Supercharging the Gallery app

Ever since its launch, our free Gallery app has been one of the most popular. As is so often the case, when an app gets a lot of use we begin to see how its flexibility and usefulness can be improved.

Since Gallery v1 was developed, advances in the Perch API have made tasks like image processing and template parsing much more straightforward, and so when it came to work on Gallery v2 we knew that we’d be able to break free of things like the restrictions of having only two image sizes.

But we went further than that. We knew that reordering images within an album was cumbersome, so we added drag and drop. We removed the requirement to set an image title, defaulting to the file name if none was entered, and we added batch operations like multi-item delete to make management easier.

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One of the biggest jobs when managing galleries is, of course, uploading all the images. Lots of you have been asking for some way to upload multiple images at once. Technically, that’s not straightforward, as shared hosting accounts often have an upload limit as low as 2MB. Sometimes that can be too low for one image, let along a batch.

Gallery v2 gets around this by using an uploader with the ability to split files into chunks and upload them in chunks, piecing the images back together on the server. The upshot is that – provided you have a capable browser – you can point Gallery v2 at a folder of images, set it upload and come back to it when it’s done.

We’ve also included more examples of use, including JavaScript slideshows and light boxes. Here’s the full list of what’s new:

  • Multiple custom image sizes, driven by template options
  • Bulk image uploading
  • Chunked uploading (requires Flash or Sliverlight plugins, or a fancy-pants HTML5 browser)
  • Drag and drop image reordering
  • Bulk image deletion within albums
  • No requirement to enter an image title
  • Redesigned perch_gallery functions to make them easier to use in your pages
  • All the ‘custom’ options for album and image listings, including start, count, filter (including custom fields), paginate and so on.

Gallery v2 requires Perch 1.8 (which is a free update, as usual). Due to the changes, it is not compatible with previous versions of the Gallery app. We’ve kept the docs and download for v1 available for those using Gallery v1 on an existing site. You should use v2 when you need a gallery on a new site.

You can download it from the add-ons page or read the documentation for more.

Posted by Drew McLellan on 4 January 2012 at 14:29
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Comments

  • Svein Are Grønsund

    Very cool.

    See that you are using Plupload. Are there any reasons for having flash before html5 in the list of runtimes?

    It would seem that the html5-runtime has more functionality and is preferred over Flash (with all the Flash-blockers these days).

    Gallery App has this order:
    runtimes : ‘flash,silverlight,html5,html4’

    Wouldn’t it be better with this order:
    runtimes : ‘html5,flash,silverlight,html4’

    04 January 2012

  • You can of course change the runtime order to whatever suits your purposes.

    The reason we don’t specify HTML5 first is that chunking is a big feature for a lot of people on shared hosting. HTML5 chunking is only really properly supported in Chrome at the current time, making it less useful. A lot of our customers’ clients use IE, which is likely to have Flash or Silverlight available.

    We may well revise that over time.

    04 January 2012

  • Great update to the gallery app
    Can’t wait to try to out.

    30 January 2012

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