Phraymd – an image collection manager

This little thing called Real Life (TM) got in the way again so my April 1st joke stayed there much longer than planned. To the point that it isn’t funny anymore (thanks Andrew for pointing it out🙂 ). A while ago, I received an email from Damien Moore introducing Phraymd an image manager that he is working on. Although Damien described Phraymd as “as buggy as all hell” (and the name is still temporary), the program is so interesting it deserves a mention.

Basically, Phraymd is an image collection management tool: it allows you to work on your images metadata – tags, titles, copyright, etc which is stored inside the image itself. You can then search through your image collection, modify metadata in batch, etc.

This is what Phraymd does. Just as interesting is what it does not: image editing. Don’t look for a red-eyes removal tool,  brightness and saturation cursors or black & white conversion. However, Phraymd makes it very easy to open your images in an external editing program (GIMP, gThumb and others).

Phraymd is coded in Python – it uses wrapper around standard libraries. To quote from the webpage:

  • Emphasis on a snappy interface. All the heavy lifting is done on background threads or external processes to ensure the UI never blocks. User is informed of what is going on in the background with progress notifications etc.
  • Keep metadata in the images where it belongs. To the extent possible, databases/indexes are temporary files that can be deleted without losing useful data.
  • Simple notion of a photo collection: all of the images (jpeg, png, raw etc) in a directory including its subfolders. A database to speed up image lookup is maintained in the users home folder.
  • Database keeps track of image metadata for speedy search and sort of images (the database can be recreated from the underlying images)
  • Support collections with 10,000+ images (currently, the program should run ok with 100,000 images but may use a lot of memory — that can be tweaked)

On the UI side, Phraymd uses onmouseover overlays to present you with basic information about the current image.

Sounds interesting? Here is what Phraymd looks like after you have chosen your image directory:

phraymd_1

Here it is when you are working on a particular image – note in the above toolbar that I am working on the subset of images tagged for Montreal.

phraymd_2

And here is the metadata entering dialog:

phraymd_3

Lastly, a few more notes from Damien:

  • “phraymd” is just a working title — I’ll hopefully find a better name by the time its ready for mainstream consumption (branding seems to matter).
  • phraymd is in its very early stages (I started coding in about January), a part time project with a team of 1 (and even he isn’t a programmer by trade).
  • feedback is especially welcome: I set up a google group, or people can use Launchpad to create bugs or ask questions.
  • volunteers are welcome to join the project (code, docs, art etc)

Have a look at launchpad and google group, test Phraymd and let Damien know about your experience, suggestions or help. I have this feeling that Phraymd could well be filling a much necessary need in the Linux for Photography eco system. My only wish would be to be presented with a list of tags to tick rather than typing them each time (with typos which make subsequent searches impossible).

15 Responses to Phraymd – an image collection manager

  1. rhen says:

    It looks nice. I’ll try it out.

  2. Lucian says:

    I think that kphotoalbum (http://www.kphotoalbum.org) can be used to do the same thing with a lot of features.

    Am I missing something?

  3. rhen says:

    kphotoalbum is very similar to phraymd with more function but I use ubuntu so I prefer GTK apps.

  4. Lucian says:

    I also use Ubuntu and have no problems using a KDE application, including kphotoalbum.

  5. John says:

    Hi there,

    I;ve just got onto Getdeb and and had them upload the latest version of Fotoxx. It is getting better all the time.

    Thanks for the tip, I will give Phyarmd a try.
    Regards
    John

  6. Daniel Sach says:

    Looks to be nice but simple.

  7. Geert says:

    Another one that seems to move in the right direction: blueMarine.

    I haven’t tried it yet, but will give it a spin later today.
    Has anybody had any experience with it yet ?

  8. Geert says:

    Oops, forgot the link for blueMarine: http://bluemarine.tidalwave.it/home.html

  9. Philip Goh says:

    You could always use F-Spot that comes with Ubuntu by default. I’ve found it a lot faster than Phraymd at handling my 10k+ photos.

  10. spillz says:

    I’m the developer of phraymd. I normally stay out of these discussion, but this comment caught my eye:

    “You could always use F-Spot that comes with Ubuntu by default. I’ve found it a lot faster than Phraymd at handling my 10k+ photos.”

    I’m not sure if this is just a troll or a legitimate issue, but phraymd certainly shouldn’t be any slower than f-spot in performing its tasks. The initial setup of the collection may take some time, but that is also true of f-spot. Startup can take a little longer in phraymd because phraymd will check for changes to images in the filesystem, add new images to the collection, remove missing ones and update the thumbs and metadata on changed ones. Thus, if you are using other programs that regularly change the time stamp of your images, this could cause slow startup as phraymd will reload the metadata and update the thumbnails whenever it detects changes.

  11. Georg says:

    > My only wish would be to be presented
    > with a list of tags to tick rather than
    > typing them each time (with typos which
    > make subsequent searches impossible).

    This is actually one of the things that makes me lean towards kphotoalbum rather than digikam. I detest having to hunt for little squares with the mouse when the data I want to enter is actually text and can (to some extend) “easily” be guarded against misspelling by intelligent auto-completion.
    But as usual: IMO and YMM(and obviously does)V🙂

    And while we’re at it, a thought about the business of (re)naming programs:
    I liked the old name of kphotoalbum (“kimdaba”) better, since now I always have to think about which generic thing related to handling – no it was showing, wasn’t it?! – photographs I have to slap a “k” in front of…
    The old name had a rhythm and an identity to it, the new one is just a word that I find hard to remember.
    Maybe it’s also that the old one was more closely related to what the program actually is (in my view): a (KDE) Image Database. Or maybe it’s just my inner geek that likes to abbreviate things into interesting sounding words…😉

    …and now I’m off to try this phraymd thing…

    cheers!
    Georg

  12. Rob says:

    Does Phraymed import photos? Thats the one thing that is missing from most photo organisers and I think one of the most import aspects of organising your photos. gThumbs imports but I don’t like being restricted to an iPhoto based organising system. I want something that will add the shoot date to the file name and then place the photo in a folder with the shoot date. So DSC1234.jpg becomes “2009-10-20 – DSC1234.jpg” in folder “2009-10-20”. I then place this folder in a “year folder” e.g. “2009”. I have all my photos organised this way going back to the 80’s but cannot find anything in Linux that will help me continue to use this system.

    Sorry for the rant/long reply.

  13. spillz says:

    “Does Phraymed import photos?”

    Currently, phraymd’s importer is Nautilus (or the terminal) — just copy the photos to the photo directory and phraymd will find them.

    “I want something that will add the shoot date to the file name and then place the photo in a folder with the shoot date. So DSC1234.jpg becomes “2009-10-20 – DSC1234.jpg” in folder “2009-10-20″.”

    I have been thinking about how best to do imports in phraymd. I’m not a big fan of renaming my images, but horses for courses. If you are willing to write a python script that does what you need, I could easily turn it into a plugin… I can do this myself, but it will probably take a while before I get to it and this way you’ll get exactly what you want.🙂

  14. It should also be noted that there is binary blob firmware required to load that model.

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