A few questions about iPhoto — things that don’t make sense to me.

  1. Why can’t I export items that are on a burned DVD (or CD, I assume)? I’d certainly understand not being able to edit photos, rename them, assign tags, and so on — it’s stored on read-only media. But why in the world can’t I export unless the photos are stored on my local hard drive?

  2. When I drag photos from an archive on DVD into my local photo library in order to export them, why can’t iPhoto keep track of the correct tags? While the tags are fine in the archive, as soon as I copy them into the main library, the photos end up tagged semi-randomly, usually with only one or two tags (and those often seem to be “wedding” and “family”, for some reason).

  3. What is iPhoto doing when it loads an archive from DVD that was created with an older version of iPhoto and it presents you with the “Updating iPhoto Library” dialog box? Obviously, it can’t be updating the database on the DVD, that’s write-only media. I think that it’s creating an updated copy of the archive’s database on the hard drive to use, but if that’s the case, why doesn’t it save that archive for later use? It seems to me that it wouldn’t be terribly difficult to do that, and yet every time I try to load an archived photo library, I have to sit and wait for iPhoto to think.

Thanks to these three issues, I may end up re-importing my three DVDs of archived photos so that they’re all on my hard drive — and then hope that having all the photos available doesn’t slog iPhoto down too terribly. Not my preferred approach (especially as, given issue number two, I’d likely have to go through and re-tag all the photos), but as it is, I dread having to go back to old photo archives.

iTunesShining Star” by Earth Wind and Fire from the album Pop Music: The Golden Era 1951-1975 (1974, 2:50).