FotoTagger – a new personal tool for photo annotation and sharing

June 01, 2006 (PRLEAP.COM) Technology News
FotoTagger addresses three main challenges in managing digital pictures by providing the following features:

1) Keeping image details forever: Every user definitely has experience of forgetting names of people or objects presented on photos. Attempts to include relevant information as a part of a file name or to add keywords are often inconvenient and inefficient when it comes to identification of people or objects.

On the other hand, having names and comments placed directly on digital photos is useful only when a user is able to easily hide these annotations and view an original image. This is exactly what FotoTagger basically does.

Currently, FotoTagger is already used for annotating travel photos, family pictures, and paintings.

2) Finding needed images immediately: For most users, wasting time trying to find a photo with a specific person or object is a usual exercise. FotoTagger provides an ability to reach a desired image by searching across textual notes. This capability lets users perform a meaningful search and rely on what is presented on a picture rather than on formal parameters, like a file name or an image creation date.

3) Sharing annotated images by using standard blogs: Many users often want to share images along with some textual comments and explanations. A real value of photo sharing can be often measured not just in a number of photos. In some cases, it is determined by few pictures with reasonable annotation. That is why FotoTagger supports publishing to blogs as a form of photo sharing.

FotoTagger helps users publish images with additional text explanations to a blog just in a few clicks so annotated pictures can be easily shared with other people. The current version of FotoTagger supports publishing to and LiveJournal. Alternatively, annotated images can be also shared through email and exporting to HTML for easy publishing in the Web.

3F distribution principle: Current personal version of FotoTagger supports what could be called "3F principle" F1: Free of charge; F2: Free of ads; F3: Free of spyware and privacy intrusion.

FotoTagger can be downloaded from the Cogitum Web site and numerous download Web sites. The product Web site provides various examples of possible FotoTagger applications, help documentation, and FAQ.

The current version supports several photo management features, such as image rotation, image re-size, fit screen, sending an annotated image by email, support for annotation in most alphabetic languages, as well as export of an annotated image to HTML and export of tags to XML.

Technically, all annotations are embedded into an image file so they cannot be lost or disassociated with the picture. An original image is never distorted thanks to ignoring FotoTagger annotations by all other image viewers, including browsers. Similarly, uninstalling FotoTagger will not change or damage images. FotoTagger works with JPEG files.

Cogitum has also suggested an open standard for storing and visualizing annotations. The standard is based on the existing standards for digital images.

Appeal to history: FotoTagger is probably the first and only software product that proudly claims utilizing three thousand years traditions. The blog associated with the program developer demonstrates that many cultures in the history used text over image with traditional image media. FotoTagger just restores this tradition to digital images.

Company: Cogitum is an innovative software developing company with several award-winning personal software tools, including Co-Tracker and Co-Citer that gained total hundreds of thousands downloads.

Contacts: Cogitum, 21339 Fairhunt Drive, Ashburn, VA 20148 USA, phone: 1-703-858-2377, fax: 1-703-858-5343