Real World Review – iPhoto 09′

You have to wonder what would make you want to blindly upgrade to iPhoto 09′ if you are perfectly happy with the previous version.
Sure, it’s part of new version of iLife 09′, including iMovie, iWeb, and GarageBand. OK, getting a lesson on the guitar from Sting on “Roxanne” for $5.00 is pretty darn cool in GarageBand.
But that’s not why you’re here.
We picked up a copy, and ran it through it’s paces.
(remember that when you upgrade any version of iPhoto, it has to re-import your photos so the new software will work. Just letting you know for time consideration. We have 150GB, so it took a while.)

iPhoto 09′ has added some pretty cool new features: It now has facial recognition .

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OK, what that means is you pick a photo, click the Faces icon on the menu, and a white box will appear around each face in the photo, add a name, then it searches through all of your digital photos for similar faces, hopefully that match. You get to confirm or deny the selected possible photos matches.

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Honestly, this first gen application has a looooong way to go. When tagging one of our friends, who is slightly thinning on top, but has other distinctive features, it brought up thousands of shots that were way off the mark.
It certainly doesn’t happen as fast, nor as accurately as we had hoped.
Not be a hater, you can tag a Face, and then upload to Facebook, already tagged with the persons name. After the party, you can post to Facebook with the names on it, and it’s a much faster operation than doing it on Facebook proper.
Hmmmm……Facebook-Faces. Makes sense. Great interface. (sorry)

There is also a geotagging function which lets you tag your photos with the location of the shot.
There are 2 ways to do this: The best way would be to have a GPS device on your camera. We have used one for a long time and so seeing all of our previously tagged photos was cool to see on a global map.
The other way is to type in the local address, as general as a city name, as detailed as a street address.

[photopress:iphoto_sample2.jpg,full,centered]
enter the info here if it is not included in your digital file

And sure enough, it will tag your photos, map them, and gives you choices of viewing maps.

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list of all of your photos with tagged locations

[photopress:iphoto_sample1.jpg,full,centered]
Detailed map

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Global map

But here is the thing…We know where we were.
The point of all of the social networking is to share.

If we just had a meal in a great little hidden restaurant, it would be very cool to take a photo and send it off to friends and let them click on the photo, and get them to Google in their browser., and have a pinpointed map show the the way.
Does this program do that?

Nope.
Or maybe, not yet.
This is the whole point of geotagging though. You want to share. The vacation album you post online could have a whole other level of interest if the viewer could share the voyage with maps.
According to Apple, this current version of iPhoto can only share locations, or embed the info, IF you upload to Flikr, go to Flikr maps, and then just have it show your photos.
Not real easy, and not real practical.
So, a big disappointment here.
We would rather use the geotagged info on Adobe Lightroom, which with 1 click , takes you to Google Maps, and gives you a usable map and url, that we can send along in an email.

Back to the good stuff:
So we have a slightly improved edit interface, which simplifies the edit options with plain language. One nice addition is the option to have your color corrections affect the skin tone or not. Nice.
Plus you get a tint corrector where you can pinpoint a neutral tone in your shot and correct the overall scene color cast.
Designing a slide show is a cool thing to show off your work, and this new version gives you more templates to choose from.

You do know why a lot of photogs may work in Photoshop but still have iPhoto though, right?
It has one of the easiest interfaces out there for uploading your work.
Put your finished file of photos from working in Lightroom, onto your desktop, import the folder to iPhoto and in short order, you can up on line with a password protected, beautiful interfaced, site for your clients to choose images from. And send them a visual email announcing the posting.
Sure, you can get that FTP that does an auto upload from Lightroom, but this iPhoto is the fastest and easiest tool for the job.

We guess you may be asking: should I buy or not?
For $79.00 you get a lot of bang for the buck. Especially when you consider the other programs included. Garageband is great for adding a custom track to your slide show.
If you are just interested in the upgraded iPhoto 09′ app, you don’t have to rush out for this one. Wait for an improved version.
If you don’t have ANY version, you should have this program at hand.

OK, we’re off to see how Sting can teach us how to be a rockstar on Garageband. Or just feel bad about our wasted youth, taking photographs.
Yeah, right.

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