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Why I don't like to use the "attach photo" option

Let me first say that I appreciate the CH team's efforts to respond to user feedback since the second relaunch and that some changes have made a world of difference. Let me also say that, as an avid photo poster and general proponent of photos on this site, I also appreciate the efforts to add a photo posting feature. I tried to take advantage of this option in the beginning, but I've decided that I just don't like it and haven't been using it much for the following reasons:

1. The photos are all clustered on the bottom of the post. No option to embed within text.

2. The images are exactly the same size as the avatars. Since I don't have an avatar (or have chosen "white space" as my avatar), it's easy to overlook my photo unless I highlight it in some way so people will more likely notice and click to enlarge. Even if I had an avatar, it's easy to miss.

3. The max of four photos is limiting. I sometimes need to add more to illustrate a process or series of dishes within a meal.

4. Loading even two photos seems to take too much time on my computer. Much quicker to upload to other sites and then add those links in my text.

5. Photos seem to still be getting cropped. I posted one photo this AM on the HC board and it cropped off the sides. Not aesthetically pleasing...

6. No ability to add descriptive captions to photos.

There may be other reasons that I'm forgetting, but I'm having the most issues w/ the above. I'm fine to continue using my old method of linking to other sites, but it seems a shame that this feature can't be better utilized or improved upon. Thought you might like to know...thanks for listening.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. All good points, I second everything you said.

    1. Thanks, CL. I've noticed that you've been using photobucket, and wondered about that. I agree that all of the issues you've outlined are problems and would add one more: not being able to add a picture when editing a post is also a limitation.

      That being said, I love having the photos all in one place. Browsing them is a pleasure, and they've clued me in to great posts that I might've otherwise missed. Some examples:
      Rubee's tantalizing photos: http://www.chow.com/profile/10271/photos
      Carb Lover's food porn extravaganza: http://www.chow.com/profile/10371/photos

      12 Replies
      1. re: rose water

        Yes, having all the photos in one place as part of a user's profile is nice; I sort of forgot about that feature. That's why having captions would be nice, so people know what the photo refers to. This may be too difficult to set up, but it would be cool to click on the photo and not only have a caption but also a link to the original post. For instance, looking at my photo profile, one has no idea which are from restaurant vs. home meals and on which board to find more info.

        I've been enjoying your lovely photos too, rose water!

        1. re: Carb Lover

          Hmm...it used to work that way! That's very strange. Previously, if you clicked on a photo it would take you to the thread where the photo was originally posted. That's how I happened upon the Rubee's lovely Zuni salsa verde. If that function's gone, that's a big loss. Engineers, please bring it back. The decontextualized photos are pretty, but without connection to the original posts, they're much less useful.

          (And thanks, CL, re my photos. They'll never reach the photographic greatness of yours, but I'm having fun!)

          1. re: rose water

            Really?!! Photos linked to original threads at some point? I never noticed that. That would be wonderful...

            1. re: rose water

              If you roll over one of the photos in your My Chow, the word "source" appears. Click on that and it will take you to the thread where the photo appears.

              1. re: Melanie Wong

                It used to. Unfortunately doesn't seem to anymore.

                1. re: rose water

                  It's working for me right now on your page. Maybe there's a browser difference.

                  1. re: Melanie Wong

                    It would be really nice, if instructions on usage of photo features could be put into a FAQ or something. After reading your post, I went to CarbLover's page, clicked on her photos page, and sure enough, when you hover your mouse over the thumbnails, *some* of them reveal the phrase "source" along the bottom of the thumnail. Of course when "source" is in a white colored font, it is VERY hard to notice, at least to these old eyes.

                    So if you click on "source" within a thumbnail you get taken to the thread where the photo was posted, if you click on any part of the thumbnail other than "source" you get an enlarged, full view of the photo.

                    It is these kind of "hidden" features/functions that when never explained, but just deployed in to the software, raise frustration levels, and spur otherwise needless feed-back on Site and Technical Support boards.

