My visit to Path to see its new “stacks” feature and meet Dave Morin

You’ve seen Instagram. You’ve heard Color got $41 million. But what’s up with Path?

I went to Path’s San Francisco office last Friday to meet up with founder Dave Morin to give him a bit of heck (I don’t like the limit it has of only being able to show photos to 50 friends). He told me his customers wanted him to keep the feature as it is, but you’ll enjoy hearing why.

Really, though, I was there to see what Path is announcing this morning: “stacks.” What does this new feature do? It lets you see stacks of photos around specific people, places, or things in your photos. It’s quite nicely done and shows the historical power that is hidden in the metadata associated with our social media.

To make it really useful, though, Path has to become the camera we use EVERYTIME we decide to take a photo. So far it isn’t. Here’s some of the cameras I use, and why I use them:

1. If I want to share a photo with you on Tumblr, Flickr, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, I use Instagram. Why? Because I have more than 10,000 followers on Instagram ALONE! What does this mean? The minute I post a photo I get tons of comments and questions. Some things are meant to be bragged about. Instagram also checks into Foursquare, which lets me view my historical data in a different way than any other system lets me view it.

2. If I’m in a restaurant, I use Foodspotting. Why? Because that system rocks for capturing food you’ve eaten, as well as letting you see food photos around you. I find this is more valuable to me than Yelp is for finding my next meal. I also use Foodspotting to check into Foursquare.

3. If I need to take a rapid number of shots, or I want to edit them before uploading, I’ll use Camera +. Then I usually save those photos out to my camera roll before using one of the above apps to upload.

4. If I use my Android phones, I’ll use PicPlz since that service is pretty capable, but ships on both Android and iPhone (Path says its Android app is coming soon).

5. If I have an “intimate moment” that I want to share with only my closest friends or family, I’ll use Path (for instance, a photo of my kids in the bathtub — I really don’t want that to get wide distribution).

Anyway, the point is there still isn’t “one camera” we use all the time. We’re still in play and Path won’t get me all the time until it figures out how to let me use it to distribute photos to other systems.

But Path’s stacks shows me why I’ll use Path more now.