33. About Finding Items in the Catalog
Before You Begin
24 About Organizing Items
If you take full advantage of the power and potential of digital photography, before very long, the Organizer catalog will be filled with thousands of photographs. In addition, your catalog may also contain a lot of digital video, audio files, and creations. As you learned in 24 About Organizing Items, you don't have to store all those thousands of media files on your hard drive unless you want to. You can choose to offload your media files onto CD-R or writeable DVD media, and still include those offline items in the Organizer catalog. So, regardless of where items are stored, if they are in the catalog, they can be easy to find and use when needed. By the way, if you decide to edit an offline item or use it in a creation, the Organizer will tell you which disc to insert in your optical drive so that it can access the proper file.
Just because your catalog may have countless rows of thumbnails does not mean that it is less manageable, or that your media files are more difficult to find than when you had only a few dozen thumbnails to contend with. After each image file has been imported, the catalog automatically begins tracking that image's filename, location, file date, and file type, along with the Exchangeable Image File (EXIF) data that your camera/scanner stored in the file when the image was shot or scanned. If you import an audio or movie file, its filename, location, file date, and file type are tracked too. So, without doing any work other than importing a media file, you can locate an item immediately if you know any of its file data.
The true organizational magic begins, however, when you associate any number of markers to the items in the catalog. The markers enable you to keep track of what's important about a particular itemfor instance, whether it's a holiday, party, or other special event, or whether the shot was taken indoors or outdoors. You can add notes and captions to your catalog items, making it even easier to locate a particular media file when needed. See 31 Add a Text Caption or Note and 27 Attach a Marker to an Item for more information.
If you make any changes to a digital image file and you start the editing process through the Organizer, the program will keep track of when these changes occurred. This is true whether you use the Organizer's Auto Fix tool, the Editor's tools, or some other graphics editor such as Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro to make the changes. This makes it possible for you to search for "the family photo I edited last month." If you include a photo in a card, photo album, or slideshow, the Organizer will keep track of that fact as well, enabling you to search for just the images or other media files used in creations. (See 35 Find Items of the Same Media Type.)
Because the Organizer keeps track of so much, finding the file you want is simple. For example, by dragging a marker to the Find bar, you can display only the photos, audio, movie files, and creations with that marker. See 34 Find Items with the Same Marker. Get a closer look at this photo in the Color Gallery.
After marking the items in the catalog, you can easily locate media files with similar characteristics, such as images that include your wife and daughter.
Here are some of the other types of searches made possible by the Organizer:
Understand the Find Bar
Just above the photo well in the Organizer window is a long bar marked with a binoculars icon. It's called the Find bar. You don't need to worry about displaying the Find bar, even if you're not currently searching for particular items, because it's always there. Whenever you have a search in progress, however, the Find bar shows you the different criteriathe markers, notes, or captions you're searching forthat each item in the well currently matches. If you're searching for items with certain collection or tag markers, those markers appear in the Find bar. If you're looking for the photos you used in a particular slideshow, the Find bar reads Used in along with the name of that slideshow. If you're looking for only those items to which you've attached audio captions (see 35 Find Items of the Same Media Type), the Find bar reads Items with Audio Captions.
The Find bar shows you the criteria for the currently displayed items.
One exception to this functionality deals with when you're searching for media files created during a particular period of time. In that case, the Timeline at the top of the window narrows itself to represent the range of time you've chosen, and the Find bar displays no search criteria at all. See 39 Find Items Within a Date Range to learn how such a search works.
You can add criteria to the Find bar to narrow a search. For example, you can start with one tag such as Birthday and then add another tag such as Ramona to display only Ramona's birthday photos, audio, movie files, and creations using those files. Instead of adding another tag to the search, you can exclude a tag from the search results. For example, you can tell the Organizer to display all the Birthday images that do not include Ramona. You clear that search and use the collection marker, Funny Moments, to help you locate the photo of Ramona throwing water on the Wicked Witch of the West at her Dorothy party, and hitting you instead. If you mean to start a new search, and there's already a search in progress, it's best to clear the Find bar of its current criteria first. To do that, just click the Back to All Photos button on the Find bar. This also resets the photo well so that all items in the catalog are displayed.
When there's an active search in progress, the Find bar displays the number of matches and non-matches. After you perform a search, the matching items are displayed in the photo well, and a check mark appears next to the XX Best box on the Find bar (where XX represents the number of exact matches to all your criteria). To show those items that do not match the criteria in the Find bar, enable the XX Not check box (where XX represents the number of items that do not match the criteria). With both boxes selected, the photo well will display all the items in the catalog, but on the non-matches it will show a red Not icon (a circle with a slash) similar to the one on the Find bar. Matches won't have this icon.
You can control the display of matches, non-matches, and partial matches using the Find bar.
To have the photo well show only items that do not match the search criteria, you must uncheck the XX Best check box and enable only the XX Not check box. After you do this, all the items in the photo well feature the red Not icon. You could use the XX Not option, for example, to help you search for photos that do not include your son.
In a situation where there's more than one marker in the Find bar, only items with all the selected markers are displayed. You can, if you want, display items that have at least one of the markers but not all of them by selecting only the XX Close check box. Items that meet this special condition are adorned with a blue check mark Close icon. You can have the photo well show items that are both partial and complete matches by enabling both the XX Best and XX Close check boxes in the Find bar and by leaving the XX Not check box disabled.