Forget that software for importing and editing photos that came with your digital camera.  Here are six reasons you should use Picasa from Google.

  1. Organizing photos on your computer: Once installed and launched, Picasa will catalog, by date and folder, all of your photos, no matter where on your computer they may be located. Note: By default, .gif and .png file types are not cataloged. This can be changed very easily.
  2. Getting photos on to your computer: Picasa is great at this. Once you connect your camera or memory card to your computer, Picasa will pop up and ask you if you want your snapshots imported to your machine. Of course, once you do this, the photos will be added to the Picasa catalog.
  3. Cropping: Once you start thumbing through your photos, you’ll probably want to make some changes. Cropping allows you to cut away the part of a picture you don’t want.
  4. Lighting, Color, Effects: Picasa has the ability to change the lighting and color of a photo. You will find “Fill Light”, “Highlight”, and “Shadows” most helpful. You can also add haze and sepia effects.
  5. Search: Of course, being a Google product, searching works very well. Search by dates, tags, even predominant color.
  6. Distribution: Picasa has three very easy ways to distribute your photos. Right from the program you can email them, post them to free, shareable Web albums that Google provides , or send to an online photo service like Shutterfly, Ritz, Snapfish, Walmart and many others.

Once you’ve played with Picasa for a few minutes, you’ll see why it should be your photo management tool.

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