iPhoto '09: The Missing Manual
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: April 2009
Pages: 384

With iPhoto '09, Apple's popular photo organizer and editing program is better than ever. Unfortunately, intuitive as it may be, iPhoto still has the power to confuse anyone who uses it. That's why more people rely on our Missing Manual than any other iPhoto resource. Author and New York Times tech columnist David Pogue provides clear and objective guidance on every iPhoto feature, including new tools such as face recognition, place recognition based on GPS data, themed slideshows, online sharing, enhanced editing, and travel maps. You'll find step-by-step instructions, along with many undocumented tips and tricks.

With iPhoto '09: The Missing Manual, you will:

  • Get a course in picture-taking and digital cameras -- how to buy and use a digital camera, how to compose brilliant photos in various situations
  • Import, organize, and file your photos -- and learn how to search and edit them
  • Create slideshows, photo books, calendars, and greeting cards, and either make or order prints
  • Share photos on websites or by email, and turn photos into screensavers or desktop pictures
  • Learn to manage your Photo Libraries, use plug-ins, and get photos to and from camera phones

There's much more in this comprehensive guide. Discover today why iPhoto '09: The Missing Manual is the top-selling iPhoto book.

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oreillyiPhoto '09: The Missing Manual

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(7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)


David Pogue has done it again.

By Cardiff Q

from San Diego, CA

Verified Reviewer


  • Accurate
  • Concise
  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written


    Best Uses

    • Expert
    • Intermediate
    • Novice
    • Student

    Comments about oreilly iPhoto '09: The Missing Manual:

    David Pogue has done it again, this time with the very able assistance of J. D. Biersdorfer. This latest book in the "Missing Manual" series, iPhoto '09 The Missing Manual, published by O'Reilly Media, is an equally valuable resource for those new to the Mac and/or iPhoto as well as for those who have used iPhoto for many years.

    Part One, iPhoto Basics, covers everything from getting photos from the camera into iPhoto to organizing, and editing them once they are there. Particularly helpful is the chapter on the newest organizing features, introduced in iPhoto '09, Faces and Places. Using the face recognition method is fairly straightforward, while manually geotagging photos is more challenging. Pogue's step-by-step guidance makes it easy. The section on editing photos is so thorough and revealing that even novices can produce professional-looking results with ease. Those who shoot in RAW will find the advice in that section particularly helpful.

    Part Two, Meet Your Public, guides the reader in the making of prints, web galleries, DVD slideshows and more, including publishing to Flickr and Facebook. Detailed instructions for using iPhoto to make and order books, calendars and cards is included. Using the information provided saves not only precious time but also can save money while assuring good results that will wow family and friends.

    Part Three, Photo Stunts, is devoted to designing and building Screen Savers; finding prewritten AppleScripts, and developing Automator Actions that add new and timesaving features to iPhoto. Methods for managing the thousands of photos that eventually populate iPhoto by burning them to disc or backing them up to an external disk is explained. iPhoto '09 The Missing Manual explains how to create, swap, and merge iPhoto Libraries and the pitfalls to avoid.

    Part Four, Appendixes, though brief, is packed with very important and helpful information. The first section, on Troubleshooting, can save the day when things go awry. How to retrieve photos using Time Machine is worth memorizing. iPhoto '09 Menu by Menu explains in useful detail every one of the menu items included in the program.

    Although those coming from using other photo management programs (e.g., Picasa) might wish for more in this book to ease their transition to iPhoto, the information in this book will shorten their learning curve while providing a series of confidence-building successes.

    As Pogue himself says, the Missing Manual books are "entertaining [and] unafraid to state when a feature is useless or doesn't work right." The indispensible information contained in this book is delivered in an easy-to-understand, witty, and engaging way. Even those with years of experience with previous versions of iPhoto will learn new tricks. And everyone will benefit from keeping iPhoto '09 The Missing Manual as a handy reference book and valuable resource.

