DEVONThink Workflow

DEVONThink Workflow

I am glad I purchased a license for DTPO. This software has allowed me to do something that I have not been able to do before. I am using DTPO at this point primarily for indexing my files. However, I am also adding some files such as; links to web sites, emails imported and rich text notes.

I have lived with the results of a brain injury for many years now, undiagnosed until recently. I have (severe) trouble with organizing and with memory. Too much information all at once can get way too confusing. I have had trouble organizing primarily - with time management being not too far behind. Assuming that I have remembered to place files in the appropriate folder, I can still get lost very quickly when I begin to work on a project because now that project is pulling information from several folders. Where do I put all of that new information? Before you know it I have duplicate files, aliases here and there and I have totally lost track of where I was, and the project dies.

With DTPO I have a single database (so far - trying not to overcomplicate things). I have mirrored my newly organized file structure with tier 1 being my four areas of my life’s goals and then eight more areas of what I have to remember to focus on to lend support to my four areas of my life’s work (organizing, time management, money, school, etc.).

Now that I am building a clear structure on my hard drive (apart from my work in DTPO) and mirroring that in DTPO I have set up a structure where I used saved searches nested within my DTPO added folders of focus for each area I want to work on and to keep track of.

Doing It this way is already providing good results and I am finding that this is still very much a work in progress. I am learning by evaluating new methods, discarding some and keeping others.

It is helping me to focus in ways that I could not do prior to using DTPO. For example, I have Writing as one of my life’s goals. Before DTPO when I would find articles about how to write, how to choose a publishing method, etc., those articles got mixed in with my book ideas. Then progress on a book idea got mixed in with progress on other book ideas and even if It didn’t, I got confused and lost focus every time because, even if I remembered where I left off (I usually didn’t remember) It took so much effort to get back on track, by the time I did I had lost too much focus to do much good.

With DTPO I now have an Organization sub-goal (folder) AND a Writing goal (folder). Both are folders created in DTPO. Organization contains saved searches on each organization sub-topic that is important to me. Now I see that one of my important topics in Organization is “Learning to Write”. Now I can add links with tags which put any articles I discover and want to review in that saved search. My writing folder has a folder for each writing project ONLY (potential book). Each writing project has two saved searches, one for any tagged information (research) which relates to that book, and the other search is for actual progress, draft, progress notes, goals for that book.

I have made simple icon graphics for the different levels of my folders. I see nothing wrong with the standard blue folder icon or the purple saved search icons but I want to see It a little more like an outline. I have a standard color as a solid Icon block for each of my four life work folders (the same color for all of the four Goals) and a different color for each of my eight support areas folders (the same color for ALL of the eight subfolders). Each saved search folder has a horizontal line icon so It looks like an outlining program (to me anyway).

I am not yet ready to set up specific calendar dates, but I am sure that I will get there too. For right now, It has been a huge benefit just to finally know where things are, and to be able to focus. I have saved bookmarks here and there for years but saving bookmarks didn’t associate with my projects so they did not do much good over time, and now they do.

Now, when I want to focus on a specific work area I can double click and drill down, anda new window opens and I can focus on that particular work process.

I wanted to share this about how my work flow works and say thanks to the team for making this really nice DTPO app and for helping me to get a work flow, that is working.

Thanks for sharing your experience and for your support and encouragement. It’s always rewarding to hear how our products are making a difference in peoples’ lives.

Thanks from all of us at DEVONtechnologies. :smiley:

Thank you for sharing your workflow. I found it particularly interesting how you created saved searches inside each project.