                    1. re: ChinoWayne

                      Yep, I've stumbled upon a couple hidden features of this type on the site. Most recent was putting the zip code for a restaurant in the search box and popping up the piece in The Digest. And, the zip code was no where in the text, so it must be coded elsewhere. It doesn't work for every Digest article, so I guess there's just a test sample for now. Maybe these features aren't detailed anywhere for now because they're not fully deployed and we should expect some changes in how they work.

                    2. re: Melanie Wong

                      Strange. I'm using IE6 at work and cleared my cookies/cache (the extent to which i know how to troubleshoot). Still can enlarge a photo by clicking on it, but the white floating "source" link doesn't show up.

                      1. re: rose water

                        I use IE6 at home and work and never have noticed the "source" link. When I roll over a photo, there's just an img #.

                        1. re: Carb Lover

                          I am using IE7 and I see the "source" link.

                          1. re: Carb Lover

                            I'm using firefox now and the "source" link is back...now onto the buggy uploading issues...

            2. I stopped using it because it stopped working. Haven't felt compelled to try again since the tech support never bothered to respond or update the matter.

              1. The "attach photo" function doesn't always work.

                I've tried it three times - it worked twice. When it failed, there was no message or indication of what went wrong - the browser hung and I had to kill it. When I checked my post, the text was there but the picture wasn't.

                So, like ttriche, I've stopped using it. It's too flaky and hard to figure out.


                1. Thanks for your feedback, Carb Lover--and everyone else! I don't think the photo upload is meant to be in its final form (especially since, as others note, it's sometimes flaky about uploading at all), and this thread has some great feedback on things to address in future iterations.

                  -- Jacquilynne, Community Manager for Chowhound

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: Jacquilynne

                    For whatever reason, I've been having better luck lately with uploading photos.

                    1. re: Jacquilynne

                      Thanks for your reply, Jacquilynne. Nice to know our input has been noted. Look forward to future improvements.

                      1. re: Carb Lover

                        just seeing if this works as I too am having problems with photos Thanks for letting me test

                        1. re: ccmurieta

                          Not only does it work, but it looks very interesting! What is it? :)

                          1. re: kattyeyes

                            That was my Crawfish Quesadilla with Corn Relish and Avocado from Bayona in New Orleans. It was delicious!!!!!! :)

                      2. re: Jacquilynne

                        Thanks for responding. Maybe when it's all shaken out, you might post something on the front page. I didn't realize that the photo upload/attachment thingy was still in development or I'd have been less harsh about my assessment.

                        Having the ability to include photos in posts would be grand -- especially for illustrating steps in a recipe, or techniques, or preparations. Being able to group images into albums, even if only for the purpose of ordering them sensibly or labeling them with a tag, would also be nice. The rollover-to-enlarge thing is nice, but IMHO needs work.

                        Anyways, thanks for the effort you're putting in to revamp the site. I've done this for other, slightly smaller sites and it's always harder than it looks. CH is doing a good job of it.

                        1. re: Jacquilynne

                          AHEM, that was almost a year ago and I had problems this morning.

                          I posted a reply with four pictures and some pictures were accidentally redundant so I deleted the redundant ones and had to add another post to add the missing pics (because you can only edit text, once you post it. Dumb! One pic uploaded and the other didn’t. Well, each time you try and upload pics it must be accomplished through a NEW post, which was getting tiring and leaving me feeling foolish because I had to add unnecessary posts just to get the pictures added! Then they are really not with my post and certainly not imbedded where I want them to be. The thumbnail size is ridiculous.
                          I heartily concur that there should be a FAQ (answer) for posting pics.I still don't know if the 550 X 550 PX is the max size without software intervention to modify it. I have stayed within the limits of 2meg for four images. Still one did not upload.
                          Believe me, I like Chowhound and don't see a good alternative for my chowish needs. I'm going to let this wish list continue elsewhere as this is about photo upload issues.....

                          1. re: Scargod

                            Yeah, I still don't use the photo uploading feature since nothing has changed.

