Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Discussion of general issues, not related to a specific Mac or iDevice operating system.
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Stephen Hart
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Sun Jun 12, 2011 3:01 pm

I think I'll wait until the next version of iPhoto is released and then revisit this issue. Right now I think I'll keep the $79.99 in my wallet and use the copy of iPhoto I already own.
My sentiments exactly. For a long time iPhoto just got better and better, but I fretted about the ballooning size of my photo collection.
Though I think some of the criticisms I've read of the current version of iPhoto are fairly weak, there are certainly some things that cause me to really have to rethink which app to manage my photos in.

However, it might be that Apple's apparent direction with QuickTime Player and Final Cut Express hold some lessons: Widen the gap between two products by shrinking one and expanding the other.
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Mon Aug 08, 2011 11:26 am

Stephen Hart wrote:I'd be interested in your report.
Here are some points I'm concerned about with iPhoto:
Description field. Not useless in iPhoto 9, but asymptotically approaching useless.
I need to see a whole description field, and need to be able to do normal copy, paste, delete, etc. easily.
Find and replace in description fields across all photos would be excellent.
Search, especially advanced search. In iPhoto, I often get anomalous results from two- or three-word searches.

Any other real advantages over iPhoto.
I downloaded Aperture 3 for evaluation, and can report back on some of my own queries:

• Description field is just fine. It's in an inspector, and the field expands to show the whole caption. It's all easily editable. I don't know if there's a limit to the amount of text you can put in the field. [Later discovery: Caption is also available with the Metadata tab on the left-hand panel. Don't know why this escaped my notice before.]

• Search is superb. Aperture does multiple-word search for text perfectly, cutting down the number of photos shown as you add words. You can also search using place, date, etc. This is a killer feature for me. Even if iPhoto 12 is improved in this respect, I doubt if it'd add all the power of Aperture search. (Strangely, I don't see a way to show Place in the photo's metadata, though you can show GPS coordinates.)

• I don't see any Find and Replace within captions, and that's a pain.
For example, let's say you discover that you've misspelled Nisquallia on a bunch of images. You can search on the misspelling, but then you'd have to change each instance by hand. Maybe I can figure out a way to do F&R with a QuicKey or AppleScript.
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Mon Aug 08, 2011 4:07 pm

After looking at the Aperture Adjustments panel--much expanded from iPhoto to Aperture--and fiddling with Aperture a little more (I love the Loupe), I'm sold. I'm consolidating my library to Aperture, and will relegate iPhoto to the "unused" category*. I guess at some 40,000 library images, it was time, even if Apple hadn't hobbled iPhoto.

*And, if iWeb disappears from iLife, I'll stop upgrading iLife. Does that mean I get a SMUG Power User Secret Decoder Ring?

BTW, here are the instructions I used to run the trial:
http://www.apple.com/aperture/iphoto-to ... e/how.html
Last edited by Stephen Hart on Tue Aug 09, 2011 1:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:01 am

Beware of the process if you want to buy Aperture.
Apple offers a free, 30-day trial version. If you click Buy when that version starts up, you will be taken to the Apple page shown in the image below, not to the App Store.
You need to download again from the App Store, where the price is $80.
The App Store version just sees the Aperture library I set up. I didn't have to import images again. The new version replaces the trial version. A dialog flickered by, something about updating the trial version. All in all very smooth.

As in any process where you're changing large libraries, be careful of backups. You want to make sure your iPhoto library is safe. On the other hand, you probably don't want to have two copies of that library on all backups. For the moment, I'm just leaving the iPhoto library alone.
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:52 pm

Just wanted to add one thing.
You can use the Loupe in Aperture even when viewing a grid of thumbs:
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:39 am

One bug I've found is that the Aperture Library does not show up in System Preferences > Desktop.

The preference pane will show a Loading message for a while, then the word Aperture will show up in the left-hand pane. But there's no choice of photos there.
Repairing permissions in the Aperture Library didn't fix the problem, nor did repairing the library database.
The Aperture Library does show up in iWeb.
You can work around this by putting the photo(s) of your choice in the home/Pictures folder.
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Tue Aug 23, 2011 2:50 pm

As with many of its products, Apple has a page of short video introductions to various Aperture topics. I sampled a few and find them excellent.

http://www.apple.com/aperture/how-to

The slideshow features in Aperture seem excellent to me. I've been wondering whether I need to really spend some time with iMovie to do slideshows. It looks like Aperture will do much of what I've wanted to do. (Of course, there are other reasons I should learn more about iMovie.)
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:23 pm

Above, I noted Aperture's excellent Filter HUD* for searching. And I noted multiple-word searching, which is missing from the latest iPhoto. That's pretty much why I switched to Aperture.
So if I search for Cicindela oregona in iPhoto, I get all photos with either word. In Aperture, I get only photos with both words. That's essential for scientific names.
But what if I want "Cicindela oregona" and "larva" and I don't care where "larva" occurs in the caption?

Aperture's Help is confusing on the issue.
It says "You can enter multiple text items, separated by commas. Aperture locates any images that have a match for all the text items." but that doesn't work for me. And it makes sense that it doesn't because I might want to search for "Cicindela oregona," a valid text string.
Help also says "To search for images by multiple text entries.... In the Filter HUD, add as many text fields as you need by choosing Text from the Add Rule pop-up menu multiple times."

That works nicely, and is fully controllable. You will probably want to add the text fields consecutively, however, as adding a new field always puts it at the end of the HUD list.



* "In Mac OS X applications, heads-up displays (or HUDs) usually take the form of miniature, darkly-colored, transparent windows which are revealed outside the window of the currently-running application." Wikipedia
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Tue Sep 20, 2011 10:04 pm

Stephen Hart wrote:One bug I've found is that the Aperture Library does not show up in System Preferences > Desktop.
Well, strangely enough, today I checked again, and all my Aperture photos show up in Desktop and Screensaver.

Maybe it takes a while for Aperture to create the system-accessible library file.

[09 21 11]
And today, I can see the Aperture library in Screensaver but not in Desktop.
Pretty flaky altogether.
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Re: Aperture vs. iPhoto Question

Post by Stephen Hart » Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:44 am

It looks as if the Aperture 3.2 update today (mine came from the App Store) fixed the issue with the library not showing up in Screen Saver and Desktop. Both appear normal today. Hope it's a permanent fix.
Still no Add to Aperture for Mail attachments.

And, in general, I've been very happy with Aperture as an upgrade from iPhoto.
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