That 15th March deadline is approaching fast for the cutting off picasa in favour of google photos. I’m choosing to keep picasa running on my computers, as long as I can. It is easy to use and fits in well with the other applications I use (ok there is some tension between my various photo software mistresses) but picasa is very reliable. She definitely handles the reading of my SD cards (via a card reader) faster and more efficiently than any other program I’ve tried and gives me flexibility of which files (I can select thumbnails) and importantly weather I want to delete upload files or not. Also the organization of subfolders to load into (I prefer a date base format YYYY-MMM-DD so that the sub-directories for each day are in chronological order)
It is with family photos (which I almost never post on-line now) that she really still outshines other software. Her face recognition is a cut above the other offerings, there are the occasional misclassification (interestingly often with other family members or their parents as a child). Importantly it is easy to correct misclassifications. This is incredibly useful to find people, and therein lies one of the biggest issues, how to save this organization, if picasa becomes truly obsolete. (I do have a workable solution which I will outline in a future post). The family friendly aspects extend in her easy of use and the creation of albums in addition to the data based upload organization. For all majour family events I also select the better photos and put them straight in an album (the album appears to contains those photos but is just a link back to the original photo (where ever it is stored). It is then very easy to set up a slide show of that event (and perhaps chrome cast it to a TV) or in the past upload and share that album via Picasa web album. (Even if google do provide other a way to access existing web albums, I would be wary of sharing anything on google photos now and definitely can not recommend it).
I have put together a few workshop on digital photography for artist and have always recommended picasa as the best way for them to get organized on a PC (sorry but I have given up trying to help those in the apple-verse). It was the easy visually select and tagging and/or creating albums that meant that artist could take charge of large reference collects (without having to tediously give metatag every image). The fact that it is a non-destructive manager & editor is often overlooked, but this help keep collection managable. Those used to illustrator of bit-map graphics ediotors some get overwhelmed with versions. Most photo software now offers similar ease of organization. Whilst not extensive picasa does provide most of what an artist might want in terms of manipulating images to support and provide reference for their art. Typically this might be cropping, adjusting tone and colour and maybe collage. I also show them the way to better composition via colour desaturation (and notan), layers and how powerful the retouch brush (to clone away things) can be (albeit the one process that adjust the original but keeps a copy). If their art is mainly photographical based and they shoot RAW they do probably need extra photo finishing features (like lightroom, photoshop and/or add-ins, browsers like OnOne10) however these can share the photos with picasa. Importantly because picasa was a free download it fits most artist merge budgets (if they even have one or money to spare)
Picasa is on all my computers and is the goto application if I want to find a photo. Whilst I am far from an obsessive metadata or keyword tagger, there is enough organization logic build in via face recognition, my albums, the chorological upload order and occasional key wording. I actually have a separate picasa library that is my catalogue to my photo archive. (and have a copied of the picasa install package stored with that archive)
At the moment I expect picasa on my PCs to function as normal (it does work fine under windows 10, despite the website only suggesting windows 7+ compatibility), except for the on-line web album connection. However it is probable that it might not be loadable onto future version of operating systems or hardware (eg it doesn’t work on apple mac or ipad, or on android phones). Thus another set of issues I’m working on and will post about soon is protecting the organization and context of the photo collection. So I will be sticking with picasa, on all my computers even after March 15th. After my hassles with windows 10 I have grown to dread upgrades anyway.