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Ozzy Benn Intros New App, CritPick
By Anamika Singh, TMCnet Contributor
Ozzy Benn, the designer, has just launched CritPick, a social media site that allows users to compare up to three pictures or images side by side, comment and give feed-back, and support their favorites. While it initially launched using the Twitter API, CritPick will now offer Facebook (News - Alert) and cell phone apps.
An expert of the Python coding language and the new Google App Engine Platform, Benn spent months determining what was working and what was failing with similar apps. He then launched CritPick using Twitter's (News - Alert) API initially, when Twitter photosharing sites limited Tweets to viewing just one photo at a time.
"I was excited," said Benn, "because I felt that no one had really done what I wanted to do yet: share multiple pictures and get votes on favorites. Plus, being a designer first and foremost, who also loves to code, I also wanted to create something solid that also looked great."
CritPick helps generate feedback by turning Twitter streams into a real-time decision making tool. It works by selecting one, two, or three images, photos or screenshots, adding a title that will be the Tweet, and giving people the chance to comment.
Benn is known in the professional interactive world for his cutting-edge designs; and in particular, as the creator of DesignCharts, a website many ad agencies go to for inspiration, or to search his Chart's weekly "Top 40" list of the hottest websites from around the world.
Benn has always believed in Solopreneurship – spending one's own time, money, and creative know-how hoping to launch a new online business model and making it as "the next big thing,” according to a press release.
"Like DesignCharts, with CritPick, I didn't sit down and think, 'Now what could I do next that would impress my mum and make lots of dough?' Not that I'd mind of course,” Benn said. “But honestly, most of my independent projects come out of my own desire to use such a site myself, something I'd like to see that just doesn't exist yet. I think so many of us designers and coders like a challenge too. It's the thing that keeps us working late into the night, learning and researching, and trying to do code and design something new and really useful, a site that's solid too, but one that's also beautiful."
Benn visited sites like Dribbble and sent out Tweets and Skypes to colleagues to get their feedback, but he realized something was missing.
"I just wanted to create something that everyone could use, that was free, open to all, and well coded, where you could share more than one picture or image at a time, a site where you could also have a running total of votes to show you which option was the winner. That's how it all started with CritPick," he said.
Benn plans to launch a Facebook version of CritPick and cell phone apps soon.
Anamika Singh is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Anamika's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Carrie Schmelkin