Smarter photo albums with Google Photos

Google Photos has taken a step towards taking some of the pain out of creating photo albums from your photos with “smarter albums” and I am looking forward to seeing it in action.

The update blends the Stories feature (imported from Google+) with Google Photos to automate album creation and add additional data like location data to create what will hopefully be an improved experience.

Stories have been a hit-and-miss experience for me so I haven’t really used them all that much. I suspect its because the intelligence behind their creation isn’t sophisticated enough to see the same themes I do (probably not surprising, the machines aren’t that smart yet). That said, they are a fun way to share events. I modified this one from my birthday day off last year:


I use both Flickr and Google Photos to share photos and while I am a little concerned about the direction Flickr seems to be going, I am very interested to see how Google Photos evolves over time.

Google Photos is an easier option for people to use to share their photos (well, if you ignore the blue whale in the room – Facebook). I’ve replaced Apple Photos with Google Photos and Flickr as my photo sharing choices and I basically manage my device photo libraries through these apps.

I don’t see the new album features available in existing albums on Google Photos but we have an office Purim party today so I’ll have a new album of photos soon and I look forward to seeing how it all comes together then.

Photo credit: tookapic






One response to “Smarter photo albums with Google Photos”

  1. I love this video from Google Photos. It captures the generational differences when it comes to family photos perfectly![youtube am definitely more on the “take-a-gazillion-photos-and-put-them-into-albums-that-some-fancy-technology-can-index-for-me-for-later” category when it comes to family photos!Where my photos go these days

    Why Flickr is better than Google Photos

    My photos are typically uploaded to Flickr and Google Photos by default. I also sometimes share albums on Facebook but I don’t have complete archives there at all. I also make multiple backups of my primary photo library and RAW files because I am more than a little neurotic about losing my family photos.At the same time, I love living in a time where we can take so many great photos and share them so easily. Having machine learning systems go through our photos and make them so accessible, despite taking 23 photos of the same sunset, is amazing.Google Photos definitely has the edge when it comes to identifying what is in our photos. As long as I have my Flickr (and other) backups for full resolution images, I’m happy to keep sending all my photos to Google Photos too.

    Smarter photo albums with Google Photos

    Not sold on Apple Photos yetI haven’t used Apple Photos much. The libraries tend to become pretty big. My current edited library is about 128GB. That is stored in Flickr in full resolution (I uploaded most of that when we arrived in Israel – a decent upload capacity and no data caps is a must) and in Amazon S3.I don’t really see me using Apple Photos for my full library. For one thing, I don’t have the drive capacity for that on my current MacBook Air. For another, iCloud storage pricing is still relatively expensive compared to other storage options. Still, I created a small Apple Photos library to play around with the new Apple Photos app.One of the changes that I like is that I don’t have to replicate my photos in the Apple Photos library. I can “import” photos that I have stored on different drives without actually moving or copying them. That saves a lot of space.That said, Apple Photos still seems to take up a lot of extra space on my drive relative to the imported photos. At the same time, the library may seem to be relatively big because I activated the Photos iCloud Library and it is importing photos shared through my iPhone and iPad.I probably need to play around with Apple Photos and use a bigger subset of my library to get a better sense of how much space it will actually use once I’ve accounted for my iCloud library.Those old family slides
    Old memories with my DadMy current mission is to have about 150-200 slides from my childhood scanned and added to my digital library. The big challenge with older generations’ photos is that there either aren’t many or they are in physical formats that will only degrade over time.The slides are mostly in pretty good shape and there are a lot of amazing memories in there. So much I have forgotten from my childhood.My Grand Plan is actually to co-ordinate with my brother and sister to have all the slides they have from my mother digitised and shared as a collected family archive.When I look at photos of my parents’ childhoods, I’m struck by how few I have access to and just how few there are altogether. It isn’t quite as bad as the great grandfather in the Google Photos video with just two photos in his whole life but there really aren’t many photos going back a couple generations.If anything, our kids will have too many photos of our lives and theirs but, hopefully, machine learning will keep developing and the (likely) terabytes of family photos we leave for them when we eventually leave this life will become a rich and valued archive of memories.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Like this:Like Loading…

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