Consider this message a succesor to the posting devon-technologies.com/phpBB … php?t=1882 .
I remember quite well how excited i’d been after having read the following paragraph within the Technology section of the DEVON-Technology webpage:
Some of the most likely applications for the DEVONtechnology are databases (knowledge bases, expert systems, search engines, table-of-content-generators, instant data-mining), intelligent agents, encryption, compression and archiving. Other uses for DEVONtechnology may be chat-bots, context-sensitive help, optical character recognition (OCR), speech analysis, recognition and synthesis, statistics, thesauri and automatic translations.[/i]
… and my curiousity grew into impatience with version 1.7 of DEVONThink. The company and its prodduct started to exceed its promisses. At the same time it was clear that some kind of scripting or programming support was needed to turn the information retrieval tool into an artificial intelligence development environment as outlined on the website.
Now the Pro version obviously can be considered as a next step into the soft computing future. But Applescript, despite its merits has the big disadvantage not to be a perfect fit for a world of a web-operating-systems. For exactely this reason i’ve built my Ruby-DEVON-Bridge, which uses the power of a multi OS compatible scripting language with an extraordinary soft computing tool.
Two flies with the clap of one hand !
Suddenly i could connect Devonthink to all the cool webtools popping up everywhere around the web and secondly everything performed much better than expectd.
One of the first apps developed with the combo is an extended version of Instiki, the well known wiki-clone, written in Ruby on Rails, under Mac OS X. My intention was to develop a workflow which should make it possible for me to screen a much bigger amount of RSS, E-Mail and IM information flow than usuallay capable for an individual. Basically the main idea is to establish some kind of smart twist. Instead of searching and screening data for hours make the appropriate information find you, automatically. This is possibel with Devonthink.
So, what i did was to build a workflow on top of several applications, namely Gmail, Jabber, NetNewsWire, Instiki and Devonthink. Via RSS or Atom i collect all my news-feeds, blog-feeds, tag-feeds. photo-feeds, mails and im-sessions into NetNewsWire. Every our a script colleccts the as unmarksd flagged messages into Devonthink. Everything into one big data-soup. i don’t even try to screen this.
Next i’m using my favourite wiki, Instiki. There i simply enter everything that belongs into notebook. The daily ToDos, collect ideas, copy-paste my articles, collect links and pdfs, post addresses and events. Then something very interesting and effective happens. The same moment i post a new wiki page it’s entry gets compared to the whole datasoup inside Devonthink. So should there be a relevant RSS-Feed concerning my actual thoughts or intentions i will see it and can call it directly. That’s a total eye opener. Things become relevant when i articulate myself or when i log or describe relevant working practices. Documents start to group around my postings automatically. The high performance desktop becomes a reality, this way. This way 500 rss feeds are screened every day, the whole wikipedia, all my mail for 3 years and much more.
To make the similarity results even better i intend to filter the replies in accordance to the folder hierarchy inside Devonthink, by using a simple rule-based engine to decide the relevant context of every posting.
Finally, here’s a screenshot visualizing the whole thing: static.flickr.com/26/45012053_ad8055fc79_b.jpg
There is another one showing how simple it is to push things into Devonthink with Ruby: static.flickr.com/25/45021279_79291000c2_o.jpg
And another one showing how raw Apple Events are used to embed Devon-intelligence into Ruby ( not that simple anymore but performance is fantastic) : static.flickr.com/29/45020940_ec892e7174_o.png
And dont’t forget ! Instiki means this tools can be used by a group of users, if you use instiki as a wiki on a public webserver !
More to come…