    (9 of 10 customers found this review helpful)


    Get Your Money's Worth From iPhoto

    By Roger Bernau

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly iPhoto '09: The Missing Manual:

    I was recently offered the opportunity to review the newly released book, "iPhoto '09 _ The Missing Manual", I jumped at it. This is the latest in a series of books O'Reilly has published on each version iPhoto. I am happy to say that I have read and reviewed them all _ and enjoyed them.

    In scanning back over my reviews to get a sense of how the series has developed I momentarily was surprised to note that there was nothing for iPhoto 3. Then I remembered that there was no iPhoto 3! _ something to do with the numbering of iLife versions which initially were out of synch with iPhoto. Just to confuse you, I note that iPhoto '09 could have been called "iPhoto 6", the fifth version of iPhoto!

    David Progue is one of the authors and his co author for this version. is J.D. Biersdorfer. A quote on the cover of the book suggests that David Progue is one of the world's best explainers, and I would have to agree.

    The Missing Manual Series of books covers a large number of Mac and other subjects, mainly software titles. The motto of the series is 'The book that should have been in the box'. For those too young to remember, or even to have known, computer software used to come with detailed instruction manuals telling you all about how to use all of their features, in the same box as the floppy disks. Ah, the good old days, when the features could be hidden so well that you needed a book to find them!

    Of course these days the basic features of a software program are pretty obvious and easy to find _ given the mouse driven interface, menus and built in (and on line) Help. Aren't they , ? Personally I often find that I grab for a manual, when I have one, after the built in software Help can't (help, that is), or it is taking too darn long for me to delve through it. A good manual with a good index quickly reduces my stress level.

    So, what about "iPhoto '09 _ The Missing Manual"? For a start, as usual I compared the book Table of Contents with that of the previous version to see what is different. Straight off I found what could be an interesting commentary on how the digital camera market has matured over the past few years. Up till now the iPhoto manuals have kicked off with a substantial section on digital photography, digital cameras and on photo taking. The latest version no longer includes this. Fair enough I guess, digital cameras are pretty common now and even many phones have one. So the manual now concentrates on iPhoto and leaves the actual photography to other books. I should mention that the final appendix does give some references for camera selection and other photography information.

    The book is a quality softcover of the type that will stay open on the desk without forcing the spine. The paper is a semi gloss, the text is clear, the layout logical and the pictures are all in colour. It has 368 pages and includes a 4 page table of contents and a 13 and a bit page index.

    The manual is divided into four parts as follows:

    Part One _ includes importing photos into iPhoto, using the program, storing and retrieving and editing. The editing function has improved in iPhoto '09, including handling of RAW images, and it all seems to be covered. There is a chapter on the two new features of Faces and Places. 'Faces' is a function that can automatically recognise faces in photos allowing users to name and group subjects. 'Places' allows the tagging of photos with place data (some cameras can do this automatically).

    Part Two _ is all about outputting and using the photos stored. This includes making prints, email and web/network sharing, outsourcing books, calendars and cards and using photos in movies and iDVD.

    Part Three _ delves into what could be called more technical subjects including screen savers, AppleScript, Automator and file management.

    Part Four _ holds the appendices on troubleshooting, explanations of every iPhoto menu item and references for further information.

    In the back of the book is advice that the equivalent of a CD of software, practice files etc is available on Web _ "The Missing CD" _ at www.missingmanuals.com.

    One of the great things about iPhoto is its ability to edit photos, without having to undertake the equivalent of study for a PhD. I started to read up on the subject in Chapter 5 and quickly became engrossed on the subject of the histogram in the adjustment panel (so that's how it works!!). It took me five minutes before I could tear myself away to get back to this review. Everywhere I dipped into the book there was plenty to capture the interest. Did you know, for example that iPhoto '09 can hold ten times the number of photos the previous version could? that's 250,000 photos! How long would to even take that many?

    The book is a beautifully written, engaging manual. It would be ideal for the iPhoto beginner and highly useful for the experienced. The layout is logical, the colour pictures are plentiful and good aids to understanding, and the index is comprehensive.

    This is a good manual. I would suggest that without it you cannot get your money's worth from iPhoto.

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