workflow for "external applications"

I’m loving DevonThink, but I’m getting sort of confused by what I have in devonthink and what I have in my finder. For example, I have some “pages” documents that I have in my finder and in a DT database. I know I should delete the ones in the finder as the DT are more up to date. So my question is can I create and save a document from an “external application” say pages in DevonThink or do you have to save it to the desktop and then drag it into Devonthink. If it is the latter, do you have any tips? I suppose I should create a folder called “Import to DevonThink” in the finder and delete it each day.


You still have to save them to, e.g., the Desktop and then drag them into DEVONthink. We don’t want to hack the Save dialog as this would be poking around in the OS. You can, however, create a “Save to DEVONthink” folder and attach an AppleScript to it. You can find a suitable one on DEVONthink Pro’s disk image.

Oh, that’s a great idea. I’ll check that applescript out.


Are there any modifications that need to be made to the applescript in order to get it to work? I have attached it to a folder, but the files don’t seem to want to go to my open database.


I couldn’t get the folder script provided to work either. However the Import Droplet works very well.

I use several applications in a regular bases and what I do is create an empty file for each one of those applications and store them in a folder that I call Blanks. Whenever I need to start a new document I go to my Blanks folder and duplicate the type I need at that moment. After that I change the name using Tools>Show Info… and save. The new file is saved within the DPpro2 database thus no extra copies in the Finder. It is really simple and fast to implement.

I’ve always thought this was one of the rough edges DT had to improve.

Your suggestions are interesting, but I just tried something else that seems to work. Instead of making a blank document and storing it in a “Blank” or “Stationery” folder, you Export it as a template. You just have to go to the place you want to have the new document, select Data -> New with template, and there you have it.

Is there any problem or risk you might see in this method? I just tried it with an Excel worksheet (.xls) and it seems to work with no trouble.

Your approach will work very well.

  1. Create the file you wish to use as a Template under its native application. Example: I created two Pages 08 template files under Pages. A “Blank Pages O8 Template.pages” and a chosen “Letter 08 Pages Template.pages” file, saved to the Desktop. Then I imported those files into a database, followed by Export > As Template.

  2. To use a Template, choose Data > New > With Template and choose the desired one. A new document with the desired filetype will be created in the group location from which you called it up. Now, either click on the Open Externally toolbar icon or choose Open With and select the application under which you wish to edit the document. Edit and Save it.

  3. Now use the Info Panel of the newly edited document to give it an appropriate Name.

That’s it! A convenient way to set up within your database templates for the external applications you frequently use. Documents edited and Saved to the database in this way don’t require an extra step of importing them from the Finder; they are already within the database.

Great ideas! Thank you!

Great solution! Thank you very much!

This worked perfectly for adding a blank OmniOutliner document to my list of templates. No more saving to the desktop and dragging into DT (with an extra version to get mixed up and needing deletion).

Is there a way to auto-fill text into the template when I create it, taking for example, the name of the folder it is nested in?

Thanks to all.