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Issue 7.1


Funtastic Photos

Issue: 7.1 (November/December 2008)
Author: Dave Mancuso
Article Description: No description available.
Article Length (in bytes): 3,994
Starting Page Number: 10
Article Number: 7102
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Full text of article...

Joy Sha and Sam Rowlands, the team who make up Ohanaware, first made a splash last year with their game Recyclorama. Not content to rest on their laurels, they unveiled a new photo editing application this year called Funtastic Photos. Its goal seems to be the same as the old Apple marketing campaign: fits in, stands out. More than that, it's just plain fun.

Upon launch, Funtastic Photos accesses your Pictures folder and your iPhoto pictures inside it. It conveniently looks in your Downloads folder too, as well as your PhotoBooth and Mail Downloads folders. Anywhere you might have pictures, Funtastic Photos tries to find them for you. It presents them to you in a familiar browser window similar to iPhoto, but with a few innovative twists. It models QuickLook for the photos it displays both with a button and with the spacebar, just as in the Finder. Better yet is the browser's Column View. Once I selected this view, I never left it. It's a very convenient way to view photos, much better than iPhoto.

Funtastic Photos reads and writes common file formats, and handles metadata in photos. Photo information can be edited and saved just as you'd expect.

Within minutes of launching the program, the fun begins. Editing pictures is easy, with a number of pre-built One-Click styles. If you wish, click Advanced Options to tweak photos to your heart's content. All editing is non-destructive, and Funtastic Photos doesn't tamper with the original files. It saves its pictures in your Documents folder in a Funtastic Photos folder. You can go back to your original photo after years of editing if you wish.

The application offers much more than photo editing. Print Layouts give you a number of slick, impressive templates in which to format, arrange, and print your picture. The Print Layouts are wonderful, much more varied and useful than iPhoto books for personal projects. My favorite Print Layouts are the Funtastic Cube® and the Mini Fun Book. The Picture Collage is cool too, and something you'd pay for elsewhere. In fact, you'd save several times the cost of the product pretty quickly using these features. You can tell that Joy's design experience has really brought out the best in Sam's programming skills. It demonstrates how important design is to a successful application.

Your photos aren't just for yourself, and the application recognizes that. It offers a number of options to share your pictures. The Share Via option is fantastic, spanning email, various online services (e.g., Picasa or Flickr), or on iChat, or more. It's stunning how easy sharing your pictures becomes with Funtastic Photos.

As you can guess, I've become a fan of this application. A side note: don't show it to your wife, or you won't get your computer back for several hours. It's not often that you find an application that dazzles and delights you. Funtastic Photos is such a product.

End of article.