topbanner_forum
  *

avatar image

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
  • Thursday July 9, 2020, 1:29 pm
  • Proudly celebrating 15+ years online.
  • Donate now to become a lifetime supporting member of the site and get a non-expiring license key for all of our programs.
  • donate

Last post Author Topic: I'm thinking of going primitive, with discursion into zettelkasten  (Read 78497 times)

Nod5

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,045
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
General reflection (if I may, Dormouse let me know if you think I'm taking things too off-topic).

I'd love to see a comparison review of these markdown/plaintext "information management apps or systems" (not sure what the best term is) e.g. HackMD, CodiMD, Obsidian and others. First in regard to editing single files (syntax highlighting, shortcuts, autocompletion, ...) but second and more importantly comparison of features for global search, tagging, replacing and organizing the information.

One particular feature I've been thinking about is inclusion/transclusion.

Some apps offer that feature in (extended) Markdown or Asciidoc or with extra tools like Pandoc. My experience or impression is that transcluded content only shows up in these kinds of apps in preview mode and/or generated output, like .html or .pdf.

But I'm curious if some app also offers a third, mid-level mode or view.

1 raw view: the editor shows all syntax unresolved. So transclusion syntax is shown as for example "{{B.md}}". The user has to in a separate step open B.md to see its content, for example "hello world".

2 preview: the editor resolves all syntax, including seamlessly showing transcluded content.

3 transclude view: (this is the feature I'm looking for) the editor resolves only transclusions but no other markdown syntax. For example the editor shows "**weather**" (unresolved) but shows "hello world" (resolved transcluded contents of B.md) instead of "{{B.md}}".

In transclude view edits to the transcluded content would directly edit the source (B.md).

In transclude view the editor/app syntax highlighter would mark transcluded lines with a vertical colored bar. This is necessary so the users knows that edits there will edit the transcluded source. The highlight bar could show parent/child structure: bar on right side = content transcluded into this document; bar on left side = content transcluded from this document into other document). We could also imagine ways to interact with the transcluded content via such highlighting (click bar to open/jump to source; shortcuts to fold/unfold transcluded content; ...)

That could be useful for non-programming, personal use.

To expand, when coding it is often good to not all the time see the content of includes, as it would clutter the code we want to work on. We mostly just use the functions/methods and look up the source of the include only when needed. The imported modules are relatively fixed with a specific purpose. In contrast, for non-coding personal usage we might want to see the transcluded content most of the time while editing. For example when editing shed_build_plan.md we might want to see the resolved contents of hardware_tools_inventory.md most of the time. As a reminder to ourselves and also as context to surrounding text.

A halfway measure along these lines would be something like what the Peek feature in VS Code does for functions/methods/variables, but for non-resolved transclude syntax in Markdown.

Or a more complex version: some extra syntax for the transclude syntax gives case by case control over if and how to resolve it in transclude view (full resolve; resolve as embedded X lines high editbox with scroolbar; resolve only as mouseover tooltip peek; no resolve).
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 06:45 AM by Nod5 »

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
*[] Read all the Andy Matuschak references from Panzer
*[] Work out sequence for evaluating text editors
*[] Check out Typora, Obsidian,  Texts, HackMD and CodiMD

So how long before BBCode goes markdown? Or rather forums simply switch to markdown.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 11:15 AM by Dormouse »

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 10,547
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Yes, quite a bit.  So much so that I pay for it.  I'm writing my book in it (it has a book type layout), and I thought reading this thread the autolinking feature would be nice for this system.

Cool! Do you have a view on the difference between HackMD and CodiMD? AFAICT they started out as the same project, but CodiMD is a FOSS fork. Confusingly HackMD github seem to still have a (competing) CodiMD repo.

https://hackmd.io/
https://github.com/hackmdio

https://github.com/codimd
https://demo.codimd.org/features#


I didn't see offhand where codimd supports book mode, which is my major use of hackmd.  And some other features, like workspaces.  And that's just from a cursory look.

