One for the books

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They say that timing is everything. If so, then my week with iPhoto can be summed up in one word:


It’s like this:

April is a huge birthday month for members of my family—apparently my clan is at its most fertile just after the 4th of July. As do her parents, the female units of this clan dote on my child (or, at least, pretend to in order to curry favor so that I’ll fix their Macs the next time one acts up).

In honor of this dotage, I set out to create a granddaughter-themed iPhoto book for my mother. Devoted son that I am, I resolved to supply her with nothing but the best—the large format, hardcover version. Lazy son that I am, I resolved to repurpose the same book layout I used for a softcover version of the book that I created for my wife and me.

Opening iPhoto 5, I chose the saved softcover book layout in the program’s Source list, clicked the Themes button at the bottom of the page, chose Hardcover Large - 11” x 8 1/2” from the pop-up window in the resulting sheet, clicked Choose Theme, and then threw an apoplectic fit as iPhoto rearranged the layout of half the book’s pages.

After calming down I invoked the Undo command and the book’s layout returned to its original softcover (and correct) version. Repeated attempts to choose the hardcover version without mucking up the book’s layout failed. Giving it up as a sign that I was meant to work a little harder for the ones I love, I relaid out the book.

That was Tuesday.

Yesterday, Apple released the iPhoto 5.0.2 Update. The company tells us that changes in the update include:

  • The book layout mode now allows resizable thumbnail photos for easier layout
  • Slideshow performance is improved on G3 systems
  • The exporting of slideshows to iDVD has been improved
  • Photo-editing performance is dramatically enhanced on G3 systems
  • The “Fit Slideshow to Music” feature more tightly synchronizes slideshows with music

I’ll add one more:

  • iPhoto no longer screws up layouts when you want to do something as simple as slap a new cover on your book.

My timing was off this time. Thankfully, iPhoto is now ready for the next batch of books that I’m preparing for this summer’s Conception Day festival. Here’s hoping that yours is just a productive.

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