Publishing from LR to Dropbox

I happen to be a happy amateur photographer since my schooldays. A separate blog could be filled easily on this topic alone by me. I used to have my own website called “Pars Pro Photo” for years but lately I have converted to publishing via Dropbox only. Somewhere down the line my workflow was corrupted and I realized that for the type of distribution I needed Dropbox would do fine.

As a longtime Adobe Lightroom user I welcomed the possibility of setting up publishing services in LR4. This is a neat feature that allows to add and delete photo’s from albums published dynamically right from my archives. I use it for many things: from synching with Photosmith app to filling up my Apple TV at home and make photo’s available for specific groups and purposes.

One way or an other I was not able to set up a Dropbox publishing myself via the publishing service. In February I contacted Dropbox and they acknowledged that I had run into a “0 byte issue” that cloud not be solved, they passed it on to their Tech department. I decided to purchase a dedicated LR plugin from AlloyPhoto for $15 to circumvent the issue. Yesterday with upgrading to LR5 suddenly the plugin refused any action as it demanded a new registration code for the full price again. It felt as having to pay an unjustified additional tax, it was like being required to pay Microsoft to use a still fully functional and not changing Office Word again when I upgrade OSX at Apple.

It prompted me to do a little search and found the following resource. I decided to give it an other try: obviously the “0 byte” problem now has been solved! No need to buy a third party plugin reactivation code. It is super simple to set up your own Synched publishing to Dropbox from Lightroom (NB just see above resource: it is also possible to set normal folders not only smart folders!). See video tutorial from Michael Hoffman

Synching Iphone and LR

(Update 7 February 2015:) I have installed BitTorrent Synch app on my iPhone and the accompanying app for the Mac from the App store to help synch my photos from all my iDevices already for ages… When synched the photos are placed in a designated folder on my Mac. On LR I have activated the option to automatically import (move) from the sameĀ folder. This way I have a very simple route to get my photo role itemsĀ into my LR archive. The featured photo (processed with Waterloque app on iPad) was synched this way just moments ago…

Still I think this episode has some relevance for Red Planet Dust:

1) Services like Dropbox are creating a platform independent environment were you are less dependent on your devices. Interoperability between services is creating new and seamless combinations. This is increasing collaborability.

2) The interconnected world does not allow for arbitrary publican roles (n=1 example… ok). Resources and information are so easily findable that arbitration will hurt the business models based on them. (I think AlloyPhoto deserves a fair price for its added value, linking it up to an upgrade of something else I see as a publican role. Looking at how simple it is to set up a working service by hand you can even wonder if this is a service that you could ask – this much – cash for…)

3) If I have a look back at how my photographic workflow – including distribution – has changed over time it mirrors 1:1 the developments in the digitization of our technologies, interoperability and the democratization of the web. This is an example of the mega trends having there effects on collaborability at its best.

We often have difficulties to see the changes we are faced with. We take for granted all ready that we can Snapchat, twitter photo’s, use Facebook tagging, have all our photo’s in the cloud…

Read also at RPD: Can development of photography teach us something more broadly?