Yesterday I gave Google’s Picasa again a try. Importing my iPhoto library I ran into the now infamous error message: “corrupted AlbumData.xml”. The Apple support website has some tips on how to fix this, but it’s too vague. Luckily there are smart people out there and I stumbled upon a good way in the Picasa help forums to debug your AlbumData.xml using TextWrangler.

  1. Install TextWrangler if you haven’t already.
  2. Open your iPhoto Library using Finder: right-click (Ctrl-Click) and select ‘Show Package Contents’. Copy the AlbumData.xml file to your desktop.
  3. Open the AlbumData.xml from on your Desktop using TextWrangler.
  4. From the Text-menu, choose ‘Zap Gremlins’.
  5. Deselect ‘Non-ASCII Characters’ and select ‘Replace with: •’.
  6. Wait for TextWrangler to finish the zapping! Can take a while.
  7. When done, search (Cmd-f) for occurrence of the • (Option-8)
  8. Open iPhoto and fix wherever you find a dot in the copy of AlbumData.xml

If you are lucky, you’ll find quickly the character that is bugging Picasa. I had only one of these Gremlins in the XML file.

So, I gave Picasa a try, but it failed importing captions of the pictures, only tags. I haven’t found a fix/workaround for that, so it’s a no-go for me still.