General Feedback

Firstly, kudos for having a well organized and structured site, and a well-setup forum - I feel like I can actually take PhotoStructure seriously and have confidence you are developing it as a real product, not just a tech demo - I mention this because there are a lot of tools thrown out with a github page that disappear 6 months later - that is not the case here!

I’m using a windows setup with multiple PCs and a NAS (Synology) and I’m looking for something to browse my library of processed JPGs. The RAWs all live separately in a Lightroom catalog, and that’s how I want to keep it - I used to use Picassa while Google supported it, and since have tried a bunch of different tools, but they all have one issue or other - generally with poor metadata support for lightroom export files or an awful UI, or both. Plus I want to move to a network model where the photos are on the Synology and everything runs off that or a windows “server” and I can access it from whatever device I want. So PhotoStructure is a really good fit.

Some general feedback:

  • I personally don’t like trials that require a credit card. I don’t blame you for doing it this way, I know it makes commercial sense, but I make my purchase decisions before I hand over payment details, so this is based on trialing the free product. Trying to work out what I’m missing leads me to:
  • It seems like person tags should be a premium feature? At least, “Face Tag Extraction” is listed as Premium on the plan page, and there is no “Who” in the menu, but because Lightroom generates tags for people, if I open a picture with a person in it, click on the tag, I am taken to the Who / [Person] Filter, and I can click on Who to get to the page with all the People listed. I’m not sure I should be able to do this :slight_smile:
  • “Back” vs “Up”. The “Back” arrow on the navigation bar is a bit confusing, not because it doesn’t do what it says it does, but because I expect it to act as an “Up” arrow and take me up to a parent category. This might just be me, but I feel like there should either be an “Up” or a “Home” icon, or something so that I don’t need to open the menu to go to the top level view.
  • Lens filter doesn’t seem to work for me, but I’m not sure if this is because my metadata is non-standard. It shows Apple “lenses” (front vs back camera) but not Sony lenses on an ILC. They show up correctly in Lightroom, but I’m not sure if this is a bug or something that isn’t right with my metadata, I only have a small sample set of photos on my laptop to test with and they’re all taken with a Sony or a phone, so I can’t compare other manufacturers. I’ve had issues with lens tags before, and now I create a keyword for each lens to avoid needing to use the auto generated metadata.
  • Finding the port number for accessing PhotoStructure from a browser took a bit of clicking through the documentation on the site - I suggest you might want to create an FAQ entry about browser access. But generally your documentation is still way ahead of most one man / small team projects!

I have a few feature requests but I’ll put those in separately so you can judge if they’re important or not.

Generally I’m happy I found PhotoStructure, seems like I finally have a replacement for picassa…

1 Like

This post touches on this issue: Improve back button navigation

@mrm mentions in that post that the change was implemented in 1.0 Alpha-6, but I definitely don’t have an up arrow, nor does the “back arrow” behave as an “up one level” function.

Hopefully Matthew can chime in and clarify what was implemented in Alpha-6!

I’m sure he will reply with comments on your other points, but in the mean time, welcome!!

1 Like

@PS_2923 welcome to PhotoStructure, and thanks for taking the time to share your feedback!

Hmm, yeah, I get you. My thinking was because the LITE version doesn’t require any user account setup, people could kick the tires without sharing any personal information.

I’ve also had a couple people balk at sharing their credit card information (even though I don’t see it: it’s handled by Stripe, Inc.), so I can accept payment via PayPal as well, if that’s better for you. I don’t really advertise this alternative because it requires a bit more work on your side and my side, but it is doable.

Native PhotoStructure-powered face detection and aggregation will be a premium feature, but my thinking here is that if you’ve done face tagging with some other software, you’ve done the work, PhotoStructure hasn’t, and it’d be bogus for me to hide that behind PLUS.

Totally agreed, there are a bunch of navigation improvements that I want to make soon. @tkohhh linked to one of the topics, and that topic is linked to several others.

Oh crap: if you can email me an original JPEG or raw image file to support@photostructure.com, along with the expected lens, I can take a look.

Ah, dang: if you think of a better place to put it, I’m all ears. “intuitive” documentation is tough to do well!

FWIW, on the desktop edition of PhotoStructure, there’s actually an “Open in browser…” option in the menu bar, and on the server edition, there is a message emitted to stdout (this is from v2.1-alpha):

Please wait, setting up...
Your library is at <file:///home/mrm/pstmp>
PhotoStructure is ready: <http://127.0.0.1:1787>
See <https://photostructure.com/faq/remote-access/> to enable non-localhost access.

Correct: the left-pointing arrow is literally the back button (which is needed on the Desktop editions, but duplicates the prominent browser back button on desktops).

I apologize for the cryptic “This is fixed in v1.0.0-alpha.6!” comment without specifying what This is… I had meant that for alpha.5, the button didn’t work at all due to a javascript binding error. The other issues in that topic are still outstanding, for the most part.

I did improve back button handling in the pending build, in that prior scroll positions (especially critical in longer tag gallery views) are now retained when clicking forward and back.

Happy holidays! :clinking_glasses:

Thanks for the responses!

Regarding CC trials, it’s not handing over my card I mind (and I vastly prefer stripe to PayPay, personally), it’s the setting up a recurring payment and then needing to cancel if I change my mind, as opposed to making my mind up first and then setting up a payment - but I’m just old fashioned like that :slight_smile:

I see the open in browser link now, missed that when looking through the menus

I’ll send a file with a lens that’s not showing up. (Incidentally, to check this behaviour I’m trying to add a couple of files to my working library and the “sync” functionality is a bit odd - I put the two jpgs in a folder, waited a bit, nothing happened, tried pausing and resuming processing, tried restart sync, nothing happened…but I thought I saw another thread on sync behaviour so I won’t start a new one)