My PhotoGallery

JRP Reflecting

Reflection – written June 5, 2002

I started my first PhotoGallery in 1995, shortly after I built ibm.com/patrick. The nice folks at Kodak loaned me one of their new (at the time) DC-210 digital cameras and I began to take pictures all over the world. It is quite commonplace today but back in the mid-nineties it was a bit unique. I initially set up the gallery on some basic html pages but quickly realized that organizing them by category, providing a search ability, and creating some meta data would be key to an effective viewing experience. A colleague at IBM, Dipen Mehta, developed a Lotus Notes/Domino photogallery that was, and still is, quite unique. The way Dipen set it up, I could simply copy my camera files to a directory and then his utility would create a thumbnail plus a large (800 x 600), a small (640 480), and a preserved original picture. Each category could have a description and a nice page showing the corresponding thumbnails and links for the pictures at either high or low size.

The only problem was that Dipen moved on to new opportunities and he was the only person who knew the details of how the gallery worked. I became determined to find a replacement technology that I could maintain on my own. I am convinced that the Domino solution which Dipen developed is an ideal enterprise approach but for a hobbiest like me, I had to have something simpler. I looked high and low and eventually, thanks to an unsolicited email from Don Means, I discovered Gazo. It is extremely powerful and relatively easy to use. I am in the process of converting more than 1,000 to the new gallery. I’ll add a link here soon.

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