improving Move To

I want to move an item to a specific folder in another database.

So, I Control-click on that item . . . which in itself irritates me, as there should be a keyboard shortcut to move the item with focus . . . and choose Move To.

And here my head explodes. A vast, scrollable jungle of places I might want to put this item. But absolutely no way of simply typing in a dbase and/or folder, and telling DT where to put it.

Surely a window is in order where you can type in a dbase and/or folder name, with auto-complete, to tell DT where to move, copy, replicate etc an item?

Tools > Show Groups & Tags or you could use the Sorter if it’s a commonly used location.

Thanks Jim. My point is that I don’t want to click and scroll my way through my entire database hierarchy just to find the target database and folder I’m looking for. I want to start typing it in a search window, have it auto-complete, then hit Return and I’m done.

At the moment I’ve got 6 open databases, two of them large ones with hundreds of groups.

Like you, I find scrolling though databases and groups inconvenient when the Move To command is invoked.

Unlike you, I find that showing Groups & Tags (there’s a keyboard shortcut) and preselecting the desired group target in it, then dragging selected item(s) onto that target, is fast and convenient.

Unlike you, I would find the procedure of keyboard selection of the target slower and less convenient. Some of my group hierarchies are several layers deep, and within them some groups will have the same name, e.g., 2014, but contain different data. In other cases, in a database with more than 800 groups, I would have to remember all those group names (at least the initial letters of their names) to quickly navigate to the desired group by keyboard selection; that would seem clumsy to me.

Have a look at this script: Move | Duplicate| Replicate selected records [+LaunchBar]

(You don’t need to use LaunchBar to use the script.)

Kind regards,

That’s a good thread reference, berndm. The script was originally developed to move items out of the Global Inbox, not into it. And as replication isn’t allowed across databases, the script was modified in that respect.

Bill - You’re right, our preferences and usage patterns have some overlap, and some divergence. I imagine typing a folder name and having autocomplete supply enough of the hierarchy of each target folder that I could distinguish; I abhor clicking, dragging and all other trackpad/mouse functions.

Many thanks for the suggestion, which I’ll certainly play with. Perhaps my workflow needs more tuning than DT itself.

Bernd - Gorgeous! This is precisely what I was looking for - many thanks.

Tom, great. I use houtthakkers script extensively myself. :smiley:

In addition to this I have some folders, that I frequently/very often want to move items to. For these I use a script (thanks to korm), that has a predefined location set in in the script. So it’s one script per location. (Some I have arranged in DEVONthinks toolbar, most of them I have arranged in Keyboard Maestro in a palette, that shows up only in DEVONthink and some of them I call up via LaunchBar.)

Maybe that could be a good addition for you too. Here’s the script: move selected files to predefined destination

Kind regards,

I was about to post a remark about using a script and assigning a keyboard shortcut to it. The dealbreaker that I saw was the need for immediate auto-complete, which I couldn’t see happening within an Applescript. Luckily I got sidetracked, and by the time I checked back, berndm had solved the issue with a script that uses Launchbar (presumably the latter does the heavy lifting in terms of autocomplete). So possibly this is solved, and the thread has served its purpose.

A final remark though: I am not fond of people posting strong remarks like “head exploding”, seemingly indicating that once again, the DT devs have shown poor judgement in what they offer. At face value, I completely agree that a text-based, auto-complete enabled, “move to” function could be useful. However, for sake of general usability for anyone other than “power users”, the mechanisms offered (cascading menu, and group-and-tag window) must have priority. If we were only talking about this one feature, I’d say “sure, let’s add it”. But all of us who follow this forum, know very well, how many such proposals keep rolling in. And they are all most important to someone (and those someones are always very vocal). But have a look at the menu structure of DT. It already has more options and commands than almost any other program I know. This cannot be arbitrarily expanded! Most of these things fall then into the realm of scripts, with which people can fine tune their experience without burdening everyone else with ever more options and specialty features.

@gg378: Thanks for the understanding. :smiley:

gg378 – Thanks for the input, duly noted. Incidentally, by “head exploded” I did not mean that my head literally exploded, or even grew abnormally large. This was a bit of humorous hyperbole, aka a “joke”.

Nor did I intend to impugn the abilities of DT programmers with said joke.

Finally, I don’t think the paradigm in which a user can type in words, have auto-complete, and select from the honed-down list, necessarily fits into the realm of the “power user.” Stuff happens in the link bar on Chrome all the time.

But thanks again for the observations.

tbmueller, I’ll have to tease you a bit about your abhorrence of the Mac’s graphical user interface.

Apple went to a lot of effort on the Mac’s user interface. They did many timed tests of procedures. Some users, proficient in formatting WordPerfect documents back in the days of DOS, prided themselves on their keyboarding skills and avoided whenever possible use of the mouse. Other users preferred the Mac’s graphical interface and readily adopted the mouse and dragging and dropping.

The Apple old-timers were amused at the results of timed tests.

The keyboarders always thought they were faster, But the mousers always won.

At the age of 82, I must have hit senility about 20 years or so ago. I can never remember more than a rather limited number of keyboard shortcuts, and I don’t remember the names of all the hundreds of groups (many of them hierarchical) in my databases, much less the letters they begin with. I use keyboard shortcuts that I remember. I collect scripts, but not for procedures that I rarely perform. For filing multiple selected items I’ll stick with the Groups & Tags panel. I find it easy to select the group into which I want to file selected items, even if I didn’t remember its name. Less guessing and no typing. :slight_smile:

The developers are often responsive to user suggestions, especially when they would benefit a significant number of users.

The next generation of DEVONthink is in the works. It will make a lot of things easier to do.

Hi Bill,

I have no doubt that you’re right about the relative speed of keyboarders vs key-track-mousers, at least on average. And I wouldn’t say that I “abhor” the Mac GUI. But I vastly prefer not moving my hands from the keyboard when I can avoid it, and know my 50-odd crucial shortcuts, hotkey-invoked macros, etc by heart. (I have a text cheat sheet that I can call up with another keystroke, should I forget, but I haven’t looked at it in awhile.) I use Alfred and Keyboard Maestro constantly, to facilitate more key-initiated work.

(In short, I’m a maniac. Ok, it’s best to accept that right off…)

Certainly, though, I recognize that DT development must follow the needs of the majority in many cases, and it may well be that, given the remarkable versatility & power of the trackpad, Apple users aren’t as keen on keyboard shortcuts as I am.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts (and gentle teasing!).