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StampData is most useful when there are images of every stamp and every object. Please upload as many as possible, and as large as possible; there are effectively no limits on how much you can bring in.

To upload images, click on the [http://stampdata.com/upload.php Upload link]] at the top of any page. This gives you a somewhat complicated form that is designed to help with both single images and mass uploads of multiple files.

There are two ways to tell StampData what images you want to upload:

  • The browse option simply gets files from your local hard disk, in the usual fashion. The browse allows multiple file section, so for instance on the Mac you can shift-click a range of files to ask them to be uploaded all at once. Once you've selected files, click on "Upload" to get them into StampData.

  • The scan option takes a URL that you supply, and when you click on "Scan", gets the page and searches it for any images that it can find. It then presents its findings as a check list, with new images selected, and existing images unchecked. You can check and uncheck the boxes as you like, for instance to avoid uploading images that are part of the page's decor. Then when you click on "Upload", all the checked images are uploaded.

    The "Prefix" text box lets you specify a common prefix that will be prepended to each uploaded image's name. This is useful in the case of name conflicts, and also for searching later on. For instance, you can set the prefix to be the name of an album or a country and use that to help find the images later on.

    URL Scanning

    URL scanning is a powerful way to pull a lot of images into StampData all at once. For instance, Wikipedia has extensive archives of free stamp images, and you can pull an entire category with just a single upload.

    However, the scanning process is easily foiled by the complexities of HTML. Many pages will not give up their images easily, or will only let you get tiny thumbnails. Sometimes you will just have to right-click images to get the raw versions.

    Filling in image details

    Once you've clicked Upload, the images are uploaded and you are "done". To use a image, you can click on its link that appears below the Upload button, which takes you to the image's page, and you can tinker with it there.

    However, this is time-consuming, especially if you have uploaded multiple images. The form fields just above the Upload button let you set common properties of the uploaded images; in addition, each uploaded image has additional form fields for setting individual characteristics. After uploading is done, you can set any of these as you like, then click "Update" to change all the images. Note that updating alters the database records, so if you have modified any of these images' properties separately, such as in a separate window, those changes will be overwritten.

  • Type: this is as described at Image

  • Issuer: as at Image

  • Desc: this is the common part of the image description. For instance, if you are uploading many stamps of 1954, then if you put "1954" in this field, all the descriptions will be prefilled with "1954".

  • Source: as at Image

  • Visibility: as at Image and at Visibility

  • Owner: as at Image

    In addition, each uploaded image's list entry includes a text field for adding the individual stamp's description. So for instance if it was a 10pf stamp of 1954, you would enter "10pf" in this field, then after updating, the image's complete description is "1954-10pf", and with any luck, that will be sufficient to identify its type uniquely. The number in the list following the description tells how many types the description currently matches against; if the number is 1, the checkbox is enabled.

    If you click on the checkbox and update, then that assigns the image to the one matching type. Note that it may not be the right type! The description might be wrong, or the stamp records might be wrong, so it is a good idea to at least look at each image after uploading, and verify that the identification is what you thought.

    Multiple uploads

    If you browse new files, or rescan a URL, and click to upload more images, the list of already-uploaded images is added to instead of erased. This is so you can do several smaller uploads, perhaps from related URLs, then set the common properties all at once. If your next upload is generally unrelated, then click on "Clear" to reset the list (the images themselves are unaffected).