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Photo descriptions

 
 
Craig Shore
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      07-31-2006
How do you guys go about adding descriptions to your digital photos?

I've been trying to figure a way that's as robust as the old write on the back
of the printed photo who the hell is in it and when it was taken. Now the
digital camera will take care of recording the date and time onto the exif data
in the jpg image, but is there some standard for storing comments?
I've tried a few programs, but all seem to be specific to that program. If I add
comments it doesn't show in any of the others.

I want something standard so it doesn't matter if I switch viewing programs
further down the track, of if it's someone using a different OS and viewing
program in 50 years time.

Suggestions?


 
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-=rjh=-
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      07-31-2006
Craig Shore wrote:
> How do you guys go about adding descriptions to your digital photos?
>
> I've been trying to figure a way that's as robust as the old write on the back
> of the printed photo who the hell is in it and when it was taken. Now the
> digital camera will take care of recording the date and time onto the exif data
> in the jpg image, but is there some standard for storing comments?
> I've tried a few programs, but all seem to be specific to that program. If I add
> comments it doesn't show in any of the others.


There is a standard - has been for years, but many image editing
applications either don't care and ignore it or don't know about it.

http://www.controlledvocabulary.com/.../iptc_naa.html is a
pretty good explanation and has some links to software. Worth browsing
the rest of the site, too.

http://www.thirdlight.com/downloads/...whitepaper.pdf

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPTC

>
> I want something standard so it doesn't matter if I switch viewing programs
> further down the track, of if it's someone using a different OS and viewing
> program in 50 years time.
>
> Suggestions?


Yep, this is an old problem and dates back to the early days of 'wired'
photos for newspapers.

Use the IPTC standard, and embed your comments and keywords etc as exif
data. Photoshop, Photoshop Elements and the like know about this;
Picasa, Photofiltre etc mostly don't, and worse - may even strip out the
data if it is in the image. Irfanview can read and write this data.

There is a summary of some applications compatibility at
http://itagsoftware.awswa.com/compat.php and their product looks pretty
good, too.

Flickr understands IPTC/exif data if you avoid using their own image
uploader (which strips it out if it resizes the image) - so you can
title, describe and tag your photos in the exif/IPTC data before you
upload and Flickr will automatically add tags, captions and title.

I use a free app under Windows called exifer, does the job quite well.
Can backup exif data in case an application removes it, can insert
correct thumbnails into the image, keywords and most of (if not all) the
IPTC fields (copyright, title, description, location etc). Exifer allows
you to build dropdown lists of field entries, and you can save custom
templates. You can tag multiple files at once (say add copyright and
credits, contact information etc to files as soon as they come off the
camera.

Whether MS will finally adhere to the IPTC standard was the subject of
some debate when Vista was first released as beta, with AFAIK no sign
that MS is doing anything sensible here.

Not sure iPhoto is being any more sensible about this.

HTH
 
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elephanto05@yahoo.co.nz
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Posts: n/a
 
      07-31-2006
I started by naming all my photos to a standard type of date the a
number eg: 20060731-01.jpg. Then I used a spreadsheet to store the
info about each photo

I have since found a great free application called pixvue
(http://www.pixvue.com/) which a) renames my photos automagically and
b) stores all the info in the photo file using the standards noted by
the poster above.

 
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Kent Smith
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      07-31-2006

<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) ups.com...
>I started by naming all my photos to a standard type of date the a
> number eg: 20060731-01.jpg. Then I used a spreadsheet to store the
> info about each photo
>
> I have since found a great free application called pixvue
> (http://www.pixvue.com/) which a) renames my photos automagically and
> b) stores all the info in the photo file using the standards noted by
> the poster above.
>

Wondering how pixvue compares to googles Picasa? I've been using picasa for
a while and while it looks pretty and is great for searching. But I find it
very limiting for adding descriptions and as far as I understand all the
information is specific to picasa so if I give a photo to someone else, it
won't have my description, etc.

Another tip - If you print using digitalmax, they print the filename on the
back of the photo, so if you rename your filename to include a date and
short description it'll end up on the back.


-KENT


 
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-=rjh=-
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      08-01-2006
Kent Smith wrote:
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed) ups.com...
>> I started by naming all my photos to a standard type of date the a
>> number eg: 20060731-01.jpg. Then I used a spreadsheet to store the
>> info about each photo
>>
>> I have since found a great free application called pixvue
>> (http://www.pixvue.com/) which a) renames my photos automagically and
>> b) stores all the info in the photo file using the standards noted by
>> the poster above.
>>

> Wondering how pixvue compares to googles Picasa? I've been using picasa for
> a while and while it looks pretty and is great for searching.


It's great for browsing, since you don't have to navigate through the
directory structure. I don't think it is good for searching, though, as
it disregards tags I've added to photos.

