Apelles is a Silverlight application you can directly use online from your PC or
Mac. It's a companion application of Cadmus, and is used
to add metadata to (typically inscription) images.
Warning: this is an early Beta online version of Apelles desktop application
I have published here to allow some testing. Thus you might find bugs when playing
This online application can be used not only for editing, but also for publishing
data in an interactive environment, where users can see the inscription with all the
metadata we want to add to it, and grab their mouse and take any measurement directly
on the photo.
Open an image - Taking measurements -
Drawing shapes - Mapping text -
Adding labels - Adding images overlays -
Get XML code
In this demo Apelles is started with an image already
provided with metadata: you will find the full inscription text with its mapping,
a semitransparent digital drawing overlaid to the base image, and the measurement
unit (cm) already defined. You can of course use any other image and create or
edit metadata: you can add shapes, map the text on the image, virtually measure
any trait of your inscription letters with your mouse, describe any relevant aspect
with labels and add image overlays. All these data are coded into a simple XML file.
For some sample images (including the default one used in the demo) click
Opening an Image
To open an image click the Open button and select a JPEG image. You can adjust the
zoom level using the bottom slider. Once you have created some metadata using this
editor you can load the corresponding XML file instead of the JPEG image. In this
case, due to the remote sandbox in which this application lives you will be prompted
to load also the JPEG image and all the image overlays you have used (their names
appear in the bottom status bar).
The measures pane contains all the measurements taken with your mouse, including
the reference unit measurement and its name ("cm" = centimeters by default). To
take a measurement, once you have loaded an image first select the ruler tool (2nd
from left, marked with "12"); then click on your image to define the first point
of the ruler line, move your mouse until the 2nd point and click to fix it. The
line drawn represents the measurement: its value is shown below in the status bar
while moving the mouse and once you have taken it it appears in the measurements
pane together with the angle (calculated with reference to the baseline; the value
marked with "O" in the status bar represents the shading angle (=90 degrees - angle),
which is meaningful for letters like O.
To draw a straight ruler line hold shift while moving your mouse.
Assuming that you have a photo with a metric scale, take a first measurement to
define your measurement unit size: for instance, measure 1 centimeter in a centimeter
scale. Then click the green tick button in the measurements pane to set this as
the reference measurement unit. You can type its name (e.g. "cm") in the box to
its right side. To the right of this box a calculated value will also show you the
estimated error for the measurements taken on that image (which depends on image
resolution and unit size).
Once you have set your reference unit all the successive measurements will be calculated
according to it. You can change your unit size at any time and all the measurements
taken will be updated.
To delete a measurement just select it and click the delete button in the measurements
pane; to delete all the measurements click the delete all button in the same pane.
You can annotate each measurement taken by adding it a title and some notes. Just
select the measurement and type your title and notes in the provided boxes.
You can draw some shapes onto your image surface to emphasize some important aspects.
Use the drawing tools to draw:
- rectangles: click to set its top-left corner, move the mouse and click again to
set its bottom-right corner. You can hold shift to draw a square or ctrl-click to
cancel drawing. If you don't cancel, a new shape will be added to the shapes pane:
you can then enter a title and some notes for it and select its stroke and fill
colors and opacity: just select the shape in the list and change these attributes
as you like. Typically you will want to draw semi-transparent images; the default
opacity is set to 80% but you can change it as you prefer. As for any other object
(except measurements) you can use the selector tool (arrow button) to move an
object and the delete tool (X button) to delete an object by clicking on it.
- ellipses: you draw an ellipse just like a rectangle (see above).
- polygons: to draw a polygon you set a series of points which are automatically connected
by lines. Just click to define a point and keep adding points until you are done.
When adding the last point hold shift. To cancel the polygon ctrl-click.
Mapping Text or Other Signs
Shapes are also the base ingredients of text maps. The map allows you to map the
inscription text on its photo so that you can synchronize both while navigating
with your mouse. To define a map you just enclose in the most suitable shape group
of letters (typically "graphical" words) or whatever signs you want to map (e.g.
drawings, decorations, etc.): to draw shapes use the same tools illustrated above,
but first be sure to enter the map design mode by clicking the map button in the
top toolbox (which will change its color). In this mode each shape is added to the
map pane rather than to the shapes pane.
Once you have your shapes in place, enter the full inscription text (or whatever
text represents your mapped signs), using the same layout found on the stone, line
by line and word by word. The program will partition the entered text into "tokens"
(graphical words), and assign each a coordinate where Y = line and X = token number.
For instance, a text like:
Aureliae quae v(ixit) a(nnis) X
will be partitioned into 1,1 (dis), 1,2 (manibus), 2,1 (Aureliae), 2,2 (quae), etc.
To bind each of these tokens to a shape select the token, select the corresponding
shape and click the bind button (green tick) in the map panel. You will see that
the shape gets a title corresponding to the token coordinates and text.
Once you have mapped all your tokens, you can exit the map design mode and enable
map navigation by checking the corresponding option at the top-right of the toolbox.
In this mode when you hover your mouse on any mapped region of the image you the
corresponding token will be highlighted, and when you hover your mose on the text
(in the Text pane) the image will be automatically scrolled to the corresponding
You can also add some text labels to any part of your image. Just select the text
tool (T), click on the region where you want to place the text and type. To end
typing hit Enter, to cancel typing hit Esc. Once your label has been placed you
can change its color and font family and size from the labels pane.
You can add other images as layers on the base image, so that they can work as "overlays"
with additional information; typically this is used to overlay the digital drawing
to the photo with a certain level of transparency. To place an image select the
image pane, click the open image button and load it: the image will appear in the
list. You can add a title and some notes to it, define its transparency and offset
it on the base image using the arrow buttons and/or typing offsets values in X and
Y boxes. The center button is used to center the overlay on the base image. If you
add several overlays use the green arrow buttons to move them up or down in the
Finally, you can get the XML code which fully describes all your graphical metadata
(measurements, maps and text, shapes, labels, image overlays) by clicking the floppy
button next to the Open button: the XML pane will be filled with the XML code (you
can select and copy it if you want). You can find an XSDL scheme for this XML