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Author Topic: History In LR  (Read 2764 times)
RobertBoire
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« on: January 01, 2012, 12:31:34 PM »
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Hello,

I am pretty sure I know the answer to this but I thought I would ask just in case...

Is there any way to cleanup the history... sort of the clear all and creating snapshots? It would be nice to selectively remove unwanted or failed steps since the history can get quite long confusing if multiple edits need to be done.

R
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Schewe
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« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2012, 01:33:13 PM »
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No...you either keep it or wipe it.
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meyerweb
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« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2012, 01:58:02 PM »
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I believe that if you create a virtual copy, the copy will start with no history, but with all prior changes included.  That's probably not what you're looking for, however.
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Wayne Fox
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« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2012, 04:16:28 PM »
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One suggestion is to "use" the history panel, rather than just let it be.  When you do something you don't like, rather than just doing the opposite thing and adding steps to the history, go over to the history panel and go back few steps.
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RobertBoire
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« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2012, 07:46:39 PM »
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When you do something you don't like, rather than just doing the opposite thing and adding steps to the history, go over to the history panel and go back few steps.

Actually I noticed that... going to a previous state in history and making new change will remove everything after that.. Still it would be nice to be able to selectively cleanup.
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Schewe
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« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2012, 08:41:43 PM »
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Still it would be nice to be able to selectively cleanup.

No, actually it wouldn't...the History feature of Lightroom was designed specifically to track each and every change made to an image. Revising and altering history would directly conflict with that concept. Now, how a feature is designed and what people may want to use it for may not always be the same thing, but you would have to make a very strong use case for the LR engineers to completely redesign a featureľand that's what it would take to allow selective edits to the history list. Simply making it more tidy isn't a strong use case. If you don't want to see the long scrolling list of changes, simply collapse the panel.

What you really want to do is use Snapshots which allow you to take a snapshot of a given state of an image and continue making changes while always being able to go back to a specific image state. That is designed to give the user the control you seem to want over given states of an image.
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RobertBoire
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« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2012, 10:28:39 PM »
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No, actually it wouldn't...

Well I beg to differ. I find that often I do some changes just to cancel previous changes or previous series of changes that I am not satisfied with. The problem I find with snapshots is that they do not record the steps leading up to the state but just the cumulative end result. What Wayne Fox suggested earlier works....I actually use it quite a bit...but its not ideal. Alternately an undo feature - that does not record the result in history - would also work. I suspect  providing a selective delete or undo feature would not be a huge effort for the LR engineers and would not require a complete redesign.

Of course there is the potential that a user would unintentionally delete a change or do other damage...but that would be the user's problem.
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Schewe
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« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2012, 11:01:25 PM »
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I suspect  providing a selective delete or undo feature would not be a huge effort for the LR engineers and would not require a complete redesign.

Yes, actually it would. The entire code would need to be rewritten and since it now simply stores each step and it's settings, the UI for such a rewrite would be, uh, ugly. It would be a MAJOR effort to change History to work the way you think you want it.

I was there in the beginning when Mark Hamburg conceived of Lightroom (code name Shadowland actually). It was a simple thing to track changes made to an image so he included it Lightroom. The changes are stored linearly in the LR database. Mark also developed the History feature in Photoshop so had a lot of history with History. Early on some people wanted those changes you are asking for...Mark's response was, "well if you don't like History in LR as it is now, I'll just yank it out".

Lightroom has it's own multiple undo...the Develop module also has multiple undo tied to Lightroom's overall undo. History is a completely separate function designed to be unattached to undo. It is literally designed to track each and every step through the development history. To go into the history and selectively edit steps would be a major undertaking and undermine the original concept design of the feature. If you don't like the way it works, you are free to not use it. But if you want wholesale changes to it's functionality, you'll be disappointed...it ain't gonna happen.
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elied
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« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2012, 05:44:13 PM »
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Control Z removes the last step from History and (for me) is more convenient than Wayne's suggestion. And it will do multiple undoes, although I have never tested to see if it will go all the way back to the start of a long session.
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JohnCampbell
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« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2012, 11:07:38 PM »
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I would like to confirm what the above poster said as for me Ctrl Z also works well and will go back a long long way, can't say how far for sure but it seems like miles.  Ctrl Z will be second nature to all you MS Excel users out there.
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kikashi
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« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2012, 03:14:27 AM »
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I would like to confirm what the above poster said as for me Ctrl Z also works well and will go back a long long way, can't say how far for sure but it seems like miles.  Ctrl Z will be second nature to all you MS Excel users out there.
I'm sure that it (and its more attractive cousin, command-z Wink) is second nature to anyone who's used a computer much over the last two decades, but it doesn't address the original point. I've often found that I make a change, make more changes and then want to remove the effect of the first. I know that I can simply return the appropriate slider to its earlier position, but I'd still like to be able simply to delete the change.

The UI needn't be ugly. Click on the line in the history you want to remove and hit the delete key. Bang: it disappears, its effect disappears, LR highlights the line which was previously above or below it. The history is stored as a linear list of instructions, so that instruction is deleted from the list. All is now as if that line had never been.