And there's the fact that the active domain is demo.codimd.org- it seems that it's supposed to be self-hosted, and I'm not interested in self hosting it, and if it's not supposed to be self-hosted, then that domain would still make me shy away from actual use for anything.

Looking a bit closer, it even speaks to it:

It is inspired by Hackpad, Etherpad and similar collaborative editors. This project originated with the team at HackMD and now forked into its own organisation.

Emphasis mine.

Longer explanation at https://github.com/c...2539/docs/history.md

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 10,547
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
*[] Read all the Andy Matuschak references from Panzer
*[] Work out sequence for evaluating text editors
*[] Check out Typora, Obsidian,  Texts, HackMD and CodiMD

So how long before BBCode goes markdown? Or rather forums simply switch to markdown.

Some forums and other social media already use Markdown (see *Diaspora and Discourse)

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 10,547
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
3 transclude view: (this is the feature I'm looking for) the editor resolves only transclusions but no other markdown syntax. For example the editor shows "**weather**" (unresolved) but shows "hello world" (resolved transcluded contents of B.md) instead of "{{B.md}}".


I learned something.  Never heard of transclusion before.  For any in that same boat: Transclusionw

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Tags
« Reply #355 on: May 28, 2020, 09:27 AM »
My thinking has evolved. As mentioned above, I believed it needed to be systematic to avoid the chaos of multiple tags for the same concept. I now believe that was wrong, at least for notes.

Any changes in tag names will simply reflect the evolving patterns of thought. So long as notes have links to other notes, there is always a route to older tags.This saves time on input and would systemically work rather like Zettelkasten structure notes.
Without the need to make them.

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
too off-topic
Too off-topic can't exist if you have made a link.
 :)

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
I learned something.  Never heard of transclusion before.  For any in that same boat: Transclusion
I knew it had to be a clever programming idea.
It's rather like the motor industry supply chain.

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
here is just a quick comment on reading Markdown text directly: I find it very easy after only a little practice
Maybe.
Well I think it will depend on the content.
The example you gave is 'choppy': every element is saying "here I am" and "this is how I relate" to the other elements closeby. If you were asked what you'd read today,  you wouldn't answer with something like this. There's no flow in the language,  no subtle interplay between words or content.

I agree with the example,  I have no problem with markdown for notes because it's not a distraction. But I do when I'm working on prose and I need to focus on the relationship between the content and language and how it flows and progresses.

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
After reading that, I'd think that if you can get around the need for having editable markdown, https://hackmd.io would be stellar for this!
If you want to be able to edit in the preview, Texts does just that, which is the reason that I don't use it.  I like to have my hands on the actual text of the document, but this software does it WYSIWYG and the backing file is just Markdown.

For writing writing, txt is fine 99% of the time. I can do other bits separately.
For notes etc, I have no problem with markdown being visible as I write.

But for editing I have very specific requirements. I need colour. I need to be able to highlight etc with mouse or pen. I need comments and bookmarks.  And versions. And I need to be looking at what I'm working on not markup tags I haven't just added myself. And more probably.

I still won't care about the document formatting because that's the next stage. And I'm not sure there's an alternative to the infinite tweak/preview cycle there.

panzer

  • Participant
  • Joined in 2008
  • *
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 778
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
MDyna is a markdown notes application that syncs with Github gists, and much more:
https://mdyna.dev

Nod5

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,045
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
I have no problem with markdown for notes because it's not a distraction. But I do when I'm working on prose and I need to focus on the relationship between the content and language and how it flows and progresses.
Yeah, different formats fit for different use cases I suppose. Though for fiction prose writing maybe special formatting, beyond perhaps italics, would be infrequent enough to not distract much even in raw Markdown mode? Could also help: Many code editors let you tweak and toogle between different themes and highlight schemes. So one could use one where the format pops at times and one more discreet at other times. VS Code and other editors also have a quick toggle for zen mode (minimal mode, distraction free mode, ...) that hides most toolbars and buttons. Example:

zen mode.pngI'm thinking of going primitive, with discursion into zettelkasten


Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Some forums and other social media already use Markdown (see *Diaspora and Discourse)
If Markdown takes over the world,  I assume that all forums will switch to it.
Of course, it would have to be markdown with BBCode extensions.

