Windows Vista killer features
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Adding keyword tags in Windows Photo Gallery
If you read reviews of Windows Vista in the mainstream media, the criticism you’ll find most often is that there’s no killer feature. Oh really? These three features – XMP-based photo tagging, integrated search, and speech recognition – certainly qualify. Read Ed Bott’s original blog post, Windows Vista’s Three Killer Features.
You can add keywords, captions, and ratings to any JPEG or TIFF photo using the Info pane in Windows Vista’s Photo Gallery program. Tags are stored as metadata within the file itself using the industry-standard XMP format. As a result, you can copy or move photos without having to export your metadata.
Tags can be edited in Explorer windows as well
Need proof that tags and other metadata are in the file and not in a separate database? Open Windows Explorer, right-click the file, and inspect its properties. You can view and edit tages, ratings, and captions here, as well as view EXIF and IPTC data.
Desktop search is integrated into Vista's Start menu
Click the Start button or tap the Windows logo key to begin entering search text. A short list of results appears in the Start menu. If you need a more complete list, you can search directly from Windows Explorer.
The Search box is especially useful in Control Panel
Forget Classic and Category views. The best way to find something in Control Panel is to type a word in the Search box at the top right. The search term “sound,” for instance, produces this filtered, categorized list.
Search works in commmon dialog boxes, too
If you’re accustomed to scrolling through dialog boxes, it might take a while to get used to the idea of using the search index to filter the list of available files instead. Once you get the hang of it, though, the boost in productivity is extraordinary.
Getting started with Speech Recognition
Vista’s built-in Speech Recognition tools work exceptionally well. From this Control Panel, you can set up a microphone and train the system to recognize your unique speech patterns.
Use these cheat sheets while learning Speech Recognition
Learning the syntax for voice commands and dictation can be daunting at first. That’s where these lists of available commands from the Vista Help files come in handy.
Use this floating toolbar to set options
While Speech Recognition is running, this toolbar provides status messages and feedback to voice commands and dictation. Right-click to choose from this menu of available options. Or, better yet, use voice commands (“Start listening”) to enable, disable, and control speech-to-text features.