Benefits of CatDV catalogs
CatDV uses ‘Catalogs’ as one of the ways to help organise assets in its database.
CatDV Catalogs make it much easier to browse the CatDV asset database (in addition to searching).
Catalogs are a bit like having folders and a file path in the file system, so related clips can be organised together in a unique location. However Catalogs are much more powerful. They can be organised to mirror a file system to make browsing similar to using the operating system. Alternatively Catalogs can be tailored to suit a specific installation: using dates, events, projects, external customers etc.
When operating a database with many thousands or even millions of assets, being able to browse as well as search the database is invaluable.
Of course CatDV supports sophisticated search mechanisms too. Queries can be simple or complex, equally they can be ad-hoc or more formally stored and shared. Further, CatDV’s smart folders and automatic grouping functions provide additional levels of both search and browse capability.
Since Catalogs provide an easy way to to keep all the clips relating to a project or user together they are also used to control access and security within CatDV. Ownership and permissions can be applied to a catalog as a whole, and it’s easy for users to create a temporary Catalog (eg. with their current search results or something they’re working on privately) without cluttering a global shared space.
Without CatDV Catalogs, having all the clips in one place would be like having the Mac Finder / Windows Explorer with no folders. The only way of accessing files would be using the search box or paging through very long lists.
Without Catalogs it’s also easy to lose clips. “Where’s that clip I was working on, I had it only this morning and now it’s disappeared in those 250,000 other clips on the server!”, whereas it’s easy to find the Catalogs you were working on recently, and then clips within them.
CatDV Catalogs also enable offline working. A Catalog can be copied locally, worked on in the field (on a plane, on location with no network cover etc) and then copied back to the CatDV server at a later time.
In summary: CatDV Catalogs provide a mechanism to browse as well as search the asset database and are one of the many tools for organising and finding your media assets in CatDV.