Sell photos, vectors art and video footage online

Mac OS X

Today: moving the web site to a different hosting provider

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Today we are moving the web to a different hosting provider. During the next 24 hours some of PSM services such as keywords suggestion can work sporadically or do not work at all. Hopefully, all the transfer will go smooth and we will be up and running again very soon. The DNS change propagation takes 24-48 hours (less in North America, more for the rest of the word), so maximum in 48 hours all the changes will be adopted by DNS servers worldwide and you will be able to work with the site and with ProStockMaster as usual.

We do this change because we are continuously looking to improve our services and add more web and application features and we need an infrastructure which can support them all.
Sorry for the inconvenience

Faster ProStockMaster, the microstock software for a stock photographer

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We have just released a new Windows package with no embedded Java.
It is a much smaller download – just about 6 MB instead of 19 MB, and it works with your pre-installed Java.

You must have an installed Java on your machine in order to run PSM with this installation! If you are not sure if you got any Java, go to Windows “Start” menu, select “Run” and type in “cmd”.
A DOS-style shell window opens. Type in

java -version

on the command prompt. If you get something like this


java version “1.6.0_12″
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.6.0_12-b04)
Java HotSpot(TM) Client VM (build 11.2-b01, mixed mode, sharing)

it means that you have some Java installed. It is highly recommended to upgrade your Java to the latest version using MS Windows Control Panel prior to starting the application. The minimum required JVM version is 1.5.12.

Since modern Java 6 on Windows is faster than the previous JVM version we bundle with PSM, with the new packaging and with the latest JVM ProStockMaster will run faster! Also, many GUI-related issues are fixed in Java 6, so various skins work faster and behave more stable in JVM 6.

The new PSM packaging also fixes some weird but relatively rare problems with Windows Vista 32-bit/64-bit pre-installed JVMs. If PSM refuses to start on your Windows machine with the bundled Java try this ‘unbundled’ installation package.

Note that ProStockMaster version did not change. It is the same v1.6.0 we have released last month.

If you wish to ‘upgrade’ your existing 1.6 installation with the new packaging, taking the advantage of faster PSM with your latest JVM just get the the setup file and install PSM in the same folder where the previous version resides.

Actually, it’s a ‘back to future’ packaging since we have started the distribution this way. Then we switched to bundled JVM to avoid support issues related to improper Java installations and JVM functioning. Now we came back to that, bring you now both the ‘bundled’ and the ‘unbundled’ packages, so you can choose the package that works better for you.

Installation packages: Worldwide | North America

Introducing a new license type: Basic License ($29.99)

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We introduce a new license type: the Basic License ($29.99) , which gives a stock contributor an unlimited set of features for 3 months. The Basic license can not be renewed / upgraded.

The license previously known as “Unlimited” is now called “Pro”. Pro license has no expiration period.
The support and software upgrades services for Pro license can be renewed for $39.99 annually.

v1.5 of microstock contributors’ tool is released!

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Both Windows and Mac OS X versions of our microstock contribution tool are available for download from our web site.
We are still working on the documentation set and sites changes following the new release.

Using this opportunity, I would like to thank all the volunteering beta-testers that participated in v1.5 tests. Derek, Terry, Les, Arik, Bob, Sergei, Tomash, Alex, Nick, Francis, Ricky, Andy, Xavier and all the rest of ProStockMaster supporters in Europe, Americas, Australia, Asia – thank you all guys for the great work and wonderful feedback. Together we did it again – an innovative and unique product designed and developed specifically for stock photographers.

v1.5 Beta released!

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Yesterday we have released v1.5 Beta for Mac OS X. Windows version has been released a few days ago and the feedback I receive is very complimentary meanwhile.

So far so good. It’s the time to get more things done.
While we are collecting the feedback and fixing issues in v1.5 it is a good time to fill in another hole, starting the new project: explanations and documentation for v1.5.
As a beginning, I am thinking of making a few online “how-to” lessons that will be used later as a base for the online guide for PSM.

I believe that we have created a very powerful microstock tool which can boost your revenues to another level while saving hours of your worktime working with multiple online stock photography agencies. However, all these is correct only if the photographer knows how to get the most out of our software.

