Online Photo Management
August 16, 2004 8:30 PM   Subscribe

I have a rather picky online photo album management question.

We've had a lot of threads on programs for generating or maintaining online photo albums or galleries (1, 2, 3, 4), but so far I've been unable to find a program that does all of the following:

-Gives the user control over naming conventions and directory structures.

-Allows the user to create or modify the templates used by the program.

-Supports republishing of galleries with new or updated templates (without having to reenter titles and cutlines).

-Generates static HTML files (in other words, not PHP or ASP driven).

-Doesn't force the creation of thumbnail pages or the reprocessing of photos.

I didn't think I was being that picky going in, but I'm starting to think there's nothing out there that does all of that. My current process of creating a gallery in Photoshop and then modifying it through HomeSite is slowly driving me insane, so I'd have to pledge my eternal gratitude to anyone who could direct me to a program that can handle the five items listed above.
posted by mrbula to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
Gallery does most of these things and can be modified to do them all.
posted by Grod at 9:54 PM on August 16, 2004

aaaaugh! photoshop albums. i can't believe that adobe makes such good photo software, and that they make web editing software, yet their album code is such crap! of course, i wouldn't trust their web software anyway - look at the source code. if they won't use their own software for their own website, why should i?

have to second you on this, mrbula. so tired of editing the generated files adobe makes... trying to get them to xhtml compliance and then removing all the needless crap font tags and empty paragraphs... it's a royal pain.

and grod - you missed the "doesn't rely on php" part. like mrbula i have web space but not access to modify the server (no php, no cgi, it's a university server so all i can do is upload files).

maybe snapgallery, as suggested in the first photo gallery thread? you can customize the css, but it doesn't do thumbnails.
posted by caution live frogs at 6:35 AM on August 17, 2004

I have a complicated system that I rolled myself, because I wanted something similar. What I do is:

1. Store all the caption data in an xml file. I have a PHP app I wrote to make this simple, that I run on a local install of PHP/Apache. (It used to run on my server before it died.)
2. Then I use an XSLT stylesheet to transform that XML into HTML. I do this statically using xsltproc. XSLT is kind of a bitch though.
3. Use a Photoshop action to generate thumbnails.

Whether doing something like this would be workable for you is another question. Using XSLT transforms is very flexible though.
posted by smackfu at 12:42 PM on August 17, 2004

Response by poster: Thanks all.

CLF, I looked at snapgallery, but it seemed to be of limited use for maintaining albums. (Regarding Photoshop albums, you know you can make your own template it can use so you don't have to clean up *everything* afterwards, right? If not, check look in C:\Program Files\Adobe\Photoshop CS\Presets\Web Photo Gallery\ or wherever your template files are stored. You can then copy one of the defaults and modify it. As long as it's in the Web Photo Gallery folder, Photoshop will recoginize it automatically.)

smackfu, I never thought of storing captions in an XML file. I'll have to look into doing something like that.
posted by mrbula at 1:38 PM on August 17, 2004

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