PicLens: new dimension for your browsing

Have you tried PicLens already? You say not yet? So hurry up and install this interested web browser add-on as soon as possible. PicLens will turn your web browser into the 3D tool intended for viewing multimedia content of your favorite web pages. If you have Firefox, Internet Explorer or Safari web browser and use Windows or Mac OS X operating system, then you will be able to install the PicLens.

It is little annoying that the PicLens from Cooliris doesn't support the Opera browser. After the installation to the Firefox web browser the PicLens will show up the special button beside the search box. It should be similar in other browsers. If you would like to see the multimedia content from the web page, it has to be prepared for the PicLens technology. Currently all big and important websites support PicLens. You can try 3D video browsing on YouTube or 3D image browsing with Google Images or Flickr.

3D galleries with PicLens

If the PicLens supports the currently loaded website, you will see its button with blue color and you will be able to run it. You will see the 3D stripe with images or videos thumbnails. There is a special scrollbar located at the bottom of the PicLens screen. Yes, the PicLens start in full screen mode. Use the scrollbar to show up more pictures or videos if they are available. Try the PicLens with Google Images. As soon as you will move the scrollbar to the right, the new thumbnails will be shown up.

The small squares on the scrollbar represents the thumbnails layout on the screen. As soon as you click on any of the thumbnails you will see its bigger format and the whole stripe will be zoomed. With another double click you will see the current image on over the screen. The control panel for the presentation will appear also.

For video viewing you can use the PicLens the similar way as for the images. If you don't like the paging on the YouTube search results page, you will be lucky with the new interface of PicLens. Now more annoying 20 result for one page. Just scroll the result to see more of them. You will like the PicLens more if you have a touch screen.

After the click you will play the video. PicLens use its own player. Just note, the playing could be a little slowly on some connections. There is a caching mechanism, however it didn't work if you minimalize the PicLens and browse for other pages. You can't spare the time before the player cache the video, because it simply doesn't work this way if it is minimalized.

Searching with PicLens

After the PicLens starts you could see the search box on the top of its screen. If you would like to find any image or video on Google, YouTube, Yahoo, Amazon Flickr or other online service, just provide the search term and wait for a while. The result will be shown as the already known 3D stripe. PicLens works like the simple RSS reader for the images too. If the websites have Media RSS Feed, they can provide the images for the PicLens. Check these images from the Tour de France, they are provided with descriptions too.

How to activate the PicLens for your website?

You can find all necessary information at the PicLens website. They will provide you with PicLens support implementing step by step. At first you have to create the Media RSS Feed. Its structure is described on the mentioned page. Then you will paste this feed to your web page header code. Connect your images to this feed and add a few lines of JavaScript.

If your website is WordPress powered you can use the special module from the PicLens pages. Similar module exists for the CMS Drupal too. You will find it at drupal.org/project/piclens.

Czech version of this article could be find at Piclens: nový rozměr prohlížení webu.