Testing the iPhone WordPress app

Writing this from my iPhone to test out what is possible using the WordPress app.

The application takes you through step-by-step setting up posting, allowing you to post from multiple blogs via one username. Once through to the admin area you have three tabs – Comments, Post and Pages.

Using the Post page to add and edit a post you are taken through the title, tags, categories post status (local draft, publish, draft etc.) and then there is a large area for writing. In many ways this layout and process is much easier to use than the browser interface.

To add media such as the photos above or video, users need to save the post and then select the media tab. Once again the interface is easy to use for anyone familiar with photo applications. (By the way to take a screen-shot on the iPhone press the main centre function button at the same time as the top ‘off’ button.)

The only downside with the Post tool is that you will need to know some HTML to make text bold, italic or add links as there are no appearance functions. Even if you are familiar with HTML this is rather tedious, as you have to flick between the third and first keyboards to find the correct keys and write the code.

Would I use this application again? Quite possibly. I can see it useful for drafting posts when an idea strikes whilst on the move or not near a computer. I can also see it would be useful for quick posts and pics when at an event or outside, particularly places where there is a 3G connection but not wifi or where there’s no room to get out the laptop.

And now to press Publish and see if this has all worked.

Testing the iPhone Hipstamtic Application

Flower and a beeOver the last week, I’ve been having some fun testing out the iPhone photographic Hipstamatic app, which the makers describe as “an application that brings back the look, feel, unpredictable beauty, and fun of plastic toy cameras from the past”.

The camera comes with three standard lenses called John S, Jimmy and Kaimal and three standard frame effects or as the app describes them “films” – Blank (a white border), 69 Ina (a beige fabric like border) and Kodot (a rough edged border on white).

Here’s a test sheet showing the different lenses and films:
Left to right – John S, Jimmy, Kaimal
Top to bottom – Ina, Blank, Kodot, Blank
A test sheet of hipstamatic photos

As you can see John S has a dark blue filter appearance, Jimmy a yellow filtered appearance and Kaimal a magenta/red filter appearance. Jimmy also comes through as the brightest – which works particularly well in the shot of the flower, on what was quite a sunny day.

One of the hardest things about the app is that, much like the toys it replicates, the image in the viewfinder bears very little resemblance to the final photograph, thus making composing a shot rather experimental. So often a good shot can take up to 6 attempts – unless you can just get lucky the first time.

There is of course a Flickr group dedicated to the app, full of examples of what’s possible. My eye also caught this discussion in the group wondering if it gave users a false sense of creativity. Of which, I’m sure such queries were raised at the introduction of the Brownie camera in 1900, and of the toy cameras that the Hisptamatic takes its inspriation.

The app enables you to send your photos straight to Flickr, although the iPhone Flickr app doesn’t enable you to post your photos to Twitter or another dedicated blog. So, I’m collating some of the best results here on Flickr but the more experimental ones are also appearing on my Twitpic page, such as this one, which believe it or not took a number of attempts to get right:

Cup of tea