iPhoto 2: The
By David Pogue, Joseph Schorr and Derrick Story
1st Edition May 2003
336 pages, $24.95 US
- What the Book is About
- iPhoto is to photographs as
iTunes is to mp3 files. I've used iTunes extensively and found it to be perfectly
usable without any manual. Isn't iPhoto going to be just as reliable and easy to
Well, there are some essential differences between photos and mp3 files:
- you are unlikely to be the
original artist of your mp3 files but you are most likely the creator of your photos,
and if you lose them, they're gone forever; backing up and library management are
very important for photos;
- you play one mp3 file at a
time but can display multiple photos at a time - performance optimization is more
of an issue for photos;
- unless you are the original
artist, you are unlikely to edit your mp3 files and you have limited publishing options;
but you are very likely to edit your photos and you have very many methods of publishing
iPhoto 2: The Missing Manual sets out to address these issues and more within the
following major sections:
- Part One: Digital Cameras:
The Missing Manual
Part Two: iPhoto Basics
Part Three: Meet Your Public
Part Four: iPhoto Stunts
Part Five: Appendixes
- Target Audience
- Part One of the book would
help someone who has not yet bought a digital camera. It would also help a novice
photographer to learn more advanced techniques. I don't think it covers the essentials
of exposure for a complete beginner.
Given the expertise of the authors, this section may also be interesting for someone
with more knowledge of photography, and of today's digital cameras.
However, the majority of the book is suitable for everyone who uses iPhoto.
- What to Expect
- Part One starts by evaluating
all the features of digital cameras, explaining the costs and benefits of different
resolutions, flash media types, batteries and so forth. It then proceeds to a brief
discussion of improving composition before launching into about 40 pages devoted
to techniques that are "beyond the simple snapshot".
These chapters are impressively thorough and up to date. Disappointingly, the example
photos are all in black and white - when discussing exposure, the before and after
shots look pretty much the same.
Part 2 starts by building your mental model of how iPhoto stores your photos. It
then goes on to explain how to use the organizational features such as Titles, Albums
and Keywords, as well as iPhoto's limited editing capabilities. iPhoto offers many
choices; the authors evaluate those choices and offer their preferred methods to
improve your effectiveness and efficiency. As with other Missing Manuals, they also
seek to drill you in the most important key combinations rather than merely listing
all of them.
Part 3 covers all the ways you can use iPhoto to share your pictures with family
and friends, (such as slideshows, prints from your printer or online, email, printing
your own book, Quicktime and DVD) again exploring all the details of the options
Part 4 cover Screen Savers, Desktop Pictures, Applescript and File Management. There
is also coverage of the export feature and exporting to a Palm PDA. The most vital
topic is the File Management chapter since it explains how to maintain iPhoto libraries
so that they can be backed up to optical media, and how and why to work with multiple
libraries rather than one big one. It also covers setting up a single library to
be accessible to multiple user accounts. While I had arrived at a solution for this
myself, I was informed that my chosen method was the "geek's way" and there
was a (slightly) less geeky alternative.
Part 5 contains Appendixes on Troubleshooting, Menus and "Where to Go from Here."
The Troubleshooting section is almost worth reading before anything else since it
builds understanding of the program. The Menus section is much more than a simple
list of menu commands, as it explains many detailed aspects of their use. The "Where
to Go from Here" section restricts itself to web resources and does not discuss
more advanced digital photography applications.
- One of the immediate benefits
of this book is its coverage of everything you can do to optimize iPhoto's performance.
On a 500MHZ iBook with a CD-sized library, this made the difference between iPhoto
being usable and merely spinning the beachball every time I clicked on anything.
The book offers a comprehensive approach to methods of using multiple libraries.
There are some impressively devious ideas in here!.
Further highlights include the discussions of scripting, hacking the book page formats
and shareware you can use to get more variety in the print formats.
- Mac Guild Grade
- A (Outstanding)
- Final Words
- This book is extremely useful
for any iPhoto user. It could be improved by color printing for the photo examples.
It would be great if the whole topic of color management had also been covered, although
this is arguably outside the scope of the book.
Finally, if you buy this book and like the authors enough to rush out to buy the
rest of their published works, think twice about the Digital Photography Pocket Guide
- it seems to overlap Part One of iPhoto 2: The Missing Manual. Perhaps the authors
didn't want non-Mac people to miss out on their general photography advice.