Setting up the Camera
WinCAMA supports any Windows-compatible digital camera. These settings will help you setup your camera to be most-compatible with WinCAMA. Please consult your camera manual for how to adjust these settings.
Picture resolution or Image Quality
Selecting a large resolution and/or high quality setting will cause your image size to be much larger. When multiplied over thousands of parcels, this can really add up. WinCAMA has an image size threshold setting that will warn you when images are larger than the recommended size. Keep in mind that for printing on the PRC the image is going to be reduced to fit in the allowable space. You may want to experiment with different settings and see which gives you the best results. In general, we would recommend the lowest setting that gives you acceptable quality. If you find that the optimal setting is larger than the recommended size, we can adjust that threshold in WinCAMA so that it only warns you when the image is larger than that.
What you need to do is to create a system to associate file names on the camera with parcel numbers. Originally we used Sony Mavica cameras which used a floppy disk to store images. The Mavica numbered files sequentially starting with 001. It had an option to reset the file name for every new disk. This was ideal. Appraisers would then make envelopes with a grid like this:
As the appraiser took pictures in the field, they would right the parcel number in the next slot. When the disk was brought back to the office for data entry, the operator knew that image 001 was associated with the parcel written on line #1, image 002 went with parcel #2, etc.
Different cameras will name files differently. If your camera has a reset option like the Mavica did, that is ideal. If not, you will need to come up with some method to keep track of which parcel goes with each image. Even if the camera can not reset the numbering, if your camera always numbers the files in order, you could use a similar approach and know that the lowest file name is parcel #1, the next lowest if parcel #2.
Loading Picture into WinCAMA
To load a picture into WinCAMA, you must first have an improvement created. From the building tab, you simply highlight the improvement you want and then hit the LOAD button. A standard Windows File Open box will appear. Find the disk or folder that your camera images are stored in and then select the appropriate image. Once this folder is identified, every time you hit load the program will default to that location. Once a photo is loaded, you will see it displayed in the upper-right portion of the building tab. The date of the photo will be displayed below. Double-clicking the photo itself will open a full-sized version of the image.
Printing Picture in WinCAMA
With our program being a native Windows application, image printing is very fast, so there is no longer an option to print a PRC without the photo. In WinCAMA photos now print on the back of the card with the improvement.