File browser or database?

KIM Keywording is a database and not a file browser. This differentiates KIM Keywording from many other software solutions for keywording. To use a database has many advantages for professional keywording. The differences between file browsers and databases (for the purpose of keywording) are highlighted in this short article.

Most software solutions supporting keywording, are so called file browsers. They read all the files in a directory and are able to show – when selecting those files – all the metadata as embedded in the files. With other words: File browsers relate to the image files only.

kimkeywording-2000x2000KIM Keywording at the other hand is a database. When importing images, a record is created for every file. The database is like an extra layer of information to play with. This additional layer allows you to store many more details, for which no embedded metadata fields are available, like additional keyword languages, license information, model releases and property releases, project names and codes, flags for problematic topics (drugs, violence, nudity,…) etc. What is just as important: The use of KIM Keywording will let organise your workflow much better, with flags for the keywording status of every image, project status for all projects, contact details of customers and much more.

Though KIM Keywording is a database, it does not contain nor save the high res images. It is a database with information about the images. Of course, there is a link to the original image, stored in the database. But quite different from file browsers, you can also use the database without any valid links to the images. You can use the database for searching, to work on the metadata or do the keywording. All this is being done in the database, with all the extra capabilities. The result can be (not: must be) saved back into the original files. This is possible as far as IPTC fields are accessible. Other information remains in the database, but can be exported any time.

A database can be used, even when the images themselves are not accessible, for example, if you use different hard disks, and do not have them attached. As long as the images have been imported into KIM Keywording, you can work with the information itself (search, edit, retrieve, enhance, export). KIM Keywording is a database, allowing you to search for all the file information you have imported and created so far.

There are many advantages of a database. Are there any disadvantages? Of course, there are limitations. For example with file formats. KIM Keywording today is limited to and optimised for JPEG-files. There are two reasons for this: Images which are available online are almost without exception JPEG files. The other reason is, that Filemaker Pro and the needed plug-ins do not support metadata handling of all formats. The self-imposed limitation to JPEG files is a pragmatic approach. KIM Keywording has never been meant to replace your current file browsers, but to enhance your workflow with high-end keywording capabilities. This is needed after the selection and optimisation of your images, and before distribution of those images. The efforts being made for high-end keywording only should be done for your best images.

Consider KIM Keywording as a database of your published images.




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