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Sharing Basics for Photoshop Elements 10

Before you delve into making Photoshop Elements 10 creations for screen viewing, you should be familiar with your available options for not only screen images, but also sharing — particularly online sharing services. You also need to be familiar with the acceptable standards for online hosts, where you eventually expect to send your creations, and the kinds of devices people are likely to use to view your creations.

Before you choose a sharing activity and ultimately begin work on a creation, you need to ask a few questions:

  • What device(s) are going to display your creations? When it comes to viewing photos and movies, you have choices that include computers (including desktops, notebooks, and netbooks), handheld devices such as mobile phones and tablets (such as the Apple iPad), and TVs.

    If you want your creations to be viewable on all devices, then you need to use different Elements tools and file formats than you would use for showing creations exclusively on a TV or on a computer.

    Consider two things regarding devices and viewing your creations:

    • Adobe Flash. Some hosts convert your video uploads to Adobe Flash. If you want to share photos with iPhone/iPod/iPad users (more than one hundred million and counting), then stay away from any host that supports Flash-only conversions.

    • Storage space. Hosts vary greatly in terms of space allocated for storing content. If you want to share large video files, be certain the storage host you choose allocates enough storage space to permit you to upload your files.

  • What storage hosts are the most popular? From within Photoshop Elements, you can export directly to Facebook, Flickr, Adobe Photoshop Showcase (Photoshop.com), Kodak Easyshare Gallery, and SmugMug Gallery. Some of these providers may be new to you. Just be aware that they all perform a similar kind of service where photos are uploaded and people you invite to see your creations can access them.

    The most popular online sharing services include the following:

    • Facebook. Facebook is a private online service that’s clearly among the most popular worldwide for sharing photos. Facebook offers you up to 200 photos maximum per album, up to 1,024MB for each video, and unlimited space for all your albums and videos.

      When you submit videos to Facebook, the videos are transcoded to Adobe Flash for viewing on computers but also contain coding for viewing on iPhone/iPod/iPad. This is all transparent to the user. You just upload a video in any one of more than a dozen different formats, and any device can view the video. Facebook is clearly the leader for hosting all your creations.

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    • Flickr. Whereas Facebook provides you with near limitless options, Flickr (operated by Yahoo!) is much more restrictive. Flickr assesses maximum storage per user according to bandwidth. You can only upload so many times, then you have to wait until the next month to upload additional photos.

      It’s much more limiting than other services, and video files are restricted to small sizes. You can upgrade to a premium account for a fee, but why bother when you can get it all free with a much better user interface on Facebook?

    • MySpace. MySpace (operated by Google) is great until you want to share videos with iPhone/iPod/iPad users. All their videos are transcoded to Adobe Flash and the Apple devices can’t see them.

    • Photoshop.com. The entire user interface for Photoshop.com (operated by Adobe) is Adobe Flash. If you want to share videos with iPhone/iPod/iPad users, they can’t get into the site, let alone view any photos or videos.

  • What types of creations can you share? Obviously, you can upload individual photos to any one of the online services. You can use the Share panel and choose to share directly to Flickr, Facebook, and SmugMug Gallery, and click the More Options button to share with Kodak Easyshare Gallery.

    Also in the Share panel is CEIVA Photo Frame, where you can place orders for photo frames and share photos. In addition to uploading single photos to a service, some of the creations you might want to share include the following:

    • Slide shows. On Windows, you can create a slide show and choose to export the slide show as a movie file (.wmv) or a PDF. On the Macintosh, you are limited to PDF only. If you work on Windows, export to .wmv and upload your file to an online host. If you use Facebook, all devices show your creations.

      Slide shows have an additional benefit in supporting audio files. You can add audio to the creations, and the audio plays on all devices if you upload them to Facebook. If you try to upload the same file to Flickr, more often than not, the file will be too large to host.

    • Flipbooks. Flipbooks are Windows-only creations. Flipbooks are similar to slide shows, except that they don’t include transition effects and audio support. You can easily upload flipbooks to both Facebook and Flickr. Unless you have a huge number of photos, you aren’t likely to run into a file size constraint when uploading to Flickr.

    • Webhosting. If you want to host videos on your own web site and make the videos available to iPhone/iPod/iPad users as well as computer users, you need a little help from Adobe Premiere Elements. In Premiere Elements you can export video for mobile devices, and the resultant file can be viewed on an iPhone/iPod/iPad as well as a computer.

      Also, Premiere Elements supports some of the services on the Macintosh that you don’t have available in Photoshop Elements, such as slide shows exported as movie files and flipbooks.

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