Picasa Pains: Using Picasa Web as Backup; Sync All Folders

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .

Started to use Google's Picasa for managing photos and images, and possibly later i'll also use Google's Picasa Web Albums.

Does Picasa Modify Original Image?

Face Recognition for Easy Tagging

Google's software are quite the best among competitors. For example, Picasa features face recognition. This can let you easily organize your photos of family and friends. It is also integrated with Google's Blog and Google Earth. So, you can easily comment a photo and publish it on Blogger or Google Earth. Face recognition is a very difficult problem. Such software are usually sold for tens of thousands of dollars in security industry. I'm not aware of any consumer level photo software that has face recognition feature. Google made it free!

Does Picasa Move or Modify My Original Photos?

Two of the things i really love about Picasa is that:

If you look at the content of “.picasa.ini”, it is like this:

text=1;138;17;Xah Lee;Arial;0.128993,0.146344,0.033333,0.000000;v1,4294967295,4278190080,128.000000,1.000000,0.000000,1.000000,400,0,49152;;

This is fantastic! This means, it doesn't actually store a edited version of your image, but just a tech description of the edit. This is really smart, and does not hog your disk space, and you don't have to deal with multiple versions of your images.

Picasa Pains: Using Picasa Web as a Backup; Sync All Folders

Picasa is well integrated with Google Picasa Web for easy upload and sync, as well as Blogger and Google Earth. Picasa Web has 1 G free storage for your photos or image files. One might think it's useful as a backup scheme. Not so. Here's few points:

Picasa is not really intuitive. You have to spend quite some time to get used to the user interface. You'll also take a hour or two to get familiar with Picasa Web well. For example, whether your photos can be seen by others, how to change them, etc.