Yesterday afternoon, Google announced that they had released a new version of Picasa – version 3.5. Probably the biggest new feature is that Face recognition (that has been part of Picasa Web Albums for a while) is now part of Picasa on your computer.
But, more than Faces, I’m excited about Places. Geotagging has been greatly improved in this version, instead of requiring that you use Google Earth, they have embedded a full Google Maps ‘Places’ pane right into Picasa. Placing a photo at a place on the map is as simple as clicking on the photo and clicking at the place on the map. I show you how to do this in the video below. (Tutorial Videos:Geotagging)
Other welcome new features include the ability to edit captions – you can now insert, delete, copy and paste – whereas, in earlier versions, all you could do is type and backspace. (Tutorial Videos: Add Captions to your Photos)
For some people the new ability to change the date on a photo will be a godsend. Didn’t notice that your camera had the wrong date on it? No problem, just select the affected photos and click Tools, Adjust Date and Time!
You will see a big change in the import feature. ( Tutorial Videos:Import from Camera ) They’ve put all the options on one screen rather than making you click ‘Next’ – and they’ve added the ability to upload to your web albums at the same time you import to your computer. I’m not sure I like all the changes here – my advice is to be careful. Don’t just click ‘OK’ – make sure to read the screen and understand all the options.
One very exciting thing to me is that Picasa now recognizes the 3g2 format of video that my cell phone takes.
Over the next few weeks, Picasa will be prompting you to download the upgrade. If you want it now – and I don’t see any reason why not – you can manually download it at Picasa.Google.com
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