Album::Tutorial - How to use the Album program
This tutorial describes the basic use of the Album program to create and maintain browser based photo albums.
To get started, create a new directory and cd to it. Create a subdirectory 'large' and put some pictures there. If you have installed the 'album' tool in your execution path, you can now execute it as follows:
$ album -v No info.dat, adding images from large info.dat: Cannot update (does not exist) Number of entries = 7 (7 added) mkdir thumbnails mkdir icons mkdir css Creating icons: first-gr.png first.png ... sound.png movie.jpg Creating style sheets: common.css index.css ... journal.css im023.jpg: thumbnail OK im024.jpg: thumbnail OK im025.jpg: thumbnail OK im026.jpg: thumbnail OK im027.jpg: thumbnail OK im028.jpg: thumbnail OK im029.jpg: thumbnail OK Creating pages for 7 images (Needed to write 7 image pages) Creating pages for 1 index (Needed to write 1 index page)
Your results will vary, but be similar to this example run. What you can see is that 'album' found 7 images in the 'large' directory, created thumbnails, icons and css directories, created thumbnails by resizing the images, and finally created the HTML pages. You can inspect your first photo album by opening file 'index.html' with your favorite browser. You can click on any image to see the larger version. Navigation buttons are provided to the left of the image.
It is interesting to run 'album' again:
$ album -v No info.dat, adding images from large info.dat: Cannot update (does not exist) Number of entries = 7 (7 added) ....... Creating pages for 7 images (No image pages needed updating) Creating pages for 1 index (No index pages needed updating)
'album' tries to avoid doing unnecessary work as much as possible. In this case, all thumbnails and image and index pages are up to date. The line of periods shows progress, one period for each image processed.
'album' not only tries to avoid doing unnecessary work, but it is also very careful to not destroy your original images, nor any other changes you may have made.
In general, 'album' will never overwrite or modify:
The purpose of medium sized images is easy browsing by having a consistent and convenient size. The default size shows normal 4:3 images completely on an 1024x768 screen in the browser's full screen mode.
To add medium sized images (and also specify an album title):
$ album -v --medium --title "My First Album" No info.dat, adding images from large info.dat: Cannot update (does not exist) Number of entries = 7 (7 added) mkdir medium im023.jpg: medium OK im024.jpg: medium OK im025.jpg: medium OK im026.jpg: medium OK im027.jpg: medium OK im028.jpg: medium OK im029.jpg: medium OK Creating pages for 7 images (Needed to write 14 image pages) Creating pages for 1 index (Needed to write 1 index page)
Again, 'album' only does the work needed, re-using the work already done.
As can be seen from the example runs, 'album' looks for a file 'info.dat'. This file can be used to:
The format of 'info.dat' is simple. Empty lines and lines starting with a '#' are ignored. Data lines contain the name of an image file, followed by its description. Control lines start with an '!' mark.
'album' can fill 'info.dat' for you. To obtain this, create an empty 'info.dat' file, and run 'album':
$ touch info.dat $ album -v --medium --title "My First Album" No info.dat, adding images from large Updating info.dat Number of entries = 7 (7 added) ....... Creating pages for 7 images (No image pages needed updating) Creating pages for 1 index (No index pages needed updating)
Upon completion, 'info.dat' will look similar to:
# album control file generated by album 1.19, Tue Jun 1 22:39:41 2004 !title My First Album !medium # New entries added by album 1.19, Tue Jun 1 22:39:41 2004 !tag im023.jpg im024.jpg im025.jpg im026.jpg im027.jpg im028.jpg im029.jpg
You can now add a description for each image following the file name, for example:
!tag 2004/06/01 im023.jpg Sunrise im024.jpg Overview im025.jpg Across the lake im026.jpg Catch of the day im027.jpg Fishermen im028.jpg Swimming cows im029.jpg Moon over Clew Bay
Re-run the program (no need for --medium and --title anymore):
$ album -v Number of entries = 7 ....... Creating pages for 7 images (Needed to write 14 image pages) Creating pages for 1 index (Needed to write 1 index page)
There are no complaints anymore about a missing 'info.dat', but there's also no message 'adding images from ./large'. In other words, the only images shown are the ones named in the control file. New images added to the 'large' directory will be ignored. We'll see later what to do about that.
Most settings can also obtained with command line options, as shown.
Sets the title to XXX, override with --title.
Sets the layout to N rows (--rows) and M columns (--columns).
Specifies the desired width for thumbnail images (--thumbsize).
Includes medium sized images (--medium) of default size.
Specifies the desired width for medium sized images (--mediumsize).
Sets the tag line for all subsequent images. Cancel with an empty !tag command.
