Download Pictures Using iChat

Thursday, September 10, 2009, 02:22 PM – Tips and Hints

iChat, like most of the Apple applications, has multiple uses. You just have to know what they are, and how to use them.

My daughters and I like to use it a lot to send photos back and forth. The really cool thing is that you can send a high resolution image through iChat and it arrives instantly. You don’t have to worry about making it fit someone’s email restrictions, or lower the resolution.

For those who are “digitally challenged” as I was when I first started dealing with computers and images and digital cameras, here is a brief definition. The higher the DPI (dots per inch) of your digital photo the better quality the photo will be, especially when you print it out.

But the higher the DPI, the longer it takes it to download and the more bandwidth it takes to send it. Therefore, if you attach pictures to your emails with high DPI resolution, they may never reach their destination because the email program your recipient uses may reject them. At the very least you should send them one picture per email.

The easiest, fastest way to determine the DPI (and the size) of an image is to open it in another wonderful Apple app called Preview. I keep Preview in my dock because I use it daily, so when I want to open an image in it, I just drag the image over the Preview icon in the dock and the image opens in Preview. Then click on Tools > Show Inspector and you get this window that shows you both the DPI and the size of the image. (If you want to adjust either the size or the DPI just go back to that Tools menu and choose “Adjust Size”).

So now we have to take a few moments for the precious part. I have a great grandson who turned 3 last week. He loves guitars and got one for his birthday. The only real person he has ever seen play is his own great, great, grandfather who still plays sometimes at age 91. So when he sat down, on his on and starting imitating my father playing the guitar, the cameras starting clicking. I wasn’t there so the computer came out, iChat came on and the picture came flying to me instantly.

All my daughter had to do was download the picture to her laptop, start an iChat, and drag the picture into the field where she would automatically enter text, and hit return. It didn’t matter what size the picture was or the fact that it was 300 DPI.

About iPhoto. As far as I have been able to determine, iPhoto doesn’t give you DPI information. It’s not an important function of iPhoto. If I’m wrong I’m sure someone will let me know. But my point is that if you have a photo stored in iPhoto and you need to know the DPI just hold your mouse button over it and drag it to the desktop, release it so it stays on the desktop and then drag it to Preview as noted above. You are not harming your iPhoto image in any way, nor are your removing it from iPhoto.

So, try this easy way to send picture, scanned articles, URL’s, scanned cartoons, or whatever else is of interest or important. Remember iChat is not necessarily secure so don’t be sending your credit card numbers.

Have fun with it.

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