johnsu01 (johnsu01) wrote,

Managing photos in Emacs

One of my favorite recent discoveries in emacs is M-x image-dired. Point it toward a directory with photos, and it creates a buffer full of thumbnails for you. That by itself is useful to me — I've not been happy with any other software I've tried for just looking at the pictures on my camera's SD card and copying off the ones I want. Everything has been either too heavy or too old.

It wouldn't be useful to me except for emacs's multi-tty feature, which lets me open a graphical X frame to an emacs session running in GNU Screen. I never used graphical emacs frames before because doing so meant not being able to keep the session persistent in Screen, which was much more important to me. But now I can have both.

Often I also need to rotate the photos when I copy them from my camera. You can do this by pressing L or R in the thumbnail buffer. At first it didn't work. A little documentation reading revealed that emacs calls to an external program to do the rotation, called "jpegtran". After installing that, I can rotate the pictures. This program might be packaged as part of "libjpeg-progs" in your GNU/Linux distribution.

In addition to rotation, photos can be copied, moved and deleted by using usual dired keybindings. There is also support for adding comments.

So, basic photo management — yet another common task I can do inside of emacs.

Tags: emacs, gnu/linux, photos
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