Images in posts


Founding member
I've had to delete some older threads because the images in them were linked from free photo hosting sites like Imageshack, Photobucket, Imgur, yfrog, Shutterfly, etc., and the images were no longer available. The same thing often happens when images are linked from other sites. Generally speaking, you don't want to link to an image in your posts.

But luckily for you, it's easy to attach an image to a post look:


Just click the Attach files button and select the images from your computer and you're all set. When you do that the image is saved here and will always be available in the forum.

For the record
Really large images are usually unnecessary for magazine page scans or photos
. If you have control over size, try to upload 72 dpi images that are 1000 pixels wide at most. If you don't have control over image size, or don't know what I'm talking about, don't let that stop you from uploading. If something is too large we'll reduce it for you. The idea is to have readable text. A huge image doesn't really help achieve that (usually).
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I've had to delete some older threads because the images in them were linked from free photo hosting sites like Imageshack, Photobucket, Imgur, yfrog, Shutterfly, etc., and the images were no longer available.
You didn't have to do that, someone might have backed up or downloaded those images and now has them available to replace the lost pictures. I have most of the images folks have posted here over the course of ten years (I already supplied some of the lost photos) and you just have to whistle if you need something I have. You know how to whistle, don't you? :D
I haven't been here a while and don't know which threads exactly are affected, but generally speaking (and you all know anyways, that I'm an enemy of deleting/dumping/destroying anything at all, no matter how useless its existence may seem at the moment) I would definitely vote for zobraks' offer to use his replacements and re-activate those threads in question.
This goes even if it's only for the sake of historical preservation.


Founding member
I only deleted two threads and they were both "first appearances," so we didn't really lose anything. I can usually grab the images that are missing, and it isn't a lot of them (in these threads anyway - and when I do notice an image linked from outside I always pull it down and attach it).

I just wanted to remind people to attach. Linking to the free image services almost always ends badly.


If u don't know the poetry u don't know Bukowski
Founding member
I had trouble finding the upload option. Its not on the "add image" menu.
Eventually found something like it on the BB-code editor thing-a-ma-jig.
But now requires an extra click.
Linking to the free image services almost always ends badly.
Funny, the structure of this forum is almost identical to the Steve Hoffman forum (which is convenient for me in a small way) with the exception of the way images can be posted. Here, the linking or the direct upload options are available but over there, only the linking option is available. Is the direct upload feature an a la carte option that costs more? I agree; it's better to simply download and upload or simply use a photo one took oneself and is on one's computer and upload it; never goes away. Just curious about that.


Founding member
It's the same forum software, but Hoffman is a large forum (one of the largest - I know the guys who built this forum software were excited to work with them), so they have different priorities.

There are half a million threads and 15 million posts over there. That's ten times more users and 100 times more posts than this forum has. To back up this forum every day takes a little less than 3GB of space. If Hoffman let people attach images they would have to store and back up all of those images, so you can estimate what that would use in storage, maybe 300GB to 500GB of space. The storage space isn't even the main issue, it's the time and bandwidth it would take to move that data to the backup servers. Attaching images adds cost and complexity, so it makes sense they wouldn't do it.

But aside from all that, most old threads over there - that' I've noticed, granted I haven't spent nearly as much time there as you have - don't get revived repeatedly, so they don't have as much need as we do to maintain old threads. I think they lock threads that are more than a couple years old.
Gotcha; at least over here, a high percentage of the images are actually of significant historical value (e.g., uncollected poems, etc.). Over there, you'd likely get a higher percentage of chaff, so to speak. Not that we're immune to chaff and not that their forum doesn't contain some very important stuff, but here it's likely of a lower frequency and a lower overall volume due to our relatively small size. And superior intellect, of course. :rolleyes:


Founding member
There was a post around here somewhere at some point, that I can't locate... it was about the correct formatting for photos.

The attached scan, for instance is 821 x 1164 px and the file size is 104.3KB. Are those the correct attributes for posting images online? I know MJP posted someting at one point setting the record straight but now I can't find it...



I wish you had asked about this a couple a days ago since I kinda remember reading a thread in which mjp speaks about proper sizes of scans.
However, I've gone through tens and tens of old threads recently and really can't remember atm which thread/post it was.


Founding member
The preferred size of images has changed. The forum software changes, and more people have faster connections, so what's usable or sustainable changes.

In the past, I resized a lot of images to a maximum width of 850 pixels, because that was as big as they could be (without clicking an image to see it full size). But the latest forum software supports 1000 pixels of width without clicking to enlarge.



Anyway, my goal has always been to avoid that "click to enlarge." and keep the images as small - in file size - as they need to be to be readable. Because a lot of the images here are book or magazine pages, and a huge image doesn't necessarily make text more readable, just huge. Same for a picture that isn't text...if it's so big you have to scroll up and down to see it, that doesn't seem ideal to me.

So what I go for when I resize is 1000 px max width, 72 dpi and a jpg "quality" of 50. Cameras and phones usually save at a dpi higher than 72 now, but that's because they assume you may want to print the images. On a computer screen anything over 72 dpi is just a bigger file that will look the same as a smaller file, so it's a waste of storage space. As far as that jpg "quality" setting, I know everyone doesn't have image editing software, so I usually just do those things myself.

That's where we're at today. But as Roni pointed out some time ago, these things change, and as our monitors get bigger, the older, smaller images that used to fill a screen start to look small. But then again, how much larger can monitors get? (Don't answer that, I'm afraid to know.) But at the same time, this forum is mainly text, so in order to remain readable, the lines can't get much longer than they are now. I'm sure everyone has tried to read a website on a big monitor that has text that expands along with the window and found it impossible to track. So I think 1000 pixels is about as wide as we'll ever get.

- - -

Just to add confusion and ridiculousness, more than half of the traffic to the forum and the main site is now mobile, meaning phones and tablets, so the images are automatically sized down for those users. So we're kind of going backward, to the days when a smaller image file size makes for a better experience for mobile users. But I'll continue to optimize things around here for desktop.


Founding member
For what it's worth, the klacto image above is 821 px wide, but 100 dpi. I usually don't bother knocking down the dpi if it's 100 or 150, I just leave them. But it's unnecessary to have that high a dpi for a screen.

That screen dpi will probably change too in the future (I think it already has on the high-end Macs), but if the quantum physicists are right and there is no time, how can there be a future?

Sorry, I'm reading, Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity, so I'm thinking about things like that. ;)