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A few further thoughts on Mylio

Kicking the tyres. Maybe a bit too hard.

in Product reviews , Thursday, July 16, 2015

After writing my initial impressions of Mylio, I have now used it “operationally” to keyword and rate a set of around 700 photos taken over 15 days in Norway. This is pretty much my usual workflow, first I concentrate on initial culling, key wording, and rough ratings, and then I start working on optimising the selects from the RAW file. I’ll then set them aside and do something else for a while - like film scanning - and then come back to do a final select.

So far I’ve most worked on the Mac version of Mylio, although I have used the sync functions to send thumbnails to my iPad and iPhone. The editing stage works well, but with some reservations. I find the select/filter tools a little awkward to get my around: once you understand that they work globally, not on the selected album or object you are working with (so the reverse to Aperture), then it becomes clear. It’s a different way of working, but probably fine.  But there’s some strange view switching going on when editing the filter settings - apparently this is a bug, which will be fixed.  Once I’d got everything settled down, I created a “Norway 2015” album and started working from there.

Here I did encounter a few annoyances. I’m not too wild about Mylio “inventing” keywords for me: it creates a keyword for every folder it “watches”. I don’t want it do this, it is adding useless clutter and making looking up keywords harder than it needs to be.


Mylio’s idea of what I’d want to use as keywords diverges from mine

I’m also not sure why the EXIF data in the info panel is so small and hard to read.  I often want to see what f-stop I used when rating photos. Mylio doesn’t make it easy!  Yes, you can adjust the text size, but this is universal. The small size is fine for me, I just want that vital camera data to be more readable. Same goes for the keyword display in the same panel.

Mylio 2

The Camera EXIF data (green box) really keeps itself to itself…

But so far, so good. My first pass reduced the count from 700+ to around 200. I’m casting quite a wide net to start of with.  So, I sat down intending to send the whole set to Iridient Developer for stage 2.  Except that I can’t.  You can select “Open In…” for 1 image, but not multiple images. That is a bit deflating. In fact, that’s enough to make me give up on Mylio for now. No way am I clicking 200 times when any other comparable application would allow me to send the whole set in one action.

Mylio 3

Mylio makes it easy open a photo in a RAW processor…

Mylio 4

..but several photos are not allowed

There are a few other issues I’ve now noticed.  In the RAW development tools, Mylio does not apply embedded lens corrections, at least not from my Olympus E-P5. If I was planning to use this feature, that would be another showstopper.

Mylio 5

This Norwegian cabin really doesn’t bulge like this!

Finally, it would appear that the “Mylio Cloud” has been quietly dropped. It is not longer mentioned anywhere on the website, but instead a vague reference to being able to integrate at some point (but not today) your own choice of cloud storage has appeared.  This seems like a major change of strategy (and possibly a good one), and I would expect to find some official announcement or explanation.  The fact that I can’t - and I have spent while searching - is a little unsettling.

So for me the jury is still out on Mylio. It looks promising, it has potential, but the message is a little confused.  There seems to be a strong focus on the social media market, which of course is understandable, and mandatory if you have the usual airhead VC backers to deal with (not that I’m saying they have). But, Mylio, remember that Facebook and Flickr users expect to get stuff for free. They will not pay you, certainly not $100/year. They are not the “pro” market you seem to be addressing, intermittently. I’ve spent long enough (far too long enough) in IT startups to see the early signs of failing momentum. I do hope I’m wrong when I’m beginning to see it here.  Really I do, because I want what Mylio is promising, very much.


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