Many people consider Instagram to be a social network that should be reserved for images created on an iPhone or another compatible smartphone. I always saw it as just another place for posting my photos, similar to Flickr or 500px. This was quite easy since I have been syncing my iPhoto library with my iPhone since 2008, and has recently been made even easier with iCloud Photo Library and the new Photos for iOS and OS X.
But using a browser is even easier …
I wrote about Maciek Wilczyński’s Spotify to Apple Music Playlist Importer a month ago. Today he’s back with Inst-UP!—a service which allows the uploading of photos straight to Instagram. It’s currently in its first beta phase, as Maciek works out all the bugs, and makes sure the servers can handle the stress, but he is periodically sending out codes on Twitter, so the wait to sign up shouldn’t be long (you can find them @Maciej and @Inst_UP).
Maciek reverse engineered Instagram’s API and uses it as a base for his hack. He also simulates how they compress their images in the hope of avoiding detection. He assured me that he set up his site so that Instagram can’t easily block his tool, and if they filter out his IP address, his downtime should be less than a few minutes. If he’s not sleeping, or at the cinema. Anyway, that’s besides the point …
Since Inst-UP! doesn’t rely on Instagram’s official API, a user needs to log in with his or her credentials after creating an account on Maciek’s site. These are stored, encrypted and salted, on his servers. This could put some people off, which is why I am mentioning it. The second issue could potentially be Instagram themselves—they could decide to block the accounts of the people uploading pictures via Inst-UP! This is just random speculation on my part, but considering the negative stories surrounding the social network’s practices, and practically zero chances of getting a reply from their support team, I personally would think long and hard if this is an acceptable sacrifice or not.
Inst-UP! currently doesn’t allow cropping of a user’s uploaded images—they are automatically cropped in the middle, though this will change soon, as Maciek is currently working on it. I would suggest cropping your pictures to a square before uploading, so as not to lose control over what you want to exhibit.
★ Inst-UP! →