Development / Design / Utility /

A web tool for displaying, managing, and sorting image libraries/files stored locally.

0Cuator image browsing

Image / inspiration curation is often a personal concern (and a matter of taste), with mood-boards/collections being shared infrequently relative to collection, curation, and browsing. Having tried many and beeing dissatisfied in some manner with each service, 0curator was created as simple no-frills utility that places maximum emphasis on the images and their sorting in a simple masonry grid.

0curator is intended to work offline for convenience and bandwidth reasons associated with loading/displaying large numbers of images, often in quick succession. That is to say, loading 50+ high quality images quickly is not something easily accomplished with traditional web applications, many of which do not allow local file storage.

The design is intentionally left minimal and basic in the service of reducing distraction from the images and increase the user’s sense that this is a ‘local’ application dealing with local files, despite being displayed in a web browser. The image layout uses the Masonry javascript library to layout images in a cascading grid with no additional ornamentation.

0Curator image sorting

Operating from a browser environment means there are strict limitations on the interaction allowed with a computers local file system, and thus terminal commands are generated for manual execution by the user. This has the additional benefit of displaying to the user the exact actions to be performed on the files, which is an important reassurance when entering commands into a terminal.


  1. Clone or place the 0curator.html file in the folder that contains your images or folders of images.
  2. Using the ‘Choose Files’ button, navigate to the folder containing the 0curator.html file and click upload
  3. Select a folder of images to display / interact with
  4. Use the ‘View’ dropdown to switch between View and Manage modes
    • In View mode, click images to flag for deletion
    • In Manage mode, hover and select folder names to move files to that location
  5. Scroll to bottom of page, review listed actions, and click copy
  6. Open a Terminal window and paste into buffer and hit enter to execute action
0Curator image commands

To Do

  1. Review UX to reduce room for user error
  2. Continue to test in Windows and Linux environments
  3. Add function to create temporary custom collections
  4. Add package functionality for sending zips of custom collections
  5. Explore Dropbox integration for optional online usage
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0curator was started—in part—as an experiment to test the limitations of web browsers to interact with the local file systems. This limit is in place for good reason, as having access and authority over a local file system from a browser is not an ability any given website should have, at least without the user’s knowledge and in a desktop environment. A general user’s expectation is that the browser interacts with content online, not locally—hence, this utility is for a specific kind of user, rather than a general use case. This does, of course, impose limitations on the utility and require workarounds to achieve file interaction, but is an acceptable tradeoff.

A part of the frustrations of other image management systems/applications stemmed from the inability—or difficulty—to modify or personalise in either functionality or interface. 0curator uses simple HTML, CSS, and vanilla Javascript to be easily readable and modifiable by anyone who so wishes and has a basic understanding of the above web technologies.