Part Two: iPhoto
Chapter 6. Camera Meets Mac
In case you haven't heard , the digital camera market is exploding. In 2004, digital camerasclose to 53 million of themoutsold traditional film cameras for the first time. It's taken a few decades; the underlying technology used in most digital cameras was invented in 1969. But film is finally on the decline.
And why not? The appeal of digital photography is huge. When you shoot digitally, you never have to pay a cent for film or photo processing. You get instant results, viewing your photos just moments after shooting them, making even Polaroids seem painfully slow by comparison. As a digital photographer, you can even be your own darkroom technicianwithout the darkroom. You can retouch and enhance photos, make enlargements, and print out greeting cards using your home computer. Sharing your pictures with others is far easier, too, since you can burn them to CD, email them to friends , or post them on the Web. As one fan puts it: "There are no ' negatives ' in digital photography."
On the other hand, while digital photography is full of promise, it's also been full of headaches . During the early years of digital cameras, just making the camera-to-computer connection was a nightmare. You had to mess with serial or USB cables; install device drivers; and use proprietary software to transfer, open , and convert camera images into a standard file format. If you handled all these tasks perfectlyand sacrificed a young male goat during the spring equinoxyou ended up with good digital pictures.
6.1. iPhoto Arrives
Apple's answer to all these problems is iPhoto, a simple and uncluttered program designed to organize, edit, and distribute digital photos without the nightmarish hassles. Like Apple's other iPrograms (iMovie, iTunes, iDVD, and so on), its design subscribes to its own little 80/20 rule: 80 percent of us really don't need more than about 20 percent of the features you'd find in a full-blown, $650 digital-asset management program.
iPhoto approaches digital photo management as a four-step process:
Note: Although much of this portion of the book is focused on using digital cameras , remember this: You don't have to shoot digital photos to use iPhoto. You can just as easily use it to organize and publish pictures you've shot with a traditional film camera and then digitized using a scanner (or had Kodak convert them to a Photo CD). Importing scanned photos is covered later in this chapter on Section 6.2.4.