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I am using the Organiser in PSE5 and I find it generally useful and complementary to the folder system in Windows. I tag all my images and group into relevant sub-categories and where the images are actually stored they are broken down by date and they retain the original file number.
When you have thousands of files, how useful are these organiser programs really? Am I just wasting time and heading into a mess by tagging everything? Presumeably I am now caught by Adobe and using this organiser as the tagging is unique.
What are the catches of these systems? Is there a better way in your experience?
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Or I could be optimistic, but that's not like me
I tend to organise the folders by subjects and dates, and well that's it.
Having started out without any manipulation software I created my own filing system and was amazed when first using Picasa that it immediately sorted the files in its own fashion, mainly by treating sub-folders as primary folders. It had a go at sorting things by date, too, and made an awful hash.
When I bought PSE5 I decided not to use the Organiser at all, as I reckoned it would try to do a Picasa but differently. It's a bit of a pain when saving versions as it assumes that they will be saved in Organiser; but then, that only means remembering to uncheck one box.
Now I'm using Vista Home Premium, and the bundled Windows software is having a go at sorting things all on its own! I'm just ignoring it, though one rainy afternoon I might experiment.
I think if PSE5 has done the job for you and you're happy using it, stick with it. It's a great resource. You might end up in a mess if you use too many manufacturers' software. Imagine them all conflicting! But do you really need all those tags? Remember that, just as your best zoom lens is your feet, your best memory is in your head!
Thanks - that's a comforting reply!
I am trying to be very logical and methodical about tagging etc, and have been enjoying using the pogramme over all - I suppose I wondered if was being a bit complacent and not considering whether this was the right was to go about organising things.
I've made a start on doing much the same thing in Photoshop - tagging the photos with one or more of a range of keywords. The thing is, I only use the tags at the OS level, by setting up smart folders (on the desktop or in the Pictures folder) which automatically group all my photos by keyword. The photo files themselves are always stored by date in nested subdirectories: year -> month -> day.
I find it's a big help, and since my OS reads the tags, it's clearly not a lock-in to Adobe products.
which OS are you using, Doug? I am not familiar with "smart folders"
Yes, I was very circumspect about which OS wasn't I, Katie?
whispers: "Mac OS X"
Store mine by subjects/locations/+ dates as separate folders, inside larger folders of 4GB for archiving to DVDs.
They are also archived to an external HD weekly.
Use a Mac but not iPhoto
Ps 'Where will it all end' A lot of work. Most of it will never see the light of day again. So maybe one day/week I'll go through it folder by folder, and cherry pick into updated folders.
Quote: When you have thousands of files, how useful are these organiser programs really?
Personally, I think they are essential. It would take a very long time for me to trawl through my folders looking a specific photo. I tried a couple different programs before settling on PSE 3 as my cataloger, primarily because of the quick and easy way to tag photos with keywords. It does have its disadvantages, like not being able to write the keywords back to the native RAW or even to Adobe DNG., but otherwise I am very satisfied with the software.
As for my folder structure, I used keep my photos in subject based folders (Travel, People, places, wildife etc), but it isn't easy to back up that kind of system to CD or DVD, unless you have lots of empty space on your discs. I now follow a similar system to ColWal, using 4GB "buckets" (a term learned from Peter Krogh's The DAM Book). Very easy for backing up to DVD and to external harddrive.
But Doug, you're locked into Apple instead
Thanks Col & Vol - I'll have a think about your system.
Store mine by Date & then underneath that I have raw/web ready/tiffs for each file type.
I import using downloader pro and I use that combined with the controlled vocabulary to keyword on import.
These sit in a working directory for a month or so but are then moved to my archival drives and indexed using iView Media Pro. Once you get into the swing of keywording it makes it really easy to find images no matter how many you have.
you see, now I'm lost
Everyone has their own system, so it's not surprising you're getting lost. If you're happy with what you have, stick with it. By using PSE5's tagging you are probably stuck with Adobe, but is that such a bad thing? Not if you shoot only jpgs (or RAW+jpg), then you can write all your PSE5 tags to the jpgs and they will be readable by other similar programs such as Adobe Bridge, iView, Extensis Portfolio etc.
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