DevonThink To Go - Geolocation Data, Photos in Particular


I’ve noticed that if I create a new Media item, and take a New Photo in DTTG on iPhone, I am not getting GPS or Geolocation data in the photo. Similar with other item types, but in a different way. I have a few of scenarios.

Scenario 1:

If I take a photo from the New Photo option in DTTG, I can see in the info sheet in DTTG a label that says “Geolocation [My City]” where the city is my city. So, DTTG is aware of the location at least at the city level.
Then, if I save that photo from DTTG to the Photos app in iOS, there is no GPS data.
Also, if I look at that photo in DevonThink Pro Office on Mac after it syncs over, and pull up the EXIF data, there is no GPS data embedded in the image.

Scenario 2:

If I take a photo from the the Camera app in iOS, and then clip the photo to DTTG, I notice the info sheet label says “Geolocation --”, and the item in DTTG is unaware of location.
Then, if I look at that photo in DevonThink Office Pro on Mac after it syncs over, and open pull up the EXIF data, there IS GPS data and it is correct, my Mac finds the GPS data embedded in the image.

Scenario 3:

If I add an RTF item in DTTG, I notice the info sheet label says “Geolocation [My City]” where the city is my city. So, DTTG is aware of the location at least at the city level.
Then, if I look at that RTF item in DevonThink Office Pro on Mac after it syncs over, and open pull up the EXIF data, there is no metadata that I can find in the item regarding the location of the note recorded in DTTG. (I might just not know where to look in this case.)

I was thinking:

1.) I’d like to see GPS data coded into images taken inside DTGG and shared around to and from other apps. Is there a way to do this in DTTG?

2.) It would be very interesting to have any item created in DTTG coded with GPS location data where the item was created or imported. It looks like it’s there during capture as you can can see at the city level in DTTG info views. But not during import/clip. Similarly in DevonThink Pro Office, it would be nice to be able to have items encoded with location or if a location was synced over from DTTG have that be visible in DTPO. Is there a way to see this data other than the info sheet in DTTG?



No there is currently no way to share geolocation data from DTTG2 to other apps.

We have discussed Syncing geolocation data for non-image files, but it is a non-standard practice to have location data on them.


The speed of your replies is awesome, thanks. :slight_smile:

So, just thinking this through:

I don’t have other apps that take pictures and discard the GPS by default. Let’s say I’m taking a picture of a whiteboard at a client to take some notes, and I want to take advantage of the mobile quality of DTTG. I have to leave DTTG and use another app to take the photo and get the benefit of GPS location data in the picture, then clip it back with the iOS share sheet.

Similarly, DTTG records location when you create a note to some degree, but it’s not usable anywhere. You can’t see it DTPO, and it’s only accurate to the city. You can’t see or edit the detail in DT(TG|PO). You can’t see it on a map in DT(TG|PO).

How is location meant to be used in DTTG to get the benefit of the location data, and the mobile nature of the app? Is it mainly superficial right now?



for improved “GEO sync/functionality” of DTTG and DTPO

Actually, the GPS data embedded into photos by the Camera app should not get discarded just by importing the file into DTTG2. We will need to check what is going on here.

As for other files, e.g. RTFs, how exactly should we share the geolocation data with other apps? An RTF is just a special plain text files. And ‘plain’ really means plain. Contrary to images text files have no metadata attached.

Finally, the geolocation data is, in fact, synchronized to the Mac and between iOS devices. On the Mac there’s simply no interface yet to display it. The EXIF data is not the right place as it is no EFIX data but pure DEVONthink metadata. This might, obviously, change eventually.


The retention of GPS EXIF data for pictures taken inside DTTG, or shared into or out of the app using share sheets was my first and primary concern. Photo location is really important when capturing information. I couldn’t tell if this was being intentionally discarded or something just isn’t right.

For other filetypes, and as you pointed out, I can’t tell if location info is available anywhere in DTOP. This led me to assume the location data was only maintained inside DTTG, and not shared with DTOP. For both DTTG and DTOP I’d love to be able to search on location with different attributes. For instance, a smart group that shows me all the items I created at or near a given address. This would let me quickly find things I did at different clients. Similarly, having location in either app populate an Apple map with pins would serve a similar purpose visually.

I agree sharing with other apps outside of DTTG and DTOP is less clear in terms of the right way to do it or if it would be useful. One way to do something like this would be to use HFS+ metadata. For instance, photos have the following metadata fields: kMDItemGPSDateStamp, kMDItemGPSDestBearing, kMDItemLatitude, and kMDItemLongitude. Any app can read fields. DTOP could recognize these if a file was exported and re-imported a later time. Or DT could create it’s own set of attributes that were otherwise findable. Apps like OmniGraffle provide these sorts of attributes. E.g. com_omnigroup_OmniGraffle_CanvasCount, com_omnigroup_OmniGraffle_GraphicCount, and com_omnigroup_OmniGraffle_LayerCount, and they can be found using Finder or command line tools like “mdls” or written using xattr.