Write Portfolio info to images

vlad
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Joined: 01 Sep 08 15:20

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by vlad » 18 Dec 14 12:53

Ok, here are my five cents on ICS:

1. Paradoxically, I agree at the same time with recommending the option and with Hert's decision to leave it disabled by default. I find this decision wise simply because I trust more a program that does not touch or temper with the metadata in my images, unless I explicitly allow it or instruct it to do so. (Some people may not even want IDimager to leave any recognizable mark in the metadata, even if I personally find the use of Photo Supreme a reason of pride. :-)) I expect the setting may also incur a small performance overhead upon write-syncing, although I find this aspect secondary.

2. I find the decision to never write a private label to metadata (including the ICS fields) a no-brainer: after all, isn't that precisely the reason for which "Do not create keyword" was implemented? I do agree, however, that users ought to realize the difference between the two kinds of labels, especially if they do enable the ICS writing. Which brings me to my next points:

3. If a user has (many) private labels, he/she should not expect that his/her recreated catalog data would look exactly the same as before upon the ICS reading. (Another important point is that private labels are not recorded in hierarchical words either - yes, that's what true privacy means! - so those private labels will be completely lost if the database gets lost or corrupted and no backup is in place.) Does anyone know what actually happens when the catalog used to contain private labels and is subsequently recreated via ICS reading?

My personal expectation is that any label (tree) that was originally defined under a private label would be "promoted" in the new catalog under the (first non-private) parent of that private label, with the implication that distinct label trees (originally placed under private labels) might now get merged under a common node (label or top-level category). The catalog structure might therefore look quite different than the original one - but the two should still be equivalent, modulo private labels! This is only my own, untested theory - does anyone have first hand experience or insights?

4. In light of the above considerations, a user might want to avoid private labels as much as possible, even when (s)he does not want to create regular keywords for certain labels. Yet, there is currently no way to specify "Do not create keywords" on a top level category - one can only declare it as private. I have filed feature request #2736 to improve on this.

5. I think it's important that Steve (or someone else) let us know whether he is eventually succesful in recreating the catalog data. If not, it might be user error or program error - but, in either case, someone should look into this. (It's pointless to recommend a non-default setting if it is not handled properly, especially if this brings about a false sense of safety.)

(Sorry for the long post; at least, I hope it's worth the 5 cents promised.)

Mike Buckley
Posts: 1194
Joined: 10 Jul 08 14:18

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by Mike Buckley » 18 Dec 14 13:57

vlad wrote: 1. Paradoxically, I agree at the same time with recommending the option and with Hert's decision to leave it disabled by default. I find this decision wise simply because I trust more a program that does not touch or temper with the metadata in my images, unless I explicitly allow it or instruct it to do so.
Using that logic, I would think you would object to the default setting that enables automatic writing of the catalog information to the image files.

We don't yet know that the option to write to the ICS is still being recommended. Hert has changed the hover tip at least to some degree not yet available in the current build.

My thinking is that the reason for changing the default ICS setting should be explained to the customer base, especially after so many years of explaining in the product documentation the usefulness of the enabled setting.

vlad
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Joined: 01 Sep 08 15:20

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by vlad » 18 Dec 14 14:02

My 6th cent (sorry):

Not every program offers a built-in database backup and restore feature (the responsibility for those operations is often left entirely to users and third party tools). PSU does implement it and, on top of it, it provides an additional mechanism (ICS) for tranparent backup and restoring. Consider the ICS feature a safety bonus rather than something essential to the inner workings of PSU or to a standard workflow (as a default setting might suggest)! (I'm not suggesting by any means that ICS shouldn't properly work - it should, as long as it's officially supported and documented. But we ought not consider ICS a substitute for regular backups, possibly using specialized software, to external media.)

Btw, I remember I used to be reminded about the catalog backup - this hasn't happened in a while. Is there a reminder I might have turned off?

