DTP for information gathering and project management

I have been using DTPro intensively for several years for information gathering, in several projects.

I use a database for each category of projects. For instance:
project categories

  • non-profit
  • writing
  • training
  • personal development

What I appreciate, is the robustness and reliability of DTP, as well as its capacity to synchronize between different desktop machines (for me: Mac Mini and MacBook Air, over Dropbox). Unfortunatly, DTTGO, which I have purchased, isn’t as reliable (some database are reluctant to synchronize) nor convenient (the note taking interface is just too basic).

Recently, I have upgraded to DTP Office in order to be able to manage systematically bills from our non-profit, as well as scan occasionnally info page (can work well with newspaper articles, when they are not too large).

I usually manage a couple of projects at the same time, typically 2 or 3 professionnally, and a few writing projects. I have recently customized the Project template to my own needs, and it works. Additionnally, I have added the Annotate and Revision scripts, which I found a bit difficult to customize.

I would appreciate if there could be some notion of dates in the folders and files managed in DTP (such as deadlines). I could do that in invoking reminders, but seems like fragmenting projects into bits. Instead, I am looking what project management software I could use that would interface well with DTP Pro, allowing for instance to refer to larger notes / docmentation. I’ve tried Omnifocus, but it is to individual for me, as I want to be able to share my project with a small team (less than 10 people). If you have any insights on how to articulate DTP usage with project management, please tell me.

Overall, DTP is great for large information management, finding information, for writing projects. I do need to articulate it with a project management software, desktop or online, to make it my one-only work landing point.

PD. Why does the list appear as it does above?

Fixed the list by replacing list= with list.

Last things first – the format for an ordered list is as follows (need to add the “=1” to the first tag)


I have several ideas to contribute on the topic but I’ll have to come back later and fill them in. For now, I would say that DEVONthink “item links” are the best glue between DEVONthink groups or documents and external task managers (I use 2Do) and calendars. I have a bunch of little scripts and KeyboardMaestro macros to handle the interfacing – DEVONthink’s calendar and reminder scripts are too rigid for my use. I also use Curio to visually map out and control projects – the DEVONthink item link plays well in Curio, and Curio has excellent features to integrate with your calendar and reminders.

I realize I’m suggesting buying other software in order to work with your database – but sometimes it’s better to have a collection of good tools rather than try to make DEVONthink do more than it’s currently capable of doing.

Thanks korm

I have been fiddling with other software myself, and I realize DTP is not a software management tool, so finding a project management software adapted to one’s needs and style, and linking it with DTP is fine with me.

I tried Curio years ago, and was a bit skeptical about its “Swiss knife” style of doing many things. But it may be an advantage as well, and I see its author is still active there. Personally I have a long time use of Xmind Pro (mind mapping, with possible project management in its pro version). I’ve tried Pagico, and a variety of project management tools, some online (cannot be interfaced with DTP), others desktop. I realize “agile management” fits my style more than classical project management with dates and dependencies. Those are useful for me only every 3 months to give a representation of strictly framed missions.

To go back to the subject, could you clarify what you call “item links” in DTP? Are those shortcuts you create for example by draging and droping an item from the Finder? Or something else?

The “item link” is what DEVONthink puts on the clipboard when you select a group or a document and choose Edit > Copy Item Link (or from the contextual menu). It’s this:


when pasted in a program that accepts links, it can be clicked and open that group or document in DEVONthink. It’s a way of connecting apps to you data. I used these item links in 2Do actions, in Curio, in Fantastical, in mind maps (iThoughtsX for example). The links do not work in most web-based productivity apps, such as Trello. They do work, however, in DTTG2 assuming that you have synced the database and group/document that the link is supposed to open.

Thank you for this tip! I tried it in Todoist, and it works. Useful.