Back in Chapter 7, I showed you how to save and use metadata templates. If you save and apply them through Photoshop's or Bridge's user interface, they'll almost certainly work seamlessly better than 99 percent of the time. But if you open one of your saved metadata templates in a text editor, you may be in for a surprise.
When you do so, the first thing you'll see is the usual line or two describing what kind of file the template is. The second thing you'll see is a copy of the Camera Raw settings for the image that was selected when you saved the templateThomas Knoll actually had to build special code into Camera Raw to ignore this entirely bogus data. This behavior was also present in Photoshop CS, and some pundits have suggested that the best way to create a metadata template is to start from a brand-new Photoshop document.
However, as you'll see in Figure 8-11, even this approach isn't perfect. You won't get bogus Camera Raw settings, but the template includes dates and image IDs that I'd much rather weren't there!
Figure 8-11. Unedited metadata template
The unedited metadata template contains a good deal of extraneous data. The entries that are actually needed to make the template perform its task are the boxed onesthe rest can safely be deleted.
Cleaning Up Metadata Templates
Metadata templates saved as is from File Info in Bridge or Photoshop seem to work seamlessly in Bridge or Photoshop. But having a template that contains erroneous metadata simply worries memaybe I'm just paranoid, but I don't want to take the risk of third-party software stumbling over extraneous junk. So let's take a look at the best-case-scenario metadata template shown in Figure 8-11, and go through the process of slimming down so it only contains the information that's really needed.
When you save Metadata Templates, Photoshop saves them in a dedicated folder. Rather than typing the lengthy path names for both Mac and Windows, I'll show you the simplest way to find your saved templates. Just select a file, choose File Info from the File Browser's File menu, and then, in the File Info dialog box, pull down the flyout menu at the upper right and choose Show Templatessee Figure 8-12.
Figure 8-12. Show Templates
The easiest way to find saved metadata templates is to choose Show Templates from the File Info dialog box's popout menu.
Once you've located your templates, open one in the text editor of your choice. Figure 8-11 shows a newly saved metadata template created from a new, blank Photoshop document that has never been saved. All I want it to do is to set the Copyright Status flag to Copyrighted, enter my name in the Author field, and set the Copyright Notice to ©2007 Bruce Fraser (I believe in being prepared). In practice, that is in fact all it does, at least when everything is working properly.
But as computers and software get ever more complicated, we all at some point learn the hard lesson that things don't always work as designed. One rule that's always stood me in good stead is to keep extraneous junk to a minimum! So the only entries that need to be in the template are the Dublin Core Properties and XMP Rights Management entries, and the enclosing entries that say what kind of .xmp file this is. All the others can safely be deleted.
Once the template is stripped down, it becomes apparent that the easy way to create copyright notices for different years is not to go back into File Info and make the entries there, but simply to change the year on the relevant line using the text editor and then save each one with an appropriate name. Figure 8-13 shows the edited metadata templateit's a whole lot more manageable.
Figure 8-13. Edited metadata template
<?xpacket begin="Ôaø" ?> <x:xmpmeta xmlns:x="adobe:ns:meta/" x:xmptk="3.1.1-111"> <rdf:RDF xmlns:rdf="http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#"> <rdf:Description rdf:about="" xmlns:dc="http://purl.org/dc/elements/1.1/"> <dc:format>application/vnd.adobe.photoshop</dc:format> <dc:creator> <rdf:Seq> <rdf:li>Bruce Fraser</rdf:li> </rdf:Seq> </dc:creator> <dc:rights> <rdf:Alt> <rdf:li xml:lang="x-default">¬©2007 Bruce Fraser. All Rights Reserved.</rdf:li> </rdf:Alt> </dc:rights> </rdf:Description> <rdf:Description rdf:about="" xmlns:xapRights="http://ns.adobe.com/xap/1.0/rights/"> <xapRights:Marked>True</xapRights:Marked> </rdf:Description> </rdf:RDF> </x:xmpmeta> <?xpacket end="w"?>
Once you become comfortable with editing .xmp files, you'll find that it's often faster and easier to accomplish your goals using a lowly text editor than it is to do so by tunneling through the many dialog boxes and palettes presented by Photoshop.