When you have a folderful of digital images to share with others, chances are you'll want to create an album so visitors to your Web site can browse them easily. But coding dozens of Previous and Next links between photos can be tedious. There's a better way: Stone Designs' PhotoToWeb 1.3.3, an OS X-only application that makes building a Web site as effortless as dragging and dropping folders of images.
Dragging a folder containing almost any sort of image (including JPEG, PICT, TIFF, PDF, PNG, and GIF) onto PhotoToWeb gives you an album window where you can rename, crop, scale, rotate, reorder, or delete your pictures. You can annotate each image with captions, titles, even stories that include hyperlinks. If you drag a folder that contains subfolders with images, you get a hierarchical album, and the resulting site will have a main index page with links to the subdirectories.
Once your images are ready, you choose the Create Web Pages command, which lets you select layout options for your site and then generates HTML files, thumbnail and full-size versions of each image, and navigation buttons, ready to be uploaded to your Web server. Sites can be based on the four included templates, but there's no easy way to create your own templates (although you can customize your site by adding your own HTML).
As capable as PhotoToWeb is, it's a little expensive for what it does. One competitor, iView Multimedia's iView MediaPro ( ; Reviews, August 2001), is only $45 and is a terrific media cataloger that also creates customizable Web photo albums. PhotoToWeb also suffers a bit from its prior life as a NextStep application, using some confusing terminology and containing a few puzzling interface options.
Macworld's Buying Advice
PhotoToWeb can save you a lot of time and makes sharing images over the Web easy. While itit'sis a bit overpriced as a stand-alone product, it's also available as part of the $299 Stone Studio (reviewed in the upcoming September 2001 issue). In that bundle, PhotoToWeb is a steal.