Nod5

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,045
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
I didn't see offhand where codimd supports book mode, which is my major use of hackmd.  And some other features, like workspaces.  And that's just from a cursory look.
...
Longer explanation at https://github.com/c...2539/docs/history.md
The history link helped. Seems CodiMD is not for me either, right now at least, since I don't want to manage a server for notes.

I like the look of HackMD book mode, though might not fit my personal use. But seems very well thought out for many use cases, especially collaborative writing. Is there a way to do global search in a HackMD book? The top left search bar on the demo page only seems to let us search the outline.

Never heard of transclusion before
-wraith808

I guess the terms include, transclude, import and embed are used for roughly the same thing a lot of times. I've mostly seen 'transclude' used for combining non-software plaintext files into a larger whole for e.g. documentation. So maybe the idea with the term there is to contrast that use to including/importing source code in a software project, but I'm not sure.

The HackMD embed feature GIF nicely illustrates what I called raw view and preview modes

kBOTpI2.gif

Unfortunately no third transclude view.

Not surprising though since no other markdown app I've looked at had that either. I searched some more on transcluding markdown today but still no luck. These two links were interesting nonetheless
https://stackoverflo...uding-multiple-files
https://www.reddit.c...th_live_preview_for/

I bet new transclude features will emerge sooner or later, given all these markdown apps and systems competing for users. Big question: Will the giants Google and Microsoft make room for easy markdown use on their platforms too? Imagine the google docs platform but with interlinking, transcluding markdown files.

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Could also help: Many code editors let you tweak and toogle between different themes and highlight schemes. So one could use one where the format pops at times and one more discreet at other times. VS Code and other editors also have a quick toggle for zen mode (minimal mode, distraction free mode, ...) that hides most toolbars and buttons.
Yes. I'm already looking to check out text editors. From this thread, I have  Vim, neovim - with warning of steep learning curve, VSCode, Notepad++, and iirc UltraEdit and EditPad from another thread. I will search for other contenders.

I know that I won't cope with a steep learning curve unless I  can extend the time can work on a PC. And I have no experience of text editors,  though I think I did have Crimson in the past. Which leaves me wanting one thats intuitive and easy to learn and where I can switch off or ignore all functions that relate only to programming or programming languages. I remember Superboyac writing that EditPad was more intuitive than UltraEdit.

I don't actually need what most people consider distraction free, it makes no difference to me at all. But intrusions in the actual text are another thing completely.

Fiction,  fact, academic,  report are all the same to me. I need to work with the pure prose. Equations, graphs, tables, diagrams, images etc can all be separate - I'm used to journals that require them as separate pages.

Notes, journalese and web (if I did it, and I don't rule the possibility out) can include as much formatting as Markdown wants to throw at it without it impacting me at all. Attempted perfection never competes with speed for them.

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 10,547
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
MDyna is a markdown notes application that syncs with Github gists, and much more:
https://mdyna.dev

Thanks!  That looks interesting!