I really want to show what you can do with PSM v1.5. In this blog the things will probably come in the “back” order, from the most complex stuff to the simplest things, just because I am very keen to show here the most interesting stuff first. We will put all the “how-to”-s in the right order on our web later on, taking the reader step-by-step from the simplest operations to the more complex stuff.

Stock photography software update, soon

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So, what you can expect in the upcoming version?
Let me give you a brief preview.

As usual, we listen very carefully to our customers, knowing that what they ask for is what they need.
We are working on:

1. Altering file statuses & stock photos upload time, so you can mark any image on your HD as “already uploaded” to some microstock agency. This will help to avoid re-uploads, providing one source for the stock image archive data.

2. Speeding up the images browsing. Like many other application, ProStockMaster will now store the generated thumbnails in the DB, thus making the browsing of the folder fast & efficient.

3. The keywords generation user interface will change, allowing you to play with the list of existing and generated keywords for each new keyword you enter.

4. StockXpert issue is solved in this release.

I am thinking about adding “find a duplicate image” functionality (anyway PSM keeps the images DB and anyway the app knows a lot about each indexed image), but I am not sure that there is a demand for that. Drop me a message/comment if you think it is something required.

We do not plan adding any new stock photography agency this time. Instead, we had to remove Lucky Oliver microstock from the list.
We are checking what else we can do in the short term, not delaying the upcoming release for too long.

We plan releasing the new version of PSM microstock tool in the next few weeks, so stay tuned.

David

Release Notes for v1.5.0

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So far so good, and the Beta for v1.5 is almost finished.
Look at the release notes below.

C’est la vie, as usual software development leads everything – we are a technology-driven company, are not we?
- and we go forward with an exceptional but completely undocumented software. I am going to build a series of how-to’s for v1.5 very soon. Hopefully, the first one will be ready this week yet.

Release Notes for version 1.5.0
August 2008

This is a major software release which adds many new functions,  improves software stability, usability and performance and fixes many internal issues. Large parts of code were completely redesigned for flexibility, new functionality and speed. Context menus added in many graphic user interface areas (Right mouse button on Windows / Ctrl + click on Mac)

Application performance: preview and thumbnails display speed is significantly improved. Note, that  first-time image access will always be slower since the software builds the images thumbnails and register the data in the database. All further display requests for the same thumbnail will work fast because the thumbnail was already created.
Ability to alter upload date, time and upload status for any image and agency. Together with ability to edit number of downloads and earnings it gives you full flexibility and complete control on the image history and archive statuses.

  • “Select/Unselect All” check box added, allowing quickly select/unselect all stock photography agencies for each stock photo to be uploaded

Uploads reliability significantly improved.

  • PSM will now verify your login credentials for any microstock site both at the time of stock agency selection and during the uploading of stock images.
  • If the upload fails due to a network error, PSM will retry uploading the failed file a number of times and will gracefully inform you if it will be still unable to upload the file after a few retries. The application will continue trying to upload other selected stock photos in the upload queue to that microstock, if possible.

Total redesign of stock imagery keywording, adding new extremely powerful “Manage Keywords” dialog and multiple context menus the user interface

  • Built in “Translate” function helps adding IPTC keywords to the stock photos in your native language.
  • Ability to select your input language with on-the-fly translation to English. 23 input languages supported
  • “Back translation” for the selected keyword from English to your input language on a mouse click. These three functions above allow you describing the image in your native language with instant translation to English and help provided by “Generate” functionality described below.

“Keywords suggestions” functionality improvements so you can add keywords to microstock images even faster:

  • Generate with “on-the-fly” translation: now the keywords can be entered in any supported language. They will be translated on-the-fly and for their English translation more matching English keywords will be selected
  • Generate more keywords right from the generated keywords using context menus directly in keywords lists
  • Generate from a single keyword (this is the recommended practice)
  • Generate from a keyphrase or multiple comma-separated keywords. This method will bring you less but more relevant results.

