The Project Gallery of jAlbum 18

jAlbum 18 has just been released. The main improvements in this version is a faster album uploader and the new Project Gallery - the subject for this blog post. With active regular use of jAlbum over some time you end up with a huge amount of album projects. Finding the right one isn't always easy. The "Recent project" list helps, but the thumbnail images are rather small. Enter the new Project Gallery! New project gallery buttonThis window presents large thumbnail images of web previews of each album project. If no album has been made (i.e. no web files present), then the gallery resorts to displaying a large version of the representing thumbnail instead.

To access the Project Gallery either press CTRL/CMD+G, select File->Project Gallery or hit the new project gallery button located just to the right of the new project button. You can even double click the "Recent projects" label (project ordering label) to open the Project Gallery.

The Project Gallery presents a grid of large thumbnail images for each album project. It defaults to presenting the recent projects, which may reside anywhere on your computer but you can alternatively choose to list all album projects found under the "My Albums" folder. The ordering can also be flipped between recent, alphabetical and reverse alphabetical. To open a project simply double click it or navigate using the cursor keys and hit Enter.

Project Gallery window 

Quick search

Just like Windows Explorer, the Project Gallery has a quick search function whereby it alternates between all projects beginning with the letter you type.

Pro tip

As you open a project, the gallery closes, but you can keep it open and move it next to the main window to quickly browse between projects. To do so, simply hold down SHIFT or ALT as you open a project.

The context menu

If you right-click an album project it will reveal a contextual menu. It currently has the options "Open", "Preview" and "Reload". Preview opens the project's album in jAlbum's default web browser and "Reload" forces jAlbum to recalculate a snapshot of the web preview. This may be needed if the album wasn't done rendering the initial display when the snapshot was being taken.

 Performance

When you initially open and browse the Project Gallery it will take some time for the web snapshots to populate the view, and you might notice some flickering, but once it's done, operating the Project Gallery is fast. (Web snapshots are being cached on disk within the .jalbum folder of the album project's root folder in order to speed up the rendering)

Improved image review with jAlbum 17

Present your best images. The new review mode of jAlbum 17 helps you to quickly compare images side by side, zoom, tag and rate them. 

Taking photos is only part of the work. One easily ends up with hundreds of images. Now comes the challenging part wading through this pile in search of the best ones so you don't bore your viewers. Here's where jAlbum 17 really simplifies matters with its brand new review mode. Simply select one or a few images and hit space bar to bring these up for comparison in a full screen view:

 

 

 

 

The thumbnail strip

If you move the mouse to the bottom, a thumbnail strip will pop up, allowing you to quickly navigate between your images. Use CTRL and SHIFT+clicks to select multiple images and ranges.

The selected images can now be quickly rated or excluded with a button click. Use keys 0-5 to rate and "-" to toggle exclude/include. You can also use keys 6-9 to apply various flags to your images.

Operating on individual images

When you move the mouse on top of the closeup images, the hovered image will highlight. Keys 0-9 and "-" will now rate, flag and exclude that highlighted image only. This allows you to quickly work your way through the images. (You can naturally use the mouse too).

Zooming and panning

To inspect part of an image, simply point it and right click or use the mouse wheel to zoom in. A double click will close in on that image only (if you're reviewing multiple images)

Keyboard navigation

Simply use the left and right arrow keys to navigate back and forth. Use SHIFT+left or SHIFT+right to bring up the next or previous image next to the existing one.

Presenting the best

To finally present the best images in a gallery, hit ESC to leave review mode and make the album. The excluded images won't show. If you instead wish to only present your, say 5 and 4 star images in a gallery, then you can do as follows:

  • Hit CTRL+F to bring up jAlbum's filter bar
  • Select stars 1,2 and 3. Now only these low-star images show
  • Hit CTRL+A to select this group.
  • Hit "-" (minus key) to exclude this group
  • Close the filter bar and make the album

I hope this new review mode will be a real time-saver for you! All available in jAlbum 17!

/David

The slideshow must go on

Grab some popcorn, sit back and enjoy our newest skin – Projector. It was made to offer the best slideshow experience. Yet we didn’t forgot about popular features like search, tags or maps like those found in Tiger skin.


