There is so much talk these days about image metadata. And for good reason, since metadata is at the heart of any system for organizing your digital photos. However, there are only two categories and only two sources of metadata. Understanding these basic aspects of image metadata will help you stay focused on the important things when organizing your digital photos. Read on to understand the only two sources of image metadata.
Image metadata has been around for a long time. Standards for image metadata however have been trying to keep pace with consumers’ appetite for digital content. As a consequence, image metadata standards have been in flux for a while. It has been very difficult for software makers to adapt both to new standards and customer demands as the two are almost always out of sync.
A wise reader has asked me a wise question recently. The question went like this: “How do I organize my pictures for the future? What can I do today so that the pictures I leave for may family will be accessible in the future by my children and grandchildren?” This question made me think and realize that leaving memories for those we love is very important. Actually this is one of the main reasons we take pictures I think. Spending some time to understand new technology and future trends is worthwhile for everyone. If we don’t then we might embrace some tech fad today that will be obsolete in a few years and then all the work done using this “very cool new thing” will be wasted. So, what do you do to organize your pictures for the future?
Last week I published the first part of the interview I conducted with Hans Fremuth from Metability Software about image metadata. In this section Hans talked about the current state of the image metadata standard development and in particular about the XMP standard developed by Adobe. In addition, Hans provides insight into how he organizes his own pictures on his computer. This article is the second part of the interview.
Once in a while I find something on the web that makes me say: It’s about time! That’s what I found a couple of weeks ago. Image metadata and image metadata standards are very important for coming up with any meaningful long term strategy for organizing your pictures. However, with so many standards and acronyms it is very hard to figure out what to do. Do you use EXIF, IPTC or XMP for your strategy? How about all three? I believe I found a really good resource that explains the differences and commonalities between all three standards.
It is very rare for me to read about photography on blogs that have to do with computer science and programming, but this week I came across a very interesting study that combines computer science and picture organization methods. The study was done by Cornell University faculty and students and was presented at the 2009 edition of the International World Wide Web conference. It was entitled “Mapping the world’s photos” (See resources at the end for the PDF link).
When photography which is an art, intersects technology which is…not an art what do you get? You get some weird buzz words. Today’s star is Geotagging ! Think of it as Geographic Tags, or Geographic keywords. The thing that makes it weird is that GeoTags are actual coordinates, so they’re not related to tags or keywords at all. They’re not keywords…’cause they’re not even words.
Now that I have explained the different types of image metadata there is one more question to answer: how does this image metadata end up in your image files? This article will explain the road very frequently traveled by image metadata. From your camera to your computer and back to your image file, image metadata becomes connected to each image and this way becomes PORTABLE.
Tagging your images is so cool, compared with using plain old folders…at least that’s what everyone says 🙂 But how do your carefully created keywords get attached to your images? What are EXIF, IPTC and XMP? And most of all…why should you care about all of these acronyms? Understanding the different types of image metadata will help you better manage your pictures.