Spotlight does not search iPhoto metadata

Discussion in 'macOS' started by johnpg, Mar 29, 2005.

  1. johnpg macrumors member

    johnpg

    Joined:
    May 21, 2002
    #1
    The subject really says it all. At least as of a couple weeks ago (which is the only time I've seen Tiger and didn't have much time as I was visiting a company for an entirely different reason) Spotlight does not search iPhoto data. I'm not sure of the build number, but several builds have come out since I saw it.

    Anyhow, iPhoto stores its metadata in its own database and not inside the image files themselves. Apparently spotlight only searches based on the EXIF and other metadata in images. When that data is there, it works great. The guy had a photo that he downloaded online and the included metadata had a description of the photo, who was in it, who took it and other keywords. He was able to spotlight search for "Orange dress" or "Mexico" and the image showed up in the list. However this was not the case with iPhoto. There were thousands of images in his iPhoto library, many with keywords but none were found in Spotlight except for images that had the keyword we searched for in their filename. I was hugely disappointed.

    Some of the other things that Apple lists on their website, such as using "descriptive keywords" didn't work either. See below:

    "You can also use descriptive search words to get amazingly targeted results, even across thousands of files. For example, to find portrait-formatted images, just type “Image” and “Portrait.” To find everything from a colleague, simply type the person’s name. Spotlight returns every document she authored or edited, every image she may have emailed, messages she wrote (and messages you sent to her) and her contact information. Results are shown in sorted, automatic categories for easy browsing, picking and clicking."

    I'm positive that these features will be in the final build but I was surprised they didn't work when I tried it out. However I'm still concerned about iPhoto support. I'm hopeful that Apple will release an update that adds the metadata to the files themselves. Has anyone seen any newer builds and tried any of these things? I've not seen the iPhoto issue mentioned hardly anywhere.

    Cheers,
    John
     
  2. daveL macrumors 68020

    daveL

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2003
    Location:
    Montana
    #2
    Well, you're looking at a not very new beta, so what significance does this information have?
     
  3. crees! macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #3
    And the smackdown! He's out for the count!
     
  4. Mr. Durden macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado
    #4
    I saw the very first build of Tiger ever, and it wasnt complete, so Tiger is gonna suck. Hard. :rolleyes:
     
  5. daveL macrumors 68020

    daveL

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2003
    Location:
    Montana
    #5
    The other point to all this is that iLife apps aren't distributed with the OS X seeds, or the Tiger release, for that matter.
     
  6. johnpg thread starter macrumors member

    johnpg

    Joined:
    May 21, 2002
    #6
    You don't have to be a-holes about this. Read my post, I said that these things might be different in the final builds and that hopefully Apple would come out with an update for iPhoto. However it seems you people have forgotten that this is MacRUMORS.com and the whole point of this site is to talk about these sorts of things. You're not impressing anyone by getting all defensive and posting mean remarks. We're all here because we love the Mac and want to talk about cool new stuff. Can we please just do that?

    Cheers,
    John
     
  7. Mr. Durden macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado
    #7
    Of course. You are right. I wholeheartedly apologize for my offensive remarks and hope that I have done nothing to damage the possibility of you and I being chums on the Macrumors sight. I was only being playful. I regret the misdirected attempt at levity.

    Now, is an apology forthcoming for the "******" remark?
     
  8. runplaysleeprun macrumors 6502a

    runplaysleeprun

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #8
    I wouldnt give one. But then again, I'm a bitter, grudge-holding person. :)

    and bitter, grudge-holding people die younger. so it evens out in the end...
     
  9. daveL macrumors 68020

    daveL

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2003
    Location:
    Montana
    #9
    I guess, from my point of view, the original post doesn't really evoke anything to discuss. What's there to say other than we'll see what's what in the final release?
     
  10. rainman::|:| macrumors 603

    rainman::|:|

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2002
    Location:
    iowa
    #10
    Yeah, at best it's pointless, at worst it sounds like yet another person bitching about beta software. I really, really wish people would just wait for final releases.
     
  11. AppleMatt macrumors 68000

    AppleMatt

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    UK
    #11
    Harsh treatment. Newbies won't stick around if they're shouted at.

    The last build I tested thoroughly, which was very recently didn't search iPhoto libraries either so his point isn't moot. He also offered information that many people wouldn't have known about unless they had gone off and researched it.

    Feedback on development is fundamental to driving development. If we didn't have "bitching" about test and retail software we'd progress a lot slower.

    AppleMatt
     
  12. johnpg thread starter macrumors member

    johnpg

    Joined:
    May 21, 2002
    #12
    Yes, apologies for the ****** remark. I come here to have fun, not to argue with people. I'm glad you guys feel the same. And I'm no newbie, I just haven't posted much. :) I can understand how some of you could have read that as complaining. It wasn't meant that way though. I just wanted to talk about this, and was hoping some people with more knowledge might have some insight into what's happening now.

