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From Closet to Facebook Timeline

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011
sneak peak at the new Facebook Timeline

Facebook timeline is all the buzz today at f8 (for those non-Valley types, that's the Facebook developer conference). As a company whose business it is to help folks digitize and share their own personal timelines, we're very excited about it.

Here's the deal: Facebook timeline is part of a new profile interface, and allows you to add content to your own personal timeline. A snapshot of my woefully barren timeline is here (look to the right of the profile):

Now, regrettably, the bulk of your photography collection that would naturally illustrate your personal timeline is probably collecting dust somewhere in a dark corner of your house. And that, friends, is where we come in. We not only scan photos, but we scan slides and convert negatives to digital. We also transfer VHS to DVD – hey, the '80s and '90s deserve some love too.

Since GoPhoto is the only scanning service that puts your scans into free online albums with unlimited storage and 1-click Facebook share, filling out that Facebook Timeline is actually as easy as packing up a box with all your old photos, slides and negatives and sending it off to us for the flat rate of $16 round trip and 37¢ a scan.

Hey, getting your pictures to digital so that you can preserve and share them online is what we do anyway. Now Facebook is giving you an easy chronological feature to organize and share them. And, even better news: we'll be augmenting our Facebook app to more easily enable bulk transfer of photos.

Facebook Timeline launches for everyone next week or so, but if you must absolutely positively have it right this second, our pals at TechCrunch tell you how.

The lion sleeps tonight

Thursday, August 18th, 2011
old scanned photo

This photo, like me, aging over time...

Sometimes it's easy to forget that I was cute once.

Photo scanning being all the rage these days, my Dad was nice enough to scan this picture of me when I was around 3 months old, to compare with my then 3-month-old daughter. Here is a list of things we learned in this experience, in no particular order:

1) The hardest part about finding a matching yellow lion toy is that the sheer volume of plush lion toys is enough to make one wonder whether or not their numbers exceed real-life lions. So if you were worried about the status of the lion on the endangered plush-species list, don't be. Population: stable.

2) A single old photo scan takes kind of a long time, and it still looks about as comparatively good as the person in it after all that time. By the time my Dad scanned it, touched it up and emailed it to me, he'd spent 20 minutes on this. (And if he's saying 20, I'm saying 30...)

3) I was cute once. See? And I was way, way ahead of the fauxhawk trend.

4) Sending your child a decades-old baby photo that depicts her at the same age her first baby is makes it far too tempting to spend far too much time planning to take an identical-as-possible photo of her own baby.

digitizing photosAnd thus we arrive at the series of photos taken of my somewhat unwilling offspring after I spent an embarrassing chunk of a Saturday morning finding Just The Right Yellow Lion Toy for the occasion.

Now, I'm not exactly proud of myself for fancying up my child and subjecting her to the apparently unruly Mr. Yellow Lionface, but fancy her up I did.  She's in a frilly dress and everything.  Hey, we're making memories here, people.

After the ordeal, it then occurred to me that it might be nice to scan my whole baby book so that I might compare the 200-ish photos commemorating my entire childhood with the 2000-ish photos I managed to accrue in the first few months of my child's life.  Not to mention that, given the condition of my baby pic, it's probably a good idea to get these things scanned before they fade any more.

But man - the time it would take.  Do I want to spend an entire weekend scanning and touching up old photos?  Um... no way.  It was bad enough spending 2 hours looking for that lion.

And so, as I write this, I am waiting on my baby book to come back from Red Bluff, CA, home to the magical scanning elves at GoPhoto.  I sent 2 boxes, literally crammed with every piece of photography I could find: photo albums, random envelopes full of miscellaneous negatives, loose pictures - they all made the journey up North, along with my baby book.  I didn't bother sorting through anything; since you can delete any of the scans you don't keep and don't have to pay for them, I figured it's easier to sort through them online once everything's digitized.  So once I decide that, perhaps, my Freshman 15 doesn't need to be immortalized quite so thoroughly, well, there's a handy delete button.

As for the lion toy, he regrettably met a swift end at the paws (er, teeth...) of my dogs.  I'm just glad we got to commemorate his short, baby-slobbered life with a series of somewhat amateurish photographs.  Sleep well, Yellow Lion Toy.  And don't worry: Mr. Giraffe is still around to play with the baby.

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