Optimal workflow for a specific use case (custom metadata / incoming links)


new DT 3 Pro user here and currently exploring the possibilities. Any input on the following use case would be much appreciated:

I have several folders/groups in my Zettelkasten, which I would like to link to multiple relevant documents & media in another database for quick access. In the Info pane for these folders it should be visible, which items are linked as resources (item names and folder path). If the title of the linked item changes, this should ideally be reflected here as well. The group name should show up automatically when opening the Incoming Links pane for the resources.

These are the possibilities I’ve found and their limitations:

Add multiple custom metadata fields (resource #1, resource #2, etc.) with URL

  • Issue: Since there is no search functionality, it can be a bit slow to manually navigate through various branches to select the item. I would prefer to simply copy and paste the item links.

Copy item links and paste them into the Annotations field.

  • This is the best solution I’ve found. The title of the linked item is pasted with a hyperlink, although it won’t be automatically updated if there are changes. I can simply click the hyperlink to jump to the linked resource and the backlink shows up automatically under “incoming links”.
  • Next to the downside of link titles not being dynamically updated, this also clutters the Annotations field. A more elegant solution could be to use a rich-text custom metadata field, but here the incoming link to the group is not shown in the Inspector for the linked documents.

I can live with both workarounds. Nevertheless, it seems to me that a fuzzy search to filter the selection menu for custom metadata fields of the item link type would add a lot of value here. But perhaps someone knows another workaround or other solution to optimize for this use case?

Thanks in advance.

You could also use the type Item Link instead of URL. In this case the displayed title of the linked item is always the current one.

Thanks for the suggestion.

However, an item link wouldn’t allow me to see where the link is pointing towards. Since I want to link to numerous resources/reference files, this information needs to be visible in the inspector.

So I guess this question is morphing into three concrete feature requests:

  1. An option to paste an item link and then have it displayed in the inspector in the same way as URLs (to be able to see, where it is pointing).

  2. Links added to rich text custom fields should be displayed in the Incoming Links category of the item they point towards. This seems to be the case when links are added to the Annotations field, but not for Rich Text custom fields.

  3. Fuzzy search when adding a URL, rather than having to navigate to the item through various branches.

Where exactly do you want to paste the item link in which inspector?

I would like to paste it into a custom property field (see first post).

For more context: Apparently, someone else has had a similar use case a couple months back.

I’m mentioning it because there was another interesting point made in that thread:

Being able to specify the type of link (related to, reference for, etc.) could be another great addition for managing multiple links between items in DT.

Thinking this idea a bit further, there could then in the Outgoing Links/Incoming Links inspector be an option to filter the displayed links based on their link type