Digital cameras have made it incredibly easy to record memories, but at the same time they’ve turned our computers and phones into warehouses that are littered with hundreds and thousands of forgotten pictures. Such is the extent of our digital assets, that use of software aids has become imminent for the upkeep of our ever-growing media collection.
When it comes to photo management, an average person typically prefers to use a free utility like Google’s Picasa® or the default photo gallery application that comes with the OS. These utilities enable organization of photos into albums. Some programs even provide the added functionality of image captioning and face tagging. However, when it comes to search, common photo organizers offer a limited scope since their search function is based upon few parameters.
The lack of accuracy in search results can cause a lot of inconvenience. In order to search efficiently through a large media library, one needs a powerful photo cataloging software like Kestrel GX. Kestrel GX is a light weight yet feature-rich photo management software, which serves as an amicable alternative to popular photo management tools such as Adobe® Lightroom and ACDSee® – that are a staple among professional photographers.
Instead of grouping photos into albums, Kestrel GX catalogs them by allowing the user to attach an array of searchable parameters to each image file. These include notes (description), tags, author, date, and rating. Additionally, you can designate the image to more than one category, for example a picture of a dog may be added to categories: animals and pets. All these details are stored in a database along with a thumbnail of the image file, so that the database can be searched even if the actual images are on offline media such as: DVDs, flash drives and external hard disks.
Kestrel GX also allows searches using EXIF (including GPS) and IPTC information! For example, you can search for all photos that were taken with a particular camera. The software’s search engine is not only powerful but it’s also extremely fast.
Kestrel GX allows viewing of complete EXIF, GPS and IPTC information. The software also has a built-in EXIF and IPTC editor that allows complete editing of these information. With Kestrel GX, users can even create multiple databases (or catalogs). This is clearly a great feature, which can be of immense value to media professionals such as web developers and instructional designers since they maintain an extensive media collection comprising of personal photographs and professional media assets.
Kestrel GX’s powerful cataloging and search functions are supplemented with a range of supporting functionalities like photo editor, print manager and photo book creator. These features along with other nifty options such as batch renaming, image conversion and watermark editor make the product an all-round utility for novice and amateur photographers.
The amazing functionalities of Kestrel GX are packed into a simple and elegant UI. It is surprisingly well finished and neatly primed for a product that has been developed independently by a 23 year old software developer. There is no learning curve to Kestrel GX, but those who are new to photo management and editing software will be able to use Kestrel GX after skimming through the provided workflow guide.
Kestrel GX (kestrelfly.com) is completely free for personal use, and commercial use license is available for a small fee of $9.99. The product is a brainchild of Mauritius based photography and programming enthusiast Gosvami.D.Purmanun, who initiated its development in 2008. Kestrel GX has been available to public as on November 5, 2010, it can be downloaded online.