                            I also think it's a shame that although the Places feature has a photo upload option, no one seems to be using it. I can see why though: one has to upload photos again to the Places page even though one may have already uploaded photos in the body of a post. There has to be a more elegant and efficient way to link all of this data...

                            1. re: Carb Lover

                              i just tried to upload a photo of a hacked recipe and it doesn't show up.

                              they really should find someone who knows a bit more about usability...

                              there really shouldn't be any 'hidden' things to find. under myChow-photos, you should be able to upload there and have a link for trouble; the reason you can't and lack-o-link, is beyond me.

                              1. re: adrianneleigh

                                The reason there's no upload directly to 'my chow' photos is that it's not meant to be a general image repository. You can upload photos to a specific post or recipe (and then they appear in your 'my chow' section), but the intent is not for people to upload photos and just have them in their profile -- it's to upload only those photos that are relevant to what they're posting about.

                                I've been trying to get more info on photos and problem solving for photos for our FAQ, but have thus far been unsuccessful.

                                Some people, though, have noted that if they can't upload the photo with the recipe, they can sometimes edit the recipe and successfully upload it after -- if you're still within the edit window for your hack, can you try that.

                        2. What's the ugliest part of your body?
                          Some say it's your nose
                          Some say it's your toes
                          But we know it's
                          Your mind, it's your mind.
                          Frank Zappa
                          The eyes are the mirror of the soul,
                          Hence fear of photos.

                          1. I've given up on attaching a photo. Why is this so hard. My photo has been reduced and it still won't take.

                            15 Replies
                            1. re: sleepycat

                              I've given up, too. The frustration is more than I can bear. All my attempts are for naught.

                              1. re: Cynsa

                                I wonder what the issue is - I attach photos all the time - I'm using IE, and reduce them by 25% and save before I attach them.

                                Edit - I meant - I reduce them TO 25% of their original size.

                                1. re: MMRuth

                                  Never had a problem either. Every pic I've tried to post has posted.

                                  1. re: hannaone

                                    Every once and a while I have a problem b/c the photo is too big - I've forgotten to reduce it in size - but that's it -and now I've gotten in the habit of reducing them as soon as I load them onto my computer.

                              2. re: sleepycat

                                As I said above (http://www.chowhound.com/topics/38535...) Chowhound should have a FAQ about adding pictures and find out what's going on with glitches (if they exist) and clear this all up. This borders on unprofessional, and I speak from a web developer/designer/photographer point of view. Most sites have image posting rules, so just saying that 2 meg is the limit is not enough! I don't like the way that the software being used (that resizes the images) wrecks the quality if you don't submit it "just so". I want to know what the specifications are for "optimizing" an uploaded image.

                                It is not unusual for the software de-optimize the image if you upload an odd-size image or inappropriate file size. Not everyone has Photoshop to optimize the images for the web or knows the ins-and-outs of the process. A little more detailed information would probably help a lot of people with their struggles uploading pictures. You know what they say.... A picture says a thousand words. Actions also speak volumes.

                                That is why many of us Chowhounders are discriminating and have high expectations of finer (or even not-so-finer) restaurants, IE, paying attention to detail, being consistent, getting things right, fixing things that are wrong and training the waitstaff how to properly do their job (etc).

                                Thanks for listening; I have enjoyed my time on the soapbox. I hope I don't get deleted like some of the other heavy-handed censorship you have exercised recently.

                                1. re: sleepycat

                                  Perhaps if you tell us how you're going about trying to reduce the size of your photos someone here might be able to help, since that surely is the problem. In general, your photos should be 72 pixels per inch and not larger than about 6" X 8" or 600 by 450 pixels.

                                  1. re: JoanN

                                    Looking at other images (and from my own submisions) it appears you have to fit into a 550 X 550 pixel format. And the web standard is 72 pixels per inch. I see images that are 550 X 420 all the time on CH. Look at the image properties. Saying that, my images have been resized to odd sizes when they are at or under that 550px size. They are often distorted, darker and the quality downgraded from the process.
                                    See Johnny Ray's - Milford, CT (New England) the shot of the banquettes. Right now I'm looking at the "for the web" image before being sent and the image after Chowhound posted it, side by side.. The CH picture has been made much darker and less colorful! The seating is supposed to be a bright salmon color. It has been enlarged from 400 X 300 to 430 X 330 which distorts it because it is 7.5% in one direction and 10% in the other. The detail and color is getting totally ruined on most images I upload. I'm beginning to agree with others; what's the point?

