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photo.tamu.edu – Gutted & Rebuilt in PHP

Photo.tamu.edu is Texas A&M University’s Flickr presence on steroids. Combining the powerhouses of content around campus into one unified resource. Aimed at proving a solid media outlet for journalists and content providers alike, this refined tool started in .NET and is now completely built in PHP. My goal as the lead developer of this project was to migrate version one’s cover to a framework that could be easily maintained throughout the webmaster office. Although version one was an alright start, it failed at meeting customer requirements and was quite error prone.

Some larger improvements I have made to the system include:

  • “Search” now indexes all A&M Flickr accounts, instead of just one at a time. Check out Reveille.
  • A functioning CMS with integrated approval process and notifications for departments & organizations interested in joining the system.
  • Jeff provided the system with an excellent library for integrating CAS 3 into our login panel.
  • “Media Contacts” are now available for each Flickr account. Need to find out who to contact about a photo? Look no further.
  • Photo was re-structured using the Zend framework, a delightful tool I might add.

Some small improvements include:

  • Random homepage photo is now selectable. Before you had to guess where it resided 🙁
  • Top-level menus have been cleaned up and now reflect the pages that are currently loaded.
  • The drop-down list floats currently selected Flickr accounts to the top of the list.
  • Photo tags link to search appliance. Now you can compare tags of all Flickr accounts simultaneously.
  • URL’s now make sense.
  • Context menus have been added at the individual photo viewing level.
  • Terms “image”, and “photo” were littered all over the site. Let it be known, the site will only state “photo” now. This switch avoids confusion in the long run… photo.tamu.edu? or image.tamu.edu? Your dose of url marketing for the day 😉

As always, we appreciate your input. Email us your thoughts and opinions, or post up in the comments.

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Friday, July 2nd, 2010 Image repository, News, Programming 2 Comments

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