The second scenario will work you up even more. Imagine the commonness of having more than one camera in the house. Each, lending to the graphical stew of your pictures folder. Of course, your exasperation can be easily cured by the timely habit of renaming photos when you transfer them. Arranging photos chronologically (according to dates) also makes retrieval a snap.
Today, most digital cameras have an internal clock which tags the photos with the exact time when it was clicked. This information is embedded as meta-data (meta-data is data about the data) in the photo itself.
The EXIF (Exchangeable image file format) and DCF (Design rule for Camera File system) standards are specifications for this meta-data. EXIF, in simple terms, defines the camera and image information in the files. DCF defines standards which ensure compatibility between different recording media like a camera and a printer.
It is this photo information that software programs tap into when they read the pictures. And using this information makes arranging photos by timestamps as easy as clicking them.
Automatically rename photos with the date they were shot with NamexifWhen we say ‘Namexif’ aloud, it sounds like a blend of ‘name’ with ‘fix’ and also ‘exif’ (a portmanteau). The free software does exactly that. Namexif batch-renames photos with the dates they were shot. This helps to ease the chronological assortment within your pictures folder. Of course, photos compulsorily must have the EXIF data.
Namexif is a lithe 700MB batch renamer with a simple interface. The timestamp software is a standalone executable. It runs on Windows 95, 98, 2000, XP and Vista. Namexif works snappily in three steps –
- Run the program – select and add the individual files or the folder where the photos are stored. Click Next.
- On the next screen choose the date format you want from the three pre-sets given. In case of high speed shooting mode, where the times may differ by sub-secs, the format adds dashes (-) to tell filenames apart.
- You have the option of keeping the original name or adding your own name as a describer. In case the camera (or photo) does not support EXIF standards, then the original name is kept intact.
Automatically timestamp photos with StampStamp is another free software which renames image and video files chronologically. It can also batch process entire folders and add a timestamp to the beginning of each filename. Stamp is an improvement over Namexif on several fronts. It can directly transfer photos from most cameras. It batch renames audio/video files too.
Also, unlike Namexif, Stamp saves the renamed image files in a different folder (gives an option of copy or move) thus preserving the originals. Some of the other power features include -
- Stamp gives the choice between five different file formats which fall across – DCF convention, History Data formatsCustom format.
- Custom format is handy for generating long or short filenames with descriptive information like location of shoot.
- Stamp comes with various filters which lets the user control the processing by including certain files and excluding others.
- Stamp features extra options for file handling like preview function which displays a summary of predicted results and an error reporting log.
Of course, there is a tool like Picasa which in itself is a complete photo management application. It also automatically renames photos by date. Renaming photos by date is quick and simple with these two little file renamer alternatives. After a few gigabytes of photos we will find that arranging photos chronologically rather than by name is easier for instant recall.
You can also try out the cross platform JetPhoto which Jeffry has written about in a previous post.