                                    1. re: Scargod

                                      I see what you’re getting at, and maybe I’ve just been lucky. I just opened this photo


                                      in Photoshop. My original photo (as saved for Web and CH posting) was 546 X 432 pixels. The resized CH photo is 520 X 390, so I’m getting less distortion than you are. And when I open them side-by-side, I can barely tell the difference between them—in either color or detail. Don’t know enough about all this to say why, just that for the most part I've rarely been displeased with the way my photos show up on the site.

                                    2. re: JoanN

                                      This is a test. I am sending a 550 X 366 image using Imageready. Focaccia I made

                                      1. re: Scargod

                                        I think that looks great. Are you pleased with it?

                                        1. re: JoanN

                                          Yes. I have to retract all my negative stuff about CH messing with the quality and color. There is something going on (on my end) with exporting to web from Photoshop, whereas Imageready is doing a good job.
                                          I'm not sure why the resizing but that is minor.

                                          BTW, I don't think you meant the bread, but I ws very pleased with it, too.

                                          1. re: Scargod

                                            So glad to hear it. I have to confess that the only photos I take are (a) of my dog and (b) of the food I cook, that I post on CH, so I'm not particularly discriminating. I do play around w/ flash/no flash to try to get a more accurate photo.

                                            1. re: Scargod

                                              Just fyi, I never use the "Save for Web" feature in Photoshop. I just change the size of the image under Image > Image Size.

                                          2. re: Scargod

                                            This is a test.
                                            The image is 550 X 550. (There are many 550 X 550 images on the site but it seems to be the largest size image allowed)
                                            I saved this in Photoshop CS2 as a 72 ppi jpg image and reduced quality so I ended up with a 142 kb file size. The colors are brilliant and the orange is very bright.

                                            1. re: Scargod

                                              The site reduced it to 420 X 420 and the color is ruined. I don't get it. I upload images to six sites I manage and don't have these issues.

                                      2. I'M BACK!
                                        I was re-reading posts on this thread. Jacquilynne, in March of 2008 you said, "I've been trying to get more info on photos and problem solving for photos for our FAQ, but have thus far been unsuccessful." I don't see that there is any FAQ on photo upload procedure or recommended photo settings or sizes. It seems we're still stuck with "max 2meg and .png, .jpg or .gif formats". I don't even know if the format info is accurate.
                                        I've never seen where technical support has specified what formats are allowable or preferred. Within .jpgs there are several color formats to export in. Adobe RGB1998 seems to work OK but there is sRGB and ProPhotoRGB, that are common to me. In the past I have had issues with uploading an incompatible color profile and had the colors really look like crap. I have been using Adobe Lightroom to export my photos to Chowhound and, until very recently, that has been compatible and color has been OK. Not so on my last uploads.

                                        As a photographer, who prides himself on his work, I hate to see very nice looking images end up looking like crap on my threads and posts. Something in the resizing and post-processing by Chowhound's photo management software is playing hell with my images. The artifacts from resizing are terrible and they end up looking like I shot them through a Coke bottle instead of an expensive Nikon lens....
                                        I have even tried to outsmart the processing software and size my images according to what "it" seems to like (or photo size du jour), but I still can't win. If I see it is resizing my 550 x 550 images to 519 x 519 I submit another at that 519 size and it still resizes it!

                                        Can anyone respond to this with any helpful information? Can't we have a simple do's and don't on photo uploads? How long would it take to make that happen?

                                        27 Replies
                                        1. re: Scargod

                                          From what I can see, the max height is 390px and the largest width I've seen is 520px

                                          I uploaded the image in this post at 390px by 520px and there was no resizing.

