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Documentation & User Guides | FotoWare

Creating QuickLists of predefined metadata

This topic explains how to create QuickList files of predefined metadata for use in the FotoStation metadata editor.

Where are the QuickLists stored?

The easiest way to locate the QuickList location in FotoStation is to select a file in the grid and open the metadata editor (Ctrl-T), and go to File > Manage QuickLists. This will open the folder that contains all the default QuickLists, where you can also create your own by making new plain text files and following the naming conventions outlined below.


Types of QuickLists

There are 3 types of QuickList

Flat structure 

The standard QuickLists are flat-structure lists that let a user pick from a number of predefined values.

Flat QuickLists support auto-complete so that you can start typing and have FotoStation automatically suggest entries that exist in the QuickList.

Flat QuickList file naming: These lists are made by creating a file called ql_<fieldnumber>.txt in the configuration, where the field number designates the field that the QuickList should be associated with.


A typical QuickList for the Keywords field, #025, (file name ql_025.txt) can look like this:


Hierarchical structure (Thesaurus/Taxonomy)

A QuickList can also be created with a hierarchical structure of keywords. Each level in the hierarchy is indented with a <tab> to separate the levels.

Hierarchical QuickList file naming: Thesaurus lists are stored in files named <fieldnumber>.txt, for example 025.txt for the Keywords field. As you can see the only difference between a thesaurus list and a standard flat QuickList naming-wise is the lack of the ql_ prefix in the file names of thesaurus QuickLists. A metadata field may well have both a flat QuickList and a hierarchical structure associated with it: In the case of the Keywords field (#025), the file ql_025.txt would contain the flat structure whereas the file 025.txt would contain the hierarchical terms.

The content of a thesaurus QuickList typically looks something like this:


Levels can be added as needed - however, for practical reasons, it is best to limit the number of levels to a maximum of 3-4.


Linked field lists

This is the third type of file that allows linking several metadata fields. In structure, they are similar to the thesaurus QuickLists described above, but the naming of the text files controls which tab levels in the text files are stored in which fields.

For example, the below thesaurus can be stored with a file name that maps the first level (Sports, People) to Custom field 1 (Field # 200) while the second level is stored in Custom Field 2 (Field # 201). The file name should then be: 200_201.txt


For more information about linked field lists, see Reference to QuickList naming conventions.

Downloading QuickList values from a web server

A separate topic explains how you can configure QuickLists to download metadata values from a web server.

Enabling QuickList lookup in the metadata editor

Having created your QuickList content as described above, you may also need to modify the fields in the metadata editor to enable the QuickList:

  1. Open the metadata editor in FotoStation and press Ctrl-E to modify the editor layout.
  2. Select the field that you would like to enable the QuickList for (the example below shows the Keywords field selected).
  3. Open the Item Properties side panel and select Item has a quick list.
  4. Select OK to save the editor layout.

Enable quicklist for field in metadata editor.png

Example: Adding location data using a QuickList

We've compiled an example for advanced users to see how location data can be added to a metadata struct, complete with naming conventions for QuickLists.