Lightroom SDK: Smart Filters & Smarter Collections

  • 3
  • Idea
  • Updated 7 years ago
Presently, plugins can only influence library filters and smart collections by setting metadata values.

For filters or smart collections to be dynamic, plugins need to have a background task that constantly updates the metadata.

This 'Idea' is to add the notion of a '(Library) Filter Provider' to the SDK so plugins can be written that influence library filters and smart collections dynamically.

Lightroom to call plugin passing photos, plugin to return a "thumbs up" or "thumbs down", depending on whether it suits the criteria programmed into the plugin, where

- "thumbs up" means it is approved for inclusion in the filtered photo list or collection, and
- "thumbs down" means it isn't.

Example use cases:
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To-Do collections - photos have to be dismissed by plugin to be removed from collection. For example, lets say you have a collection of photos with highlight recovery greater than 30. Normally, as soon as you lower highlight recovery below 30, the photo disappears, whoosh - bye-bye. If photos need to be dismissed by plugin, they remain in the collection until they are dismissed, by virtue of the To-Do filter providing plugin.
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Metadata needs to be saved filter (aka the "down arrow" filter) - plugin compares last edit date with xmp filedate, if last edit date more recent, photo gets the thumbs up.
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Metadata may need to be read filter (aka the "up arrow" filter) - plugin compares last edit date with xmp filedate, if xmp filedate more recent, photo gets the thumbs up.
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Sophisticated filters that consider a combination of develop settings, metadata, and possibly even image analysis could also be programmed.
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Note: this can be accomplished now, sort-of, in a klunky fashion, either by plugin background thread or user invoked update, but it would be better if it was handled as a callback controlled by Lightroom - only called upon when filter is active:

- Much easier to program.
- Always automatic: Does not involve periodic manual updating of metadata by user.
- Does not involve otherwise extraneous metadata.
- Background task does not need to update metadata all the time, even when filter is not active.

If you like this idea, please remember to click the '+1' button below.
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Rob Cole

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  • sure this is a good idea

Posted 7 years ago

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