I could live without a lot of things I currently own. I know this to be a fact because I sold, gave away, or otherwise lost most of my possessions during my divorce ten years ago. It shocked me how much I loved the lightness of not owning things.
But I don’t want to live without my photographs. Thankfully, every last photo I took as a kid and young adult survived. I keep them in boxes; I digitized them all a couple years ago. They connect me to memories I might otherwise have lost.
Since the divorce I’ve returned to photography in a big way. Between film and digital photos, and including scans of all of my old photos, I now have well north of 20,000 images on my computer’s hard drive.
Holy backup, Batman! And I do back them up, to a wee external hard drive. But if my house burns down, both computer and external drive are toast.
So I became interested in uploading my images to “the cloud” (i.e., someone else’s server, via the Internet).
I investigated a few solutions, none perfect, but quickly settled on Flickr. As a Flickr Pro customer, I have unlimited storage. And their Flickr Uploadr automatically uploads every new photo. It marked them all private so you can’t see them.
It was occasionally useful, as it let me find an old photo much faster than searching through folders on my hard drive.
But I use Flickr primarily to host images I share here, and those private photos just clogged my camera roll and intruded into every search result. And because I upload for public consumption a processed version of each photo, I see duplicates everywhere.
It made Flickr hard for me to use. This week I decided I’d had enough. I uninstalled the Uploadr and deleted all of the private photos.
And so I’m back to looking for a way to store my photo collection in the cloud. Do you do this? If so, what solution are you using and how well is it working for you?