Flickr, founded in 2004, has long had its roots in chat and in image sharing. Since migrating to the United States and Yahoo in 2005 from Ludicorp, a Canadian company, Flickr has gone from beta to "gamma" (slyly denoting "never-ending improvement"), added capacity for video, and evolved into the image-sharing service we now know.
The Flickr site is a tremendous beast that Web 2.0 can only begin to harness with its social tagging (user-defined keywords that go beyond simple metadata), photography groups, image pools, and invitation-only "best of" categories. (For instance, The Library of Congress Flickr photostream provided this image of a young woman riveter working on the B17F heavy bomber known as the "Flying Fortress," shot in 1942 by Alfred T. Palmer.)
But this slide show doesn't dwell on the historical. PC World roamed Flickr looking for particularly interesting work--and what we failed to discover was a place to stop! So, what we present here are some noteworthy groups that we'll visit again and again, photographers who are incorporating traditional and modern techniques to create terrific work.
Flickr claims that its massive gallery of snapshots now contains hundreds of millions--from the mundane to the wondrously creative--and it's easy to spend hours meandering the digital halls, clicking pretty picture after pretty picture, hoping you don't get fired for your Flickr addiction.
Put on your boots, grab some food rations, and pull on your oxygen tanks, because we're going in to admire some of Flickr's more interesting wonders.