I use tagged groups extensively in DT. The moment one wants to assign more than one group or tag, the available mechanisms become very cumbersome. In fact, I think it has become worse in DT3, as there seems to be no “Groups and Tags” panel anymore (or do I miss something?). The only options seem to be:
(1) replicate item to new group/tag by cmd-opt-drag,
(2) use the contextual menu,
(3) enter the (group) tags manual in the inspector.
The “one destination at a time” of (1) and (2) are killing me, and (3) essentially requires that you have the tag dictionary in your head, and it also is prone to creating bad tags due to auto-completion jumping the gun.
Here is what I really would like to have:
- A group/tag window that shows all available tags at once (no collapsing hierarchies like the old group/tag panel)
- Checkboxes to check/uncheck the desired tags. No cmd/shift-click stuff for multiple selections (which is prone losing the selection).
- Once a selection is made and if necessary, reviewed, a button is pressed to add the tags to the item.
DT has no such solution and my scripting skills are not up to the task of trying to implement such a panel via AppleScript. To validate this approach, I decided to create an external panel which transfers the tags to the clipboard which can then be pasted into the DT inspector.
I made a php form-based webpage that shows this panel in a browser:
Once I selected tags and press “generate tag list”, the tags are displayed
and can be “select-all copied” to the clipboard and from there into DT (technically one could tell the script to automatically put this on the clipboard, but I ran into browser security barriers and did not follow up on this further). There are naturally drawbacks, namely that the list of tags must be manually updated to reflect the current DT group structure, and the need to copy/paste manually.
However, I have to say that after using this for a while, even with those complications, this has become by far my preferred method of grouping/tagging. I find it nice to be able to look at the list and select/deselect tags. Checkboxes and final validation with an OK button seem to be ideal to select multiple items from a large group of topics. Everything else feels inferior.
Ideally, such a method would be available natively in DT.
What do you think? Please let’s not discuss the merit or lack thereof of heavy grouping/tagging. That’s another question.