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Real World Digital Photography, 2nd edition by Tim Grey, Seán Duggan, Katrin Eismann

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Metadata

Metadata is not a setting or mode that you'll find on your camera, and you probably won't see the term in the instruction manual, but your camera is generating lots of metadata every time you take a picture. To use a simple definition, metadata is information about information. More specifically, metadata is structured information about a collection of data—such as an image file—that makes accessing and using that file more efficient and productive.

Recent improvements in the digital management of information have underscored the importance of metadata among different professional disciplines, but the concept itself has been around for a long time. Distance scales and legends on maps, for example, qualify as metadata since they are ...

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