Keywords sets & keywording – build keywords set per a category and more, in any language

  • Import keywords from a CSV file with optional “on-the-fly” translation
  • Export keywords to a CSV file . They will be saved in UTF-16. These Import/Export functions allow you to manage an external set of keywords templates in any language, exporting them with or without translation any time you want to apply them or use other images as keywords templates (using “Extract from image”)
  • Change keywords order, moving them “up” or “down” in the keywords list, thus putting most significant keywords in the beginning of the list
  • Extract keywords from an image (IPTC)
  • Applying selected keywords set to multiple selected images (this function together with “Extract” above replaces previous “Copy Metadata” functionality. That’s why the “Copy” button in the main IPTC panel was removed as unnecessary)
  • ISO-8859-1 (ISOLatin) IPTC support – ability to retrieve and write IPTC keywords in the majority of Western languages
  • Ability to translate all or some selected metadata for images in the selected folder, creating new images with translated metadata in the chosen destination. This function allows you to create an image set which is indexed

Completely new Look and Feel and multiple Graphic User Interface changes

  • Right pane which shows images thumbnails can be resized now, thus switching between “filmstrip” view and “table” thumbnails view.
  • All the file chooser windows (open, Import, Export etc) have Preview window now, showing the thumbnail of selected file

Files and DB management

  • Basic file management functionality added: Copy, Move, Delete images in thumbnails context menus. Their new location / status will be registered in the application DB accordingly.
  • Now you can switch between different application’ databases. If one day you move your DB to another location PSM will ask you on startup where to find it’s database and will work with the DB located anywhere (if the software can properly access it). You can verify the location of your current DB anytime opening “Tools->Switch DB” menu. You can now perform periodic DB backups and restore the DB on a computer system failure, pointing PSM to the restored DB location..
  • “Connect” button is added in the initial installation dialog, allowing to connect to the existing ProStockMaster database if a previous PSM database already exists on your computer system.  Windows users: installation script already does it for you, so there is no need     to connect manually to your previous DB. Mac and Linux users can choose now the previous DB location during the installation of new version of PSM or select another DB later on, using “Switch DB” menu.
  • Database clean-up and maintenance function added – clean-up the DB from non-existing images and re-build the DB indexes for the faster DB access
  • Full-size image viewer: movement option added with “press-n-drag” mouse button (Photoshop-style)  for easier and faster image reviewing at full size

Logging

  • View log menu added
  • Logging level menu allows to switch between normal and detailed logging

Top-level application menus are changed and redesigned

  • “Upload->Folder” functionality redesign: now all the images are selected according to their upload statuses and images that were already uploaded to some sites will not be re-uploaded to these sites if their status remains “uploaded”
  • Upload confirmation dialog changed to provide visual information (thumbnails lists) for both “Upload->Folder” and “Upload->Selected Images” menus.

Simultaneous upload of multiple images to StockXpert – only 1 image uploaded: bug fixed

Release Notes for version 1.5.0

August 2008

This is a major software release which adds many new functions, improves software stability, usability and performance and fixes many internal issues. Large parts of code were completely redesigned for flexibility, new functionality and speed. Context menus added in many graphic user interface areas (Right mouse button on Windows / Ctrl + click on Mac)

  1. Application performance: preview and thumbnails display speed is significantly improved. Note, that first-time image access will always be slower since the software builds the images thumbnails and register the data in the database. All further display requests for the same thumbnail will work fast because the thumbnail was already created.

  1. Ability to alter upload date, time and upload status for any image and agency. Together with ability to edit number of downloads and earnings it gives you full flexibility and complete control on the image history and archive statuses.

  1. Select/Unselect All” check box added, allowing quickly select/unselect all agencies for each image

  1. Uploads reliability significantly improved.

    1. PSM will now verify your login credentials for any site both at the time of the agency selection and during the upload process.

    1. If the uploading fails because of a network error, which is a quite typical issue with multi-files uploads and not-so-stable networks, PSM will retry uploading the failed file a number of times and will gracefully inform you if it will be still unable to upload the file after a few retries. The application will continue trying to upload other files in the upload queue to that agency, if possible.

  1. Total redesign of the keywording functionality, adding new extremely powerful “Manage Keywords” dialog and multiple context menus

    1. Built in “Translate” function for any keyword, either entered from the keyword or exported from a file. 23 input languages supported

    1. Ability to select your input language with on-the-fly translation to English

    1. Back translation” for the selected keyword from English to your input language on a mouse click These three functions above allow you describing the image in your native language with instant translation to English and help provided by “Generate” functionality described below.

