Lightroom: Support defining mandatory keyword node hierarchy (instead of only values)

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As a data management professional in the software development industry, I find the data management features in Lightroom to be a bit basic.  

As an prosumer photography enthusiast, I need the ability to define a mandatory node based taxonomy in my keyword hierarchy so that I can better organize my images.  

For instance... every single photograph ever taken in the history of time has a geopolitical location... so every single photograph that is post processed in Lightroom should also have a geopolitical location as well ;)

Please see the following as a very basic example:

Keyword Node Hierarchy:

GEOPOLITICAL LOCATION
  -- Continent
      -- Country
          -- State/Province/Territory/Prefecture
              -- County/Parish/Shire/District
                  -- City

Example of Keyword Value Hierarchy based on the above fixed geopolitical location structure:
Asia
-- Japan
   -- Okinawa
       -- Okinawa
           -- Naha
-- India
   -- Maharashtra
       -- Pune District
           -- Pune
North America
-- United States
    -- Nevada
        -- Clark County
            -- Las Vegas
-- Canada
    -- British Columbia
        -- Metro Vancouver
            -- Burnaby

This type of keyword management can scale to teams, organizations (think stock photo content providers), communities, etc... and not be fixed strictly to geopolitical hierarchies... The value here is that it increases the data quality of keywords particularly if a mandatory keyword node hierarchy can be imposed at a company level.

Another cool idea could be that geopolitical keywords get automatically populated based on the geospatial coordinates in the EXIF data of the image... but one step at a time ;)
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Todd Dixon

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Posted 2 years ago

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Dan Baumol

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This is a great idea.  Taking it a step further, if for example one used the keyword "Las Vegas" for a photo, keywords North America, United States, Nevada, and Clark County could be automatically added.
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Tapani Otala

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Um, isn't this what the IPTC Location Taken/Created and Location Shown tags are designed to capture? They include separate Country, Country Code, City, State/Province and Sublocation, and even World Region. There is no separate County field.

http://www.photometadata.org/META-Resources-Field-Guide-to-Metadata

You can see the Location Taken data in the metadata panel by selecting the "Location" dropdown. The Location Shown can be seen when the "IPTC Extension" is selected - you can enter multiple locations.

Granted, aside from the fields themselves there is no controlled vocabulary enforcing sanity (i.e. nothing prevents you from entering non-sensical data like "Las Vegas" in "British Columbia" province of "Japan").

My only wish was that there was a way to nest one level deeper on the sublocation. For example, "Half Dome" -> "Yosemite National Park" -> (no city) -> "California" -> "USA". As it stands, I end up lumping them together as "Half Dome, Yosemite National Park" as the sublocation. Regardless, this isn't a limitation of Lightroom itself.
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Todd Dixon

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Yes, you're right about the IPTC metadata, however this request isn't about locations.  I only used location as an example as it was a pretty obvious one to quickly type up.

Below is a mockup of what I'm requesting, hopefully the image does it more justice than the text description.  Fixed structure in gold text in the image.

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madeupname

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Perhaps I am not understanding your request - but did you look into hierarchical keywords, which are supported by LR? I use them all the time

With kind regards

Volker
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Todd Dixon

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I use hierarchical keywords already.

What I'm requesting is a method to define a fixed hierarchy model.  This would unlock much more powerful search capabilities (e.g. imagine being able to search across multiple keyword branches simultaneously with extreme precision - something that isn't very easy to do in Lightroom currently.  It's possible, but it's not very precise and extremely cumbersome to do)

The location hierarchy was simply an example.

Another fixed hierarchy structure could be for people:

PEOPLE
-- Relationship
    -- Relationship Type
-- Person
    -- Name
    -- Metadata
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Roelof Moorlag

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When i add add the "Las Vegas" keyword to a photo, thanks to the hierachical Keywords "North America", "United States", "Nevada", and "Clark County" are added automaticaly already. 

Whith a GPS tracking device the coordinates can be added to your images. Lightroom can find the adres automaticaly when the photo is taken in a populated area. It's your choice to make these adress data permanent to the photo's
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John Cothron

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I already do this in my keywording scheme, what would be REALLY helpful for Adobe to do would be to give us some control over which and in what order keywords are embedded in the image.  This would help tremendously with certain stock agencies.  For one the alphabetical order just doesn't work for the way most of use lightroom.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Merging with appropriate topic.

Please reference the new conversation here: Maintain keyword order for stock agencies
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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"Another cool idea could be that geopolitical keywords get automatically populated based on the geospatial coordinates in the EXIF data of the image"

You can accomplish this using LR's automatic address suggestions (reverse geocoding) and the Search Replace Transfer plugin. LR will translate the GPS lat/long to IPTC location fields (Sublocation, City, State/Province, Country), and the plugin will then copy those location fields to the corresponding hierarchical keywords.
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Todd Dixon

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I'll look into this - thanks for the suggestion! :)
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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To ensure every photo has the appropriate location fields applied, you could use this method:

- Enter the locations in the IPTC location fields, and/or have LR populate them from the GPS lat/long.

- Define a smart collection to find all photos for which one or more of those fields are empty -- that will help you enforce the requirement that all photos have location fields filled in.  

- Use the Search Replace Transfer plugin to copy the location fields to hierarchical keywords.
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Todd Dixon

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Thanks - but the request isn't strictly about location - it was just an example.

I'm more focused on defining a fixed hiearchy model rather than the "loose" unstructured model that Lightroom currently supports.