Not that I’m the most social person in the world, but once in a while even I am impressed by social networking apps. Burstn, a twitteresque photo-sharing service, is such an app.
Burstn runs on iOS (and, soon, on Android). When you start the app, you’re presented with a camera app. Once you take a picture, or pull one from your device’s album, you’re offered the chance to add a caption and some #tags. You’re also offered a set of popular #tags that you can just choose, which is nice because it’s rather hard to get to the # sign on the iPhone keyboard.
You can also preview the picture and decide if it’s good enough to post. Then you submit it, and the picture is copied to your device’s album and uploaded to the burstn website.
The website, in turn, provides a chronological stream of the pictures posted by all users. It can be very interesting to watch accidental patterns appear in the image stream. And some of the images are really, really good!
You can also “like” images and share them on facebook and twitter, and follow posters whose images you’re especially fond of.
Sounds simple, right? Well, it is. And that’s why it works. The developers make it just as easy to share the little things in your life as it is to share carefully constructed and intentionally artistic image. Even though I’m not prone to stop what I’m doing for the sake of taking a picture, there’s something about being able to quickly share quirky things I see as I go about my day that appeals to me.
I could just write it all down in a blog such as this one, or try to squeeze the emotional content of an image into 140 characters in twitter. Or I can just show you exactly what I’m seeing and let you decide whether it’s meaningful or not. And by watching the photo stream on the burstn website, I can witness the pictorial stream of collective consciousness of all its users.
The app is simple and straightforward; it has no special options or configurations. It does one thing, and it does it easily and elegantly. If you’re looking for an interesting app to share things in a novel way, then you should try burstn.