New toys from Flickr

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With over five billion photos on Flickr, it has moved far beyond a niche hangout for photographer-types. It’s mainstream and it’s social, and it’s embracing that. Or at least it’s going a bit of way towards running with realising that it’s part of the social media phenomenon but trying to maintain some olde worlde charm by introducing Photo Session.

The idea is that you can get all your friends who are scattered across the globe together in one virtual place, be it from their laptops, iPhones, or iPads, to look at photos of your latest trip kayaking down the Nile, at the same time, with conversation, possibly some wine, and doodles. Yes, doodles.

It might be the doodles that gives Photo Session a glimmer of hope

You choose the photos and invite upto ten people to join the session. Then you can flick through your album and yak about the icky colour of the Nile and its fearsome crocodiles until your hearts are content. There are no special requirements, but if your guests want to play with the stuff, like the doodles, then they need a Yahoo! ID.

Now I don’t know about you, but I was kinda glad when photo-sharing websites like Flickr allowed me to escape the mind-numbing marathon sessions of sitting through other people’s interminably boring holiday snaps that left me wondering whether eating the photographic paper might induce a faster death. The Photo Session oodjimaflip seems somehow regressive, no? Maybe the doodles features will salvage it?

In other slightly more practical news, there’s also a shiny new Android app for Flickr. You can take photos, mess around with filters, and then send them on to Flickr, as well as Facebook, Twitter and anywhere else that you share photos online. The interface has been custom-designed for Flickr, so that you can make use of maps and tags and navigate it easily. And of course you can see the comments and activity on your own Flickr photos and look at them full-screen.

Adobe Photoshop Express 2.0 is go

Photoshop Express

Hot on the heels of Photoshop Express 1.5, which came out at the end of January, version 2.0 of Adobe’s on-the-move photo editing suite for iPhones, or anything running iOS 4.2, really, is available for download. That bit’s free, but there’s also a not-free Camera Pack that you buy for £2.39. Of course, it’s the not-free bit that you’ll be wanting.

So now you can have a noise reduction feature, called, rather originally Reduce Noise; you can self-time pictures at three or 10 second intervals; and there’s the Auto Review function that allows you to decide quickly if you want to keep your picture.

Version 2.0 will work provided that you’re running iOS 4.2 on your Apple-branded mobile communication device; but you need an iPhone 3Gs or more exciting, a third or fourth generation iPod Touch, or either of the iPads for the Camera Pack to work. Oh, and Photoshop Express can’t currently support the camera on the iPad 2. Just by the way. Very useful.

Photoshop Express 2.0 can be downloaded from the iTunes store, naturally.