We're not, as I understand it, wanting to edit the history while retaining the effect of the deleted lines. I agree that that would be hideous, both conceptually and practically.

If history is intended as an audit trail, then of course what I suggest would be a very Bad Thing. But it isn't; it's just a way of going back in time. I really don't see the downside to this feature, which I suggested here some years ago, I think when LR1 first apperaed (and received the same reply from Jeff, by the way). I realise it's not going to happen, though.

Jeremy
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Alan Goldhammer
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« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2012, 07:16:10 AM »
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The UI needn't be ugly. Click on the line in the history you want to remove and hit the delete key. Bang: it disappears, its effect disappears, LR highlights the line which was previously above or below it. The history is stored as a linear list of instructions, so that instruction is deleted from the list. All is now as if that line had never been.

We're not, as I understand it, wanting to edit the history while retaining the effect of the deleted lines. I agree that that would be hideous, both conceptually and practically.
The key problem is that LR edits build on one another and even if you could delete an edit somewhere along the way it would lead to unpredictable results.  The simplistic way to consider what is going on is to imagine a chain of mathematical manipulations.  Somewhere along the way there is a command to multiply by 2 and you want to delete that one.  It's not necessarily going to result in 1/2 the value particularly if there are complex operators and floating point math involved.  Even a simple photo image involves a lot of pixels and specific changes to each one of those pixels.

You are better off doing the kludge work around and creating a virtual copy at the point you want to effect the change at and moving on from there.
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Rhossydd
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« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2012, 07:37:47 AM »
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The key problem is that LR edits build on one another
Is that true ? I don't think it is.
I'm sure there have been explanations here from those that know that say LR doesn't work like that. AFAIUI it doesn't matter in what order you carry out the changes to the sliders, LR just processes the final set of parameters regardless of how they were arrived at.

If you give the implications of that some careful thought you'll understand why just deleting a single history stage is more complicated than it might at first seem.
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #13 on: January 04, 2012, 07:43:47 AM »
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Alan, Lightroom edits do not build on one another - the current slider values are all that matters. If you don't believe this, save the edits back to xmp and remove the image from the catalogue. Reimport it, there'll be no history as it's not written to the xmp - but the image will be identical.

The history panel is just a log of what you've done - yes, it is an audit trail - and I can think of lots of other ways I'd prefer the Adobe engineers to spend their time ahead of allowing people to fake it.

John

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Alan Goldhammer
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« Reply #14 on: January 04, 2012, 08:30:50 AM »
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Thanks for the clarification! 
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RobertBoire
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« Reply #15 on: January 04, 2012, 10:46:44 AM »
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Yes, actually it would. The entire code would need to be rewritten and since it now simply stores each step and it's settings, the UI for such a rewrite would be, uh, ugly. It would be a MAJOR effort to change History

and then

The UI needn't be ugly. Click on the line in the history you want to remove and hit the delete key. Bang: it disappears, its effect disappears, LR highlights the line which was previously above or below it. The history is stored as a linear list of instructions, so that instruction is deleted from the list. All is now as if that line had never been.


The latter was my point from the beginning. I cannot of course claim to have  been there at the dawn of LR but from my own experience with other software development I would find it difficult to believe that the software is designed such that this is more than a few hours work. In fact most of the UI is already there. You can already position the cursor on any step in history. How difficult would it be to add a right click and delete as suggested by Jeremy?  I believe the history in CSx allow something similar. Assuming of course that the following is true:

Lightroom edits do not build on one another - the current slider values are all that matters.


I guess at the end of the day only the Adobe software engineers know what the real level of difficulty is.

That being said I was not aware (my bad) of the Undo feature (which is eerily similar to the delete that cannot be supported... but I digress) when I started this thread.  I have a question though if anybody can help. Undo/Redo seems to work just fine when you start with the most recent item in history. What happens though when you place the cursor at an arbitrary step and then Undo? I have noticed if you Undo/Redo from an arbitrary position and the Undo again from the most recent step the cursor jumps to the original arbitrary location skipping the step in between. I cannot quite figure out what is going on. Probably LR is not designed to support starting from an arbitrary location at all. But then why does it allow it? The documentation is no help at all on this.
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #16 on: January 04, 2012, 11:30:35 AM »
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Of course it's true! If you need to prove it for yourself, test it as I described.
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RobertBoire
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« Reply #17 on: January 04, 2012, 12:00:14 PM »
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John,

I am sure you are right. I was just emphasizing that it would be a precondition for delete to work properly.

R
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #18 on: January 04, 2012, 01:26:33 PM »
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Don't worry, I was amused as it's a common misunderstanding. I've long thought Adobe could have used a different term like "log" to distinguish it from Photoshop's feature.

Of course, it is not merely a log. One nice touch is when you're in Before/After view (Y) you can drag history steps into the Before view.

Jon
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RogerW
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« Reply #19 on: January 04, 2012, 03:00:42 PM »
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I'm glad that LR's History isn't likely to get messed about with!  From a teaching point of view, it's one of (many) strong features!
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