Flickr’s New Design Still Broken? Kind Of

The first real rant here on my blog with the till then incomplete subtitle “ranced rants of a grumpy old man” was about Flickr’s new design including, but not limited to the out-of-the-blue change to it. A couple of days went by now and after some more fiddling and trying out I came up with the conclusion formulated in the title of this post.

Some of the bugs—most of them probably caused by the hasty transition—have been driven out but some old bugs stayed and some changes were not very useful. One of the old bugs that nags me most is the one where you come back to somewhere inside a group, that is to a page with a
number bigger than two and without any old cookies and switch from the default “justified” to “large thumbnails” you get thrown back to page one of the group. Nevertheless a cookie gets set and the second time you try to get to the page number you wanted directly you get both, the correct page and the correct view. This old bug seems to have gotten worse in that the first time you asked for your page the first page comes up without the detour of clicking on “large thumbnails” but I’m not sure if that was the case already. My memory doesn’t get better with age.

One of the new things they got worse is the lack of memory on behalf of the chosen options. I have the habit of searching regularly for a couple of keywords and, because I am doing it regularly with always the same keywords, I am not interested in the most “relevant” findings but in the most “recent” ones. With the old design the search kept the option “recent” the new design forgets it. This might have been made so intentionally but is in my case a bit enervating if not outright annoying. The workaround is to simple type the keywords into the URL (change any spaces into “+” plus signs and anything other than ASCII into their hexadecimal counterparts) but that is definitely not how a modern website should function.

I have not tested everything and am quite ok with the things I saw and could test. Lets say: I’ve seen worse.

The biggest change is of course the change of the business model: from clients paying for webspace (to put it simply) who used the website to post their pictures and share them with others to clients paying for advertising who just rent some space to show their advertisements (BTW: I’ve seen no advertisements yet, did you?). This might work for tumbler with their high number of viewers in relation to the smallish number of bloggers but will it work for Flickr, too? I have my doubts.

You can get an external one Terabyte harddrive for less than a hundred now, so if you relied on Flickr as your backup for your pictures (and probably payed for it!) it might be a good idea to do a backup of your precious numbers at home and keep it more safe.

Oh, 522 words? That was quite wordy for me 😉

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