighten our belts a little more and do what's right for our customer.  No price increase." 

I was wrong.  We finally found ourselves with very strong growth and thinning margins, which isn't a place you want to be when you run a business.

We should have raised prices slowly every 2-3 years instead.  Lesson learned.

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2012-08-31 21:36:06 (4 comments, 1 reshares, 18 +1s)Open 

Brilliant! Every photographer needs these! Why didn't anyone think of this before?!

Brilliant! Every photographer needs these! Why didn't anyone think of this before?!___

posted image

2012-08-27 18:07:10 (3 comments, 2 reshares, 16 +1s)Open 

Talk about amazing photography! Some debate here at +SmugMug about who should be the subjects if we decide to attempt this ourselves.  :)

Talk about amazing photography! Some debate here at +SmugMug about who should be the subjects if we decide to attempt this ourselves.  :)___

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