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Digital Asset Management

Digital asset management (DAM) is the name applied to software that allows you to organize digital images, but it's more than just software to use. We prefer to think of digital asset management as a comprehensive image-management system that enables you to name images, back them up, categorize and assign keywords to them, store file attributes and metadata, and most important, do all of these things in a consistent way. Geared toward providing sophisticated organization for the professional photographer with a large library of images, an image management system provides a more robust solution for image management than a simple folder structure as discussed in Chapter 9. Of course, a good DAM system will let you find the right image when you need it, but it offers a lot more than that, which we will discuss in the following sections. In the long run a little effort on the front end to create a consistent system you can work with will pay you dividends in less time wasted, much less frustration, and fewer gray hairs.

Tip

You may not think you're going to take enough pictures to merit a DAM system. Mark our words: If you avoid organizing your digital camera files, you'll find yourself using the D word with the other connotation pretty regularly as you look for an image you desperately need but just can't find.



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