Timelapse: Messages

How to check for Duplicates and Missing Entries

Timelapse versions –, released from April onwards, contained a bug that may have compromised your data sets. I do apologize for this - the bug rarely appears on my machine during testing, so I didn't spot it.

Feel free to contact me at saul.greenberg@ucalgary.ca if you have any issues with the instructions below or need any help. I will be glad to guide you through this.

The Issue

When Timelapse loads an image set for the first time, it may occasionally skip an image, where it instead creates a duplicate of a nearby image. This does not always occur: it depends somewhat on both your computer model, and how you configured Timelapse to load images. As it is unpredictable, it is best to test recently loaded image sets. Image sets initially loaded using earlier versions of Timelapse (prior to April) should not be affected.

Note: if you have previously loaded but not analyzed any of the images (i.e., there is no relevant data), you can just delete the .ddb file and reload the image set using the latest version of Timelapse to fix the issue.

Step 1. Export a spreadsheet and mark your duplicate files.

Note: you may be able to skip this step if you already have your set analyzed with (say) a single field filled in across all photos. This is described in more detail below in Step 4, variation 1. However, you may want to go through the entire process for at least your first image set so you can understand your options.

The instructions below refer to the latest version of Excel, so it may differ somewhat if you have an earlier version

  1. Using Timelapse,
    • open a suspected image set.
    • Select the menu item File | Export data from this image set as a .csv file and preview in Excel
  2. Continue by using Excel,
    • highlight the File column in the spreadsheet
    • select Conditional Formatting| Highlight Cell Rules |Duplicate Values | Format cell that contain Duplicates with <some color of your choice> (you will find this in the Excel File tab at the top)
    • scroll through your spreadsheet to see if it contains any colored cells
      • If you find one,, those are duplicate entries.
      • If your images are named sequentially (e.g., IMG001, IMG002, etc), you will likely notice that the spreadsheet will contain a missing file near the duplicate file entry.
    • Save it as an excel (vs .csv) file

Step 2. Delete your duplicates (if any)

  1. Create a copy of you .ddb file just in case things don't go as planned.
  2. Start the latest version of Timelapse,
  3. Load the suspected image set.
  4. Select from the menu: Options | Advanced | Delete Duplicates...
    • the dialog box will list duplicates, if any, along with an option to delete them all.

Step 3. To include your missing images

Note. This step requires that you still have the original images in their original folders.

  1. Continue from the above, where you should have your image set (now without duplicates) loaded in Timelapse .
  2. Reload your image set by choosing File | Add image and video files to image set.... Navigate to the folder(s) that contain your images.
    • Timelapse will only load images that were not previously loaded i.e., your missing images will now be included.
    • Be patient if you have a large number of files. Timelapse currently doesn't show feedback of skipped files, so you may wonder what is going on.

Step 4 - variation 1

Note: If you already have your set analyzed with (say) a single field filled in across all photos, try this approach Otherwise go to variation 2 below.

  1. For example, lets say:
    • you have a Note field called Analyzer, and you had filled it in for every image with a name (i.e., its not empty).
    • when you add the missing images as to the prior instructions, those images will have the Analyzer’s field as empty (assuming there is no default value set).
    • you can then show (and thus analyze) only those images by
      • going to the menu Select | Custom Selection and
      • ticking the checkbox on the Analyzer field, then just select Analyzer (which by default will show an empty value).

Step 4 - variation 2

Note: If variation 1 doesn't work for you, try this

  1. Export your data to Excel as before
  2. Copy and paste the column of file names from the previously saved spreadsheet next to the column in the new spreadsheet.
    • you should be able to see which new files were added simply by comparing the two columns.
    • navigate to those files and analyze them as usual.

If things go wrong (although they shouldn't), restore the backup .ddb file and try again.