    Also, to me this topic highlights an issue with spotlight, in that it wasn't designed to search for anything other than file-based metadata. So it can't search iPhoto databases or Entourage email for instance. An example of this is Mail.app email in 10.4 has been converted to individual files for each message so as to work with spotlight. I don't see this as a major problem, but it's certainly something worth exploring. With CoreData coming I suspect we'll see more and more large databases in new apps, but Spotlight may not be able to search them. Maybe this is a topic better suited for Ars?

    Cheers,
    John
     
  13. Diatribe macrumors 601

    Diatribe

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2004
    Location:
    Back in the motherland
    #13
    Geeez, you people are rude. He just voiced concern over whether iPhoto metadata will be searched and asked if somebody knew.
    Are you that way in real life too? Sheesh, sometimes I cannot believe the conceitedness some people have.
     
  14. nuckinfutz macrumors 603

    nuckinfutz

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2002
    Location:
    Middle Earth
    #14
    Shutup!!!






    Just kidding. I didn't have a problem with his post.
     
  15. daveL macrumors 68020

    daveL

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2003
    Location:
    Montana
    #15
    It's very possible that the Spotlight functionality to search iPhoto isn't even in the Tiger seeds. Since iPhoto is an iLife app, and not a part of the base OS, as Mail is, it can't be tested with the seed. We know there have been changes to Mail to support Spotlight, so why wouldn't the same hold true for the iLife apps? However, the iLife apps aren't seeded to developers, so nobody can test it. Why would you think Tiger Spotlight would work against pre-Tiger iPhoto versions? Apple has made a pretty big deal about getting developers to build Spotlight capabilities into their app,. i.e. each app has to incorporate these new search functions, they don't just come for free. Obviously, Apple will do this internally for the iLife apps, but we won't see them until Tiger is released.
     
  16. johnpg thread starter macrumors member

    johnpg

    Joined:
    May 21, 2002
    #16
    I think you're probably right about this. But it's not so much that I thought it should work, I think everyone just assumed that it did work. Since I noticed that it didn't I felt it might be interesting to let people know. I just can't imagine that Apple would release Tiger and not have it work with iPhoto, so I was surprised. As I said in my original post I suspect they'll release an update to address this, and am hopeful that they will. But it seems weird that they didn't just have iPhoto 5 write the EXIF (and other) metadata when they released it. I guess we'll find out soon enough! :)

    Cheers,
    John
     
  17. daveL macrumors 68020

    daveL

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2003
    Location:
    Montana
    #17
    Well, Jobs did demo Spotlight searching in iPhoto (pics with a lake, I seem to remember), so I'd be hard pressed to believe it isn't coming. Of course, if they are having some problems, it may not be available out of the gate. Hopefully we'll know soon enough.
     
  18. chameeeleon macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2004
    #18
    I sure hope Apple'll write a Spotlight plugin to search iPhoto - it's always been a little weird with it's crazy database and all. Not to mention that at the moment iPhoto itself is a little screwy with it's search field - if you type in two different things, like two keywords, it shows the photos that match either instead of the photos that match both. And the Photo search box in iDVD 5 and iWork only searches titles, not keywords or comments. It seems the iPhoto team isn't as obsessed with searching as everyone else at Apple, lol. Maybe saying "boom" just isn't as big a thrill for those guys.
     
  19. johnpg thread starter macrumors member

    johnpg

    Joined:
    May 21, 2002
    #19
    I'm not sure that that's possible, or at least not likely. In order to do it right they'd have to put all the metadata inside the image files themselves. It's already supported, just like ID3 tags on MP3's, images have EXIF, IPTC, XMP and other data embedded in them. I think the big challenge here is how to preserve existing data when importing into iPhoto. Right now the keyword handling is pretty weak, so they'd have to revamp that in order to import existing metadata into iPhoto. Frankly, if they did this I don't see why we'd even need an iPhoto database anymore. They could use Spotlight to find and display images. In fact if they could somehow mark a photo as being imported into iPhoto, either by keeping a small database themselves or adding it as an attribute to the images metadata we wouldn't even need an iPhoto library folder. You could keep your images wherever you want and iPhoto via spotlight could just be the management tool. This would allow you to move your images and manage them in the filesystem however you wanted and have iPhoto still work fine. In a perfect world that's what they'd do. But I'm not holding my breath. :)


    Incidentally I talked to my friend just now and he said there's some stuff in preview.app to add keywords and ratings to images. The ratings didn't work but the keywords were added to the actual image file's keywords metadata field. So considering that, I suspect Apple is indeed working on an update to iPhoto for Tiger that will use the image file data. Either that or the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing in Cupertino. :)

    Cheers,
    John
     
  20. Chris Grande macrumors regular

    Chris Grande

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    #20
    This is also true with Keywords, iPhoto seems to do a "or" search instead of an "and" search... very annoying.

    As far as Spotlight searching iPhoto its something that I would think would be needed, and expected. Not ony searching the photos themselves but also searching Photo Albums, so they would come up in your search results. This along with iTunes Playlists.
     

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