Building Local Icons Finder on Your Computer

Every application developer, web designer or other icon collector owns a large icon archive on their computer. As time goes on, it'll be a serious challenge to quickly find and locate a special icon in the huge icon collection. This is why the icons finder becomes necessary.

Rich Information File Naming

The simplest and natural way to find icons is base on the icon file names. Most modern operating systems allows users to use fairly long text strings as file names. For instance, on Windows platforms, you're able to enter a maximum of 255 characters in file names. It's an enough text length to store various informations for icon finding. For example, for a deletion icon with 16x16, 32x32, 256x256 icon images, you may name it as "application-edit-delete-256.ico". Later you can find it easily when you search for deletion symbols, application software toolbar icons or large size icons for logos, splash windows or other special usages.

However, there are some defects in the rich-information-file-naming method. If you zip a file with a long file name within a very deep directory, sometimes the zipped file can not be unzipped successfully because the whole file path may exceed the system maximum path length. Another inconvenience is browsing icons in Windows Explorer, long file names are very messy and hard to view or manage.

Independent Keywords Field

The best solution is store the icon searching information in an independent place that can be easily appended, modified or deleted. Unfortunately, most operating systems, including Windows, don't support user custom fields. Some third-party icon manage software such as IconLibraryX allow users to input the icon finding info into a custom field, commonly named Keywords. Users're able to store a great deal of information as the keywords of each icon, just like the meta keywords of web pages, e.g. "application, edit, delete, 256". As you see, the solution of independent keywords field are more flexible and more standard.

Image Recognition Technology

Another promising technology which can be used for icon finding is the image recognition technology. Imagine, no need to enter keywords information in advance, just input a few words or drop a piece of original picture, all related icons displayed immediately! Using the amazing technology, the utility of icons finder will be raised to a new level. Unfortunately, the image recognition technology is immature and still under development. The good news is Google Images already used this technology experimentally. Let us wait and see!

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