Geez, Apple. Sort it out already!

So I love the iPad and use it all the time.

As a photographer, I use it to show my images. As you might imagine. Using the only viewer available: the built-in one. Apple in its typical dictatorial fashion seems to prohibit other viewers – there are none on the App store, except a few that look at your Flickr portfolio – let’s not go there.

No, to view files you must use the Apple viewer, and to transfer them, you have to use iTunes.You can tell iTunes what folder (with subfolders) to sync, from anywhere on your computer, and it does that.

So I select some images in Lightroom and write them to JPG files in that chosen sync folder. So far so easy.

But you cannot in any way sort them. I thought that you could sort them by renaming, but no such luck. They always sort by “date taken”.

GROAN. Imagine that I have a selection of model images. And that the earliest one is NOT the one I want to see first, and when people look at the list of folders. Alas, that is what  happens. Misery: that earliest image always shows as the key image for that folder, since it is the first one in it.

One way around: use iPhoto and sort in iPhoto “events”.

Which of course is not practical: managing the RAW images in Lightroom, and then having to further manage the JPG images in iPhoto? Nah, think again, Apple.

One trick, which just took me a while to work out: use the excellent EXIFTOOL command line utility to change the date EXIF tags in the file. Open a command line, run EXIFTOOL (I have written about this before: search for it on the right), and run a string like:

./exiftool -“DateTimeOriginal”=”2008:03:12 10:03:40” -“CreateDate”=”2008:03:12 10:03:40” -“DateTimeDigitized”=”2008:03:12 10:03:40” -“ModifyDate”=”2008:03:12 10:03:40” /Users/michael/Desktop/Kat-20030312-IMG_3202.jpg

Simple it isn’t. But one good thing: you do not have to type the filename. When it comes to the filename, just drag the image from your desktop into the command window, and the Mac enters the fully qualified file name, with path. And yes, that also works in Windows.

4 thoughts on “Geez, Apple. Sort it out already!

  1. Or you could just do this:

    ./exiftool -alldates=”2008:03:12 10:03:40″ /Users/michael/Desktop/Kat-20030312-IMG_3202.jpg

  2. Does the iPad fall back to alphanumeric sorting if all the photos have the same exif time stamp?

    Is it possible to strip off (or zero out) the exif data when you burn your jpgs? I am not in front of Lightroom so I can’t check (typing this from the iPad, ironically) — but if so you could save a further step. (Apologies if the lack of such an option is precisely why you have to use exiftool.)

  3. @Phil: Fantastic, thanks.

    @Seb: Sorting, not sure – good question. I’ll test. And as for stripping in Lightroom: in Lightroom I don’t think I can do that. But EXIFTOOL is simple enough, with Phil’s advice above.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *