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Posted by MadaboutDana
Feb 27, 2011 at 05:45 PM


Just to add my little contribution to this sudden flurry of activity, I’d like to mention PiggyDB (piggydb.net), which I’ve been playing with for the past couple of days. It’s described as a knowledge creation tool, but actually it’s a kind of textual concept/mind-mapping engine - very powerful, very entertaining. I’m not absolutely sure if it’s something with long-term legs, but as a conceptual exploration it’s fascinating, and very clever. Kind of reminds me of Luminotes, but it’s (much) more flexible. The whole thing runs on a Java server, and doesn’t take up many resources (you can even use the standalone version as a server - I’ve had it running on my (very slow) Asus 1101HA netbook, and it’s perfectly responsive. Better still, I can access it from my desktop (using a different user ID, even!), and it’s even more responsive!

Nice piece of programming, and functions as a rather cool outliner as well (with all entries naturally folded). Filters, tags, it’s got all the toys…



Posted by Alexander Deliyannis
Feb 27, 2011 at 06:53 PM


It seems brilliant… thanks for the heads up!

Given the flexibility of its structural approach, it is probably more useful to me and my team than Kerio Workspace which we were looking into. I’m a bit cautious about the non-existent business model, but the fact that it has reached v.4 is quite encouraging.


Posted by Alexander Deliyannis
Feb 27, 2011 at 07:46 PM


Spoke too soon; it’s a single user application. Ah well, you can’t have it all in this mortal coil apparently.


Posted by MadaboutDana
Feb 27, 2011 at 11:25 PM


Ah! No, it’s not - you can create users very easily, although everybody has the same access to every part of the database, which does restrict the functionality somewhat. You simply create a fragment entitled with a user name (e.g. “Bill”) and tagged with #user, and ping! you have created a new user. Their password is initially the same as their username, but can be changed easily from the System menu. Once you’ve created a few users, you’ll find that each tag is labelled with the author’s name, date of creation etc.

I’m actually quite impressed, I have to say!

Best of luck with the ongoing search for a collaborative solution (I’m assuming you’ve already looked at Plone 4.0? And MindTouch? Have you checked out ocPortal?).



Posted by JJSlote
Feb 28, 2011 at 09:43 AM


It’s terrific. Similar to TiddlyWiki, which was, for me, a productive system. But where TW hides and exposes a single document, Piggydb drives a database, so it won’t get bogged down when entries number in the thousands. By using a browser interface, these applications are jump-started with features that too many standalone applications neglect: zooming, spell checker, control of the background color. Try a split window with the Firefox add-on Fox Splitter, aka Split Browser. All the engineering that has gone into browsers and add-ons accrues to Piggydb and its kin. 

Piggy’s primary gaps are in screen clutter management and import capability. With a little more control of the front end, I’d remove the sidebar (Calendar, Classified by, Tag Palette, Recently Viewed), and the “Edit this fragment” bar. These should be available as text-optional icons on the top Piggy bar. And an import of some kind will be a must. Though there’s bound to be a way to access an H2 table independently of Piggydb.

Of course each user will have to determine whether he’s prepared to standardize on plain text markups rather than full-featured editing. I’d be feeling that loss profoundly.



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