Ratings redux

Any progress on implementing ratings for documents?
Was on “to do” list in 2013, and wondering if it is still planned?

blog.devontechnologies.com/2013/ … ng-labels/

I realize it’s possible to do something like this with tags, but not in a way that would work as smoothly as I would like. Would be very useful to me as I go through thousands of documents for a research project. Labels are also useful, but don’t quite do the same as a rating scale of, say, 1-5 stars would.


Nothing concrete at the moment. Ratings aren’t very widely used outside certain contexts, like iTunes.

Seriously man? Your job is “customer relations specialist” and you reply to a question about a feature by being dismissive about it? On a forum dedicated to “feedback, requests and suggestions”?

Many people have asked about this feature here in the past. Photo management software like Aperture or Lightroom–which also exist in order to organize large numbers of files–implement ratings. The official blog had said it was on a “to-do” list. Rating documents is by no means something unique to iTunes.

Devonthink is incredibly useful software for me, and I’m grateful to have it. This isn’t a make or break feature; it would be a useful one though. Obviously I don’t expect the software developers to take orders from me, but this is the forum designed for “requests and suggestions”.

“Dismissive”? Really? What exact answer did you expect?

All he did was tell you nothing was planned, and offered a possible reason why it’s not a hot topic here. Looks to me like there’s been six, maybe ten, threads on this topic in the past 12 years.


I’d say “this isn’t useful outside the context of iTunes” is indeed dismissive. Per dictionary: “feeling or showing that something is unworthy of consideration”.

Endnote, for instance, allows for ratings. Again–I’m not saying this feature has to be implemented because I personally think it would be useful, but it’s not a crazy idea taken from iTunes. And if it was another user (like you, presumably) who said so, fine–we’re all entitled to find things useful or not. But it’s just asinine for someone whose job is customer service to respond like that, in a forum dedicated to feedback, requests and suggestions.


Please reread my comment. This is not what I said. I said, "Ratings aren’t very widely used outside certain contexts, like iTunes.” I made no comment on whether they are useful or not. Obviously you find a use for them.

Hey Jim, I’ve got no interest in picking a fight with you. But you’ve got a screwy idea of what “customer relations” means, if your understanding of the term means it’s your job to be snide, unhelpful, and also wrong on the facts. As I mentioned before, plenty of software packages aside from iTunes offer the ability to quickly rate large numbers of database items.

Anyhow, this is as much time as I want to spend on this matter. Really no point in contributing to a forum on “feedback, requests, and suggestions” if feedback, requests and suggestions are to be met with this attitude from the company.


When I’m working on a project I usually create a project group. Among other subgroups that it holds might be three groups holding replicants of references that are most relevant, less important and ‘strawman’ examples (i.e., examples of poorly handled or off-target variations of a concept).

I wouldn’t find a universal rating of references such as stars assignment useful, as my ratings are project specific, that is, contextually related to the project. The same reference document will likely be ranked differently (or not even considered) for a different project. For one project a reference might be replicated to the most relevant group, but in a different project might be replicated to the ‘strawman’ group.

Curious as to why you couldn’t simply use tags, i.e. *1 | *2 | *3 etc. to get to the same result?

Ratings allows you to draw up smart searches/folders to do something with those files - or view them in a particular way - surely tagging them appropriately could do what you need?

Maybe if you could explain what Ratings/file would allow, that something else wouldn’t?

It is.

Thanks Christian, good to know.

Cassady–just efficiency. All this is I’m sure achievable with tags and some time writing scripts. It would be handy (for me at least) to be able to go through hundreds of documents (in a variety of different contexts) and give them ranks, and then be able to quickly search for all documents with a rating >= some ranking value. (Whether this is 1-5 stars, or some other similar scheme wouldn’t matter to me.)

I’m sure all of this is indeed achievable with tags, just not quite as smoothly and quickly as I’d like, since the whole goal here is efficiency in dealing with large volumes of documents.

@Cassidy: The reason I use project-specific groups holding replicants of rated references is that tags would tend not to be project-specific. That would also be true of a “stars” rating system.

I’ve been working with one of my research databases for some 15 years. I found early on that the relevance and utility of a document will vary with the topic I’m working on. (Not a surprising discovery.) That said, I do tend to informally rate the importance of scientific papers by author and source, and might use a “stars” ranking to formalize that (if I ever get the time to apply such a scheme).