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I'm very serious about automotive photography, so I figured it was a good idea to start a private wiki which can both serve as a knowledge base and an image library that contains interesting photos made by others.

After reading a lot in both MediaWiki's and Wikipedia's documentation to get an idea of how such a wiki should be organized, there are still some unanswered questions.

Let's say there are 5000 images that all have certain defining characteristics such as the artist, brand of car, type of lighting, and so on. They might have as much as twenty of those characteristics.

What's the best way to create the most future proof, foolproof and user-friendly image library? It needs to be easy to add/edit/delete/browse/search lots of images.

Using the built-in category system seems logical because it's 'native' to MediaWiki. Manually adding a lot of categories to a certain image seems a little cumbersome though. Is there a way to quickly add categories to an image/page? Is there maybe an even much better way of indexing the images?

Another point of concern are the file names. With a lot of files, there is a chance of unintentional replacing a file in the MediaWiki system. I can come up with naming conventions such as "<photographer> - <car brand> <car type>.jpg" but there is a good possibility that there will be several shots of the same car by the same photographer. How would you go about this?

Any help is greatly appreciated.

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You have three main paths here:

The most foolproof is probably a category gadget, and the most futureproof are the first two. SMW may be more futureproof if it ends up being widely used.

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Thank you for your answer! – Willem-Aart Dec 24 '12 at 12:42

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