                                          1. re: hannaone

                                            395 x 535 resized to 520 width 384 height

                                            400 x 545 resized to 520 width 382 height

                                            1. re: hannaone

                                              395 x 520

                                              410 x 520

                                              520 x 520

                                              All three resized to 390 height. So it looks like the max dimensions for posting without resizing is 390px height x 520px width

                                              1. re: hannaone

                                                I appreciate the help. My results are similar. Oddly, I cannot get anything larger than 519 x 390. I used to post 550 x 550 because I found I could post them that large. Now these are not shown or have been resized to 390 x 390. What's next?

                                                I can see that (now), when I exceed the 390 pixel height it resize everything proportionally smaller. Like Obama, perhaps I just need to look forward, in a positive manner, but I could swear that some of my past images have been distorted and I know they are being taken from my submitted RGB color space into something else and the color horribly shifted. I know that I used to be able to post 550px x 550px and I took care to never excede those dimensions. I have PS CS4 and Lightroom2 and can make my images anything I want. What I want is to be able to upload them into Chowhound without them turning to crap, even if it is 133 x 100.
                                                The attached photos: (left) 520 x 390 in Adobe RGB 1998
                                                (right) 520 x 390 in ProPhoto RGB. The only difference is the right photo is shifted up to show the whole mirror. This crop is from this post: http://www.chow.com/photos/280525

                                                Edit: Both images came in at the size that I exported them in! Thanks Hannaone for the headsup about the 390 pixel maximum vertical size! That number kept popping up but it just didn't register.
                                                It is obvious that the software doesn't like ICC Profile "ProPhoto RGB".
                                                What is not so obvious is that, side by side, on my high quality monitors there is a striking loss of sharpness in the uploaded pictures. There is no physical pixel count reduction going on, but the software is reduced the file size significantly, from 247K to 39! Thus the quality goes down significantly due to artifacts created from loss of data.
                                                People can submit four, large-size files (in theory, 500k, each), but they will be mushed down to a fraction of that quality. Boo!

                                                1. re: hannaone

                                                  Hey Scargod, thanks for hijacking my soapbox :-)!
                                                  Kudos to hannaone and you for reverse engineering the resizing threshold of approximately 390 V by 520 H pixels.

                                                  I've previously posted about the severe Lack of documentation about this 'feature'. Jacquilynne has been trying to ferret out this info from the Chow back office for a Long time.
                                                  Y'all are correct - this pecularity MUST be documented in the FAQs.

                                                  Now, I need to check that this limit applies to the Place attachment feature as well. I find it Very disappointing that few of my menu scans are readable (so far).

                                                  1. re: DiveFan

                                                    No problem. Just call me D.B. Cooper...
                                                    The issue of pixellation and artifacts just doesn't seem to be on Chow's radar screen. You would think a simple enhancement (and instructions), that would give higher quality images on the site would be desirable.
                                                    Theoretically, if you are just reducing an image that is already at the 1.33:1 ratio (or 4:3, the ratio of most "standard" monitors), you do not lose quality or introduce artifacts. It is when you upsize (which Chow doesn't do), that it is normal for jpegs to gain artifacts. The conversion filter program that they are using is lousy and doesn't deal well with oddities that PhotoShop can output. I can't even recall whether I have experimented with other formats like dng or tif/gif. It seems rather pointless, given the lack of interest.

                                                    1. re: Scargod

                                                      It's been a few months now since I started cropping all photos I'm going to post here to 520 X 390 pixels and I've been very pleased with the results. Of course, I'm strictly an amateur photographer and my standards are nowhere near as high as yours, but I suspect that's true of the majority of us who are posting photos here. This photo, for instance, seems every bit as good, albeit considerably smaller, on CH as it does on my monitor. You may see distortions in it that I don't, but I'm pleased enough with it.


                                                      1. re: JoanN

                                                        It sucks! Nothing to do with you... so don't be offended. It's a nice pic.
                                                        It is 293px × 390px and ONLY 18K bytes! It is so soft and blurry.
                                                        You can't ever have anything decent looking when they strip it down to that level.

