The “Export Media Items to Keynote” Action
Creating compelling Keynote presentations using images from your Photos library has never been an easier or more efficient process. The “Export Media Items to Keynote” action quickly exports versions of your Photos masters and imports the output files into new slides individually created for each exported item.
In addition to choosing whether the action should initially create a new presentation file, you can indicate how the imported images are to placed on the slides: centered to fit, or scaled to fill the entire slide area.
By default, text descriptions entered in Photos are transfered to the corresponding image description field in Keynote. Optionally, you can also specify to use an image description as the presenter notes of its hosting slide.
And for the sake of connivence, you can select to have the action begin playing the Keynote slideshow, either from the very first slide of the presentation, or from the beginning of the added slides.
Use in Workflow
A simple workflow incorporating the “Export Media Items to Keynote” action, would be one that precedes the action with one of the selection actions, such as: the “Get the Selection” action, or the “Get Contents of Favorites Album” action.
When the workflow is run, the results of the selection action, namely references to specific Photos media items, are passed as input to the “Export Media Items to Keynote” action, to be used to add new slides to either an existing or newly created Keynote presentation.
Updating Imported Images
Imagine you’ve used the “Export Media Items to Keynote” action to create or add to a Keynote presentation. A couple days later, you’ve made edits to the master images in Photos, and you’d like to have those edits applied to the images in the Keynote presentation. What to do?
Here’s the best part: because you used the “Export Media Items to Keynote” action to add the images to the Keynote presentation, you can use the “Update Images from Photos Library” action to:
How cool is that?
How It Works
This targeted updating process is possible because an invisible feature of Photos, available only to automation tools like AppleScript and Automator, called “Fingerprint IDs”.
Every media item in a Photos library is invisibly assigned a unique identity or “ID”, consisting of a series of characters. When the “Export Media Items to Keynote” action is run, the action names each exported file its unique ID string.
You can confirm this by selecting an action-exported-imported image in Keynote and clicking the Image tab in the right side control pane. The name of the imported image file will contain the unique ID or “fingerprint” of its related master image in the Photos library: (⬇ see below )
When the “Update Images from Photos Library” action is run, it retrieves the name of the imported image, extracts the fingerprint ID from the name, and attempts to match it with a corresponding master image in the current Photos library.
If the action locates a corresponding master image in the Photos library, the action exports a copy of the master image, and replaces the Keynote image with the newly exported version. All while retaining any scaling or positioning you’ve already done to the Keynote image.
The action also offers the option to update all images in the presentation, or just those on the current slide. As with the other export action, you can choose to use the description for the exported version as the presenter notes of its host slide.
NOTE: IDs assigned to images in Photos are library-specific. If you add the same image to multiple Photos libraries, the ID for each copy of the image will be different. The same applies to an image that is duplicated within a library.
Use in Workflow
A simple workflow incorporating the “Update Images from Photos Library” action, is often preceded with the “Ask for Confirmation” action to ensure that the user understands that the replacement process cannot be undone.
The following video demonstrates how these workflows can be used to create a new slideshow using the selected images in Photos, and then update the exported images in Keynote after they have been edited in Photos:
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