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Library 101: Digital Image Basics

Guide to best practices for cataloging images for research projects.

Naming Digital Files - Best Practice

  • Use hyphens and capital letters to separate ideas and terms in a file name.
  • Organize images files into file folders by topic or year.
  • Try not to store your images in proprietary programs (they can be difficult to retrieve and proprietary programs are not sustainable).
  • Keep file names to 10-15 characters. Any longer, they are often cut off in programs.

AVOID USING THESE CHARACTERS IN A FILE NAME. They are used in programming and not all programs will accept or upload an image file if these characters are in the file name:

Tilde (~),  Number sign (#),  Percent (%),   Ampersand (&),   Asterisk (*),  Braces ({ }),   Backslash (\),   Colon (:),   Angle brackets (< >),  Question mark (?),  Slash (/),  Plus sign (+),  Pipe (|),  Quotation mark (")