Sunday, November 8, 2009

Windows Live Photo Gallery

Sorry for the delay in posting, but as some of you know, I’m off on a cruise. One of the relatively new features of Holland America cruises is a Microsoft “techspert” on every ship to get people hooked on Windows and Windows Live for writing blogs and posting photos.

This morning I attended a presentation on Windows Live Photo Gallery that demonstrated some of the program’s features. Basically it works like Picasa or any other photo storing and editing program—and it’s a free download from

But there’s a particularly intriguing feature in Windows Live Photo Gallery—the ability to identify individual faces in uploaded photos and to have the program “learn” these faces and automatically identify them in future photos. Our techspert demonstrated how you can then search for all photos with a particular person identified in them without having to actually look at each photo. Pretty cool!

It seems to me that this might be a very useful feature for genealogists. If you can identify “Great Aunt Martha” in a series of scanned photos that you know are of her, Windows Live Photo Gallery might be able to identify her in other photos you’ve scanned but didn’t know exactly who was in them. It’s definitely worth a try. Just be sure to use the exact same name for each time an individual appears in one of your photos.

Do try this out and let me know how it works for you.

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