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Journaling, a simplistic view

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Posted by Amontillado
Jul 21, 2018 at 01:12 AM

 

I’ve decided to take up journaling, at least as long as the habit will stick, and decided on a few requirements.

Not on paper. I don’t do that.

All content must be completely recoverable if the journaling software evaporates.

I need to be able to add any file type.

I want tags in hierarchies, and flexible sorting and searching.

There is probably a better way to do what I want, but so far DEVONThink looks like a reasonable option. I’ve started with a group for the year, with subgroups for months, with RTF files for day entries.

I named the first two months “06 - June” and “07 - July”, and day entries in the form “19 July, Thursday”. That was so they would sort chronologically.

Then I discovered if you choose unsorted for the contents of a group, the order you set is persistent. You can change back and forth between sort options without losing your unsorted order. Unfortunately, not all of the views allow fine grained sort options. In the three pane view, the sort order for the left-hand, vertical pane is global. You get the same sort order for the whole thing. I like that sorted by kind, which causes subgroups to appear as alphabetically sorted. July comes before June, until you switch back to any other view.

Oh, well, the two pane view isn’t half bad. I think I may like it better, anyway, and switching to three-pane doesn’t trash my manual ordering.

DEVONThink has an industrial look to it, but I’m tolerant of that. I’m intolerant of losing data, and DEVONThink is the only thing of its type I’ve used that has been rock solid.

I think it works great, and it might as well be free. After all, if you haven’t installed DEVONThink, you should, and since it’s already there, why not keep a journal in it? :-)

Yes, yes, I know. Mileage varies.

 


Posted by Alexander Deliyannis
Jul 21, 2018 at 05:45 AM

 

Amontillado wrote:
>All content must be completely recoverable if the journaling software
>evaporates.

Not sure how you do this with DEVONThink; doesn’t it use a proprietary file format?


>I think it works great, and it might as well be free. After all, if you
>haven’t installed DEVONThink, you should, and since it’s already there,
>why not keep a journal in it? :-)

The logic is impeccable, that is, unless you are not on MacOS ;)

 


Posted by Paul Korm
Jul 21, 2018 at 10:47 AM

 

DEVONthink has NO proprietary formats for documents.  That seems to be an persistent urban legend.  Files are stored in DEVONthink as their original files and are never transformed by anyone other than the user..  They can be any format—from .txt to .app to anything more complex.  DEVONthink just stores files or indexes externally stored files.  Anyone can drag out or export their files from DEVONthink at any time. 

Alexander Deliyannis wrote:
Amontillado wrote:
>>All content must be completely recoverable if the journaling software
>>evaporates.
> >Not sure how you do this with DEVONThink; doesn’t it use a proprietary
>file format?
> >
>>I think it works great, and it might as well be free. After all, if you
>>haven’t installed DEVONThink, you should, and since it’s already there,
>>why not keep a journal in it? :-)
> >The logic is impeccable, that is, unless you are not on MacOS ;)

 


Posted by MadaboutDana
Jul 21, 2018 at 02:21 PM

 

On the one hand - on the other, DEVONthink does keep files in databases, which are effectively a single proprietary file (dtBase2 format).

So although you can easily extract files from DEVONthink, you have to be running DEVONthink in order to extract them… ;-)

 


Posted by MadaboutDana
Jul 21, 2018 at 02:23 PM

 

Personally, I’d be using one of the many excellent markdown writing tools out there. If you’re on Windows, you could do worse than the latest version of iaWriter (which is turning into a very sophisticated little number). Another product worth keeping an eye on is Write (writeapp.co), which has got some sensational features.

A nice, recently produced Mac product is Diarly, but it’s still pretty basic. A mix of DayOne and Bear, really, but needs a few more features before it’s ready to recommend.

 


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