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Every Webmaster's Saviour!
Once you've been on the Net any length of time, you'll start to accumulate lots of images. And unless you have an extraordinarily good memory, you'll soon need some tool to view these images. Preferably en-masse (rather than opening them one by one in a paint program).

Image Catalogers perform this function. Many paint and other graphics programs now include image catalog features with their core .EXE program (eg: Paint Shop Pro, Picture Publisher etc). But for our money the stand-alones are still the best!

The only drawback we've ever found with image catalogues is that they usually generate very large databases of thumbnails. The more images you have, the longer the complete indexing process takes, the slower the program runs and the bigger the final thumbnail database. But we use one image cataloger every day - so that may give you an idea about how useful a webmaster's tool one can be.


How Big?

How big should a web graphic be? The answer is always "as small as possible", but a reasonable size is probably 10K to 12K.

The rule of thumb you should use is that it takes an average viewer 1k/sec to download a web page at 28.8kbps - and right now, that's the average speed the world connects at.

So a 10K image will take about 10 seconds; a 12K image 12 seconds; and so on.

Another good rule is that your web pages (images and text together) really shouldn't exceed 40K to 60K at most. Make them any bigger and you'll lose lots of viewers.

ThumbsPlus scans your hard disk, seeks out images, metafiles, fonts and movies and displays them in thumbnail galleries. You can click on any graphic to display it at normal size and get an exact measurement of the file size and dimensions. Then you can invert it, manipulate it, brighten it, darken it, copy it, rename it, move it, turn it into a transparency (if it's a GIF)....whatever you like! This remarkable program will catalogue every type of graphics file on your hard disk ....even TrueType fonts and Microsoft Publisher graphics. Yet it's simple enough to master within 5 minutes. Trialware versions are available for Windows 95/98/NT and Macintosh.

Bark Software Development's HTMLimage is a handy utility program for Windows 95, 98 and NT 4.0. HTMLimage will browse all the GIFs and JPGs in a directory and then construct a HTML page for viewing them. The program is simple and useful, and is distributed as shareware (full registration is $US10). If your budget and/or requirements don't stretch to more expensive image cataloging software (or you need to assemble galleries of thumbnails for your site), this may be the answer to your problems.

Image Browser
Soft Concepts - a software development house at Lanarkshire in Scotland - produce several very useful programs for graphics work. One of them is Image Browser, a shareware thumbnail image viewer, converter, cataloger and printer for BMP, GIF, JPG, PCX, PNG, TIFF, WMF and Icon images. Unlike ThumbsPlus (above), this program doesn't create large databases on your hard drive - so it may be very useful if disk space is at a premium. Image Browser also allows you view or print your thumbnails lists and perform batch conversions between formats, and registered users can scan in images with Twain-compliant devices and perform screen captures as well. Versions are available for Win95/98 and NT.

Search for more image catalog software in our Resources directory!

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