I am falling in love again with Picasa

Today it's Macworld 2009 without Steve Jobs. Is that a big deal? No obviously. I will not spend thousands of dollar sitting in the Moscone Convention Centre San Francisco but yes I spent $45 to go to Expo this Thursday. Call me cheapy bastard, but I just want to hear a good news.

Well actually it' is a good news. Google announced that Mac user will having Picasa on their system. But wait...it's a beta and required only at Intel machine. Yea yea yea...whatever but I will make a point that I really really missed Picasa.

My first encounter with Picasa was in the early development in late 2005 (I guess). It was brilliant to scourge any graphics files on my old Toshiba. Compared with the capability now, Picasa was merely file management software with 'cute' basic editing photos. It's not design for brainy people but enough to satisfy the needs of demanding blog posting (I started blog intensively on those days).

It blended nicely with Blogger (aka Blogspot which I am still on now whatever you wordpress guys out there called it old skoll) and the ability to resize and edit in minutes sending photos to friends and family or even online albums just amazing.

But the most helpful function of Picasa is digging the files. It's got keywords or tags to organise files. The small thumbnails just help me lots as my memories based on pictures and graphs. It helped me with pdf or tiff, png, jpeg, nef (oh yes Picasa can read RAW file). It convinced me to abandon Photoshop Elements 2.0 as my major filing photos editing.

Now with new version I am just playing around and still amuse by its changing. It's got Filters and special filter that recognized faces. The last one turned out to be copied by iPhoto'09 that Phil Schiller introduced today. The faces recognation is not NEW. Apple only 'borrowed' the idea from Picasa guys. That's why I wonder why Picasa for Mac released a day before Macworld'09. You can guess then.

What I see on 'new' Picasa that make me falling love again is so much funtionality. It's got Movie Creation (kinda sideshow in movie), backup on CD (they called it Create a gift CD) and ability to sync with the album online (whoaa...).

The Share tabs give you freedom to resize photo, make it movie, and even added watermark (I am not sure it can deterrent the photo theft away). And the one and only function that I missed is creating collage. It's getting lots fun now. The collage sample from my visit to Madame Liberté last month showed how easy to do in less than 5 minutes (reminded you that even though I have been play with Picasa before but never touch it again since 2006).

The editing was Basic fixes and Tuning with adding more contrast (Picasa did not say contrast but rather going to Tuning which added shadow and light). It did not have histogram though but for well trained photo snapper you will see the effect straight away. And the conectivity to blog also seamless.

I will suggest that Picasa will open up more ability to sync directly to social networking (aka Facebook). And give freedom to pull over more from iPhoto and use it diligently without neglected the other part. In my opinion, you will not need iPhoto'09 since you've having the easy to use Picasa. It does have capability plug in into iPhoto but hey...I am not using iPhoto anyway. Somehow restricted me to dedicate my web and blog into what so called Mobile Me (another disaster product from Apple).

Picasa also maintained the Picasa Album that store photos of your Blogger or just the sake for free storage. So yeah why spend more money for free photos storage out there? You can name it!

I am still in love with Picasa. Although it crashed easily (it's Macbook fault anyway).