Doug Toppin's Blog

My thoughts on technology and other stuff

Observations on the Apple Aperture Photo App for Mac

I’ve used the Apple iPhoto app for photo editing and management for a couple of years but hear a lot about their more serious app called Aperture. I decided last year to try Aperture but gave up before too long because I still found iPhoto to be quicker and easier. I am moving my photo library to a new external drive attached to my new MacBook Pro and have decided to try harder this time to use Aperture. One of my immediate observations is that Faces (the face identification portion in both iPhoto and Aperture) seems to be more effective in Aperture (or else it is a function of the machine it is running on). It is picking out faces even in pictures that happen to be caught in the background of my pictures. If you have not used Faces it works very well for being able to find pictures with particular people in them rather than having to browse around. It is not perfect but certainly has worked well enough for me. It another aspect of photo organization that I began to appreciate when GPS location data was attached to my iPhone and Panasonic Lumix pictures. With location data embedded you can find pictures by map rather than having to remember when they were taken. Vacation pictures become much easier to get to in my experience. I also bought a couple of ebooks on Aperture usage and library organization and am going to be diligent about learning this time. I believe that Aperture is more efficient than iPhoto in managing photo archive space. When I copied my iPhoto archive it was 225 gb in size. I am beginning to learn that you have to a zealot about policing your pictures by deleting duplicates or ones that are not really worth keeping. Disk space is cheap but the processing time to load, access and manage tens of thousands of pictures is not cheap from the perspective of the time that it takes. More to come on this subject.

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