Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Lightroom SDK opens up the development module

sooooo....Adobe opened up the Lightroom SDK to make adjustments in the develop module.

geek link:

Lightroom always had a way to write "plugins" in an obscure language called LUA. Now for the first time in LR CC, these plugins can influence the slider settings in the develop module. To be clear: you can now write a native plugin that changes the sliders in the develop module. The friends over at Knobroom will use this it seems. this is cool. However, Paddy has traditionally taken a very different course (since this wasn't available before). What was a strength (it worked) now is a weakness (old tech). I also have no idea how LUA works.

I am sitting here, pondering the following:

1. This new interface doesn't allow everything, but can influence a lot of the sliders in the panels.
2. It's really cool and a sign for more to come
3. Communicating with this would require me to learn a bunch of new things, like how to send HTML requests to Lightroom, receive from Lightroom, and mostly, learn LUA
4. I have no inclination to learn LUA as it is super obscure and I am too old for this. I am not a programmer by trade (nor a professional photographer)
5. Maybe I can make the old tech work, maybe not. It will be a pain
6. Lots of work in my real job, and lots of family stuff
7. New cool products for professionals that use this start popping up (expensive but cool)

Right now, I am concluding that Paddy is not a priority for me. It is a pain in the behind and I am not moving to CC (yet?).

However, what we have is really cool. So, if somebody out there wants to learn how to use LUA, and write an HTML receiver/sender in LUA for this new Plugin module, I am happy to implement that in Paddy - I would in fact be delighted. Short of that, I will play with a few things going forward but not pushing as hard as I had previously. It's just not fun at the moment

Monday, May 4, 2015

Is LR6 a beta?

As a side note, I think LR 6 is really what used to be called a beta. Here is a trace with a Windows debug utility. Clearly, Adobe is worried about startup times. In the past, this kind of stuff was spat out by the beta builds but not by the release

[11192] ==============================>It took 0.063054382801056 (0.064055979251862 overhead) to make maybeMakeScrollableAdjustmentsPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0 (0 overhead) to make makeDevelopOpenNegativeDebugPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0 (0 overhead) to make makeDevelopRenderingDebugPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.01000964641571 (0.01000964641571 overhead) to make makeBasicPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.0040031671524048 (0.0040031671524048 overhead) to make makeToneCurvePanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0 (0 overhead) to make makeAdjustmentsPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.0020016431808472 (0.0020016431808472 overhead) to make makeSplitToningPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.0060063600540161 (0.0060063600540161 overhead) to make makeDetailPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.00900799036026 (0.00900799036026 overhead) to make makeLensCorrectionPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.0040032267570496 (0.0040032267570496 overhead) to make makeEffectsPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.0030031800270081 (0.0030031800270081 overhead) to make makeCameraCalibrationPanel
[11192] L:
[11192] ==============================>It took 0.00099998712539673 (0.00099998712539673 overhead) to make makeSyncResetButtons

When perfectionism kills timelines

OK, on the computer crash...long story, but fixed it. turns out, my 12 year old had the right idea - the USB 3.0 drivers on my old motherboard couldn't take some newer hardware. Learned a lot, cursed a lot.

On Paddy, weeeellll......there was the simple way. LR6 is not that different from LR5. Had I kept that long startup process, updated all the indices for the Paddy sliders, I would have been fine. Now, I went down a route to make this all much more flexible. It's a bit idiotic, really. But remember, I am in it for the challenge of programming....So, I am in the swamp right now. Deep. Revisiting old routines and wondering "what did I do there". Not good. But fun.

So, here is where we are

  • The good news: This will be a good update. It will work ultimately, and for those who do not use Midi, the startup will be much faster if you are willing to have the panels pop up on first use. (Sending the Midi values still requires opening the panels first)
  • The bad news: This will take time. As in, it will take weeks. I apologize, but you knew what you were getting into 

As a general note - LR 6 is really not that impressive from a photography point. I like the brush in the filter, but that's about it. I have 50k plus personal pics tagged with names (family archive back to the 1930s - hobby), and the face recognition doesn't really help that much. The assignments I have have don't require face recognition.  I like the Auto-angle for my landscape stuff, but I survived without it. Overall, if I didn't have CC, I probably wouldn't buy LR 6.

So, recommendation if your high throughout workflow relies on Paddy: Stay with 5.x until this one is stable. LR 6 ain't worth the curses if you were able to make your income with LR 5.x

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Well, and then there was a crash

Unrelated to LR or Paddy, my development machine crashed. Hard. Also, my BCF 2000 died. I almost cried. That was the machine that got me hooked on MIDI for picture editing in LR 3. So I spent all weekend free time doing Windows stuff and being cranky. And ordering a new hard drive. The BCF replacement....maybe. I have a BCR 2000 that I almost like better now because I have more controllers without switching presets. I miss the "woooosh" of the mechanical sliders, though.

While I couldn't push the issues forward, thanks to online backup, I now have my Paddy development environment set up on my work laptop again. Not as good as three screens, but between airport lounges in London, the U.S. Midwest, and Canada, I might get done something this and next week even on a small laptop screen. Yes, that's where I will be earning the money to pay the bills in the next 14 days.

For those of you who are impatient: I have a really, really (really) well paying day job with lots of travel that is as unrelated to Photography as you can imagine, and then some. I also have three kids, one of which has a general health issue, one has a learning disability, and one has an anxiety issue stemming from the fact that the parents spend probably too much time with the other two. Between photography and them, they come first. Also, other stuff like going out with my wife. Paddy is what I do when I have time and don't  sleep. So, I would guess Paddy CC will be out in 6-8 weeks. But I can promise right here that we will get there. It's just a matter of time. I have the sliders working under certain conditions, but not under others (e.g., grad filter selected with a JPG in 2003 mode......arg!). I just want to change some other things as well while I am at it to make this thing more robust..

Also, I am not impressed with LR CC. The facial recognition is fun, but I don't use mobile (zero need), touch interface. there is no real improvement for what I do other than the brush in the grad filter. that is great, I love it, but.....not a new release to me. More like a small additional feature set. I would have loved content-aware fill......

So, if Paddy is important to your high-throughput workflow, stay with LR 5 until I am done.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Friday development status

This update shows that LR6 really has not that much new. I have most of the sliders running, even the complex ones like HSL that change assignment. The only really new piece is the brush in the gradient filter, but it doesn't ruin Paddy. The work a while ago with LR 5 did pay off. Now I need to test a few reset buttons, and then make sure everything works in the old process modes and for JPG, but good progress

LR CC - Paddy CC

Now that LR CC is finally out, I am starting to update Paddy. Bad news is that this will be a slow process as I am very much in demand in my day job and for the family.

The good news is that the LR control scheme is close to the old one. I did some forensic science during the week, updated the Paddy source codes for the renames of control schemes last night, and I got some basics working - for instance, the main sliders! Yeah!

The bad news is that they didn't change the dynamic control scheme, so the startup for the beta version will still be awkward.

Here is the path forward

  • Get a Beta version out that has the same functionality as we had for LR 5 (with no registration)
  • Set up a new discussion board - the old is broken
  • Gather feedback and improve, and in parallel work on a new startup scheme
  • Set up new Webpage
  • Update User guide

Now, I have LR CC. I am unlikely to buy the stand alone in addition, so I will just hope that Paddy will work for it