Hert
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Joined: 13 Sep 03 7:24

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by Hert » 18 Dec 14 14:18

Writing ICS is still recommended.
Having ICS written or not is up to the user. A good catalog backup strategy is much more important, and ICS is an extra fallback. Recommended to have, not important enough to have it ON by default.
This is a User-to-User forum which means that users post questions here for other users.
Feature requests, change suggestions, or bugs can be logged in the ticketing system

vlad
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Joined: 01 Sep 08 15:20

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by vlad » 18 Dec 14 14:24

Mike Buckley wrote: Using that logic, I would think you would object to the default setting that enables automatic writing of the catalog information to the image files.
No, I do not, because a standard (default) expectation from a DAM program is to write catalog information to the image files - specifically, information mapped to standard metadata fields or to fields which I specifically choose myself. I would argue that the proprietary ICS info does not fall (by deafult) under this clause. (And no, I'm not a lawyer, although I have a lot of fun these days watching "Suits", season 3. :) )

Btw, even if I don't currently use it, I do appreciate that PSU also offers the option to "store metadata to the database only": it's a nice bonus for whoever doesn't want to touch images at all. (Just curious: is anyone using this preference?)

HCS
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Joined: 19 Feb 14 22:08

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by HCS » 18 Dec 14 14:47

vlad wrote:No, I do not, because a standard (default) expectation from a DAM program is to write catalog information to the image files
I'm not to sure about it being a default expectation. It is certainly not my expectation.
vlad wrote: - specifically, information mapped to standard metadata fields or to fields which I specifically choose myself.
Ah, i understand, it's your expectation, of course you're fully entitled to that :D
vlad wrote:Btw, even if I don't currently use it, I do appreciate that PSU also offers the option to "store metadata to the database only": it's a nice bonus for whoever doesn't want to touch images at all. (Just curious: is anyone using this preference?)
I don't, but only because i've never bothered to change the defaults. At least for the server version, i'd like these settings to be (able to be) made on a more granular level, not at database level. While i use the server version, i'm the only user.

In a multi user environment though, i'd like more options on label level to assign categories, beyond the Private flag. I'd like to be able to assign metadata to the label (so: a label to the label) which could then be used in policies to show/hide certain catalog info from certain user(groups). Once those options and granularity become available, with all due respect, the server version is more like the standalone version on steroids (which totally fits my personal purpose).

Mike Buckley
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Joined: 10 Jul 08 14:18

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by Mike Buckley » 18 Dec 14 14:51

IDimager wrote: Recommended to have, not important enough to have it ON by default.
Thanks for the explanation. It makes sense.

vlad
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Joined: 01 Sep 08 15:20

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by vlad » 18 Dec 14 16:33

Hi HCS,

the funny thing is that I turned off auto-syncing several months ago, although I don't have any problem with its default enabling :wink: (I may reconsider my own settings, in light of experience.) My point was really more about writing the catalog info to the files (whether manually or not), although I'm admitedly biased. (I am ruling out DAM programs which only lock in the data to their own DB.)

It's interesting what you suggest about permission settings (at the label or field level) - I can see how that's handy in a multi-user environment, but I must say I don't see the advantage(s) for a single user. Perhaps you could give us some hints.

HCS
Posts: 150
Joined: 19 Feb 14 22:08

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by HCS » 18 Dec 14 17:24

vlad wrote:Hi HCS,

the funny thing is that I turned off auto-syncing several months ago, although I don't have any problem with its default enabling :wink: (I may reconsider my own settings, in light of experience.) My point was really more about writing the catalog info to the files (whether manually or not), although I'm admitedly biased. (I am ruling out DAM programs which only lock in the data to their own DB.)

It's interesting what you suggest about permission settings (at the label or field level) - I can see how that's handy in a multi-user environment, but I must say I don't see the advantage(s) for a single user. Perhaps you could give us some hints.
Hi Vlad,

Well, curently i don't really have a strong use case. But left to think about your last question for a while (say 5 minutes or so), i could come up with the use case in one of the other threads about tracking output of images.

I may actually want to output to various web sites, perhaps galleries and/or stock sites and would like different way of embedding labels/keywords for the various output channels.

I think this is only applicable once one starts to employ multiple of anything, users, output channels, input channels, etc. So, use cases are everywhere.

Truth to be told, i'm an IT architect in real life and do this kind of stuff for business systems, think ERP, Supply Network Planning, etc. etc., so this kind of approach (parameters to be used in policy setup) is rather close to (my) home.

stevehughes
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Joined: 19 Jan 13 3:46
Location: Brisbane, Australia

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by stevehughes » 19 Dec 14 9:07

My findings with version 3.0.2.2060

- Hert is correct about the ICS not being enabled by default. (Of course he is - he should know. I was mistaken)
- Created c:\test and put a bunch of test images in it.
- Created a new database, re-opened PSU, checked ICS read and write.
- Imported the photos, assigned them all to a Test Collection and a Test Category. I noted that when I added them to Test Collection the modified date on the files didn't change, however when I added them to Test Category the modified date was updated.
- Created another new database, re-opened PSU, checked ICS read and write.
- imported the photos.
- Found they were assigned to Test Category, but not to Test Collection.

- ExifTool shows nothing that looks to me like the ICS data although I admit I don't know what I'm looking for. I attach one of the images.

Steve.
Attachments
20130101_014300.JPG
20130101_014300.JPG (815.03 KiB) Viewed 2785 times

vlad
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Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by vlad » 19 Dec 14 10:27

Steve, if you look at the Xmp data, you will find XMP-ics (it contains Test Category, for example), you could also find the ICS info in Details panel -> XMP Advanced. The problem is that the ICS data does not contain any info about portfolio collections - and I have confirmed this for a couple of my images too.

Looking in Mantis, I could find a previous bug report about missing collections in ICS: http://mantis.idimager.com/view.php?id=1865. I am not sure if this is the same underlying bug or not, but it should be reported to Mantis.

jstartin
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Location: UK

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by jstartin » 19 Dec 14 11:53

vlad wrote:Steve, if you look at the Xmp data, you will find XMP-ics (it contains Test Category, for example), you could also find the ICS info in Details panel -> XMP Advanced. The problem is that the ICS data does not contain any info about portfolio collections - and I have confirmed this for a couple of my images too.

Looking in Mantis, I could find a previous bug report about missing collections in ICS: http://mantis.idimager.com/view.php?id=1865. I am not sure if this is the same underlying bug or not, but it should be reported to Mantis.
Unless my memory is massively faulty then portfolio information used to be written to XMP-ics, and reimporting a "deleted from database" image with Read ICS enabled did restore it to the Portfolio/Collection. It seems some bug has broken this functionality and I imagine Hert will be able to mend it once it is on the bug list.
Jim (Photo Supreme: AMD Quad-Core A8-5500 Accelerated Processor 3.2 GHz; internal AMD Radeon™ HD7560D; 4GB DDR3 SDRAM; Win10x64)

tstoddard
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Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by tstoddard » 19 Dec 14 13:13

Out of curiosity, I just checked a few images that I have in some collections. First I looked at a collection that was created over a year ago and found that the files I had added to that collection do have a portfolio element in the xmp:ics section. Then I looked at a collection that was created in September of this year and I found that the files in that collection do not have portfolio information in their xmp data. It appears that this is a bug that has gone unnoticed for a while now. The issue that vlad referenced was from V2 and it was marked as resolved. I guess somebody needs to open a new issue in mantis.

I took the liberty to submit the bug in mantis: http://mantis.idimager.com/view.php?id=2739
Tom Stoddard

Mike Buckley
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Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by Mike Buckley » 19 Dec 14 13:32

I'm also finding that Portfolio information is inconsistently saved or not to the ics data. I can't detect any pattern. In fact, some images in a particular Portfolio are recorded in the ics data and some images in the same Portfolio are not.

vlad
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Joined: 01 Sep 08 15:20

Re: Write Portfolio info to images

Post by vlad » 19 Dec 14 13:59

I've just noticed that Hert has already fixed the bug, in a record breaking time of 8 minutes (submitted -> resolved) - probably took him shorter than each of us commenting on it in the first place. :)

(Tom, thanks for reporting it. I've also asked Hert - in the bug reporting thread - to allow us to reopen existing tickets, we'll see if he agrees.)

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