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ARE THERE ALTERNATIVES TO PICASA?

Posted on 2012-08-15
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Last Modified: 2012-08-28
I am looking for a simple way to send a small "slide show/ presentation" to a few
people. It should be graphically clean and without Twitter, Facebook, and other social media links or advertising.  The user should click an emailed link (url) and the first photo/page would appear, with arrows at the edges to page forward and backward
thru the presentation.  A caption could appear under the photo or overlaying it.

Currently I use a Picasa album with about 30 photographs for an apartment
I rent, often by email, to out-of-state and out-of-country grad students.  
I send the Picasa link to the perspective tenants to "show" the property. It
includes a floor plan as well as several text "pages"  and a map. Since Picasa
can't display .doc or .pdf files, I have to manipulate the text and floor
plans to jpgs which is a lot of trouble. I particularly dislike all the stuff
that Google includes, like menu bars, my name, RRS feed, Prints, blog,
developer, Google Home, etc. It's not as graphically clean as I'd like. And
frankly, it's confusing to use and maintain because it's so interconnected to
other Google services.

I want a SIMPLE link-based system rather than one where I'd email send the actual
photos -- that much I do like about Picasa.   I realize I could create my own domain
and send that link or use one of the commercial hosting services to build
my own webpage, but that can cost $10-$20 a month and I only need to
send this presentation every 12 to 18 months for a few weeks until it's rented.

Experts, are there alternatives to Picasa?
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Question by:carolinadon
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Accepted Solution

by:
ryanbloom earned 1600 total points
ID: 38298017
Hello,

Have you considered creating a free wordpress account?  It would allow you to make a domain "xxxx.wordpress.com".  The hosting through wordpress is free.  You could build a gallery on there and show your apartment.
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Expert Comment

by:Paul Sauvé
ID: 38298102
If you have a Hotmail account, you can use SkyDrive to accomplish this.

Go to SkyDrive, click on Images and create a folder, then open the folder and add the photos. You can share using the link that is indicated when you click on Share. Anyone can use the link that you send, regardless if they have a Hotmail account or not.

Alternatively, you can make the folder Public and anyone can access it.
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Author Comment

by:carolinadon
ID: 38298145
SkyDrive sounds interesting...  does it support pdf and doc files as well as photos?
Captioning of photos?
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Expert Comment

by:Paul Sauvé
ID: 38298454
You can put any file format in skydrive.

Public link that anyone can use.

Captions? Yes:SkyDrive caption
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Author Comment

by:carolinadon
ID: 38302819
I set up a Hotmail account and put 8 photos on SkyDrive.  But it seems to have much the same cluttered format as Picasa.  In the screen shot below, I want to eliminate all the text to the right and the menu across the top; the photo index below is ok but not necessary.
When I send a link to someone, I want ONLY the photos & captions to display.   Is that possible with SkyDrive?

I'm still looking into WordPress.
SDss.gif
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Expert Comment

by:ryanbloom
ID: 38302865
I don't believe that is possible but not 100% sure.  Skydrive is more for the sharing of files, not presentation oriented.  With Wordpress you control what pictures and captions show on the site.
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Expert Comment

by:Merete
ID: 38311036
Hi  carolinadon
as I see it  you need to decide which direction to take in the actual type of project you want to send and how that delivery method is done,
your problem is two fold,
(1) a slideshow can be a Power point Show PPS which can be sent as an attachment through emails. No URL. and NOT a in the video form.
or
(2) made into a slideshow video which can be uploaded to youtube etc. URL which can be added to the email as a URL

your criteria fits more a PPS> and the first photo/page would appear, with arrows at the edges to page forward and backward thru the presentation.  
A caption could appear under the photo or overlaying it
. << definitely is similar to a power point.
Now since you want to upload somewhere so the>>The user should click an emailed link (url)<<< this really complicates as all those criteria you set as now it is a video
and apart from adding captions and tabs to the start and to each image, which is possible however the link backs and forward this is not possible within a video itself.
in refs to>>and the first photo/page would appear, with arrows at the edges to page forward and backward thru the presentation.
You can make a slideshow with with Windows Live Moviemaker add captions and titles etc and this is a video playable only.
You can export to youtube or save for email as is.
No further interaction on the user besides opening the URL from youtube or running it in an email or an attachment form.

A PPS is probably the simplest method and add that as an Attachment in the email then your criteria how the PPS runs is met.
refs to>The user ( delete >should click an emailed link (url)
 The User would open the attachment and the first photo/page would appear, with arrows at the edges to page forward and backward thru the presentation.  
A caption could appear under the photo or overlaying it.
How to Create a Photo Slideshow with PowerPoint

Add captions, annotations, or subtitles to presentations< applies to Powerpoint 2007
PowerPoint Slide Show Step-By-Step. Setting Up a Slide. 1. ... to figure out how to make a new slide or how to get the Common Task Window to display again. PDF
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Author Comment

by:carolinadon
ID: 38312576
I definitely do not want a movie/uTube presentation.

If I understand Powerpoint, the presentation would be sent to the viewer
instead of a link.  That's not good since it would require a large email file
and perhaps special software to view.

So far Wordpress seems like the solution, but I've not have time to
set that up and explore fully.  Although my application is tiny (20 photos),
I wonder how Wordpress makes money if it is indeed free.

When I say "slide show" I am using it as a generic presentation term...
I hate those apps that automatically change pics every x seconds.  My
viewers should always have to click for the next page.

Thanks for your comments.
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LVL 70

Expert Comment

by:Merete
ID: 38314162
Word Press makes money the same way through  web hosting services to big brands
http://www.labnol.org/internet/blogging/how-wordpress-makes-money/7576/

Most people have Office installed bar Mac windows and or Linux, which could be a problem with formats across the windows types.
And a PPS is opened with Adobe Reader X
It actually auto opens once saved as a PPS, Just like a PDF
You set the timings for auto run, or just leave them out and then have clickable back and forth links.
You said it would be a small slideshow, most emails accounts handle 5 megs fine.

Have you considered flash presentation?
Convert the PPS to flash?
http://www.authorgen.com/authorpoint-lite-free/powerpoint-to-flash-converter.aspx

Youtube accounts can be made private and only the people you select can see the video, this can be sent as a link via email to the students/graduates.
Then you can remove the video from your youtube  account once your done with it.
Even delete your youtube account.
There is also LinkedIn
http://learn.linkedin.com/what-is-linkedin/
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Author Closing Comment

by:carolinadon
ID: 38343343
Most trouble to set up, but best way to get full control.
Thanks.
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