Monday, August 21, 2006

Picasa Googler Engineer Spotted?

While I was doing a recap of Google employees over on Inside Orkut, I spotted this profile.


I came across Andre's profile before, mainly because he was the owner of the Picasa forum on Orkut. Who would have guessed that one of Picasa's own would have started this community? (or a least take ownership of it)

The forum does not seem to be too active, although I'll list it on the sidebar and let anyone know if I find anything interesting in there. Posted by Picasa

Email Digest For Picasa Web Albums

Note: Belated news, I know.

Google has released another feature on its photo social networking site. Users of Picasa Web Albums can now be alerted about activity regarding not only their photo albums, but some activity in your friends as well.

(From Picasa Web Albums site) When people you have marked as favorites create new albums, upload more photos, or comment on your photos, we send you a summary of these activities to your email address at the interval you specify.

Users can adjust the frequency of the notifications by simply clicking on the settings link near the top...


...and adjusting their preference as seen below.


This should help users of Picasa's Web Albums to stay updated about what is happening on their site, although if someone desires to be notified more than once daily, then they may want to try subscribing to an album via RSS feed. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Google Assimiliates NevenVision (For Picasa)

Good news for Picasa users! It appears that Google has acquired NevenVision and according to the Google Blog their technology will be used to improve image search.


More information from the Official Google Blog:

We've been working to make Picasa (Google's free photo-organizing software) even better when it comes to searching for your own photos—to make finding them be as easy as finding stuff on the web. Luckily we've found some people who share this goal, and are excited that the Neven Vision team is now part of Google.

Neven Vision comes to Google with deep technology and expertise around automatically extracting information from a photo. It could be as simple as detecting whether or not a photo contains a person, or, one day, as complex as recognizing people, places, and objects. This technology just may make it a lot easier for you to organize and find the photos you care about.

Documenting Picasa has more info regarding the acquisition and Beta News goes into a little bit more detail about NevenVision.

Note: It looks like AOL is getting jealous of the photo social networking wars, and had decided to jump into the battlePosted by Picasa

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Picasa Web Albums Link Within Gmail

Some of you may have noticed that Google has recently inserted a Picasa Web Albums link within Gmail.


For those of you unfamiliar Picasa Web Albums, its basically Google's photo social network where users can view and comment on each others pictures (and download them as well). Sort of like Flickr, except it is owned by Google instead of Yahoo.

Although this will make it easier to access your photo's while checking your email, this latest addition is a distant second to a Firefox hack by Matthew Parker (allowing users to insert photo directly from their album). Posted by Picasa

Monday, August 07, 2006

Adding Text To Your Photos

In previous discussions, many users have desired to add text (or fonts) to their photos via Picasa. Unfortunately the Google team is busy making Picasa Web Albums even better for us (a higher priority IMHO) so until then here is an alternative way to add text to photos.

Note: Since the world runs on Windows, this tip is designed for them.

Before starting, if you are looking to add fancy fonts to your posts, you can find some free downloads over at, or SimplytheBest Free Fonts. If you are happy with the ones you have, simply continue below.

First, find the image you like and right click on it inside of Picasa. A menu should appear, allowing you to select which program to open the photo with.

Simply highlight Open With and after the side menu appears, choose the program you would like to open the image with (I would recommend Microsoft paint or Paint below).


If you are in MS Paint, a new window should appear displaying your image. Click on the "A" button to select the text on photo feature.


Also make sure you select the translucent text box (as shown below), otherwise MS Pain will fill in the text box area with a color.


Next, click on the image and draw out the box size that you prefer on your image (this is where the text will go).


Grrr....unfortunately Picasa will not let me upload the other screen shots. You may have to visit this web page to see the entire presentation (as I'll have to upload the images manually via Blogger or Posted by Picasa

Update: The show must roll on.

Right click on the text box area and after the menu appears, highlight the Text Toolbar option.

Once the toolbar appears, select the font that you want to use on your photo. You can also adjust the text size, and whether or not it is bold, italicized or underlined.

Type in the phrase you want to appear on your image. If you run out of space, either adjust the image size or delete your phrase and redraw the text box on the image for more words.

Now you are done! Simply save the image on your computer, and Picasa should update your gallery reflecting the new text on your photo.

MySpace, Blogs Invade Picasa Web Albums

(Hat Tip: Documenting Picasa)

The Google team is finally allowing users to sport Picasa Web Albums within their blog or MySpace. Unfortunately you can not post individual photos to your weblog, although hopefully the Picasa team will add that feature within their site.

Once a user clicks on their individual album, they should notice the Embed in Blog/Myspace link on the sidebar.


Clicking on it will reveal the html code necessary to add your images to your weblog, website, etc.


Once inserted, users will be able to display their pretty faces (or anything else of interest) on their site.

Note: Depending on whether you use Firefox or IE, you may notice that your image looks "funny." Here is a snapshot using Firefox:


...and here is the same one using Internet Explorer (both IE6 and IE7)


I have no clue (at least yet) why the image looks funny, although I noticed the same thing in reverse on Documenting Picasa (where Firefox looked weird and IE displayed the photo properly).

This may have to do with some weird html browser laws, although hopefully this problem can be resolved by either Google or Firefox (I gave up on IE long ago). Posted by Picasa

Friday, August 04, 2006

Google Mac Attack (Picasa Web Album Uploaders)

(Hat Tip: Documenting Picasa)

The boys and girls at Picasa have (finally) started to court the Mac market by releasing the Picasa Web Album Uploader. Mac users can download the uploader over here, although you will need a Picasa Web Albums account in order for this piece of software to work.


More from the Google Blog:

This new download comes with two handy tools for uploading photos: There's a plug-in for uploading your pics within iPhoto. If you don't use iPhoto, or just want to upload the occasional picture, just drag your photos into the provided standalone app and click Upload. Either way, I can't wait for my fellow Mac users to showcase their talents. [...]

For me [Ted Bonkenburg, Software Engineer] this has been a great opportunity to meet and work with new people, explore new technologies, and help create something that I hope the Mac community will find useful. So, please sign up for Picasa Web Albums, download the uploaders, and show the world some beautiful photos.

Ted did this project as a part of Google's 20 percent time, (great job Ted) although I wonder if he would consider making a full blown version for Mac? Posted by Picasa

Update: Zmarties is hosting Documenting Picasa on his own server. Please update your links (as well as your RSS feeds).