Custom metadata "Set" type

My understanding of the custom metadata type “Set” is that it allows one (and only one) selection within a defined list of allowed set metadata entries e.g. if I create a metadata called “missions” and give it the distinct values


then for a given file/group I can assign a custom value for missions from a dropdown list such as mission1 or mission2 but not mission1;mission2 e.g. two or more values from the list. This is quite different from another programme called Tinderbox which I use for notes where the attributes “Set” refer to multiple values.

I’m wondering how best to replicate this behaviour in Tinderbox. Typically in my work experience (I work with satellites) a given note or document can be associated with several missions. For the moment - failing a way to do this with custom metadata (I hope there might be additional in the future) - I assume that disciplined tagging is the only way.

  1. You could use the multiline text type and insert lines for each relevant mission
  2. Or, create a boolean type element for each mission (Mission 1; Mission 2) – it there are not too many missions to make this impracticable.

The difference between a set and a list in Tinderbox is that a given element can occur multiple times in a list (e.g., like a multiline text element), but in a set a given element can occur only once (i.e., if you practice discipline when filling in the multiline content in DEVONthink).

  1. Tags are a valid custom metadata element too and tags can have child tags. So a master tag “Mission” could have “Mission 1”, “Mission 2”, etc., as children. You don’t need to apply “Mission”, just apply the child tags.

Thanks. Appreciate your suggestions. I like the approach using Boolean meta tag for each mission which is clean and logical . The downside here could be in the sheet-based summary of custom meta data which will have many empty columns - one for each mission whether applicable or not.
Multi line text is flexible and has the advantage that only one custom meta tag is required. Do you know to match individual lines within a multi line tag e.g in setting up smart group queries etc… ? I’m sure that in most cases I would like to retrieve documents based on whether a particular mission appears or not in the custom tag.

Multi-line Text is merely a string. Custom metadata is available as a search attribute. Here’s an example…

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