Incorrect sorting by name

I am trying out DTPO. I am going to give it a thorough workout before I buy it, but so far I am impressed.

There is, however, one annoying issue that has me flummoxed. I am using the Dewey Decimal Classification and when I sort by name this is what I’m seeing:

001.1 Intellectual life
001.01 Theory of knowledge
001.2 Scholarship and learning
001.3 Humanities
001.4 Research
001.9 Controversial knowledge
001.09 Intellectual history
001.089 Knowledge–ethnology
001.0601 Unesco

If i remove the first four characters, which are shared by all 9 groups, and remove everything after the fifth character for clarity this is what I get:


This is obviously not proper alphanumerical sorting.

I have found that I can get groups into the correct order by padding the numbers with zeroes. However, this is abusing the DDC for the sake of DTPO, and I don’t like kluges.

001.0100 Theory of knowledge
001.0601 Unesco
001.0890 Knowledge–ethnology
001.0900 Intellectual history
001.1000 Intellectual life
001.2000 Scholarship and learning
001.3000 Humanities
001.4000 Research
001.9000 Controversial knowledge

Any thoughts or solutions?

That’s odd. Even odder, if you create the same files in the filesystem, then Finder and PathFinder also sort them strangely – but a different strange (and “wrong”) sort than DEVONthink’s.

Yes, this is curious. I looked at the original post and I thought that can’t be right, so I also created documents with those names. My results are the same. :question:

Windows 8 also sorts them like DEVONthink.

Here’s a theory. Leading zeros are probably stripped or ignored by the sort algorithm. If you do that, and assume that the file sort algorithm treats anything to the right of the first period as an extension, then the algorithm (a) sorts the left hand side and comes up with 001 for each item, then (b) it sorts the right hand side , stripping zeros, and results in


Which is correct, from an integer perspective.

Odder still, I get the same results in Finder and Path Finder as do in DEVONthink.

Except that treating decimals as integers is equally odd.

File names are not numbers … decimals, or integers. They are strings. Don’t read too much into my conjecture … it’s just a idle theory about the sorting algorithm to pass an otherwise slow afternoon. 8)

Look what I found:

004.0820 Computers and women
004.0846 Computers and older people
004.0871 Computers and the visually-impaired people
004.088378198 Computers and college students

Since I am a once and future college student this may be relevant. There are eight classifications after it with only one or two numbers after the decimal. I found another kluge so I wouldn’t have to pad the others as much.

004.0883b[/b] Computers and college students

It’s ugly but it works.

Since this problem goes deeper than DEVONthink I won’t be expecting a fix. :smiley: