AJAX image viewing done right

In the wake of all the uproar over at Model Mayhem’s implementation of AJAX photo viewing, I thought I would highlight some sites that’s done it right.

In the wake of all the uproar over at Model Mayhem’s implementation of AJAX photo viewing, I thought I would highlight some sites that’s done it right.

  • Flickr
  • Smugmug
  • Zenfolio
  • Photobucket (I don’t really like their implementation with all the clutter but they are a photo sharing site, not a photo presentation site)
  • Webshots
  • Visual Lightbox has lots of sample galleries here. Just pick a demo on the left to see the effect.
  • This article from Smashing Magazine is from May 2007 but has a lot of good demos. Yep, May 2007. That’s how late to the game Model Mayhem is and some people are complaining about this like it’s the latest fad. In May 2007, there was no such thing as an iPhone and the iPad was not even a spermatozoid in Steve Jobs’ pants.

The point is Model Mayhem was probably one of the last sites of that size to implement AJAX photo viewing. The only sites of significant size I can find that does not use AJAX photo viewing is Devianart and Pbase. If you look at the way Deviantart transitions from one image to another here, it’s clunky and abrupt as it resizes the image window and reloads all the page elements. On a slow connection, you will see all the page elements disappear and reappear. Pbase does a better job because they don’t have a lot of junk on the pages but you can clearly see the image being repainted if you click next on this photo. That gallery would look so much better using AJAX and lightview.

Some key features of AJAX using lightbox effects.

  • Floating and smooth cross-fade transition
  • Slideshow with autostart option
  • Multiple themes for adding borders, frames, background colors
  • Windows & MAC version
  • XHTML compliant
  • Zoom effect with overlay shadow
  • Rounded corners of overlay window
  • Large images fit to browser window
  • High quality image scaling with anti-aliasing
  • Support for exif data presentation