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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Gadget Bag: Keeping Track


Use the right software to get a handle on your ever-growing image library

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This Article Features Photo Zoom

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Apple Aperture 2
For nature photographers, once we come back home with cards full of inspiring images, it can be quite a challenge to get all of those images sorted out and organized. Big memory cards have made it easy to shoot digital images by the hundreds, and keeping track of so many files requires some help.

There are a number of software packages you can use to manage your image library. Each program has its strengths and weaknesses, and your choice of which one to use will be dictated by how much functionality you think you need. For example, do you simply want to have a program that keeps your images organized, or do you want the ability to do some enhancement? All of the organization-software choices are becoming more useful and powerful. Some programs offer so many image-processing features that you’ll find that you seldom need Photoshop for any but the most complex work.

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Corel Photo Album 7 Deluxe
Most imaging programs use interfaces that have been designed for simplicity while viewing, and flexibility when choosing how to browse. Programs often allow you to view images by thumbnail or by hierarchical structure (which means you can view them by folders and subfolders), and now many programs also are offering a carousel view, which presents a larger foreground image with previews of upcoming or preceding images minimized to the sides. It’s a visually pleasing way to quickly cycle through images until you find the one that you want.

Corel Photo Album 7 Deluxe
gives you the essentials of image management at an affordable price. You can organize images quickly, and there are video-management capabilities thrown in, as well. Basic editing options like rotating, cropping, resizing and fixing red-eye are included, and one-click image optimization will optimize brightness, color and contrast. There also are extras like converting images to black-and-white and creating slideshows. Integration with Sharpcast technology is another key feature of Corel Photo Album 7 Deluxe with an online backup solution for your photo collection. List Price: $49.

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