Best thing Bing ever did
November 19, 2014 10:58 AM   Subscribe

Can someone recommend a dynamic, curated, photo desktop replacement for the amazingly great dearly departed Bing Dynamic Desktop Theme for Windows (7)?

The end result: a rotating set of desktop backgrounds of stunning high-resolution landscape/flora/fauna photos.

The mechanism: the theme was set as the Windows desktop background, and fetched new photos via RSS, saving them in a deep-buried but not temporary user folder, so they didn't go away and stayed in the rotation (which I had set at 30 minutes and I like it that way). If you drill down to the folder, the title hover tag for every photo had a short description of the location and thing (where applicable, like the name of a flower or castle or whatever). I think it probably retrieved a new photo once every couple of days. In the end I had about 200 photos, before it stopped.

I saved the photos to my Dropbox and now use them as a rotating slideshow, but I really miss the fun of having a new one show up among all my "old friend" desktop backgrounds. The thing was the quality of the photos: every single one of them was amazing. Dramatically-lit Cornish seascapes, a white fox curled up in the snow, almost macro photos of tropical flowers or birds. Somebody somewhere was doing a bang-up job curating the feed.

I would like to find another service like that which is still being updated, but it's really hard to google and all the results look like virus firehoses - which was one of the things about it being Bing, at least it was a devil I know. So if someone can vouch for something, it would help.

I don't use screensavers, so that doesn't satisfy. Yes, it has to be Windows, this is my work-work laptop and I do Microsoft work so that is what it is, and I'm staying on 7 until actual flames come shooting out of this laptop and I'm forced to upgrade, but if there is a similar service for 8 I will note it for future reference. (I did find something similar for my Mac, but they're 60% crap backgrounds, not satisfying at all, and not the computer I stare at all day anyway.) I am using Momentum for Chrome but I really want desktop backgrounds. I just don't want to go find them and add them myself.
posted by Lyn Never to Technology (5 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
I'ved always like the 500px editors pick, mainly in the landscapes section. You could use IFTTT and dropbox to create a channel to constantly change the background.
posted by zabuni at 12:05 PM on November 19, 2014 [2 favorites]

Webshots Desktop does what your wanting. You can have new photos from categories of your choosing delivered daily.
posted by okieangel at 12:36 PM on November 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

I just went to the National Geographic website and downloaded my favorite photos in desktop-background sizes. Then saved them to a specific folder that I then pointed the rotating background image to. (Right click on background, Personalize, click on Desktop Background, then point the picture location to the folder.)
posted by jillithd at 6:42 AM on November 20, 2014

I know it isn't dynamic and you probably already knew about this, but the background of changes daily and the photos are available to download. As much as I dislike bing, I do really like their background photos and the snippets of info.
posted by umwhat at 10:58 AM on November 20, 2014

Bing Wallpaper Downloader - will not only download but also set up screensaver and rotating desktop backgrounds. Will even download some old images (I think it goes back 90 days or so).
posted by timepiece at 5:04 PM on November 27, 2014 [1 favorite]

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