I have been experimenting with Aeon timeline and I find it really useful.

However it is not really a database management app.

It would be useful if we could have a timeline view?

I am also using Aeon and find it very useful. Could you expand on what you actually mean by a Timeline view in DEVONthink please? :question:

Well I am thinking of perhaps applying a label, tag or group to an item of data.

For example I have a big garden. I regularly over the years have had work done. I put the receipt in devonthink and I may tag it with a timeline tag, and garden tag.

Then I create a smart group with these tags and view it with timeline view to see my garden project over the years.

I know I can do this anyway and view the results but I find the timeline view to be really useful for me. I think I can grasp data better when it is more visually represented like this.

I see what you mean, thanks. My own use of timelines at the moment is to see the time relationship between people of the same very extended family, i.e. in genealogical studies, and this can bring up connections of which I had not immediately been aware. There are many examples I could give but a simple one is that I had not realized what the various ages of my parents, grandparents and great-grandparents were when my 3 brothers and I were born. The information was there in my genealogical database and, more crucially for this discussion, in my DEVONthink database in the form of images of birth certificates, but I had not made the connection that a visual timeline allowed me to make. It would be good to have a timeline in DTPO but I do not know how or if this could be achieved practically—the developers would need to comment on that one :wink:

Devonthink is all about learning new relationships between the data you have. A Timeline view gives you a different perspective on your data which can be really useful.

Another point is that I am striving for simplicity in my life. I am trying to cut down the number of apps I use. Devonthink pro office is definitely a central hub for my data and i do quite a lot with it. It would be useful to use the existing data in it to look at timelines rather than having to add data to different application (like Aeon timeline or tinderbox).

I am not one of the developers here or an employee, but I have been around here for a while and have some idea of what DEVONthink is and isn’t. I’ve also earned my living in information technology for a long time and have developed a sense of the art of the possible. Readers of the forum generously suggest feature changes and requests, and that is a good thing. Many of them get implemented in this product. The suggestions that don’t usually entail an enormous amount of work for a niche feature that would not appeal to a wide audience, or they ask that DEVONthink mimic sophisticated software that already exists. Today for example, there’s a request in another thread that DEVONthink mimic Skim’s features for PDF annotation, and there’s the feature request for a timeline (perhaps like Aeon’s).

Consider, however, if the DEVONthink developers (there’s not an army, there’s a handful) were to write those features then they would have to spend as much time collectively at that work as the three development teams of DEVONthink + Skim + Aeon. Add the other complex features that get requested, and you can see where this is going – it’s neither feasible nor a good investment for the company.

The good news is that DEVONthink is a good citizen of the OS X universe and works very well and cooperatively with dozens of applications. DEVONthink excels at tracking, relating, and organizing your data – but it doesn’t excel at being Excel. Or Skim, or Aeon or blah blah blah. If you build a home do you need to become an architect, a carpenter, a plumber? No, you just need to learn how to work with the trades. I suggest it’s a better investment to learn to use DEVONthink to work with the software you already have or can get. Software that does all the wonderful things that Aeon or Skim or Whoseitswhat does.

That interesting garden timeline, for example. A few seconds with the Aeon manual reveals that Aeon can import a .csv file and build a timeline. All the information in that .csv file can be collected from your documents in DEVONthink. A moderately simple script could do that, or you could make a sheet in DEVONthink with that information and that you could open in Aeon to populate the timeline. Sure, it takes some effort to do that. But, not much, really. It’s a good idea, IMO, not to wait for someone to make software that does what one imagines, but to grab the tools that are on the table and go for it.

Sorry for the screed. Not official creed. Just a regular user’s opinions.

A read with great interest korm’s posting—very sensible as usual also very useful. In the case of a timeline korm’s .csv suggestion is well-worth pursuing and I shall do so. (Not, however, being proficient in writing scripts I would like some hints on how to proceed on this one). The beauty of a forum is that sensible discussion often produces a sensible answer and I entirely agree that to work with Aeon’s developer is a good way forward, indeed the said developer is, at my suggestion, looking at how he can make Aeon “DEVONthink” friendly. As a good first step he is specifically looking at making it possible to paste a link from DEVONthink’s Copy Item Link facility into a notes field and I am very hopeful that it will not be too long before this is possible.

Korm, you make a good and fair point, however, the Skim feature suggestion accords with the fact that, and I think I can safely generalise here, a substantial body of Devonthink users are heavy PDF users. In many traditionally paper-based professions, such as law and accounting, the tide is turning towards running practices based on PDFs rather than paper originals. The transition is happening smoothly in some cases, and chaotically in others - depending on the resources available to throw at the problem. There are lots of bloated and over-priced software packages directed to this transition, but none with the flexibility and speed of DT.

If the many DT users who work predominantly with PDFs are to remain in the fold, I think its probably inevitable that DT will require a feature set of tools that accommodate such use. Its not there yet, but I’m confident it will be. In all other regards, it excels.