David Weinberger’s Point. Shoot. Kiss it goodbye is a wonderful essay on the fundamental problem of digital photography.
Digicams make everything so quick, so easy, that we all go a little crazy. We take hundreds, thousands of snaps and actually look at, or make use of, a tiny fraction of them. We’re filling hard disks with gigabytes of pictures, and we have no idea of what’s there and whether it deserves to stay. If you could find all the bad pictures, all the useless ones that you’re never going to use again, wouldn’t it be nice to dump them and free up some space?
Sure, some people are organised enough, and have the spare time to devote to keeping their photo collections under control. You can get hold of apps and plugins like Keyword Assistant which makes adding tags a breeze, but that still requires you to devote the time to sit down and do the tagging.
I believe there’s plenty of people - myself included - who are too lazy or too busy to sit down for hours at a time, tagging or otherwise organizing their photo collection, no matter what software they use to do it. We need something that fits in with the way we work.
So here’s my idea. Let’s call it Tagnag.
It’s an app, or a utility, or an iPhoto plugin. It works by interrupting you at a time interval you set in the prefs - every five minutes, every two hours, once a week, whatever - and showing you a photo from your archive. Under the photo is a blank text field and a line of instructions saying: “This photo has no tags. Please enter some now; or hit Command+Delete to remove the photo from your archive.”
All the user has to do is bang in some tags (names, places, anything meaningful to them) and hit Enter, and the Tagnag window disappears, making changes to your iPhoto/iView Multimedia/A.N. Other Photo Manager App database in the background. You’re free to carry on with your work.
OK so it will take a while to go through a collection of thousands of photos, but the idea is that this approach is flexible and fits in with your other tasks, in a manner that suits you. If you find yourself sitting in an airport with nothing constructive to do, you’d be able to engage Tagnag’s “Turbo” mode and zip through 50 or more photos one after the other.
Did somebody say Lazyweb?