                                                        1. re: Scargod

                                                          Ha ha! No offense taken, I assure you. Just curious how you know it's 293 X 390? I really thought that if I was cropping to 520 X 390 that that's how it was showing up. Just goes to show how dumb (and easily satisfied) I am.

                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                            I've got some real nice property out in West Texas I'd like to sell you.....

                                                            Seriously, they restrict the maximum height to 390, and the width to 520, no matter what. You cannot work outside the box! To see any images' properties, right click on the image and select "Properties". You will then see something like the attached. They assign a number to the image file instead of the name you used.
                                                            Now about that property... interested??

                                                    2. re: DiveFan

                                                      Finally got a chance to resize to this dimension, and I'm really disappointed. The full size 8 x 10 scan looks fine but when reduced to these dimensions it looks like crap even with a lot of tweaking in my ancient Adobe PhotoDeluxe. I'll attach it here and in the linked place.

                                                      As I posted a long time ago, the only fix for this alleged 'feature' is for CH to NOT resize automatically except to display a 'thumbnail'. CH should let us view the pic full width WITHOUT ad banners on the right.

                                                      Birrieria y Taqueria Manolos
                                                      831 W Gardena Blvd, Gardena, CA 90247

                                                      1. re: DiveFan

                                                        Yes, it would be great if they showed your image, as you submitted it. However that is usually not feasable since most people do not understand the limitations of the web page and screen resolution. You have an 8 x 10 scan. What resolution? The web cannot deal with more than 72 dpi. If you have scanned it at 200 or 300 dpi then that is at least twice as wide as a 1024 x 768 resolution monitor. It is way too big! If you crop and size it to 520 x 390 then Chow's filter will not resize it but it downgrades the image quality by removing some of the information. It gets fuzzy. They have your image as being 520px x 388px. They took a (8 x10) 1:25:1 ratio image and made it into a 1.34:1 image. Did they crop it or distort it? It's not terribly small, but here's the kicker: it is only 41Kb! There is no way you can have text detail at that file size. If they let you have a 900 px x 720 px it would just look worse. Same data, just enlarged. They are just trying to limit the size of files that are filling up their drives. For some image files it is not horrible. When it is like yours, you might have well as never uploaded it.

                                                        1. re: Scargod

                                                          Hi, so for the uninitiated (me!), I'm SOL unless I get some photo editing software? I always wondered how people were posting photos within the size limits. All of my files are too large, but I'd like to play along, too.

                                                          1. re: kattyeyes

                                                            No. If you have a typical point and shoot, you will probably be able to directly upload your image file without modification except that you will have to make your image file size less than 2 meg. A less than 2 megabyte file can be any pixel size; you just don't know what you will end up with on Chow until it gets there! It won't be larger than 520 x 390 pixels!

                                                            What I have been trying to do is optimize my images for Chowhound, so they are not resized, distorted or color shifted.
                                                            Chow seems to accept JPEG (JPG), PNG and TIFF. I don't know how the different formats are affected by the filter Chow uses. Chow will not upload one of my Photoshop JPEG formats. It does take JPEGS in Adobe RGB 1998 color settings, which is common for older cameras. They will also accept the ProPhoto format but they mess up the color. My images, 72 dpi tiff with LZW compression and 72 dpi tiff with no compression did not upload.

                                                            1. re: Scargod

                                                              That's where I'm stuck. I don't know how to make an image fit the <2 meg restriction...but I'd like to learn. Good morning!

                                                              1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                Here are instructions for how to reduce the size of a photo on a Mac.


                                                                Are you working on a PC? What operating system? What program do you use to download your photos to your PC and what program do you use to view your photos on the PC. Answers to these questions should help in finding the easiest solution.

                                                                1. re: JoanN

                                                                  Sorry, JoanN...I didn't see your post till just now. Thanks for offering to help. Yeah, I use a PC with Windows XP and have Lumix loaded there to view the photos. I didn't realize simply e-mailing them compresses the images. It would help if I could have found the manual, but e-mailing them is easy enough. I am going to be armed and dangerous with my new photo posting abilities!

