Thursday, May 15, 2008

On Searching for Photos . . .

New searchable maps at to help in the photo search process.

My searchable website has exceeded 20,000 photos! Wading through them can be time consuming, sometimes frustrating, and at times, overwhelming I've been told. The challenge continues to present itself: How to make this process easier and more accurate for the photo researcher and browser? The solutions create many trade-offs. Web page real estate is valuable, and the variations in monitor sizes and web browser programs are abundant.

I chose the route of a large home-page load (Google says they don’t like that) mainly for functionality. An essential “text side bar” loads with categorical photo searches, in a dynamic expanding arrangement. While it is not perfect, I find this side bar to be helpful and it remains consistent throughout the website.

We have found a way to zip it on the fly to reduce download size. To further augment the photo search conundrum, I built a series of searchable maps of Alaska that have links associated with the respective categories. At this time, they include maps for Geographic regions, Mountain ranges, Public lands and Towns and roads. I’ll continue to expand this, and streamline it for efficiency and functionality. I’ve got some ideas, but then again, I’m a photographer and it is high time to get out of the office and make some images. I’m always open to suggestions, comments and feedback about the website’s functionality and performance.

No comments: