How would you all like versions to work for you?

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fbungarz
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How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by fbungarz » 10 Feb 16 16:15

Hi all,
I have seen from several contributions across this forum that PSu Users either rarely use versions or are dissatisfied/confused how they work. There is also an extensive discussion about a feature request in Mantis (http://mantis.idimager.com/view.php?id=2525).

I am one of the (few?) people that like the idea of using versions a lot and try to do so, but find the way they are handled fairly counter intuitive.

The discussion in Mantis suggests that versions have three purposes:

1) to collate together all versions of the image to easily recognize them as being versions
2) to process all versions as one, when appropriate (labelling, geo-tagging etc.) [the appropriateness being subject to other discussions
3) to decrease the number of duplicated images shown on screen, in some circumstances [circumstances under discussion]
To me a rather important aspect, why I bother with versions is missing:
4) to use a particular version for a particular purpose

For example...
  • - I would like to be able to quickly open a particular version in DxO or Lightroom. Both programs work well with DNGs, so ideally it should be possible to configure PSu to open the DNG files when I call these applications from within PSu. PhaseOne's Capture One, however, work better with original raw files (NEF, CR2). So, ideally these files should be selected when opening C1 from PSu. Currently I have to manually select the version that I want to open in an external application.
    - I would like to quickly print a contact sheet and have PSu select the print version (that actually now works again in build 2075)...
    Emailing an image from PSu the email version would be used...
Here my suggestion:
PSu's Preferences allow to specify file naming masks for a particular version (Preferences - Catalog - Versioning - Place Holder - Match as).
It would be fantastic if a specific default program [external, e.g. Lightroom, DxO etc.] could be configured here as well as an internal program option (e.g., use this version for printing, use this version for emailing, etc.)

Related to this suggestion is the discussion about how versions should best be displayed.

The discussion in Mantis (mantis.idimager.com/view.php?id=2525) as well as many posts on this forum illustrate that users are confused and often frustrated that different parts of PSU display either the whole set of versions or only the main one.
From a programmer's view the logic behind this is obvious:
(1) For a particular purpose (see the list above, e.g. labelling, geo-panel, etc.) it is not necessary to display versions separately. A label applies to all versions in a set, if one version was geo-tagged, those coordinates apply to all the derivatives as well. [However, there are borderline cases: area-tags. A version that is a crop of the original may not have the face of a person that was included in the original file. Some people may prefer to assign different star ratings or different color labels to their versions...]
(2) For most other purposes it appears more logical to have all the versions displayed. E.g. in folder view having only the main version displayed would look odd, because the other files are not missing, but are nevertheless hidden. For a particular date it also may not seem reasonable to hide versions, etc. etc.

Now, though I understand the logic being this, I think it is still flawed.
For example:
I very often start labeling my images in folder view. It makes sense. I don't need to have the catalog category tree open for labeling. The Label Panel is much more convenient and I successively import files into folders names according to the date, when the pictures were taken. Then I start labeling folder per folder. This means - for the labelling I actually now hide the subversions, filter out the main versions only.
In many other views I often also hide all but the main version. For example, when I work on labeling all photos from a particular date no matter in which particular folder they might be (Catalog - By Date).
BUT:
In some instances ONLY one version is displayed and this can be quite a nuisance: For example, portfolios only show a particular version. But perhaps one time I would like to work on the files in a portfolio using an external editor and then, once edited, I would like to email or print the results or transfer them to a different folder. Now, to get the particular version that I want, I need to do some fancy searching of the portfolio...

I am not saying my workflow is like one of anyone else. I have read the discussion in Mantis (and many more) about versions and it seems everyone would like this to work slightly different.

But here are some very simple suggestions, that may address everyone's need:

(1) Default: show all versions everywhere
(2) Update the filter bar to permit filtering out a particular version quickly (ideally that filter should be "sticky" for a particular view)
(3) Permit setting up version-specific applications, i.e., versions can not only be assigned to one particular placeholder, but PSu can be configured to use that version for a specific action (external program and/or internally).

The obvious advantage of this suggestion: it is fully configurable according to anyone's need.
  • - If someone wants only a particular version to be displayed, that is possible (of course, where that version does not exist, the main version gets displayed! also a quick way if for a version set all versions actually exist...).
    - If someone wants to use a particular version for a particular purpose, that is possible too - either, because it can be configured globally in Preferences, or by very quickly displaying/filtering out only the versions needed.
    - Finally it would also be a fairly simple and elegant solution, a much less confusion way to set up versioning. Per default one would see all versions everywhere. Then it would be possible for a particular view to hide/show versions quickly and keep that setting enabled until changed again.
I could have added my comments/suggestions to Mantis 2525, but the discussion there is very long already and it looks to me that it is unfortunately not going anywhere...

So, I though I start this anew here. I hope nobody will be annoyed about this.

Cheers,
Frank

Mike Buckley
Posts: 4561
Joined: 10 Jul 08 14:18

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by Mike Buckley » 10 Feb 16 16:24

The current versioning system meets all of my needs though I understand that that may not be true for everyone. Indeed, versioning is one of the most important capabilities to me.
fbungarz wrote:I could have added my comments/suggestions to Mantis 2525, but the discussion there is very long already and it looks to me that it is unfortunately not going anywhere...
It's highly doubtful in my mind that starting another discussion here will have a meaningfully different outcome.

vlad
Posts: 967
Joined: 01 Sep 08 15:20

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by vlad » 10 Feb 16 19:24

Hi Frank,
fbungarz wrote: To me a rather important aspect, why I bother with versions is missing:
4) to use a particular version for a particular purpose
Makes sense.
But here are some very simple suggestions, that may address everyone's need:
May I paraphrase Mike and say it's highly doubtful in my mind that some very simple suggestions may address everyone's need?
(1) Default: show all versions everywhere
I guess you mean all qualifying versions (like in Folders view, currently), meaning: those versions which meet the criterion associated to the displayed collection.
(3) Permit setting up version-specific applications, i.e., versions can not only be assigned to one particular placeholder, but PSu can be configured to use that version for a specific action (external program and/or internally).
I have colored the part of your suggestion which would actually remove an existing flexibility. Personally, I don't care much about that flexibility, but removing it may not be compliant with everyone's need. Just saying it...
The obvious advantage of this suggestion: it is fully configurable according to anyone's need.
  • - If someone wants only a particular version to be displayed, that is possible (of course, where that version does not exist, the main version gets displayed! also a quick way if for a version set all versions actually exist...).
If someone is interested only in a particular sub-version (as opposed to some version), I think that main versions should not be displyed at all. At least, not without being highlighted in some way.
Per default one would see all versions everywhere.
Again, not so fast! For example, if you're in some catalog state view, why would you want to show versions which are not in that state?
I could have added my comments/suggestions to Mantis 2525, but the discussion there is very long already and it looks to me that it is unfortunately not going anywhere...
May I call my PR guys to put a positive spin on it? :wink: (ok, thank you)

I am obviously biased (since I've contributed a lot to Mantis 2525, along with others), but:

1) That ticket shows there is clear interest in improving the versioning. (Sure, there are still just a few of us who have contributed there, but let's face it: writing in Mantis and looking at technical details is not a popularity contest.)
2) The discussion may be long and twisted, but it's actually been more consistent, productive and focused than many other discussions I've seen (both inside and outside the fine Supreme community).
3) Several people came with thoughtful suggestions and proposals, which we subsequently discussed and tried to refine. The overview of different proposals is available here: http://mantis.idimager.com/view.php?id=2525#c6142 (There's also a subsequent note from Andrew.)
4) I implemented a working script (technically, two - but one script is just one line long), as a proof of concept and as a workaround for certain limitations.

...Sure, the end result is all up in the air (we haven't heard any feedback from Hert), but there's only so much one (or more) could do to influence the product roadmap...; still:

5) Number 2525 is simply too beautiful not to hold faith in the eventual ticket resolution :)

Mike Buckley wrote:
fbungarz wrote:I could have added my comments/suggestions to Mantis 2525, but the discussion there is very long already and it looks to me that it is unfortunately not going anywhere...
It's highly doubtful in my mind that starting another discussion here will have a meaningfully different outcome.
LOL :lol:

(Honestly, I can't stop laughing every time I read or recall Mike's reply. Perhaps that's because it's so seriously phrased - or perhaps because it's so true. We're facing again one of those tough choices: should we simply discuss again, ad nauseam, about versions - or should we just discuss, again, about the pros and cons of discussing about versions? :lol: ...Sorry, I just couldn't resist...)

Mike Buckley
Posts: 4561
Joined: 10 Jul 08 14:18

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by Mike Buckley » 10 Feb 16 20:09

vlad wrote:Sorry, I just couldn't resist...)
Try harder next time. :mrgreen:

fbungarz
Posts: 3163
Joined: 08 Dec 06 5:03
Location: Galapagos, Ecuador

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by fbungarz » 10 Feb 16 20:26

Hi Vlad,
just some points I'd like to clarify:
(3) Permit setting up version-specific applications, i.e., versions can not only be assigned to one particular placeholder, but PSu can be configured to use that version for a specific action (external program and/or internally).
I have colored the part of your suggestion which would actually remove an existing flexibility. Personally, I don't care much about that flexibility, but removing it may not be compliant with everyone's need. Just saying it...
You are interpreting that too literally: I do not mean to remove the option that I can assign one version to several placeholders! I want to suggest that in addition to assigning it to a placeholder my suggesting is to allow the placeholder to be configured (in Preferences) to call a specific application or task. To explain this: I might have a NEF file that I assign to the version placeholder "Original". In Preferences that placeholder would then be set up to call PhaseOne C1. So, if a thumb is selected (the main version or any other version) and I call PhaseOne C1 as my external editor for that version set, the NEF file would open in that application, not the other versions...
The obvious advantage of this suggestion: it is fully configurable according to anyone's need.
  • - If someone wants only a particular version to be displayed, that is possible (of course, where that version does not exist, the main version gets displayed! also a quick way if for a version set all versions actually exist...).
If someone is interested only in a particular sub-version (as opposed to some version), I think that main versions should not be displayed at all. At least, not without being highlighted in some way.
If someone is interested in a particular sub version, but that subversion does not exist, showing the main version instead immediately indicates that the version I am looking for does not exist!
I guess, what is needed are two kinds of filters:
(1) a filter that only shows a particular sub-versions (nothing else; actually that can already be achieved, but it might indeed be implemented in a more convenient way)
(2) a way to set up (for each view) which particular version should be displayed (if available, else show the main version; this second option currently can be achieved for the main version only - using your custom filter scripts: http://forum.idimager.com/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=23782).
Again, not so fast! For example, if you're in some catalog state view, why would you want to show versions which are not in that state?
Well, this is a no-brainer: of course for that part of the tree (Catalog State) it makes no sense to display a different version. As an example: the Catalog State "Out of Sync" displays images out of sync. It clearly makes no sense to display the main version here, if that version is in-sync, but not a subversion, which may be out-of-sync. Likewise, if a main version contains is Geo-tagged, but a subversion not, the subversion that is not tagged should not show up in that category...
etc. etc.
Several people came with thoughtful suggestions and proposals, which we subsequently discussed and tried to refine. The overview of different proposals is available here: http://mantis.idimager.com/view.php?id=2525#c6142 (There's also a subsequent note from Andrew.)
OK, I admit that I should have read that summary more thoroughly, but did not because the discussion there is simply overwhelming!
Ironically almost all the points summarized there would be addressed by my suggestions:
1) A version filter integrated in the filter bar (Vlad, David)
Exactly what I want!
2) An expanded/collapsed display mode (Andrey, Vlad, David)
Also my suggestion: i.e., the option that I can expand the version sets anywhere (apart from the parts where that makes no logical sense like the "Out-of-Sync" example mentioned above!)
3) A Related/Suggested Collections feature, aka "Show more" extended with versioning criteria, inside or outside the current tab (Vlad, David)
I am not sure, if I completely understand this request. I would assume that being able to set combi filters for a specific version and one or several other filters would address this? If that is what is meant by this request, then it also could be achieved by what I suggested, namely the option to flexibly choose what version (collapsed or a particular version) is displayed for a particular view.
4) A highlighting feature (restricted or not to qualifying versions/images?) (David)
Again I am not sure if I completely understand this request. But a version indicator can already be shown using a thumbs info script. I assume you want a more permanent (hard-coded) way that different versions are highlighted? Now, that I have a nice thumbs info working well for me, not so sure about this...
5) Improvements to version tabs - not sure if those are suggested only for portfolio collections or for all collections? (Mke, David)
I asked for something akin to the version bar of IDI a long time ago; when PSu still did not have tabs. Personally I am now quite happy with the tabs, but of course I would not mind the option to show that tab alongside the collection view (essentially having IDI's version tab back...). I do think much about the confusion about versions is a result from not being able to see the different versions side-by-side...
I doubt that this last request has any chance to ever get implemented. Hert seems rather reluctant to additional "clutter". It is probably as unlikely as my request for more options to customize the panels (e.g., a panel that combines Image Details + GPS, or Image Details + Labels).
May I paraphrase Mike and say it's highly doubtful in my mind that some very simple suggestions may address everyone's need?
May I paraphrase your paraphrase? 3 out of 5 (= requests no. 1, 2, 3) + another 1/2 request already feasible (using thumb infos = request no. 4) + another request already half-way-there (using version tabs = request no. 5) isn't so bad, right?
So, even without reading your 2525 summary, I managed to address quite a few points with my suggestions...
Number 2525 is simply too beautiful not to hold faith in the eventual ticket resolution
I like your positive attitude :D

Cheers,
Frank
Last edited by fbungarz on 10 Feb 16 21:36, edited 2 times in total.

Mike Buckley
Posts: 4561
Joined: 10 Jul 08 14:18

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by Mike Buckley » 10 Feb 16 20:58

vlad wrote:[Ticket] Number 2525 is simply too beautiful not to hold faith in the eventual ticket resolution :)
Considering that it is apparently a feature request rather than a bug report that apparently has gone on a long time, I suspect that it has already been resolved in the developer's mind though perhaps not to the satisfaction of anyone participating in the ticket. Such is the understandable nature of many feature requests.

fbungarz
Posts: 3163
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Location: Galapagos, Ecuador

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by fbungarz » 10 Feb 16 21:06

I suspect that it has already been resolved in the developer's mind
Well, in that case I am much looking forward to seeing that "mind" be put in "practice" :mrgreen:

vlad
Posts: 967
Joined: 01 Sep 08 15:20

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by vlad » 10 Feb 16 21:28

Good - so we're discussing versioning. Fine by me.
I want to suggest that in addition to assigning it to a placeholder my suggesting is to allow the placeholder to be configured (in Preferences) to call a specific application or task. To explain this: I might have a NEF file that I assign to the version placeholder "Original". In Preferences that placeholder would then be set up to call PhaseOne C1. So, if a thumb is selected (the main version or any other version) and I call PhaseOne C1 as my external editor for that version set, the NEF file would open in that application, not the other versions...
You may want to copy this specific suggestion to Mantis (if you haven't lost faith in it), as I don't recall something similar being captured there. (I could be wrong, though.)
If someone is interested in a particular sub version, but that subversion does not exist, showing the main version instead immediately indicates that the version I am looking for does not exist!
How does one immediately distinguish a main version, especially if it's a collection with hundreds or thousands of images? (Plus, what if someone selects all the thumbs without checking?)
I guess, what is needed are two kinds of filters:
(1) a filter that only shows a particular sub-versions (nothing else; actually that can already be achieved, but it might indeed be implemented in a more convenient way)
(2) a way to set up (for each view) which particular version should be displayed (if available, else show the main version; this second option currently can be achieved for the main version only - using your custom filter scripts: http://forum.idimager.com/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=23782).
That is correct.
Well, this is a no-brainer: of course for that part of the tree (Catalog State) it makes no sense to display a different version. As an example: the Catalog State "Out of Sync" displays images out of sync. It clearly makes no sense to display the main version here, if that version is in-sync, but not a subversion, which may be out-of-sync. Likewise, if a main version contains is Geo-tagged, but a subversion not, the subversion that is not tagged should not show up in that category...
etc. etc.
Good - we're on the same page.
OK, I admit that I should have read that summary more thoroughly, but did not because the discussion there is simply overwhelming!
Sure, that's completely understandable.
May I paraphrase Mike and say it's highly doubtful in my mind that some very simple suggestions may address everyone's need?
May I paraphrase your paraphrase? 3 out of 5 + another 1/2 request already feasible (using thumb infos) + another request already half-way-there (using version tabs) isn't so bad, right?
So, even without reading your 2525 summary, I managed to address quite a few points with my suggestions...
Right, Frank. Good to see convergence on the matter.
Number 2525 is simply too beautiful not to hold faith in the eventual ticket resolution
I like your positive attitude :D
You know that saying: a pessimist is a well-informed optimist... I guess I'm just missing the info... :mrgreen: (Btw, Frank: that's the alternative, more somber way to read Mike's latest suggestion.)

Cheers,
Vlad

fbungarz
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Location: Galapagos, Ecuador

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by fbungarz » 10 Feb 16 21:35

How does one immediately distinguish a main version, especially if it's a collection with hundreds or thousands of images? (Plus, what if someone selects all the thumbs without checking?)
Easy with my custom thumbs info: a yellow bar = main version, a green bar with the name of the subversions = subversion.
I guess that would be request no. 4 (a way that the versions are highlighted differently; honestly, to me that was an absolute "must have" in PSU and I was able to migrate only, when I finally had figured out the custom script that would do this:

Code: Select all

<body bgcolor="%code
if Catalog.ImageIsVersion(ImageItem) then
  result := '#00FF00'
else if Catalog.ImageHasVersions(ImageItem) then
  result := '#FFFF00'
else
  result := '#000000';
%/code"><FONT size="10"color="#000000">%CatalogPlaceholderList</FONT></body>

sgbotsford
Posts: 11
Joined: 11 Feb 12 21:48

Re: How would you all like versions to work for you?

Post by sgbotsford » 07 Feb 18 1:34

I'm considering PSu just because of versions. The list of programs that support versions is small.

When I first thought about versions, I had in mind a project I did way back before percentages were in common use in CSS and bandwidth was stingy. I created a web page photo album that required 16 different sizes of each file, ranging from 64x96 up to 2048 x 3072. In that case, I had each size in a different directory.

So: Versioning shouldn't care where the file is, as long as it's in one of the folders designated as a PSu folder.

Generally in a view I only want to see a representation of the primary file. But an icon or badge near the image tells me that there are other versions of this image. Mousing over that badge shows the other versions. Clicking on the badge keeps the popup present and you can then do actions on versions.

Generally I want to have a version tree. I want to be able to tell if version C is derived from B or derived directly from the master.

If I apply a keyword to a master I want that keyword to percolate down to the versions. BUT if I add a keyword to a version it only applies to it and it's derivatives.

If I apply a negative keyword to a version, then that says to PSu "Do not apply this keyword to this image and derivatives." The main use of this is to remove keywords for parts cropped or edited out.

When I run an image through an external program, that program may create multiple versions. E.g. Edit with Photoshop. Now there is a .psd file. From PS I export a JPeg file. So the version tree would be Master -> PSD -> Jpeg. Clicking on a master and asking to edit in photoshop a second time would bring up a dialog "Start new PSD from master, reopen existing PSD, or open a copy of PSD?

Ideally Versions should be able to cope with edits files produced by non-destructive external editing programs. E.g the 'version' is a symbolic or hard link to the original master, and the edit file is associated with the link.

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