What’s new in El Capitan
Upgrade your system to benefit from essential improvements to Photos
Since Photos’ debut on the Mac, Apple has addressed some of the deficiencies that discouraged some people from switching from iPhoto.
Notably, you can now add location data to photos that don’t have it, and edit it on those that do if you find your camera’s GPS is a little off. Select one or more photos, choose Window > Info, then click Assign a Location at the bottom of the Info window (if there is no existing location) or click on the row above the miniature map (if there is). Enter the name or postcode of a location, then select the correct one from the list of matching places. If you want to explore a location in more detail than the Info window allows, grab the Get Selected Photos Items and Show Location in Maps actions for Automator from photosautomation.com, add them to a Service workflow in that order, save the workflow and, optionally, assign it a key combo under Shortcuts > App Shortcuts in your Mac’s keyboard preferences.
Much like you can assign the same location to multiple photos at once, Photos in El Capitan lets you set the same title, description or keywords for multiple pictures at the same time. Doing so for keywords is perhaps the most useful as it helps speed up categorisation of your photos, which encourages the use of Smart Albums to find library items that match certain criteria (File > New Smart Album).
Just the way you like it
Photos in Yosemite allows you to drag the contents of albums into whatever order you like, or you could sort them by the date on which they were taken. El Capitan’s version has two date options, enabling you to put either the newest or oldest photos in an album at the top. You can also choose to sort albums by title, which gives you a way to serialise photos using the same title followed by a number. However, note that the ability to batch rename photos doesn’t offer a way to add numbers automatically, so you have to do it manually. Doing this means you can instantly get photos back into whatever narrative order you’ve established for an album, whereas that order would be lost if you were to manually arrange items and then choose one of the date options.
Photos could already detect faces in images, but identifying them was a chore because you could only select one at a time, which resulted in a lot of clicking. You’re now able to select multiple photos at once, making this a far quicker process, and consequently you’re more likely to be bothered to use it.
Recover from mistakes
Accidentally removing a photo from your library could cause panic before now, if you somehow pressed
∫ then ® , or ç+∫ to skip the confirmation dialog. Photos already provided a way to recover photos for up to 30 days after ‘deletion’, but you had to be aware of this feature’s presence in the File menu. It’s now a persistent item in the Albums view. Go there, then proceed as you would before: select items to put back in your library and click Recover.
The Faces feature is quicker to work with, so you’re more likely to use it
Faces used to be a chore because you had to identify faces one at a time. Now you can whizz through confirming or rejecting the app’s attempts to pair them with names.
El Capitan’s version of Photos dispenses with the need to add location data to pictures before you import them into your library.