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Re: Why do Events still exist?

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Joe Marler
Re: Why do Events still exist?
on Dec 2, 2016 at 10:25:53 pm

[Robin S. Kurz] "So then why not get rid of folders in the Finder and just dump any and everything on the top level of every disk and just use Finder tags to filter everything? By that same logic I guess folders were a mistake of the original OS "

In most file systems, folders are an intuitive orgizational and navigational UI construct which maps to the underlying directory structure. Whether the UI draws a folder object or not, a heirarchical file structure exists. Using folders and sub-folders was an easy UI step, plus approachable and familiar to users.

FCPX is more like a relational database. In an RDBMS there is no intrinsic heirarchy of data, it exists in unordered rows that you query by attributes. On ingest you can define (ie tag) additional attributes to facilitate later retrieval. If the UI chooses to display that in folders corresponding to those attributes, it can, but (unlike a file system) the data is not heirarchically organized.

Since the advent of the RDBMS there has always been a conflict between human perception and relational data management. People often think of data navigationally or heirarchically. In their mind, rows are in an intrinsic order, like papers in a file. People have an ingrained (or is it learned?) tendency to store things within things, items with folders, folders within folders, etc.

This is likely one reason why FCPX originally used events. Not doing so would be too foreign, and transitioning or new users had enough to struggle with anyway.

Re "So then why not get rid of folders in the Finder and just dump any and everything on the top level of every disk and just use Finder tags to filter everything? By that same logic I guess folders were a mistake of the original OS..."

As previously described, a file system is very different from an RDBMS or FCPX. Today you can use FCPX perfectly well without any events, although events may have some residual value besides a comfort blanket of familiarity.

Object or database file systems have been proposed and some built, but none widely adopted. The lack of these is one reason we have so many problems when manipulating data outside iTunes, Lightroom or FCPX, which the app is then unaware of. Current file systems are very dumb, have no two-way communication with the app, and force database functionality to be redundantly implemented within each app. Each app must implement its own database, verification and repair functions -- often rudimentary, undocumented or even non-existent.

Some apps have moved toward diminishing a pure folder-like organization. E.g, Gmail folders are not real folders but attribute tags which it displays as folders.

I'm OK using FCPX without events but I understand the need for them, at least for the foreseeable future. Eliminating events might make the FCPX storage model more pure, but I don't see it bringing any other advantage, and it would create chaos if done.

To answer Oliver's original question, even if database, query and performance factors would have allowed the original FCPX to be without events, I don't think it would have been sellable to customers. It would have been too foreign.


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