keyword or title weighting/ draggable links in browse mode


I’ve given devon think 1.9 a spin around the block, and think it’s great. It’s a lot faster, and generally cleaner and easier to use.

I do have two suggestions though, that I thought I’d share.

The first is that I’d really like to see the algorithm for categorizing things be tweaked a bit so it allowed weighting of some ‘special’ words, both for groups and in the articles or notes themselves. If I could type in a list of twenty keywords to associate with the article, preferablly not in a separate pull-down, but in a split area on the drawer where the ‘move to’ suggesions were made, I would find that really nice. If I could tell it the ‘extra weighting’ to give the keywords and/or the title, that would be very cool. If there were a way to also assign user-chosen keywords to groups, so that articles containing those words would have a better chance of landing in the right folders, that would be neat as well, and stop a lot of miscategorizations. Finally–perhaps alternatively–is there a way to make it so that on rtf and plain text (i.e. editable) documents, that the user could just type a special symbol in the document itself that indicates where the title/keyword area ends, and that special weighting no longer applies. I think something like this would greatly improve DT, until (perhaps?) a more complex set of categories of fieldnames could be tagged onto the individual documents. Any thoughts from anyone about this?

Secondly, I’d like to mention two things I’d really like to find DT a bit more useable as a browser:

1.Is there any way to make it so that the little icon that appears next to the URL is draggable, like it is in Safari, so that I can pull a copy of the current url into a folder? Right now, if I decide to browse in DT, if I find myself on a page I want to keep a link to, I end up opening the link in safari and then dragging the link back into DT. I would really like to be able to drag that little icon for the page over into a group and have a copy without leaving devonthink. It would also be nice if there were an action menu item (with a keystroke shortcut) that said “Bookmark”, which would make a duplicate link to the current page, and not force a page reload.

  1. It would really be nice if there were a way to set an option in the URL/link data types so that there were three types of behaviors possible when one clicked on a link in one of them:
    a. browse in place, do not update link (current behavior)
    b. browse in place , update link with each click (so that with every page load the current page is saved, so that pages aren’t lost when you click off of them)
    c. save link on click, create and select new link with target click, select new one. This would work like a command click in Safari–the old url would remain there, like a tab that is still open, with its current url saved in it, and the clicked on url would load in a new page. You would end up with a trail of links in the folder as you browsed.

I think you could implement this with just two check boxes: [auto update url] and [switch to duplicate url with click]. It seems like a command click should serve to flip/override the second setting, so that one could click and duplicate even if the url wasn’t set up that way.

Well that’s it for now. Thanks for a great program!



I think keywords and other user-defined metadata will be added in 2.x. That might make it possible for more control over category selection and also allow correlation of items into “smart groups” matching certain criteria.

I’d like that, too. I keep expecting it to let me drag or edit it like a “standard” browser location field since it’s visually positioned like one.

Another method is to use the “Copy Page Location To Clipboard” contextual menu, then “Content->New->With Clipboard…” [command-N] to create a link item with the URL as its name. Select the new item, then use “Rename->To Web Page Title” from the script menu to change the name. Or select some text on the page and use “Set Title As” to use that as the item name.

That seemingly common multi-step operation is begging for a simpler way to do it.

Not sure I understand ‘b’ but I noticed how clicking a link in a HTML or URL document opens it in the current DT window but clicking one in an RTF document opens it in the external browser (e.g. Safari). There’s also some confusing behavior with item selection after using “Go->Forward/Back” navigation. For example, “Content->Reveal” selects the last selected item but the content window doesn’t change. Or when clicking an item after navigation the window isn’t refreshed to show that item’s content. Those are limited observations since I haven’t checked possible interactions with different doc types.

Your ‘c’ bullet is an interesting idea. I’d like to compare that to past discussions of implementing a non-destructive bread trail history, which would also include navigating between database items.

The consistency and expectation of DT database browsing/navigation with both internal and external content has been improving. I hope some of the new features being added won’t get too far ahead of important usability factors for taking advantage of those features.

If I understand option c, I’d like to second its usefulness. When browsing the web, I find the normal hypertext behavior of a link click jumping to a new page/location to be too disruptive, but at the same time I don’t want to lose track of things I read that merit further attention. In Safari, a command (or middle mouse button) click on a link opens a new tab behind the current page. I can keep reading without losing my train of thought, but end up with a bunch of tabs open that are the next things to read.

Translating this into a DT scapbook workflow that keeps longer term record of things worth reading, it might be nice to have command-click create the url links in a folder for later perusal. This would solve the loss of context that occurs when I quit safari before having time to examine all the tabs I’ve created. Of course, into which DT folder to place the links is a difficult UI problem. Mixing all of my pending reading together in a single group seems okay but not great. It would be better to maintain some kind of context of where I was when I created the link. Perhaps create a group for each page containing all the links saved while browsing that page?