My visit to Path to see its new "stacks" feature and meet Dave Morin

You’ve seen Instagram. You’ve heard Color got $41 million. But what’s up with Path?

I went to Path’s San Francisco office last Friday to meet up with founder Dave Morin to give him a bit of heck (I don’t like the limit it has of only being able to show photos to 50 friends). He told me his customers wanted him to keep the feature as it is, but you’ll enjoy hearing why.

Really, though, I was there to see what Path is announcing this morning: “stacks.” What does this new feature do? It lets you see stacks of photos around specific people, places, or things in your photos. It’s quite nicely done and shows the historical power that is hidden in the metadata associated with our social media.

To make it really useful, though, Path has to become the camera we use EVERYTIME we decide to take a photo. So far it isn’t. Here’s some of the cameras I use, and why I use them:

1. If I want to share a photo with you on Tumblr, Flickr, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, I use Instagram. Why? Because I have more than 10,000 followers on Instagram ALONE! What does this mean? The minute I post a photo I get tons of comments and questions. Some things are meant to be bragged about. Instagram also checks into Foursquare, which lets me view my historical data in a different way than any other system lets me view it.

2. If I’m in a restaurant, I use Foodspotting. Why? Because that system rocks for capturing food you’ve eaten, as well as letting you see food photos around you. I find this is more valuable to me than Yelp is for finding my next meal. I also use Foodspotting to check into Foursquare.

3. If I need to take a rapid number of shots, or I want to edit them before uploading, I’ll use Camera +. Then I usually save those photos out to my camera roll before using one of the above apps to upload.

4. If I use my Android phones, I’ll use PicPlz since that service is pretty capable, but ships on both Android and iPhone (Path says its Android app is coming soon).

5. If I have an “intimate moment” that I want to share with only my closest friends or family, I’ll use Path (for instance, a photo of my kids in the bathtub — I really don’t want that to get wide distribution).

Anyway, the point is there still isn’t “one camera” we use all the time. We’re still in play and Path won’t get me all the time until it figures out how to let me use it to distribute photos to other systems.

But Path’s stacks shows me why I’ll use Path more now.

Comments

  1. So … nobody needs to actually remember anything for themselves any more?  As cool as Path is, I’m wondering how unhealthy the trend may be.

    1. Honestly, do you remember what you ate on Thursday last week? I don’t. Why would I? What apps like these really let you see is your life in patterns.

      1. Food spotting is great, and so are people that share on it.  Yelp is good but sometimes I dont know what I want to eat and looking at the pics of nearby food – closes the deal.  Thanks foodspotters.  

  2. So … nobody needs to actually remember anything for themselves any more?  As cool as Path is, I’m wondering how unhealthy the trend may be.

  3. Path works really well for sharing with an intimate circle or with a partner and it’s wonderful to go over your calendar of past memories. The timeline view is something facebook doesn’t do well – I wonder why they don’t provide us with a simple view to see all this interesting data

  4. Every new WebApp starts with an App working on iPhone rather than Android. Path is an example but also Instagram. Why is that? I mean, there are more android phones in the market than iPhones…

  5. I hate to be mean but I REALLY tried hard to make Path work.  Its just too limited on Social Integration.  Look if I want to share photos with a select group of people…I’ll go back to 19 f***ing 40 and put a photo album on my coffee table.  I tried and after months of pushing it I sent Path a Dear Jane letter.  I have a bunch of early adopter friends on Path including you Scoble.  Only me and 2 other people use it.  Crickets.  The App has so much potential and is very well done.  Sometimes business’ can fail on one premise or bad belief system.  Path and Color Apps will be great business failure studies for students on how NOT to blow your launch.  I just hate so see such a great thing wasted.

    1. Chris: I agree with you. I still try Path from time to time, but can’t use it for the use case they are selling. Plus, most of my friends and family aren’t on iPhones. Hell, Louis Gray? Android. My brother? Blackberry. Best friend Luke? Palm. My dad? A no-name feature phone. And so on and so forth.