Workflow to organise book notes using OmniOutliner and DTP?


I am working on improving my methods of organising my book notes and article notes.

For article notes I think I have a good method, using Sente to acquire PDFs and using the notes feature to select text I want to make notes for and then using this script:

which exports all notes as separate RTF files to a folder, adding the correct Sente reference with page number to each RTF file, which can then be used for building references in essays, etc.

So I am left wondering how to process my book notes. As most books I need are not in electronic format yet I tend to dictate or type notes into my Mac. Because of becoming familiar with the method above for articles, I began to think that having separate RTFs for sections of book notes, organised in a folder/group hierarchy (corresponding to chapters/sections, etc) in DTP would be the way to go.

Having researched about a bit today I thought of using OmniOutliner for getting the hierarchy of the notes right. I can export this as an OPML file which can then be imported into DTP and, provided I give thought to the numbering of the notes, the group structure in DTP will reflect the structure of the book. I can then tag these separate text files if I want.

The trouble with this method is that the Name of the text files in DTP is essentially the content of the notes. I would like shorter Names for each of the text files. I can enter these in DTP, but it would be easier to do so in OmniOutliner as I am building the notes for each book. I am not sure though how to do this with OmniOutliner. I can add an extra column for Name, but how would this get translated into the Name of the text files that show up when the OPML file is imported into DTP? Perhaps this would be possible with scripting? If so, I could extend this to include a page number column, so that page numbers could get added at the start of each text file, and hopefully also get the Sente reference added to each text file as well.

If anyone has any advice on getting this set up, or if anyone is aware of a simpler method, I’d be glad to know about it,



Maybe use the Notes submenu of OO? When exported to OPML and imported/indexed to DTPO, the name is “Chapter 1” and the body of the file is what’s in the note.

[size=85]A clipping of an OO document, with a note added via the Notes submenu, and the related page from the help file.[/size]

Thanks. I’ll keep this in mind. As I tend to dictate/type my notes into TextEdit (this works best when dictating) and then import them to OO (each new paragraph gets imported as a new entry) it would be rather painful to copy the notes into the notes section of OO. If I was typing/dictating straight into OO this would work though…