Optimize images for web directly inside Visual Studio 2010

Probably in the 90s sometime, you achieved insider web design knowledge learning that you should not really be referencing a 4MB image file as little content image in a web page. Friends, family and associates we’re amazed as you made their Geocities pages suddenly 10X faster by replacing the image bloat. These days, the people who shoot you your imagery are generally a little smarter about fixing up their icons/logos/layout element images but there is ALWAYS more blood available to be squeezed from the stone of web images.

You still don’t believe just saving at 75% quality “for web” in Photoshop is the universal fix for web image optimization, do you? It’s not exactly life’s little joyful task to take what Joe the Marketing guy down the cube farm sent you for content or icons, and turning it into SEO and visitor-friendly pixel greatness. Especially when you’re a Developer who knows that fractional performance tuning (in this case, shaving off file size KB) in web application content is rarely going to be noticed by your team, unless it’s missing.

I found a nice little plugin for VS 2010 at http://visualstudiogallery.msdn.microsoft.com/a56eddd3-d79b-48ac-8c8f-2db06ade77c3 that let’s you execute the tedious chore of image optimization directly inside VS 2010.

Adds a right-click menu to any folder and image in Solution Explorer that let’s you automatically optimize all PNG, GIF and JPEG files in that folder. The optimization doesn’t effect the quality of the images, but optimizes them using industry proven algorithms for removing EXIF and other metadata. The extension uses SmushIt and PunyPNG for optimizing the images. Check out the short video demo.

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