[bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

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Devonavar

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[bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostWed Aug 10, 2022 1:55 am

I have a smart bin filter designed to sort footage by scene, with relevant footage tagged by scene number in a comma-separated list in the comments field. For example, a clip may be commented "2, 12, 21, 22" if it's relevant to those scene numbers.

Each scene then gets its own smart bin, which filters the comment field for the scene number using "matches any exact". This works reasonably well, except for single-digit scenes.

For example, my smart bin for scene 2 (which 'matches any exact' any clips with "2" in the comment field), returns clips that match scene 2 (as desired), but also clips that match scene 12 and scene 22 (not desired). It does *not* return clips that match scene 21, so it's not just finding any instance of "2". It seems to find any instance of "2" that is at the end of an item.

Is this a bug?
Or am I misunderstanding how "matches any exact" works? My assumption is that it's supposed to match any words that *exactly* match the value in the filter field, delimited by spaces (and perhaps commas). But that assumption doesn't appear to be correct.

I can filter out the unwanted scenes by adding a "matches none" condition for "12,22,32..."., but this has the unwanted side effect of excluding clips that are intended to appear in *both* scenes. For example, a clip that is commented "2, 12, 21, 22" will *not* show up in my smart bin for scene 2 because the exclude condition prevents it from appearing even though "2" is an exact match.

What I really want is for "matches any exact" to do what I expect it to do, which is to correctly match "2", but not "12" or "22".

Is there some combination of conditions I can use that will generate this result? Or do I have the right combination of filters but the filters aren't working correctly. In other words: Is this a bug?
Last edited by Devonavar on Thu Aug 11, 2022 7:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Devon Cooke

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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostWed Aug 10, 2022 1:58 am

PS: What is the difference between "contains" and "matches any"? I can't for the life of me figure out how those are distinct options, and they appear to return identical results.
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Devonavar

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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostWed Aug 10, 2022 2:03 am

PPS: How do I filter for a literal comma? In other words, how do I "match any" comment that contains "2," if the comma in the search term is interpreted as a delimiter? Is there an escape character?
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Andy Mees

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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostWed Aug 10, 2022 7:20 am

I've never used 'matches any exact' Devon, so I've no experience of how it works. My usual approach is to use 'contains' and ensure that whatever I may be looking for can be identified by a unique string... so for your example "2, 12, 21, 22" my clip would be instead be commented ", 2, 12, 21, 22," (ie list begins and ends with commas), I could then search for 'contains' ', 2,' or ', 12,' or ', 22,' etc and be assured that my filter will only show those explicit occurrences.
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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostWed Aug 10, 2022 8:47 pm

I was toying with a similar hack. Thanks for identifying a format that actually works! I'll probably use that for the time being.

That said, if anyone else can chime in on making "matches any exact" work better, the hack has the disadvantage of being error-prone, especially in multi-user scenarios ... I can remember to use a hacked string that starts with ", " and ends with a trailing comma, but it's a bit much to expect new users to my project to just know this. I could really use a system where I just need to tell them to add the scene number to the comments field in a straightforward way and know that it will work without any formatting gotchas.
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Andy Mees

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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostWed Aug 10, 2022 9:13 pm

Again, not answering your question (and I hope someone does) but an obvious alternative to your dilemma would be to add the scene identifier as Keyword, rather than a Comment, then you can search by Keyword and all ought to be well for both you and those others in the team.
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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostWed Aug 10, 2022 9:41 pm

Yep, I thought about that as well. The disadvantage is mostly that I'm using keywords for other things, and don't want to clutter it with scene IDs (since the display box for keywords is pretty small). This may be the best option though.
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Peter Cave

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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostThu Aug 11, 2022 3:39 am

We always use leading zeros for scene & shot numbering to avoid this issue.
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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostThu Aug 11, 2022 6:11 am

Also a great idea. Can I assume from this that, generally speaking, "matches any exact" is not working as expected, and we are all using workarounds to deal with that? Can we officially tag this a bug?
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Joe Shapiro

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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostThu Aug 11, 2022 6:56 pm

I don't think we have any way to officially tag something as a bug.
We report things here and BMD decides what to put in their bug system and how to tag it.
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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostThu Aug 11, 2022 7:01 pm

Sorry, I didn't mean that kind of official ... what I meant was, nobody has stepped up to tell me that the feature is working "as intended", and several people have posted that they use workarounds. So, I think we can decide "officially" that we are looking at a bug, not a feature that we are misusing.
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Re: Smart Bin using "matches any exact"

PostThu Aug 11, 2022 7:04 pm

Totally agree.


