Most digital cameras also allow you to shoot and save your images as RAW files or TIFFs. These are uncompressed formats that yield maximum image quality. Although they're completely lossless formats, we don't usually advocate that you shoot in RAW or TIFF unless you know you'll need that kind of maximum quality. There's always a trade-off in photography, and the trade-off with shooting RAW or TIFF comes at the expense of memory space and speed. Because the files are so large, your camera can be slowed down dramatically as the files are written to the memory card.
Q) Although this is PCPhoto Magazine, I'm hoping you can help me with a question about the Mac platform. What kind of software programs would allow me to store and organize my catalog of photos on my iMac? Can I actually use software to create a slideshow of my images?
A) Before I answer your questions, let me take a moment to clarify the name of our magazine. Most people assume that since it's PCPhoto Magazine, it's a Microsoft Windows-centric magazine. In fact, since PC stands for "personal computer," and your iMac is a "personal computer," you should know that we use both systems on a regular basis. (Last month's HelpLine column was written on a Windows XP machine; this column is being written on a Macintosh PowerBook G4.)
Your options for your iMac vary from a couple of Apple-built software packages to upgrading the operating system (the following programs also have Windows versions and usually have free trials available from their websites).
As far as photo-organizing and browsing-software applications, iPhoto from Apple (www.apple.com) will get you started. Ulead makes another easy-to-use program, Ulead Photo Explorer for Mac (www.ulead.com). It works with OS 8.6, OS 9.x and OS X.