Category Archives: Organizing Your Photos

Computational Tagging

In my SXSW panel this year, Ramesh Jain and Anna Dickson and I delved into the implications of Artificial Intelligence (AI) becoming a commodity, which will be a commonplace reality by the end of 2017.  We looked at several classes of services and considered what they were good for.

I’ve been spending a lot of time on the subject over the last few months writing The DAM Book 3. Clearly AI will be important in collection management and the deployment of images for various types of communication.

But I  hate using the term AI to describe the array of services that help you make sense of your photos. There’s actually a bunch of useful stuff that is not technically AI. Adding date or GPS info is definitely not AI. And linking to other data (like a wikipedia page) is not really AI. ( It’s actually just linking). Machine Learning and programmatic tagging comes in a lot of forms – some is really basic, and some is complex.

The term Computational Imaging was pretty obscure when the last version of The Dam Book was published, but it’s become a very common term. I think this is a useful concept to extend to the whole AI/Machine Learning/Data Scraping/Programmatic Tagging stack.

In The DAM Book 3, I’m using the term Computational Tagging to refer to all the computer-based tagging methods that involve some level of automation. This runs from the tags made by the computer in my camera to the sophisticated AI environments of the future. At the moment, it’s not widely-used term (Google shows 138 instances on the web), but I think it’s the best general description for the automatic and computer-assisted tagging that are becoming an essential part of working with images.

Cyber Monday 25% off DAM Useful Publications

We’re offering our largest ever holiday discount here at DAM Useful. Our Cyber Week deal gets you 25% off all books published by DAM Useful. Order before Dec 7.

Organizing Your Photos with Lightroom 5Organizing_Your_Photos_150px

Electronic Delivery  $34.95  Sale $26.18
DVD $39.95 Sale $29.93
Book and DVD Combo $59.95 Sale $44.96

Multi-Catalog Workflow with Lightroom 5MCWF_150px

Electronic Delivery   $34.95  Sale $26.18
DVD  $39.95 Sale $29.93

The DAM Book 2

Electronic Delivery   $19.95  Sale $14.96DAM Book_150px

Open Roads Open Minds by Steve UzzellOROM Cover150

Electronic Delivery  $12.95  Sale $9.71
Book and DVD Combo $29.95 Sale $22.46

 

Lightroom *never* fully expires

Buried in the recent Adobe Creative Cloud rollout was a revolutionary change to the way Lightroom licensing functions.  When the license expires, the program keeps on working.* This is a radical development. If you’ve been paying attention to the sturm und drang around the Creative Cloud licensing model (here, here, here, here) , this is a mind-blower.

First, the * part. Not all functions of Lightroom keep working. The sliders in the Develop module become inactive. Develop will still render the photo, but it won’t let you run the sliders. (You could still use Quick Develop in Library to make further adjustments if you like.)

Screen Shot 2014-07-10 at 9.02.28 AM

Quick Develop will still run in an expired version of Lightroom 5.5

And the Map Module will stop working. The map technology is licensed through the Google Maps API, so Adobe has to pay for each Lightroom copy that uses it. If Adobe is not getting paid, they don’t want to pay Google, so the Map Module will be disabled for non-revenue users.

But other than Develop  and Map, everything else works.  You can  make new catalogs, add new photos, add keywords, make collections, books, web galleries. prints, slideshows, exports, published copies… Basically, you have Lightroom LE.  For free, if you want it.

Yes, free.

You can download the trial version of Lightroom and, at the end of the trial period, it mostly continues to function. Free.

Hopefully, this will quiet most of the fears that people have about Adobe’s motives in moving to the Creative Cloud licensing model. In the last few years, they have dramatically reduced the price of their photo software.  Buying Photoshop Extended and Lightroom four years ago would set you back $1300. You can buy a decade of CC software and services for that price.  And now Lightroom LE is free for those who are even cheaper.


Read more about getting the most out of Lightroom


This is a bold play by Adobe. Here’s how I interpret it. Basically, they are betting that photographers will see enough value in the subscription services that they will continue to pay for Lightroom, Photoshop, Lightroom Mobile and Lightroom Web ($10/month).  Even when they can get most of Lightroom for free.

Stephen Colbert would say that a move like this takes big balls. You only do this if you are all-in on providing ongoing value to your customers. It’s the opposite of lock-in. And it illustrates the core values of the company. Your stuff belongs to you, and it’s up to Adobe to provide compelling value in order to deserve your software dollars.

There’s no guarantee that Adobe will get this right. Even though their software powers much of the creative services industry, they have not been able to hit a home run in web services.  But they understand that the future of media is squarely pegged to APIworld, and the only way to survive is to go all-in.

I’m really stoked about this decision (and I’m almost never “stoked” about anything, even those things that I’m quite enthusiastic about.) It’s gutsy, forward-thinking, bet-the-farm confidence on making some kick-ass software and services.

To those folks at Adobe who had the vision to move this forward, hats off.

iPad and Android Edition of OYP

Organizing Your Photos with Lightroom 5 is now available for iPad and Android tablet.  Due to very popular demand, we’ve created an EPUB version of the book that will play on a tablet. (Kindle does not yet support embedded video, so we don’t have a Kindle version.)

IMG_3123

The EPUB version will be free for anyone  who buys the PDF, DVD or PRINT+DVD versions of Organizing Your Photos.  Existing purchasers can request a special code for download. (Note that people who buy the EPUB version can also get a PDF version to play on computer.)

Why two versions, PDF and EPUB?
We need to have two electronic versions because there are no EPUB readers for computer that can play embedded videos, and no Tablet software that can play PDFs with embedded videos.

PDF, EPUB, DVD, BOOK DVD Formats 600px

Some housekeeping notes
The EPUB version of the book is 1.8 GB, which is pretty big for a tablet. You may not have space on your tablet for such a big file.

We had to downsize the videos a bit to make them fit (1024 pixels across, vs. 1280 for the PDF version.)  The videos in the PDF version are slightly larger, and they have less compression so they play a bit more smoothly.

If you buy the tablet version, you’ll want to first download it on your computer, and then move it to the tablet. For iPad, you open iTunes and drag the file to the iPad’s “Books” section. For Android, you’ll want to follow the directions in the EPUB reader of your choice.

Speaking at B&H Monday, March 17

140316_BHSince B&H has started carrying my books, I’ve scheduled a talk there Monday from 4-6. I’ll be outlining the strategy behind my new book, Organizing Your Photos. Registration is closed at the moment, but the website says that you can show up for the event 15-30 minutes early to get a spot.

The event should also be available online at the Event Space website sometime after the event. I’ll post more details as I have them.

OYP Review by Matt Dawson

I’ve not met Matt Dawson in person, but I know him through the Lightroom beta program. He writes and publishes plugins for Lightroom.

140206_TPG_OYP_Review

He’s just written a nice review of Organizing Your Photos describing the value of the book and the whole multimedia approach. More importantly, he outlines how the book provides clarity in the complex task of organization.

And he agrees that this book will be useful to all Lightroom users, from the novice up through the power user. As I was writing this book, these were my highest goals – to be able to provide useful clarity for Lightroom users all along the spectrum.

I think Matt has also done a good job communicating the content of the book and highlighting the particular sections that were most valuable to him.

So, thanks Matt.