Apple Photos

With OS X 10.10.3 Apple introduced the new application Photos. Photos internally uses a database where the GPS coordinates of the photos are stored. In this regard, Photos works similar to iPhoto or Aperture. If a place has already been assigned, then a small location symbol is shown in the lower left corner of a photo. If you open the Info window then the location is displayed on a map.

Currently there is no way in Photos to set the place of a photo after the photo has been imported. In iPhoto the GPS coordinates can be set using the AppleScript interface. Both in iPhoto and Aperture there is a feature to read the GPS coordinates from the original file even after importing the photo. Apple has not yet provided such features for Photos. Therefore the GPS coordinates have to be set when the file is imported in Photos.

Therefore, there are currently two ways myTracks can be used with Photos:

  1. Geotagging before import: If you download your photos from your camera to your Mac, then you should not import directly into Photos, but first put the files in your local file system. Now perform the geotagging with myTracks, so that the GPS coordinates are written to the files. Then import the files in Photos.
  2. Export/Import: If you already have the photos in Photos, then there is no other way than exporting the photos from Photos first, removing the photos from Photos, performing the geotagging on the exported files and finally importing them back again to Photos. The export of the photos may result in a change of the quality of the photos because the are re-rendered during export. Therefore, the first workflow is to be preferred.

I download my photos always using Adobe Lightroom, because I do the RAW processing there. From Lightroom I export the photos as JPG files. Then I perform the geotagging of the JPG files using myTracks. Finally, I import the files in Photos.

I hope that in the future Apple will provide other way of modifying the GPS coordinates of imported photos even after importing the files into Photos.

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