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Don't risk losing your digital holiday photos

18/01/2014 TRACEY SPICER
Mother taking picture of child by smartphone © Getty Images Mother taking picture of child by smartphone

It is a priceless image: The ultrasound of your first baby.

Well it should be, unless your life is a comedy of errors. In our case, the foetus-soon-to-be-known-as-Taj appears for a second, before Jerry Seinfeld starts talking about a woman with "man-hands".

Yep, I taped over the video.

Hubby didn't forgive me until I got pregnant again. Now we use Grace's ultrasound for both of them. More on that later.

Understandably, we've become meticulous about making copies.

But it's difficult when you're travelling. What if you lose your camera, phone, or memory stick? Or they're stolen?

Mobile phones are magnets for thieves, unlike rolls of film. The march of technology has robbed us of traditions, like the holiday slide night. But the digital age has spawned a plethora of products to replace the family photo album. Best of all, they're as quick as a flash.

The first step is to back up your photos while on the road.

If you use a digital camera, pop the memory card into one end of a camera connection kit, then insert the other into your iPad or iPhone to transfer your images. (see store.apple.com/uk/product/MC531ZM/A/apple-ipad-camera-connection-kit).

Alternatively, connect your phone or camera to a computer via a USB cable to store the images in the cloud, via Dropbox or Hightail. Most destinations offer free Wi-Fi, so you can do this every couple of days. It's a handy way of finding out whether your children are ruining your priceless memories.

After two weeks in Europe, we discovered Taj had done "bunny ears" over his sister's head in every photo except one, when he poked his tongue out instead.

Once home, you can create a family holiday slideshow using a Custom Retro Viewfinder from image3d.com. Remember the old View-Master, which you held in front of your eyes and clicked to reveal each photo?

This is a modern-day version. Fortunately, it doesn't add bell-bottomed trousers: It's not that retro. Digital photo frames have gone back to the future as well, with one in the shape of a TV from the 1960s.

For travel pictures, how about a frame in the shape of an aircraft window from designboom.com/design/designboom-shop-airframe-by-james-kim/.

If you're wedded to photo albums, try Momento Books (momento.com.au/inspiration/perfect-for-holiday-photos).

You design the pages using free software on the Momento website. Then, they send you a classy coffee table book.

Via a website link, good old Kikki-K lets you make a small photobook from your Instagram account (create.kikki-k.com/instagram/books/instagram-book.html).

"Isn't it sad, that the next generation of kids won't be able to look at family photos in a lovely old-fashioned album," a friend said the other day. Well, I'd like to turn her frown upside down (using Photoshop, of course).

These days, thanks to the wonders of technology, we can make multiple copies, share them instantly, and store them forever.

If I'd made a copy of our son's ultrasound video, we'd still have that as well. It's rather difficult to explain the, ahem, gender difference while watching the only existing ultrasound video: "Yes, you are a boy, darling, it's just that your hand is in front of your, er, you know ... anyway, who'd like some ice-cream?"

Twitter: @spicertracey

Precious memories need preserving, even in a digital age. © Getty Images Precious memories need preserving, even in a digital age.
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