8 Replies Latest reply: Jul 15, 2013 4:19 PM by turingtest2
Jon Chicago Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I want to import into iTunes a collection of around 1300 video clips I've made with my own camera, all saved in QuickTime-compatible video formats.  Currently I'm using an outdated program running under Windows XP (requiring me to use Parallels on my Mac) that thankfully is able to export all the contained information to an Excel spreadsheet.  The individual video clips are carefully named files that incorporate the recording date and sequence of recording on that date.  Additionally, there are around 50 folders corresponding to the subject matter of the video clips, and so each folder may contain a number of individual videos of that subject from different dates.  The spreadsheet includes columns for subject (i.e., the folder), the individual clip name, several more columns for brief category descriptions of the individual clips, and then a column where I have free descriptive text of essentially unlimited length.  I think that the latest versions of iTunes do have more than enough categories of video information handling to accommodate what I have in the Excel spreadsheet.  But HOW DO I DO THE IMPORT IN AN EFFICIENT MANNER?  I see this breaking down into two challenges:

1) What steps need to be taken to transfer information from 1300 rows in Excel into 1300 "videos" in iTunes--i.e., how do I systematically move information for a given row's multiple entries, organized by standardized columns in Excel into corresponding data fields in iTunes? I'm willing to use an intermediary program between Excel and iTunes if this would provide the solution.

2) How do I arrange that iTunes finds the clips in their correct folders?  If necessary, I'm willing to retire the folder organization and just put all the clips into a single folder--since they all have unique file names, this shouldn't create an identification problem, and if this allows iTunes to work more efficiently, it's fine by me.

Thanks!

  • 1. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,545 points)

    Hi Jon, I reckon I missed reading this one when you first posted because it looks like the sort of challenge I like. I've got a little backlog of things I'm supposed to be dealing with, work & family wise, but I should be able to help if you're still looking for it.

     

    tt2

  • 2. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    Jon Chicago Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi tt2, Yes, this is the challenge I'm referring to.  Let me add that in order for the solution to be really what I am seeking, I would need to be able to view the video clips down to 1/2 speed with reasonable audio clarity (such as is available in Quick Time Player 7 Pro version), and hopefully even do a frame by frame movement (without then worrying about audio of course) in both forward and backward directions.  I would be really happy to go over with you in more detail exactly what the aims of this project are, the nature of the current database and associated Windows XP program, etc. 

     

    You mentioned that "You can send me an email at the address on my scripts page", but I'm afraid I need help in how to locate this.  Many thanks,

     

    Jon

  • 3. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    Jon Chicago Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi tt2,

     

    We never hooked up further after this exchange back in February--perhaps I missed a follow-up communication from you.  In any event, I'm now up to around 1600 video clips, and I really would like to port the whole functional database from the increasingly ancient Windows XP and video cataloguing program that can't read native H.264 into a more modern system running on my Mac.  I probably would best be served by professional help on this, if available.

     

    Many thanks,

     

    Jon

     

    P.S.:  The program I'm using is called Replayer Studio, and its website is http://replayerstudio.com.  It's actually a superb program for what it originally intended to accomplish, but due to insufficient sales isn't being updated any longer.

  • 4. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,545 points)

    Hi Jon,

     

    Here is a link to my scripts page. You're actually more likely to grab my attention via a message here tacked onto any thread that I've posted to than my email as I get so much spam I often miss things that aren't.

     

    Most text fields in iTunes are limited to 255 characters. I believe Description can be longer, but it is difficult to access, so the Lyrics field may be the best place to put the data, assuming iTunes is prepared to accept and store it for the given file type.

     

    I've developed techniques for matching items in the iTunes database with items in other lists by making a dictionary of identifying strings. For example even though iTunes doesn't allow direct access to a track by its file path, if your Excel spreadsheet knows them then I could find the right video to attach the other data to.

     

    When the time comes to move the library see this migrate iTunes library post.

     

    tt2

  • 5. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    Jon Chicago Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi tt2,

     

    Thanks for your quick response.  Before I roll up my sleeves on this one, I wanted to double-check with you that this can be done in such a manner that the videos will automatically open in QuickTime Player 7 or some other player that allows me to go down to 1/2 speed with reasonable preservation of audio, and allow me also to go frame by frame forwards or backwards.  QuickTime Player 7 does this just fine, but many other video players don't.

     

    Also, do you think I could send you a very small sample of my Excel spreadsheet, so you could see if you thought the structure could work?  I was indeed planning to use lyrics for the long narrative field.

     

    Thanks,

     

    Jon

  • 6. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,545 points)

    The videos should continue to open with whatever software that you have. Hopefully we're attaching some metadata that becomes permanently tied to the video or, if not, can be remembered by the iTunes library and will survive the migration to a new computer.

     

    My email address is steve <at> samsoft <dot> org <dot> uk

     

    tt2

  • 7. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    Jon Chicago Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I sent a sample spreadsheet and a couple of small clips to your email address.  Please let me know if you received them.

     

    Thanks,

     

    Jon

  • 8. Re: Importing a large collection of home movie videos
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,545 points)

    Yep, got 'em... Probably going to be a day or two before I can spend some time on it. Feel free to nudge me.

     

    tt2