Please let 'Sorter' be invisible

I’m a big on keeping my workspace clean, minimal, and free of visual distractions or clutter. Anything not in use, I want to be out of sight. As such, I really hate that DEVONthink’s sorter is always on screen unless I’ve gone into fullscreen mode (even then it doesnt disappear sometimes).

However, I find the Sorter quite useful, and am trying to use DT as my clip and resource repository, so I’m loathe to turn it off altogether.

I want it to be invisible, and then pop up when I hit a key combination or drag items over to its invisible spot on the side of the screen (like the ‘sorter’ for Leap, for instance, or Yojimbo - if you set Yojimbo to have it invisible.)

Thanks for your consideration of this request.


I like the sorter very much and use it often, however i would agree that an option to hide it and only have it appear when you hover above the respective area would be great.

Did you know that you can shrink it down to just a tab? Not truly invisible, but much smaller than its full size.

To shrink to a tab, Click on the “DevonThink” label on the right side of the sorter. poof


@Katherine, thanks, but I’m actually talking about the tab. Sorry if that wasn’t clear. I find the Sorter tab to be screen clutter.

Really though, it’s more than clutter. It gets in the way of my manipulating other windows, using palettes, etc. If I could, I would dig into the app contents and weed out resource files or whatever it takes. Having that stupid tab getting in the way is nearly enough to make me opt out of using it. I’ve been trying to get used to it over the last couple weeks, but it’s not getting easier.

I find the least intrusive place for the Sorter tab is near the bottom right side of the screen.

By default, the Sorter tab is on the left side of the screen. To move it to the right side, ‘grab’ it with the mouse and swoop upwards and to the right.

Billl opened the can of worms containing “where I keep my Sorter tab” so here goes: I like mine on the left side a bit above the bottom. My Dock is on the right side and I have a popup Dragthing window on the extreme left side of the bottom.

My main complaint is that the Sorter doesn’t automatically slide back to its tab when finished or when clicking elsewhere on the screen. To retract the window you have to mouse up to a smallish minus sign about the word DEVONthink. In my case it’s sometimes difficult to control fine motor movements so trying to hit that little target is often very frustrating. I’d like to see it behave like the Dock does with an “auto-hide” preference.

I use the hot keys for entering new notes. I like them very much.

I really hate the tab on my screen. Give us the option of making this disappear please.

Thank you.

PS. The branding is obnoxious and over the top. I use DEVONthink, I don’t worship it. I don’t wear brands on my clothing, why do I have to have it on my computer monitor.

I really fail to see how this is either obnoxious or over the top. for me it’s out of the way and handy when I need it. It takes all kinds I guess…and it’s certainly no alter at which I worship but someday I might stitch it to my bicycle seat. :smiling_imp: DT.png

Well, there are two things at play here. One is taste, and the other is UI ergonomics (can you tell I work in UX? :wink: ). In my opinion, the sorter tab falls short on ergonomics as I already explained, which is not so much a matter of opinion, but then in my opinion it also falls short in terms of my personal taste. I mean, can you imagine if other programs started following suite with tabs and such alongside Dt’s? It would quickly become hellish. I, like ronsard, am not fond of branding on my stuff. The fact that “DEVONthink” is visible 100% of the time on my screen is distasteful to me. It’s like sticking a logo on my bedroom wallpaper. Might have liked that when I was in highschool, but not now.

But this isn’t really a debate, or at least I’m not intending it to be. Facts are, I’m annoyed by the Sorter’s invasion of my screen space, but otherwise quite like its functionality.

I’ll tell you that I find the “Do you want Sorter to hide when X goes full screen” annoying. I really wish there was a means of setting a default and then define applications which do the opposite. Or something like how Apple’s Spaces preference pane works.

Requiring the reset of all application settings when ONE MISTAKE is made is unacceptable. That’s essentially getting your users used to a constant state of configuring their computer and keeping them from forming an efficient workflow.

And, there are occasions where on my dual monitor configuration where Sorter has been set to hide on full screen, but when my cursor goes from one monitor to the other (mind you I have NOT CHANGED APPLICATIONS or exited fullscreen) Sorter’s tab reappears.

Sorter should be able to attach to the top or bottom edge of a screen.

It can go on the bottom of the screen… still gets in the way though.

OK, I’ll backtrack a bit and agree somewhat that the tab sticking out (wherever you stick it) is a bit in the way. Having checked around i find that there are other programs that have little tabs that can be positioned around the screen edges, but they all retract into the screen’s bezel in the same manner as the Dock. That would be nice and it’s certainly within the realm of coding as others have proven.

Earlier today I was at the local best Buy to get some blank CDs. While wandering around the laptop area I was flabbergasted by the sheer ugliness of the “branding” that PC mfrs allow on their keyboards: Logos for whatever graphics card is inside, “WiFi Certified,” “Wacom Enabled,” “Vista Capable” (wow, that’s an oldie), plus the obligatory Windows and Intel stickers. They almost look like you’re getting a NASCAR vehicle rather than a computer, but then Dull, HP, Acer and all the rest just prostitute themselves.pc stickers.pngwindoze stickers.png

I felt like peeling them all off as my uninhibited pre-teen side surfaced momentarily.

Which is why we all bought Macs. With disappearing Docks!

Amen, brother. Your post reads like an entry from (great Tumblr.)

I like the Sorter tab, but hate that it sometimes moves capriciously. Since I have a large screen, it’s out of the way when I shove it at top right.

But when I put it on the top right of the screen, I want it to stay there… :slight_smile: (Oddball tab movement only happens at startup, for me.)

Perhaps a solution would be a tiny button with an arrow? Button would be around 10 per cent of tab’s current size. That would be almost invisible.

Twicks if you are the kind of person to sew DEVONthink logos on your bicycle seat, our conversation is over.

Let me be clear to the powers which matter. I will not buy DEVONthink Pro 2 until the Sorter has an option to be invisible everywhere.

Stop rubbing our face in your software. Many of us chose DEVONthink as we are busy people and need powerful tools. As we use lots of these tools, we need tools which don’t call unnecessary attention to themselves. With this cluttered branding you are making the FOSS argument really loudly as at least there we can just program out the routine ourselves.

Right now I am stuck with no way to copy straight into a DEVONthink note as I won’t put up with Sorter as is, and the hot keys won’t work without the branding on the screen.

And your AppleScript to Copy Selection into DEVONthink Pro won’t work with DEVONthink Pro 2.

Thanks Christian for wasting my time and the time of all the other commenters on the thread with your in-your-face branding.

You seem to be slowly getting as detached as Michael Jackson did in Neverland, with your 50 year old packrat fanbase on these forums praising everything you code, crappy or good.

Do I sound annoyed? I am. With the money, I’ve spent on your software over the years (the only program of which which still gets use is DT), I feel we deserve better. Or if you don’t want to fix this, perhaps you’d give me a refund so I can go and buy Yojimbo or some other software with working single keystroke note creation.

Please fix this.

Broken Apple script for your reference:

– Copy Selection
– Created by Christian Grunenberg on Nov Mon 21 2005.
– Copyright © 2005-2009. All rights reserved.

set this_app to (path to frontmost application as string)

if this_app does not contain “DEVONthink Pro” then
tell application this_app to activate
tell application “System Events”
keystroke “c” using {command down}
delay 0.5
tell application id “com.devon-technologies.thinkpro2” to paste clipboard
end tell
end if
on error error_message number error_number
if error_number is not -128 then display alert “DEVONthink Pro” message error_message as warning
end try

@ronsard: Since mid-December you’ve rejoined the forums and have done nothing but complain loudly, shrilly, and with much bellicosity about first the “under construction” stripes and now the fact that the Sorter remains visible. You’ve been attacking the developers and now you’re threatening to abandon what you’ve said is your favorite application. No one’s forcing you to use DTPO, remember. It’s your choice.

Let me point out that software development is an extremely delicate and time-consuming venture. And yes, I’m one of those 50-somethings who really appreciate what the DT team has done, and I will defend their ways of doing things. Having said that, I will criticize that which I feel needs work but I will never personally attack the developers. That’s simply rude and accomplishes nothing but rancor from the others here in the forum.

The “stripes” and “visible Sorter” issues are truly insignificant UI issues that ought to be listed in the “priority 5” level of things to fix. If they are truly so obnoxious to you, then perhaps I can help you out? Which way did you come in?

And after reading your comments, I think I will stitch the DT logo on my bicycle seat right next to the Apple logo, above the American Flag that hangs there innocently. By the way: Please warn me if you ever come to Bloomington so I can be sure to be out cycling the local streets!

And finally: plonk the “conversation” is over.

Thank heavens - or rather Andreas - those awful stripes are gone now.

Hopefully the Sorter issue will get fixed in short order. There is no reason to push that tab down our throats. It’s fine for fanboys, but presumably the userbase of DEVONthink extends beyond that (when I come here sometimes I wonder).

All of the import Applescripts (the one above or the ones from … ripts.html break with an AppleEvent hander error. I presume the issue is that they don’t work with version 2.

In the meantime, if you aren’t willing to put up with that invidious label on your monitor (see Twicks the Terrier’s excellent screenshot above), the only way to clip new info into DEVONthink is with a contextual menu item. The contextual menu works very well in Safari, Camino and BBEdit (tested so far).

For instant sorting, you can choose (within the Import preferences) Destination: Select Group. For speed, you can choose Inbox of Current Database.

Ronsard, as it happens, on my ModBook I’ve got two other applications that use the same tab shape, color and size. That makes three - count them, three - identical tabs. I find it useful that one of them has a label to let me distinguish it. I’ve seen user comments on the forum of one of the other applications requesting that the application name be added to it.

That’s not branding, in my opinion, but a service to the user. You are assuming that there is no purpose to identifying the Sorter tab by application name. That would be true, perhaps, if no other applications used identical tabs. But that isn’t the case.

That’s fine, Bill. But all we’re asking is that there’s an option to not have the tab at all.