Spring break is finally here and with it hopefully comes some family time, trips and relaxation. Two years ago my family and I went to Disney for 5 days over the spring holiday and, as you might expect, we took some pictures. Nope… we took lots of pictures. Kids with characters, kids on rides, random pictures taken by kids… we had lots of pictures. When we got home I dutifully (under the watchful eye of my wife) went through and looked at the pictures determined to weed out pictures of feet and sky. It didn’t take long before I was kicked off the computer and my wife took over. It didn’t take long before she was frustrated with the way Windows handles pictures and she gave up. We still had many pictures of feet and sky that needed to be taken care of. Additionally, we had some pictures that needed to be cropped down, have the color fixed or sharpened a little bit. I could have spent hours with Photoshop fixing and cropping but what I really needed was a tool that both of us could use to organize and fix our pictures simply and easily.
Enter Google’s Picasa. Picasa is a free piece of photo editing software that you can download at http://picasa.google.com. It’s not on the approved list of software for district computers, but install it on your home computer and see what you think. There’s a little setup at the very beginning where you indicate where on your computer your pictures live. It will do a search of your hard drive and create collections of your pictures based on date taken and folder they were in. Additionally, it has facial recognition software the at is built in that learns who people are so you can search for picutre not only by date, name and folder, but by person as well. The video below will introduce Picasa 3 to you (it’s a YouTube video) and walk you through some of the features.
So, no longer are my pictures quite the unweildy mess that they once were. Now, I just need them to create a filter that will find all the pictures of feet that my daughter takes as we walk.