oreilly.comSafari Books Online.Conferences.


AddThis Social Bookmark Button

How Does Open Source Software Stack Up on the Mac?
Pages: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Photo Library Managers

The pickings are slim in this category. In fact, the only OSS photo library managers to mention are Album Shaper and imgSeek. There are a handful of other OSS applications and scripts such as Gallery, iPhotoToGallery (depends on iPhoto), and zphoto that allow you to do things such as building web pages from your existing photo collections, but Album Shaper and imgSeek are really the only ones that approach iPhoto functionality.

Figure 2
Figure 2. imgSeek

Thumbnail, click for full-size image.
Figure 3. Album Shaper (Click for full-size image).
imgSeek and Album Shaper are two Qt-based apps that provide an alternative to iTunes.

Because both of these apps depend on Trolltech's Qt toolkit rather than the more native Cocoa frameworks to run, they have a look and feel similar to that of something you may have installed via Fink or DarwinPorts. It looks like some folks are also considering getting digiKam running via Fink (keep your eyes peeled for that one; it looks pretty slick), so you might want to start getting used to these slightly clumsy interfaces (at least for a while).

Efficiently rendering and displaying lots of images at a time is a hard problem and provides at least one possible explanation for the dismal scene of open source photo library managers. Album Shaper and imgSeek, however, provide a solid starting point for further improvement and give us some level of choice if we really get tired of iPhoto. In fact, if you can get past the cosmetic issues, you might be pleased with either one of these apps. If you're willing to eventually shell out some moola to replace iPhoto, you may try downloading Adobe's Lightroom Beta (hurry, though). Of course, I'm sure you've also heard of Apple's Aperture--but going there doesn't get us much further from where we started.

Coming by a native Cocoa-based application to manage your photo library isn't so easy to do right now. In fact, this category almost seemed to put a gaping hole in our landscape after a first glance. Fortunately, however, the creativity of a few individuals has landed a couple of Qt-based apps we can give a whirl, and having some choice is better than no choice--even if it's not ideal. Because we're lacking a true OSS Cocoa photo library manager, this category's health has to take a hit.

Overall health grade: C+
OSS health grade: C

Pages: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Next Pagearrow