But I find it
> very limiting for adding descriptions and as far as I understand all the
> information is specific to picasa so if I give a photo to someone else, it
> won't have my description, etc.


Picasa writes an .ini file to each directory recording changes you make
when you 'edit' an image (it doesn't change the image itself). But for
some reason it stores data like captions and changes in a db at
C:\DocumentsandSettings\username\Local(sp)Settings \Application(sp)Data\Google\Picasa2\db\imagedata_c aption.pmp
although it does actually write captions to the correct location in the
exif data.

I suspect that means if I look at the same image after tweaking with
Picasa from two different instances of Picasa (as when accessing the
same images on a fileserver, from two different systems) I will see two
different edit states for those images. What a pain.

BTW I like Picasa a lot, there is a new version out which includes 250MB
of free online web galleries, you can sign up for the beta at google. It
is very good.

>
> Another tip - If you print using digitalmax, they print the filename on the
> back of the photo, so if you rename your filename to include a date and
> short description it'll end up on the back.


That's a great idea, but the real problem is that Digitalmax *should*
(maybe they do?) use the IPTC data if provided, so you don't have to
change your filenames to suit their system.
 
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SchoolTech
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      08-01-2006
Craig Shore wrote:
> How do you guys go about adding descriptions to your digital photos?
>
> I've been trying to figure a way that's as robust as the old write on the back
> of the printed photo who the hell is in it and when it was taken. Now the
> digital camera will take care of recording the date and time onto the exif data
> in the jpg image, but is there some standard for storing comments?
> I've tried a few programs, but all seem to be specific to that program. If I add
> comments it doesn't show in any of the others.
>
> I want something standard so it doesn't matter if I switch viewing programs
> further down the track, of if it's someone using a different OS and viewing
> program in 50 years time.
>
> Suggestions?
>
>

IPTC comments are the standard way of doing it. Irfanview will insert them.
 
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Craig Shore
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      08-01-2006
On Mon, 31 Jul 2006 23:57:59 +1200, -=rjh=- <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>Craig Shore wrote:
>> How do you guys go about adding descriptions to your digital photos?
>>
>> I've been trying to figure a way that's as robust as the old write on the back
>> of the printed photo who the hell is in it and when it was taken. Now the
>> digital camera will take care of recording the date and time onto the exif data
>> in the jpg image, but is there some standard for storing comments?
>> I've tried a few programs, but all seem to be specific to that program. If I add
>> comments it doesn't show in any of the others.

>
>There is a standard - has been for years, but many image editing
>applications either don't care and ignore it or don't know about it.
>
>http://www.controlledvocabulary.com/.../iptc_naa.html is a
>pretty good explanation and has some links to software. Worth browsing
>the rest of the site, too.
>
>http://www.thirdlight.com/downloads/...whitepaper.pdf
>
>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPTC
>
>>
>> I want something standard so it doesn't matter if I switch viewing programs
>> further down the track, of if it's someone using a different OS and viewing
>> program in 50 years time.
>>
>> Suggestions?

>
>Yep, this is an old problem and dates back to the early days of 'wired'
>photos for newspapers.
>
>Use the IPTC standard, and embed your comments and keywords etc as exif
>data. Photoshop, Photoshop Elements and the like know about this;
>Picasa, Photofiltre etc mostly don't, and worse - may even strip out the
>data if it is in the image. Irfanview can read and write this data.
>
>There is a summary of some applications compatibility at
>http://itagsoftware.awswa.com/compat.php and their product looks pretty
>good, too.
>
>Flickr understands IPTC/exif data if you avoid using their own image
>uploader (which strips it out if it resizes the image) - so you can
>title, describe and tag your photos in the exif/IPTC data before you
>upload and Flickr will automatically add tags, captions and title.
>
>I use a free app under Windows called exifer, does the job quite well.
>Can backup exif data in case an application removes it, can insert
>correct thumbnails into the image, keywords and most of (if not all) the
>IPTC fields (copyright, title, description, location etc). Exifer allows
>you to build dropdown lists of field entries, and you can save custom
>templates. You can tag multiple files at once (say add copyright and
>credits, contact information etc to files as soon as they come off the
>camera.
>
>Whether MS will finally adhere to the IPTC standard was the subject of
>some debate when Vista was first released as beta, with AFAIK no sign
>that MS is doing anything sensible here.
>
>Not sure iPhoto is being any more sensible about this.
>
>HTH


Thanks, good info in the followups to my message here, far better than what I
could find by searching.

Picasa seems to write it's captions to the IPTC data stored in the image file.
It shows up in Exifer in the IPTC descripton field. It only allows access to the
description, not the other fields, so I don't think i'll use it to write them.
I've decided to write them to the IPTC data under XMP. That should future proof
it as much as possible.

Thanks to everyone that answered, and hopefully this has helped some others in
the group too.


 
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