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Google Picasa

Student Sitting at Computer with Instructor Helping

Picasa is a simple to use picture management software with many great features for working with images. With Picasa, you can create Web albums, organize pictures into files, create beautiful collages, and complete simple picture editing tasks to improve the quality of your pictures. Picasa allows you to share your pictures with friends and family, or publish them for the entire world to see. Picasa has many of the same features as a simple photo editing software, but because it is Web-based, it allows easier ways to share your pictures and collaborate on different projects related to pictures. A few great features in Picasa is the ability to watermark your images, add text caption to images, touch-up images to eliminate red eye and blemishes, manipulate images by cropping, and shifting from landscape to portrait. Even though many photo software has many of these features, the power in Picasa is the ability to share your pictures over the Web by publishing your photos, albums, slide shows, and collages.


Picasa Video Tutorials

Mark's PIP Picasa Video

Picasa Video Tutorial Part I

Picasa Video Tutorial Part II

How to Customize your YouTube Channel using Picasa

Create Web Albums

Apply Picasa in the Classroom

Picasa can be used like other picture editing software programs. The most common one is Photoshop, but for simple projects related to using pictures, Picasa can provide editing and organizing tools. Picasa is much easier to use than most photo management software, and will not frustrate you like many of the complicated ones like Photoshop and Fireworks. Picasa would be valuable for use in high school art or photo classes, and for combining several Google applications into one project using Picasa for managing photos and for its editing tools. Adding photos to a project is often required in the class project. One idea for a class project is students could use Google Maps to create a complete record of their vacation or where ever they choose to work with, and use Picasa to touch up the pictures, make a collage, and add them to Google Maps as destination pictures with educational information about the pictures and sites the student visited, or is part of the project. This type of assignment could be used in a Social Studies class, History class, sociology class, and even a class about a foreign language. A personalized map will allow the student to add these features to enhance their maps, putting a higher value on the entire project from an educational perspective.

Also, a beginning computer class could use Picasa and other Google applications to learn how to work with Web-based software applications. Most of the major software categories are represented in the Google suite of applications, and since they are simple to use, beginning students could learn these applications to understand the basic functions of the major application types.

Finally, Picasa integrates well with Docs, Sites, Blogger, Groups, and other Google applications. If you need to add pictures to your project, use Picasa to organize and edit them, then link them directly to your Google application you are working with.

Next: Google Maps

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© 2008 By Mark C. Frank, Master of Educational Technology Student @ Boise State University