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Aperture Tip: Mange Keywords

Posted: Wed Dec 07, 2011 4:00 pm
by Stephen Hart
I don't use many keywords, preferring to search on text in the caption field.

But a few keywords may be handy, and others might prefer keywords.

Aperture has very powerful keyword features. Here are a couple of tips on how to manage them, including a workaround I found after a good deal of searching on the web.

First, you need to know about the Keywords HUD (heads-up-display, a kind of window) Window > Show Keywords HUD, Shift H or click the Keywords icon in the toolbar (you can customize the toolbar).

Aperture ships with whole categories of keywords you may not need or want. Just select and delete keywords or whole folders of keywords.
You can add keywords or import lists of keywords.
You can rename keywords.
You can merge keywords, but it's not obvious. Here's how:
Let's say you have two keywords you need to merge, like iPhoto Original and iPhoto original. (Yes, I had both, the first an automatic result of importing from iPhoto and the second, my mistake on a number of photos.)

1. Select the keyword you want to merge into nonexistence and drag it into any folder or on top of the keyword you want to keep.
2. Rename the old keyword to be exactly like the one you're keeping.
3. Here's the tricky part. Make sure your Keywords HUD has some empty space at the bottom. You can merely expand the window from its bottom-right corner. Now drag the renamed keyword into that empty space (or to the same level as the keyword you want to keep).
You'll get two messages, one saying you're changing n images and one saying do you want to merge keywords.