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exporting metadata

475 Views 12 Replies Latest reply: Oct 28, 2012 4:16 PM by hotwheels 22 RSS
hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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Oct 28, 2012 8:35 AM

i am trying to figure out if i can export metadata (for instance just the description) from my images and whether it may be possible to import this into a pdf. i have Aperture 3.4.1 as well as Acrobat 10 and the various mac software such as Preview etc.


also, when i export metadata out of Aperture does/can it go out as XMP and if so is there a way to /read/ what is in this file? i ask because i have exported metadata out of Acrobat 10 and it appears to be a file type with no visible extension and it would be helpful to be able to read what is in it.


thank you for any keywords/terms that i may be missing, references to good url's etcetera, or tips on good workflows for getting this done.


- jon


(i know i had a brief discussion about this earlier on the forum but i am not finding this documentation ATM.)

MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.1), with 64 bit Win7 Parallels
  • léonie Level 8 Level 8 (46,475 points)
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    Oct 28, 2012 8:58 AM (in response to hotwheels 22)


    you can export an xml-sidecar file with the metadata tags, or write an AppleScript to print the metadata tags to a textfile. I have a sample Automator workflow on my webpage, that performs an AppleScript to read EXIF tags - you can use it as a pattern to add the metadata tags you need.


    This sample Automator workflow is to be used as a service with Aperture, to create a text file with metadata of all selected images:



    Install this service in the Services Folder of your User Library and launch it from the services Menu in Aperture, after selecting some Images.


    Enter a Filename when prompted for the name of the output file.






  • Thomas Emmerich Level 4 Level 4 (3,470 points)
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    Oct 28, 2012 9:03 AM (in response to hotwheels 22)

    Did you try File->Export->Metadata...? It exports a txt file containing metadata for all selected images.

  • léonie Level 8 Level 8 (46,475 points)
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    Oct 28, 2012 9:18 AM (in response to Thomas Emmerich)


    Right, I forgot about that option , because it does export the IPTC tags and Apertures tags, but the EXIF camera tags are missing. So I have not used it in a long time, but fall back on my scripts:


    File -> Export -> Metadata will give you these tags:


    Version NameTitleUrgencyCategoriesSuppl. CategoriesKeywords
    InstructionsDate CreatedContact CreatorContact Job TitleCityState/ProvinceCountry
    Job IdentifierHeadlineProviderSourceCopyright NoticeCaptionCaption Writer
    RatingIPTC Subject CodeUsage TermsIntellectual GenreIPTC SceneLocationISO Country Code
    Contact AddressContact CityContact State/ProvidenceContact Postal Code
    Contact CountryContact PhoneContact EmailContact WebsiteLabelLatitudeLongitudeAltitudeAltitudeRef


    My script will print the following EXIF tags, but can easily be extended: for example:

    Version Name: Nepal04ChitwanNationalpark93

       Dimensions: 2444x1660

       Image Date: Freitag, 5. März 2010 13:10:34

       Rating: 5, flagged: false, picked: true

       Camera: Panasonic DMC-FZ28

       Focal Length: 11.5mm, Aperture: f/ 3.4, Shutter Speed: 0.008s




  • Thomas Emmerich Level 4 Level 4 (3,470 points)
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    Oct 28, 2012 9:16 AM (in response to léonie)

    Thanks Leonie for answering the question I had but didn't ask. I was wondering what was missing from the Export Metadata command that caused you to do all that work with scripts. I never had a need for the command so I haven't paid attention to what is missing from the export.

  • léonie Level 8 Level 8 (46,475 points)
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    Oct 28, 2012 10:41 AM (in response to hotwheels 22)


    but this txt file does not seem very well formatted

    The text-file is in a format that you can import into Office programs - columns separated by tabs. FileMaker could read it for example, or Excel.

    Then print it from these programs in any style you like.


    My script you will need only, if you also need the EXIF data.


    The IPTC metadata fields contain creator code, location information, copy right etc, the EXIF fields all data provided by your camera, like camera make ad lens information.



    i mean, am i correct in hearing that you are saying there is an /existing/ method to export XMP sidecar information out of Aperture?


    When you export the original image file and not the version, you will be prompted, if you want to include an XMP sidecar file. I have never used it, but try it and have a look, if this information is in a format you can use.


    1. a way to export a certain amount of information that i have patiently entered into aperture so that i can use it in ACROBAT


    If you import the text file into Excel or Filmaker, you can print it as a formatted pdf file, if you know how to use these programs.


    2. a way to print out aperture metadata in a way that is easy to read and reference in the future.


    The formatted pdf will serve for this too.

    If you have a look at the sample printout of my script, you will see that it is quite readable, and you can also print the textfile to pdf.

    But you will have to put in some work to extend the script to include the additional tags you will need. So far, I have primarily included the EXIF that is missing from the Aperture generated textfile.




  • léonie Level 8 Level 8 (46,475 points)
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    Oct 28, 2012 12:27 PM (in response to hotwheels 22)

    you are saying this is a "comma delimited tab" text file or something?

    I said "columns separated by tabs." That means, each element in a line of text is separated by a tab. If you import the file to Excel or filemaker, you can specify that elements are separated by tab characters; then spreadsheet applications will be able to extract the fields that you need. If you do not have Excel, you might try the free open office.

    For example, in Excel I see this, after importing Aperture's textfile: sorry, I only have a German version.


    You can see, that I specify the data are separated by tabstops, and Excel sorts the fiels accordingly. In Excel I will be able to extract each field "Version name", "Title" separately and to print pdf-files with only the fields I am interested in.


    You will need such an intermediate program to bridge the gap between Aperture's output and Acrobat's input.


    If you know how to use the Terminal commandline tools, you can extract each field from the text file by using the "cut" filter. It will let you extract any column from the file, but all this will be a lot of work.




  • léonie Level 8 Level 8 (46,475 points)
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    Oct 28, 2012 1:38 PM (in response to hotwheels 22)

    you are welcome, Jon.

    Good Luck!




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