digiKam

     For those of you that are long time followers of my blog you'll remember me reviewing Windows Live Photo Gallery, and Google's Picasa, we'll I'm here today, with the Linux alternative, which I honestly think is better than both Windows Live Photo Gallery, and Picasa. Now digiKam is cross platform, though I think the install is easiest on Linux.
     For those of you that haven't read those previous blog posts I'll give an overview here, people familiar with this type of program feel free to skip this paragraph, I promise no hard feelings. :)
     So digiKam is a photo management program, basically it lets you add tag to photos, location data, descriptive tags, people that are in the photo, and more. You can also adjust the date on the pictures. When you first open digiKam you might feel overwhelmed with all the buttons, but the basics are easily learned, and with time the other buttons are learned as well. You can import photos from your camera to your computer through digiKam and it will put then in folders based on a series of rules that you can create, and has plugins for many online sharing sites, so you can upload photos directly, without having to leave digiKam, or open a web browser.
     HEY PEOPLE THAT SKIPPED THE PREVIOUS PARAGRAPH  CAN START READING AGAIN. DigiKam can scan for faces, and when it finds them you can input who they are. I haven't noticed that digiKam will try and guess who the people are in all cases, but sometimes when you go to a persons tag, after scanning for faces, it will say there are some suggestions, but when you are on the unknown tag page it won't give a guess as to whom the face belongs to. Maybe this will be changed in the new version, which is coming soon, it's in Beta phase now. Not only does digiKam work on photos, but it has support for several video formats as well.

What I LOVE:
    Well where should I begin? Adding faces is easy, for instances where it doesn't find the face.
     Adding tags is simple, with a search box, and the option to create shortcuts for tags. For example you could have a tag for say sunsets, 'cause you take lots of picture of them, and rather than search and find sunset, and check the box and hit apply you just want to do a few keystrokes, you could set something up, say Ctrl+Shift+S and then you'd just have to hit that on all your sunset pictures and apply that tag, you can also select multiple pictures and apply tags to more than one image at a time.
     Slideshows. You can get surprisingly good slideshows with digiKam. You can do a search for certain tags, using and & or operations and then do a slideshow on the results, you can add music, and there are some transitions, which aren't bad, (Though I do wish there were a few more, with some more variety.)
     Basic editing, you can do some color correction, cropping, rotation, and a few other little things, For a full fledged image editor I'd recommend GIMP. digiKam has a powerful batch editor that lets you run a series of edits on your images all in a batch, for example you could resize, rotate and add a watermark to images before uploading them to the web, or something along that line.

What I dislike:
     Not much. :)
     The tagging for people is a little funky, the box is really a tad to short for the text in it, so the tops and bottoms of the letters gets clipped a little bit, it's still readable though, and what I find more annoying that that, is when you click on the box to fill in a name it doesn't select all the text in the box, forcing you to backspace the unknown tag before you can input who it actually is.