Our next “Five” entry is for plugins that you can use to highlight images on your website. As always we look forward to your comments (51 responses on the last “five” entry – thanks!).
With the advent of high speed Internet for so many in the world now images are an even bigger part of the presentation of your webpage. WordPress is no exception with 285 image related plugins at the WordPress Plugin Directory. Lets take a look at five of these plugins and see what they can do for your WordPress based website:
Dynamic Headers: This plugin was just made public in late April of this year and it is extremely popular having been downloaded 3,770 times in the last three weeks. The Dynamic Headers plugin allows you to manage what media is shown in your header on each page and/or post. This plugin allows the use of any image file and also Flash (.swf) files so it is up to your imagination on what you can do. The possibilities are quite endless.
flickr Gallery: Another very popular plugin with 18,383 total downloads to date. This plugin integrates your flickr account with your WordPress website by utilizing shortcodes in WordPress version 2.5 and above. There are several ways to display your photosets and/or individual groups of photos and is very flexible to your design and layout. You will need a flickr API key to use this plugin and you can start that from the settings page of the plugin.
Shashin: A plugin for displaying Picasa photos. This plugin is so extensive and configurable that it has its own documentation site as well. This one has been in development for a while and currently has accumulated 11,328 downloads. Some of the features include the ability to embed Picasa albums, show your photos and videos in a Highslide slideshow (bundled but only free for personal use); pick photos and videos individually for display and many other customization options. Here is an example of the plugin on the authors homepage to show the integration and display options. There are also widgets as part of the download to integrate with your sidebar.
PhotoSmash Galleries: Websites are about community right – or at least they can be. Well this plugin (7,546 downloads) allows your visitors to upload pictures to photo galleries on your website. Lets say your doing a post about pets and you ask everyone to upload a picture of their pet – well this plugin will let you do that! There are moderation features and an email to let you know a picture has been uploaded for you to OK for the site.
NextGEN Gallery: If I told you this plugin has been downloaded 719,095 times total – 11,392 last week – 1,371 just today so far – would you need any further convincing that this is worth a look? As the author describes the plugin and its development: “NextGEN Gallery is a full integrated Image Gallery plugin for WordPress with a Flash slideshow option. Before I start writing the plugin I study all photo and picture plugins for WordPress, I figure out that some of them are really good and well designed, but I missed a simple and easy administration back end to handle multiple photos, galleries and albums.”
So what makes your graphics tick on your website? Looking forward to hearing from everyone once again on these and other plugins in the realm of images.