is a blog about design, technology and culture written by Khoi Vinh, and has been more or less continuously published since December 2000 in New York City. Khoi is currently Principal Designer at Adobe, Design Chair at Wildcard and co-founder of Kidpost. Previously, Khoi was co-founder and CEO of Mixel (acquired by Etsy, Inc.), Design Director of The New York Times Online, and co-founder of the design studio Behavior, LLC. He is the author of “Ordering Disorder: Grid Principles for Web Design,” and was named one of Fast Company’s “fifty most influential designers in America.” Khoi lives in Crown Heights, Brooklyn with his wife and three children. Refer to the advertising and sponsorship page for inquiries.+
Here’s an update on Kidpost, the service that I’m building with a few friends that will aggregate parents’ photos and updates from social media into an email digest for their extended families. (Read the announcement here in case you missed it.)
We’re now sending out regular digest emails to our very small cohort of alpha testers. The digests aggregate photos from Facebook accounts only (for now; see below). Each Kidpost account can link to multiple Facebook accounts, so anything my wife or I post with the hashtag #kidpost is getting scooped up into our digest email. As I’ve said before, I often miss her posts because I’m so busy, so it’s been great to have them delivered to my inbox.
In addition to Facebook, we have definitive plans to support Instagram, too. We also had a shortlist of additional services we want to integrate with at launch, but rather than just making assumptions about which ones our potential customers would want most, we decided to put the question to them directly.
So last month we ran a one-question survey in which we asked respondents to identify the services they’d like Kidpost to support. We had about 130 votes, and what we found out was surprising. Here is a chart of the leading answers.
I don’t think any of us expected Flickr to do so well, and to lead by such a clear margin. Personally, I had assumed that that service had been nearly forgotten, but perhaps with the generation of tech-savvy parents who are raising kids right now, the memory of Flickr’s heyday has helped it parlay into a useful platform for family photo sharing. Of course, there’s almost certainly a selection bias at work here, too; the folks who responded to our survey were probably not unlike Matt, Mike and me — which is to say, we all actually remember the world before Facebook.
Also surprising was how well Apple’s iCloud Photostreams did. No one talks about this baked-in feature of the iOS and OS X ecosystem; it’s rarely mentioned in analyses of the incredibly competitive photo sharing landscape. And yet, personally, this is my favorite photo sharing platform of all. Almost all of my immediate family is on it, and it’s the first place I share the many, many shots of my kids that would otherwise bore the public at large. I just assumed that, as an Apple fan, iCloud Photostreams were a fairly niche product. But at least in these results, it turns out to be quite popular.
Last month’s survey was limited to people who signed up for our mailing list at Kidpost.net, and it’s now closed. But we have an identical survey open now at this URL, so if you’re interested in voicing your opinion, please go vote. Though these results will be even less scientific than our admittedly pretty unscientific first survey, it will be interesting to see how dramatic the differences will be. I’ll report back in a few weeks.+