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Large Jpeg File Descriptions

3 Jan 2013 8:09AM
Hi Folks

This is my first post and wondered if anyone could help me. Our Historical Society has a large number of jpeg files with large descriptions of the people in the pictures and I'm looking into ways to store these on the file itself as our backup and online storage is on Picasa which will only accept image files, at present we create the extra data in a seperate txt file which is obviously a seperate file.

The archive is accessed by a variety of machines from XP laptops upto Windows 7 (and potentially 8), not all archivists are computer orientated, therefore I'm looking for a straight forward approach prefereably without the need for additional software and finally the descriptions need to be searchable as we get keyword enquiries for a Name or Building.

I've looked at the comments column in explorer but it's limited to 259 characters but in some intances I need 600+ characters. I've looked at Tags in the likes of Picasa or Windows Live Gallery which are fine for peoples names or groups but not really useful for long descriptions.

Can anyone suggest some alternatives. Cheers

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JackAllTog Plus
9 5.0k 58 United Kingdom
3 Jan 2013 9:40AM
To do this on a large scale you might consider document management solutions.

On a smaller scale adding meta data to the file may help - i've just googled up "adding exif data to jpeg" and there seems to be a lot of discussion about it - maybe there is an EXIF writer that can add tags and descriptions to existing JPEG's and so store that info in the file its self?
mikehit 8 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
3 Jan 2013 9:49AM
I believe that Lightroom 4 gives you the option of embedding metadata into the image file itself and this can include key words or text description. But not all programmes can read embedded metadata so maybe you could download the free LR4 trial version and give it a try.
mlewis 13 1.5k United Kingdom
3 Jan 2013 3:29PM
You need to add descriptions to the description field in the metadata and keywords to the keywords field in the metadata. Have a look if Picasa can embed that data in your images. If it can't then you will need some other software to do it. There are several options.
4 Jan 2013 12:34PM
Many thanks to all respondants, although I had to rule out the Lightroom option as one of the machines is XP, I think I've found a couple of suitable metadata options.
JackAllTog Plus
9 5.0k 58 United Kingdom
4 Jan 2013 12:41PM
Hi Vic, please do share what you decide upon - i like your idea of cataloguing.
26 Feb 2013 1:36PM
For anyone looking for a similar solution we've gone for a combination of Dropbox and Windows Photo Gallery. The latter gives us the Description, Caption and tag searching we need - all be it with some creative use of the tags for any overflow data from the description and caption.

Linking the various machines through Dropbox gives us immediate visibility on the other machines without the need for complex networking and having to remember to do updates.

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