Monday, August 08, 2005

Sharing Your Digital Photos

Without a doubt, one of the best features of digital photography is the ease with which your photos can be shared. Prior to the advent of digital cameras, if you wanted to show your vacation pictures to distant family members or friends, you either had to go to the same physical location so you could hand over your photo album, or you had to send the photos through the mail. Either way, you were looking at a time-consuming and often expensive chore.

All of that has changed with the widespread availability of digital cameras. These cameras are so affordable now that almost anyone who wants one can get one. This makes the photo sharing process much easier. Let's take a look at the most common ways to share your digital pictures.

If you only have a couple of pictures to send, then the obvious sharing option is email. Sending photos by email is very fast and convenient. While most people are probably very familiar with email these days, there are still some things you should keep in mind. First, not everyone has a broadband Internet connection, so don't send 10 pictures in a single email. This will make the email take a very long time to load. Second, you should crop and re-size your pictures to get the files down to a more manageable size. Not everyone has a 2GB email account, so the recipients might not appreciate having 50% of their Inbox capacity taken over by pictures of your dog.

Photo Hosting Website
Another great way to share your digital photos is to upload them to a photo hosting website. These are websites that exist for the sole purpose of serving as a storage spot for photos of all kinds. You have to pay for some of the better hosting sites, but you would most likely only need that kind of thing if you are a professional photographer. There are several free photo hosting sites, including PhotoBucket (, ImageShack (, and Yahoo Photos ( These websites remain free by selling other things, like printing services or photo gifts. The nice thing about photo hosting sites is that you can organize your digital pictures into albums. Then you can limit access to your albums to make sure that they are viewed only by the people that you want them to be viewed by. There are a couple of other benefits too, such as slideshow viewing and automatic photo re-sizing.

When all else fails, or when you just have a massive amount of photographs to share, you can always burn the images to a CD-ROM. CDs have enormous storage capacity, so you depending on the size of your image files, you can easily fit hundreds of pictures onto a single CD. It only takes a few minutes to burn the CD using a program such as Nero. Then, you just have to distribute the CDs, either in person or through the mail. Finally, your friends or family can view the photos on their computers at their own convenience.

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