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Re: [bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostFri Aug 12, 2022 12:02 am

Works as I would expect when not using leading zeros.
If you don't wish to use leading zeros, you should use the "is" option, not "matches any exact" option.

Keep in mind that the search options are for ANY text, not just numbers. If you experiment you will see how the options work.
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Re: [bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostFri Aug 12, 2022 12:26 am

Can you explain the difference between contains and matches exact?


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Re: [bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostFri Aug 12, 2022 2:05 am

Matches Exact is an exact match of the input string to any instance of the of that input string found in the same character location. In this case the filtered result finds any instance of the number 2 in the last position in the Scene field. e.g. 2, 12, 32, 172 etc

Contains will return any instance of the number 2 found in ANY character location. In this case the filtered result finds any instance of the number 2 in ANY position in the Scene field. e.g. 2, 12, 21, 273 etc
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Re: [bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostFri Aug 12, 2022 2:21 am

I'd think these would be documented in the manual but a search on "matches any exact" gives 0 hits. Likewise reading the doc on Smart Bins doesn't talk about the available predicates and how they work.

If Peter's description is correct, it sounds like "matches any exact" is delimiter-aware. Are commas the only delimiters?

Why the choice to have "matches any exact" for 2 match both ,2, and ,22,? That doesn't sound like exact to me. It sounds more like an "ends with" for list items.
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Re: [bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostFri Aug 12, 2022 2:31 am

You are guessing.

I tested all options. There are no delimiters in the metadata searches as ALL characters including spaces and commas are considered active metadata values. It's too complicated to explain. That option is primarily designed for clip name searches where one needs to filter by character strings due to the camera clip filename structure.

As I said earlier, it's been standard practice in the media industry to use leading zeros for many filename structures, reel numbers and just about anything else due to the way computers and software deal with character positions when sorting lists. It has plagued editors in nearly every editing application. Even back in the days of CMX tape editing all numerical entries needed leading zeros.

There is no bug, just misunderstanding of the options and what they are designed to do.
Matches Exact is the wrong choice for the OP's use case.
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Re: [bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostFri Aug 12, 2022 7:27 pm

We are all guessing, since, as noted, the official documentation doesn't document this option.

"Is" is clearly not the correct choice here; that only works if the field I am searching contains *only* the scene I was looking for and no others (because it matches the whole string). I've tested this; it doesn't work.

And, "Matches any exact" *does* appear to use delimiters of some sort, since it will correctly match individual items in a comma (or space) separated list; the problem is that it is slightly too inclusive, and the rules for inclusion aren't clear. (Side note — the automated "Scene" smart bins *definitely* interpret commas as delimiters, since they have erroneously split up some of my scene names that include the string "1,000" and other scenes with commas, so the functionality to identify comma-separated lists definitely exists in Resolve).

Saying "It's too complicated to explain" just tells me *you* don't understand the logic. That's fine — I don't either. But that doesn't make it beyond explanation. It's a computer, it *only* works with logic, and that logic is possible to explain. We just don't know what that logic is.

Leading zeroes will probably work, but it suffers the same user-friendliness issue that all the other hacks do: It's error prone and non-intuitive for inexperienced users. I don't buy that there's no way to solve this because "that's how computers work". I've been dealing with computer code for a long time. I could write regex that would search by scene number without leading zeroes in a few minutes, and "matches any exact" could very well be implemented as a regex under the hood. The problem is that their logic is wrong (or, at the very least, undocumented), not that there is some magical "that's how computers work" limitation.
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Re: [bug] Smart Bin using "matches any exact" isn't exact

PostFri Aug 12, 2022 11:00 pm

I never guess, I TEST. I DO understand it and use it when necessary. Good luck with your guessing.
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