Sets the caption code for index pages (--caption). It must be a sequence of f (file name), s (size, WxH), c (caption), t (tag line). If no !caption has been used, the default value is fct.
Sets the default date format as used for the tag lines for new images. XXX must be a valid strftime(2) date format string, for example:
!dateformat %a %e %B %Y
Produce a file
icon.jpg to be used as an icon for this album (--icon). The icon is of thumbnail size, and contains a small lookalike of the first index page.
!icon may be followed by a something true or false (--noicon). Default is true.
Set the locales for sorting and date formats to XXX.
album can read values for settings from configuration files. Settings can be set as in
info.dat, the leading exclamation mark is optional in this case. By default, the configuration files used are
.albumrc in the current directory, and
.albumrc in the user's home directory. The order of precedence is:
.albumrcin current directory
.albumrcin the home directory
Environment variable ALBUMCONFIG can be used to designate user config files. It should be set to a colon-separated list of file names to be processed in order of precedence.
An important feature of 'album' is importing new images from an external source. For example, you can import new images from a CD-ROM, or from a digital camera.
Assuming you mounted a CD-ROM with new images, execute 'album' as follows:
$ album -v --import /mnt/cdrom --update Updating info.dat Number of entries = 9 (2 added) ....... im030.jpg: copy medium thumbnail OK im031.jpg: copy medium thumbnail OK Creating pages for 9 images (Needed to write 18 image pages) Creating pages for 1 index (Needed to write 1 index page)
Two new images were found on the CD-ROM, copied to the 'large' directory, and processed as usual. 'info.dat' has been updated with the new entries. Note that images found on the CD-ROM that already exist in 'large' (i.e., have the same name) are skipped.
When importing images from a digital camera, 'album' can use the EXIF information that is present in these files:
To enable EXIF processing, add the --exif command line option, or specify the import directory with --dcim instead of --import:
$ ls -l /mnt/camera/dcim/101msdcf -rwxr-xr-x 1 jv jv 2347808 Jun 25 12:08 /mnt/camera/dcim/101msdcf/dsc00052.jpg -rwxr-xr-x 1 jv jv 1327475 Jun 25 12:05 /mnt/camera/dcim/101msdcf/dsc00053.jpg $ album -v --dcim /mnt/camera/dcim/101msdcf --update Updating info.dat Number of entries = 11 (2 added) .........[ 9] 200405171843310052.jpg: link medium thumbnail OK 200405171845030053.jpg: copy rotate medium thumbnail OK Creating pages for 11 images (Needed to write 22 image pages) Creating pages for 1 index (Needed to write 1 index page)
The file 'dsc00052.jpg' has now been imported as '200405171843310052.jpg'. 'album' tries to link to the image, if that is not possible, the image will be coped. File 'dsc00053.jpg' must be rotated, so it will always be a copy.
If you hover the mouse over the file name in the index page, or over the title on the image pages, a pop-up will show a selection of information from the EXIF data.
In the file 'info.dat' you can also enter names of HTML documents to refer to arbitrary other information you want to include in your album. You can use this to embed (more precisely: refer to) other albums. For example:
20040910/index.html Pictures of an exhibition
This will store in the album a reference to another album. If at the given location a file 'icon.jpg' exists, this will be used in the album as thumbnail image. To generate a sample icon for an album to be included, run the album program with command line option --icon.
The reference will only be present on the index pages. When following the 'previous' and 'next' links of image pages, these references will be skipped.
Note that when you click on an external reference thumbnail, a new browser window will be opened to show the referenced information.
The --clobber command line option will force regeneration of all medium and thumbnail images, and HTML pages. It will not force re-import of the 'large' images. To completely rebuild everything save info.dat, remove all the files in the album directory (including .cache), restore info.dat and re-run the 'album' program.
The digital camera import is designed for cameras that adhere to the ISO DCF standard. Handling of MPG movies and voice images is probably specific for my Sony DSC-V1.
When importing images from different camera's, there's an extremely small chance that the EXIF information would lead to identical file names. This can only happen if the pictures were taken at the exact same time (according to the camera's notion of time!), and have the same internal sequence number.
info.dat, Album treats anything up to a known file name extension to be part of the file name. In general, this means that you can safely enter file names with whitespace and other uglyness.
Known file name extensions are
gif for images,
avi for movies, and
htm for links.
Johan Vromans (firstname.lastname@example.org) wrote this module.
This program is Copyright 2004 by Squirrel Consultancy. All rights reserved.
This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of either: a) the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 1, or (at your option) any later version, or b) the "Artistic License" which comes with Perl.
This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See either the GNU General Public License or the Artistic License for more details.