    1. Generate” functionality improvements:

      1. Generate with “on-the-fly” translation: now the keywords can be entered in any supported language. They will be translated on-the-fly and for their English translation more matching English keywords will be selected

      2. Generate more keywords right from the generated keywords using context menus directly in keywords lists

      3. Generate from a single keyword (this is the recommended practice)

      4. Generate from a keyphrase or multiple comma-separated keywords. This method will bring you much less but more relevant results.

    1. Import keywords from a CSV file with optional “on-the-fly” translation

    1. Export keywords to a CSV file . They will be saved in UTF-16. These Import/Export functions allow you to manage an external set of keywords templates in any language, exporting them with or without translation any time you want to apply them or use other images as keywords templates (using “Extract from image”)

    1. Change keywords order, moving them “up” or “down” in the keywords list, thus putting most significant keywords in the beginning of the list

    1. Extract keywords from an image (IPTC)

    1. Applying selected keywords set to multiple selected images (this function together with “Extract” above replaces previous “Copy Metadata” functionality. That’s why the “Copy” button in the main IPTC panel was removed as unnecessary)

    1. ISO-8859-1 (ISOLatin) IPTC support – ability to retrieve and write IPTC keywords in the majority of Western languages

    1. Ability to translate all or some selected metadata for images in the selected folder, creating new images with translated metadata in the chosen destination. This function allows you to create an image set which is indexed

  1. Completely new Look and Feel and multiple Graphic User Interface changes

  1. Right pane which shows images thumbnails can be resized now, thus switching between “filmstrip” view and “table” thumbnails view.

  1. All the file chooser windows (open, Import, Export etc) have Preview window now, showing the thumbnail of selected file

  1. Basic file management functionality added: Copy, Move, Delete images in thumbnails context menus. Their new location / status will be registered in the application DB accordingly.

  1. Now you can switch between different application’ databases. If one day you move your DB to another location PSM will ask you on startup where to find it’s database and will work with the DB located anywhere (if the software can properly access it). You can verify the location of your current DB anytime opening “Tools->Switch DB” menu. You can now perform periodic DB backups and restore the DB on a computer system failure, pointing PSM to the restored DB location..

  1. Connect” button is added in the initial installation dialog, allowing to connect to the existing ProStockMaster database if a previous PSM database already exists on your computer system.

Windows users: installation script already does it for you, so there is no need to connect manually to your previous DB.

Mac and Linux users can choose now the previous DB location during the installation of new version of PSM or select another DB later on, using “Switch DB” menu.

  1. Database clean-up and maintenance function added – clean-up the DB from non-existing images and re-build the DB indexes for the faster DB access

  1. Full-size image viewer: movement option added with “press-n-drag” mouse button (Photoshop-style) for easier and faster image reviewing at full size

  1. Logging

    1. View log menu added

    1. Logging level menu allows to switch between normal and detailed logging

  1. Top-level application menus are changed and redesigned

  1. Upload->Folder” functionality redesign: now all the images are selected according to their upload statuses and images that were already uploaded to some sites will not be re-uploaded to these sites if their status remains “uploaded”

  1. Upload confirmation dialog changed to provide visual information (thumbnails lists) for both “Upload->Folder” and “Upload->Selected Images” menus.

  1. Simultaneous upload of multiple images to StockXpert – only 1 image uploaded: bug fixed

Accessing stock images metadata database

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You can not run multiple instances of ProStockMaster microstock software on the same computer since they access the same stock photography metadata database. Each software instance will try to lock the DB, and the program will fail with “Fatal Error” message. This behavior is by design – no one wants a mess in his stock photos, keywords and  IPTC metadata, and microstock sales stats accessing the same stock images metadata database from 2 or more software applications simultaneously.

version 1.2 is released!

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Fast and easy keywording, directories uploads, earnings statistics and more…
Take a look what’s new: http://www.prostockmaster.com/whats_new_in_version.htm
Free upgrade from v1.1 available: http://www.prostockmaster.com/upgrade.htm

Download and enjoy!

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