One of the features I've been working on is soon going to see the light of day. In the post A picture is worth a thousand words, Vlada Breiburg talks about an upcoming feature in the Windows Live Mail Desktop Beta (formerly Outlook Express) which we worked on together. She writes

We are (re)introducing Photo E-mail—a super duper easy way to share photos (for those of you who use MSN Premium client this will be very familiar).

As soon as you insert a few pictures they show up in the message with an easy way to add some (funny) captions. We’ve also decided to give you a few fun and productive tools to make your pictures truly yours:

  • you’ll be able to add some borders
  • change pictures to black and white
  • change background color
  • and even auto-correct.

When designing this we debated a lot of what we should offer and decided to start with these tools until we hear more user feedback. We don’t ever want to be a full photo editing tool, but we do want to make things easier for our customers (Thank you Heather for making the tough calls; Heather was the original PM on the feature). So let us know what you think!

On sending these pictures, the photos will be uploaded to our servers and smaller versions will be placed inside the message (Thank you Dare, Richard, and Jura from the storage team on making this happen!). This will make sure that your friends and family don’t get huge messages that fill out their inboxes...

If your friends want to view bigger versions of the photos, all they have to do is hit “Play slideshow”. This is where are our friends from the Spaces team come in. They’ve created an awesome viewer for your friends and family to enjoy your pictures (Thank you DeEtte, Greg, and James).

I worked with both Heather (the original PM for the feature) and Vlada on making the Photo E-mail feature come together. It was different working on a feature for one of our desktop applications instead of a web-based property. As usual it was fun to work on a feature that I not only would use but could recommend to friends and family as well. Working on consumer software definitely rocks in this regard.

Working on the services for this feature clarified some of the thinking I've been doing around photo APIs for MSN Windows Live Spaces. I can't wait until we are ready to put some new stuff up on the Windows Live Developer Center. Exciting times indeed.


Tuesday, April 4, 2006 1:39:44 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
Dare,<br /><br />Please include the ability to rotate pictures left/right 90 degrees, 180 degrees. People often upload directly from the camera. Sounds like neat stuff, I'm looking forward to using it!<br /><br />Walt
Tuesday, April 4, 2006 4:57:17 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
The feature looks great Dare! Can't wait to try it out.
Tuesday, April 4, 2006 7:29:49 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
Windows Live Mail Desktop is looking better each time I see new screenshots, keep up the great work and innovations :)
Tuesday, April 4, 2006 8:50:45 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
Walt, the ability to rotate pictures is already included. In Dare's screenshot, under the selected picture there is a small menu, the right hand icon is for rotation.
Monday, April 17, 2006 9:52:05 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
From where should we get it's invitation?
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