August 4, 2012
This is Now Website Features Real-Time Compilation Of Instagram Photos
redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online
A new website harnesses the millions of photos taken by Instagram users every day and combines them with geographical tags in order to show the activities going on in various cities around the world at any given time.
The project is called "This is Now" and currently it displays nearly real-time updates from five of the largest international cities on Earth -- New York, Tokyo, London, Sydney, and Sao Paolo -- Eileen Marable of the website DVice explained in a Friday article.
As of April, Instagram users are uploading more than five million photographs per day, claims Jeff Blagdon of The Verge. With so much source material, he says that the service provides "a treasure trove of public data for the enterprising developer to play with," and wonders whether or not This is Now "isn´t the perfect encapsulation of the mobile web."
"The volume of photos being taken and uploaded it provides a constantly updated stream of life," Marable said. "With each photographer having a different style, subject, location, and intent you'll get the beautiful, interesting, mundane, technical, sad, happy, whatever-it-is-you-name-it, moments people choose to shoot and share. It makes the fly on the wall concept we all love all the more interesting because it is human, emotional and changing at the pace of life."
Hugo Gye and Mark Prigg of the Daily Mail said that the website, which was created by an Australian company known as Lexical Gap, had gone viral had had attracted more than 50,000 as of Thursday night.
They also note that the nature of the service will undoubtedly be cause for some privacy concern, based on the fact that not all Instagram users may realize that anyone -- not just friends -- can see their published work.
"The site also gives a fascinating insight into the activities of each cities residents," Gye and Prigg said. "For instance, London's stream is filled to the brim with Olympic pictures at the moment, while Japanese residents seem to prefer self portraits."
The Daily Mail reports that Lexical Gap officials call the website, "a visual composition which uses real-time updates from the ever popular Instagram application based on users geo-tag locations“¦ 'The tool streams photos instantly as soon as they are uploaded on Instagram and captures a cities movement, in a fluid story." They also said that they plan to add additional cities to the service in the near future.