Adapts to the device

The layout consists of 3 main sections: the side bar (function buttons), the cover page (folder info, subfolders) and the lightbox (with the thumbnail strip).

You can choose from 3 different layouts for the “cover page”, see Settings / Projector / Cover page / Title / Type:


Full width

Turntable

Card

The lightbox shows the slide images in full window, and all the other page elements are designed to be the least distractive. Works fine on mobiles; you can even use swipe gestures too to flip through the album.

The thumbnail strip can be placed to any corner: left, right, above or below the picture – it’s up to you. During slideshows the thumbnails get hidden. Similarly the captions on the photos can be moved to your liking – even in the middle of the photo.


The emphasis is on the photo

The idea came from our Wordpress plugin, which was made to showcase jAlbum-made albums within blog posts (or any page by the way). In that plugin you are able to choose from a bunch of spectacular transition effects, which made it popular amongst Wordpress users. We thought this can make a great new jAlbum skin.

There are 9 transition effects available in Projector, of which three works in 3D, see Settings / Projector / Lightbox / Main image / Transition. Click the pictures below to see them in working!

Crossfade
Cross fade

Zoom
Zoom

Ken Burns
Ken Burns

Stack
Stack

Slide
Slide

Swap
Swap

Flip
Flip

Book
Book

Cube
Cube

 

Speaking of the styles, Projector has inherited Tiger’s all 27 styles, so you can easily reproduce the same feel. Naturally, you can customize all the colors, fonts, background images and many more aspects, just like in Tiger. You can add your logo, custom links, and custom content to many places. All the custom pages have received a face lift too, to match the new design.

Technically, the skin is based on the so-called “flex layout”, which offers the best flexibility in arranging and aligning the page sections on different devices. Today all modern browsers support this new layout mode. Internet Explorer 10 and below are not (you guessed), but fortunately their market share has already dropped below 1%. (The poor implementation of 3D effects in Internet Explorer 11 results in a flawed viewing experience with 3D transition types: Cube, Book, Flip).

When you select Projector from the skin selector all the matching settings will be imported from Tiger, Turtle or Photoblogger, because they all belong to the same “skin family”. (If you’re on jAlbum 16 or older, the settings will be imported even from the Empty project! Pay attention!) This feature makes transitions from one skin to another easy, but not all settings work equally good with Projector. Notably the thumbnail sizes have to be adjusted to play nice with the new skin. So visit Settings / Images / Image bounds / Thumbnails and set 90x90 or something similarly small, as larger thumbnails take too much space from the images.

In the near future, Projector will receive even more of Tiger’s advanced features, like the shopping cart and feedback.

Comments are welcome, but please post bug reports in the skin’s forum.

jAlbum reviewed in Top 10 Website Hosting

jAlbum has been reviewed in "Top 10 Website Hosting", a review site dedicated to guiding you to reliable hosting solutions founded by people tired of fake reviews. Read what they have to say about jAlbum and our hosting solution in this article.

jAlbum 16.2 news

The newly released jAlbum 16.2 comes with two new handy improvements, both a result of requests from you. If you're missing something, let us know!

Adjust camera date

jAlbum now has a function to adjust the EXIF camera date of JPEG images (i.e. the "date taken/original" date). The function works on both individual images and groups of images/folders. Just right click and select "Adjust camera date...". Up pops a dialogue looking like this:

 

(The date format adapts to your region, here showing Swedish formatting)

 

Simply select the value (day, month, year, hours, minutes, seconds) you like to adjust, then use the spinner buttons or keys Up and Down to adjust the value. If you have selected multiple images you now also have the option to either set the same new date for all images or to adjust each image by the amount/difference you have entered.


The adjustment is undoable while jAlbum is running.

Duplicate files

jAlbum's Explore view (the thumbnail view) is designed to feel like a file manager, but  with emphasis on image management. You've probably noticed many similarities with it and your computer's file manager, still it has missed a convenient way to duplicate files and folders. Now this has changed. Simply select one or many items, then hit CTRL/CMD + C followed by CTRL/CMD + V to duplicate the selected items.

 

Get jAlbum 16.2 now!