Photonic supports a wide array of features across multiple providers:
|Provider||Requirements||What Can You Show?|
|Albums / Sets / Galleries
|Native WP||Nothing extra needed; works out of the box||Not supported||Standard gallery photos||Standard galleries||No such feature in WP||No such feature in WP|
|Flickr||Supported||User Photos and Group Pools||Albums / Photosets and Galleries||Collections, with lazy loading||Visitors login, back-end authentication and privacy levels|
|Google Photos||Not supported||Photos||Albums||No such feature in Google Photos||Back-end authentication|
|SmugMug||Not supported||User photos||Albums||User tree and Folders||Password-protection, or visitors log in|
|Zenfolio||Nothing extra needed; works out of the box||Supported||User and Generic photos||Photosets (Galleries and Collections)||Groups and Group hierarchies||Password-protection supported, login not supported|
|No API key needed, but see instructions for authentication||Supported||User photos||No such feature in Instagram||No such feature in Instagram||Back-end / server-side|
The Need for an API Key (🔗)
Photonic helps fetch photos from various third-party providers, viz. Flickr, Picasa / Google, 500px, Smugmug, Zenfolio and Instagram. Some of these providers require you to sign up for an API key, and I don’t bundle my own with the app for two simple reasons:
- Potential rate-limiting
Let’s say I had bundled my Flickr API key with the plugin and you were using it to show your photos. If you had several thousand photos, the fetching of those photos would get tagged to my id, potentially marking me as a “high use” individual. Flickr might then decide that since I am using my key so much, it should make me upgrade my level of service, or it might block my API key. These are potentially dangerous for both, me, and the end user. As a result, Photonic enforces the use of an individual’s API key.
- Usage Restrictions
Various providers’s Terms of Service mandate that a free API key will not be used for commercial purposes. I don’t make any money off Photonic, so I could use the API key as I pleased. However, if I bundled my API key with the plugin and you used it for commercial reasons, I would be in direct violation of the terms of service, and that puts me at significant legal risk.