I’ve been using iView Media Pro for about two years now and I have to say I’m very happy with this elegant and easy to use and program for managing your digital image collection. I’m inspired today to sing the prasies of iView.
iView offers an integrated solution for the ingest of digital images from cameras, organizing your collection of digital images, creating slide shows and html galliers, and it has excellent image annotation capabilities.
You can embed the metadata you create right into the JPEG images using industry standard IPTC and Adobe XMP schemes. The UI for adding metadata is much nicer than Photoshop’s in my opinion, and for this alone I’d get this program.
For HTML slide galleries on the web, you simply select the images you want in the slide show, and choose “Make HTML Gallery” from a menu and choose the size of thumbnails and images and off you go. The software also supports creating custom templates so the photo pages on the web can look the way you want. One nice thing I’ve taken advantage of is annotating images with captions and then when I make a web side show the captions can be automatically included with each image. iView is a well thought out program.
I’ve also used Gallery, an open source server-based program for uploading, annotating, and displaying images, but I find that making html galleries with iView and uploading the folder to a server is much easier, and keeping my photo collection on my own computer makes for faster workflow compared to web-based solutions. One easy methodology is to create HTML slide shows and place them in a folder on your workstation or laptop and then synchronize that folder with a folder on your web server, so new images and galleries automatically get updated when your connected to the net.
Another bonus is that since standard metadata is stored in the images themselves (you have to explicitly sync iView with the files to have the metadata embedded in the files themselves) you’re not dependent on iView, you can switch to another photo organizing program in the future, and since the metadata can be embedded in the images themselves, you can simply import into a database or other image organization and viewing program. iView also has nice metatada export capability. It’s an open tool, it does not try to lock you in like some other programs in a similar category.