                                                                  These are the crazy Choco Chewy Magic Piggy Bars I posted last month. I updated the recipe to include this photo. Sweet--literally! ;)

                                                                  1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                    Welcome to the slippery slope with those for whom, as MMRuth says, their significant others know that dinner is ready only after the flash has gone off.

                                                                    Glad to see that Scargod got you up and running. E-mailing is probably the fastest and easiest way from XP, but if you're interested in looking at other options, I often recommend a freeware program called Irfanview:


                                                                    It's remarkably stable and it has a surprising number of editing options for a free program. Even though I have and use Photoshop, there are times when I just want to do something quickly and simply and will do it in Irfanview instead. You might take a look and see if it has features that might appeal to you.

                                                                    1. re: JoanN

                                                                      HA HA! Yet, we are definitely obsessed here, aren't we? But I love it!

                                                                      Thanks for the link to Irfanview. I'll check it out. :)

                                                            2. re: kattyeyes

                                                              Here is a png file. 72 dpi, 520 x 390, non-interlaced. Wo-hoo! What is that parrot eating? Probably inedible, bad chow.
                                                              Good morning! You either have, or can download, some program for manipulation of your files. Perhaps, in this software, which often is also what you use to get the images off the camera, is an "email this photo" function or 'export for the Internet" setting?
                                                              There are also free ones on the internet that do basic stuff.
                                                              http://picasa.google.com/ is free and http://www.picresize.com/ does resizing for free. Apple's iPhoto seems to be a free download. I am not familiar with it.
                                                              You could check to see if any of these will do the job.

                                                              1. re: Scargod

                                                                Fun shot--is that you? I had a feathered friend (Elton) in a local pet store who looked just like the bird in your picture. I taught him to gobble like a turkey. ;) I will have to play around downstairs where the Lumix software is (came with the camera). Thank you!

                                                                1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                  Hell no! I wouldn't do something crazy and silly like that! My evil twin...?
                                                                  What camera do you have and what file type does it output?
                                                                  Why don't you email me and I can help you offline. See my info.

                                                                  1. re: Scargod

                                                                    HA HA! Let's see. It's a Panasonic FZ8 with a Leica lens--outputs JPEGs. Let me switch PCs and go find the booklet so I can chat more intelligently about this. Maybe I can finally upload my bacon bar food porn!

                                                                    1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                      You have a RAW output setting, too. Good for food porn!
                                                                      Looks like a good camera. Not familiar with it. See my last post edit.

                                                            3. re: Scargod

                                                              Whoa, this topic is active. Nerves are being touched - pay attention, Chow HQ :-).

                                                              Scargod, in case I didn't make it clear I resized the pic BEFORE uploading.
                                                              What resolution I scanned it at is Not that critical - if you are shrinking an 8 x 10 inch image filled with 10 point type it is bound to look crappy after resizing. I think we've all proved that :-).

                                                              IMO Chow should be more worried about the server based resizing resource than (ever cheaper) disk storage. As you've pointed out, there is plenty of cheap/free software out there to intelligently shrink the size of the image without reducing legibility (I'm more of a geek so I like GIMP). I never have a problem with 'high quality' JPEG compression elsewhere.

                                                              HOWEVER, we still need to have the web site be able to display the image much larger than 520 x 390 - this is mainly up to the web designers. C'mon Chow, current monitors display 1024 x 768 and better (except maybe netbooks).

                                                              Remove the side banner ads when viewing pictures!!

                                                              1. re: DiveFan

                                                                I find it hard to believe that the crew that's given us this great site still gives us this crappy photo functioning. I post links to web photo displays instead.

                                                                1. 520 x 390 max size is way too small. "No one" still uses that small a size to display their photos on the web or send through email. 950 x 600 would be a fair max size.

                                                                2. Never crop a photo.

                                                                3. If a photo needs to be downsized, use a method that retains image quality and sharpness (yes, it can be done).

                                                                4. Include a complete Photo FAQ on the site.

                                                                Please, take the photo functioning as seriously as you take the rest of this site!