Here’s a quick little hack I found while doing some tweaking on the blog the other evening. It turns out the images used to embed the image in the blog is versioned. Take this image:
Smugmug gives you this code back from the share->get a link->embeddable link button:
<a href="http://chuqui.smugmug.com/Best-of-Breed/Best-Photos/i-2bLmTvm/A" title="Elk, Yellowstone"> <img src="http://chuqui.smugmug.com/Photos-by-Year-Taken/2014/i-2bLmTvm/5/L/140602_101423_chuq-L.jpg" title="Elk, Yellowstone" alt="Elk, Yellowstone"></a>
See that ’5′ I’ve set to red in the URL of the IMG? That’s a version number. Whenever you upload a new copy of an image or do some other operation that causes the display variations of that image to be regenerated, you get an updated set and the version number is incremented. This update also happens when you change your watermark, for instance.
Smugmug is taking some care to make sure these embeds keep working and continue to look as they did when you created them; it’s keeping a set of each version of the image around indefinitely (as far as I can tell). But that means if you’ve embedded the image and you make a change to it (like my recent watermark update), that won’t propagate out to the embedded images.
What if that’s not what you want? What if you always want to display the most recent version of an image?
It turns out there’s an easy tweak: take that version number and set it to a large number, say ’99′. The Smugmug system is smart enough that if you give it a version number that doesn’t exist, it’ll return the version of the image with the highest version number. Tweaking this means you’ll get those version updates in your embeds automatically. Also, if you set the version to ’0′ it will always return the first version of the image, if you want that for some reason.
It’d be nice if Smugmug made this a checkbox in your account preferences. Most of the time the existing setup is fine, but some of us would like to get the updated images. fortunately, it seems there’s an easy hack to make that possible.
(as far as I can tell, this isn’t documented anywhere by Smugmug, so I’m posting it for others that might find it useful. Of course, being undocumented, Smugmug might change it and break it at some point in the future, too. But if you find it a useful hack, let them know and encourage them to formally support it).
By the way, that Elk above just arrived as a 30×30 canvas print that I had done through my Smugmug print store via the Bay Photo people, and it’s absolutely gorgeous. Soon to like proudly on my wall. Might look nice on your wall, too…. (hint. hint.)