DTTG Minor Quirks or Bugs

None of these amount to a huge a deal, however they’re all small annoyances:

  • iPadOS (15.7.x) - I can search my Inbox or Research Database but not both at the same time, whereas on iOS I can. Given my inbox is nearly as large as my database I have to search for everything twice
  • No tag autocomplete. On MacOS I really on the autocomplete to make sure I don’t invent new tags unnecessarily, on iOS I pray that I’m typing in the correct name.
  • iPadOS the PDF previewed doesn’t appear to recognize the trackpad of my Apple keyboard when try to select text for highlighting or copying. Only finger or pencil are recognized. (Ok this is fairly edge case, however after an hour of selecting text it leads to a sore arm)

What version of DEVONthink To Go are you running?

This is what I’m seeing in DEVONthink To Go…

Ok perhaps I missed the key detail here. Are the suggestions in the pastebar (is that the right name) from DTTG? In which case I just misunderstood.

In which case only items 1 and 3 stand.

Thanks for illuminating - Mark


Why not? In DTTG on iPadOS select any database (incl. Global Inbox) from the sidebar. That database will open in the sidebar or a subsection of the main sidebar. Pull down on the section of the sidebar showing the database to access the search bar. Tapping into the search bar will open this section:

Select All Databases to search across more than one database. This behaviour is identical to DTTG on iOS.

I can’t comment on your third point, as I don’t have a trackpad hooked to my iPad.

I think I found my problem with this one and I will just say the discoverability of this is bizarre. Up until you replied I didn’t think this was possible. Your reply was proof and so I searched.

I saw this

and so pulled down, which gets:

…which only searches the Inbox.

However if I search the Global Inbox, I found the view you showed.

General question.

  • Why not have all searches offer the same all/this db/this group option
  • Why not make pulled down on the main sidebar - “search all”. This would be elegant because that sidebar is the all view

Search offered in a number of smart groups (e.g. Recently Viewed) and apparently in the unified inbox view does not offer any options regarding the scope of the search. All other views (e.g. from within a database or the global inbox) offer the options seen in my post above. @eboehnisch is this behaviour intentional? Like the OP I find it more confusing than helpful.

Smart groups are, by definition, not related to any database or group. So what would you expect the search scope options to be? What database would the Database scope restrict the search to? So the search scope when searching within a smart group is the smart group itself.


I think from a discoverability perspective I would have chosen to leave the option buttons underneath the search bar, but would have masked This Database as it would - as you rightly point out - not be an available option for a smart group. I would have applied the same logic to the unified inbox view (which, of course, also can’t search in the database). Obviously I accept that doing so would only pacify my mind rather than necessarily being a universal solution for everybody.

In addition, if I search for something in a smart group but don’t find it, then my next step is to widen the search scope. In DTTG, to do so, I need to leave the smart group and select something/anything else to be able to search the database(s). I (and again, we are back to talking about my mind, rather than a universal way of thinking) find that a little von hinten durch die Brust ins Auge, as we say :smiley:

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Unfortunately, search scopes can — as far as I remember — not be deactivated.

Ah. Well then I would have done exactly what you did :smiley:

The challenge here is that it violates the sorts of principles around discoverability on iOS/iPadOS.


  • Provide an additional tab: Global Inbox/All Databases
  • Provide a warning or hint

Sorry I don’t know other iOS apps with search boxes aside from Gmail.

Actually I just realized my problem. On MacOS - DT behaves like Gmail. One search box for everything. On iPadOS/iOS, it has different search boxes depending where you touch.

On iOS, DEVONthink To Go behaves like Apple Mail. At least that was what we used as an example on how to implement, e.g., the three column view and the search. Other apps place their search fields in other places (and I have to look for them each time I search something, sort of a search-fore-search, but that’s my personal experience).

Discoverability is a huge problem on iOS. Just remember that long-pressing the space bar for moving the cursor was available for months unnoticed before even Daring Fireball’s John Gruber found out that it existed.


Long press on the spacebar, I didn’t know that. Cool.

More seriously, I use DT on the Mac every day. You’ve conditioned me to expect one search box to rule them all.

On iOS there are different search boxes and that confuses a day to day Mac user.

I just wish you added a toggle or switch to change to the wider context.


Actually, it was documented in the Tips app and the iPhone User Guide from day one. Anyone looking there knew about it long before it was laughably revealed by Daring Fireball. Take that as a lesson. :slight_smile:

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Last attempt on this thread and then I will let it die. I just used DTTG on my iPhone a moment ago. (It’s been that kind of day).

On the opening the first screen, I’m able to pull down and search all databases. Why not make the iPadOS follow the same model?

Well … On the iPhone, tapping a result on the database screen pushes a new view. What exactly would you envision should happen on the iPad, taking all three columns into account?

Eric - I’m confused. I suspect visuals would help. Can you use a Screenshot to of the iOS/iPadOS apps to help me see what I’m not understanding here, specifically what you mean by “pushes to a new view”.

As a user of iPhone/iPad software generally I expect the iPad app to behave the same way as the iPhone app.

Example a few minutes ago I was waiting for a child to finish swim practice. I was working on my iPad in Gmail to reply to a client. I used NetNewsWire on phone. When finished, I switched over to NetNewsWire iPad app. I don’t notice any differences. DTTG is harder, because I need to memorize a different behaviour.

On the iPad with its larger form factor, DEVONthink To Go supports three panes simultaneously: the sidebar, the item list, and the view/edit pane.

The iPhone cannot do the same. If you click a database, it switches to the item list for that database. So there is already a difference in behavior that cannot be resolved due to the limited screen space.

Although the iPad offers a lot more real espace? That would be a waste.

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