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
MDyna is a markdown notes application that syncs with Github gists, and much more:
https://mdyna.dev

Thanks!  That looks interesting!
I don't get anything when I click on it. I assume the site is down.

panzer

  • Participant
  • Joined in 2008
  • *
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 778
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
MDyna is a markdown notes application that syncs with Github gists, and much more:
https://mdyna.dev

Thanks!  That looks interesting!
I don't get anything when I click on it. I assume the site is down.

https://github.com/mdyna/mdyna-app

tomos

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • ***
  • Posts: 11,664
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
So I am still struggling with one-note one-thought.  Specifically, what i think is one note ends up being a whole  bunch of thoughts. 
I'd recommend reading this set of links from Panzer. I've not read all of them yet,  but will. I've never read anyone whose thinking (so far) aligns so well with my own. I'm hopeful I'll find a useful addition to my own practice and, if not, it will be a nice ego boost.
Like me, he seems to be respectful of the way he believes Luhmann worked but sceptical of the the methods of his modern acolytes.
To paraphrase something I think you intimated earlier, the thinking is the actual goal, not the physical note.
Thanks, and thanks to Panzer

I'll also point out that these are actual examples of notes.
this I find really helpful. I'm not great at picturing a setup when it's just described, so an actual example is wonderful to have -- and the website works really well (e.g. for anyone wanting a quick look see Write about what you read with two notes/links fully expanded in same page. Note related links bottom of note. All links also show a (longish) preview on mouseover. Still wish I had a couple of monitors though..)

ED: I've now read his note on why books don't work. I sort of agree with much of it, but his understanding of the underlying science is over simple and he's looking out of his car to where he's going rather than taking time to see all the ideas on both sides.
So no longer completely aligned.
 :)
haven't gotten this far yet

Panzer's post:
Zettelkasten-like system used by Andy Matuschak:
https://notes.andyma...3ViqN3hh3SmrKzjQxWAr

https://notes.andyma...A1kDd46whJh2Gt5rAmfX

https://notes.andyma...SEBzTQiCVGoC4GfK3rYW

https://notes.andyma...FPTZSK3UmdsGExLRfZz1

https://notes.andyma...rQNKr6u7AZ1jFzfTVbMF
Tom

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 10,547
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
MDyna is a markdown notes application that syncs with Github gists, and much more:
https://mdyna.dev

Thanks!  That looks interesting!
I don't get anything when I click on it. I assume the site is down.

I get the site.  The direct link to download for windows in case you're interested after seeing the github repo- https://github.com/m...yna-Setup-0.20.3.exe

wraith808

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 10,547
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Is there a way to do global search in a HackMD book? The top left search bar on the demo page only seems to let us search the outline.

No... that search box is only for the toc.

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Text editors
« Reply #371 on: May 29, 2020, 09:29 AM »
I downloaded VSCode as it seems very popular and was supposed to be good for beginners. I'm obviously at sub beginner level. Though I did notice a WYSIWYG plugin for markdown.
I then downloaded Editpad Pro as it has been described as more intuitive and advertises itself as good for all writers and not just programmers. I'm pretty sure I can learn my way around it easily enough; seems to have a traditional MSOffice style of interface.

I'm not confident I can get it set up for full editing though. So plan B is basically to write in txt, import into rtf WP for editing and then finalise and save the document in markdown.

Maybe I will find a WYSIWYG markdown editor that will work. Typora seems the most likely at this stage. I'm sure one will come along at some point. Maybe i can set up Editpad or VSCode to do what I want.

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
The reason I've been focusing on text editors,  despite the absence of an obvious fit for many of my needs, is that I see them as workers' tools. Tweaked and polished over many years for people who need to use them for production. One consequence of my system switch is the need to manage and work with many small text files, as well as a small number of very large ones. And that, I hope,  is what they can do.
Revisits many suggestions from earlier in the thread.

All the snazzy tools that seem better targeted at some of my needs, and which I will be checking out, are new. There will be glitches and rough edges and they may never get far enough to rub them down.

I recognise a huge difference between workers' tools and players' tools. And there's not many of the former for writers. WriteMonkey, Writers Cafe (now defunct) and yWriter. All work well and reliably if they're a good fit for what you want, though that's a small percentage of potential users. Possibly I'd add The Journal to this list. Three of them written by writers (I think it's OK to include The Journal in this) for their own use and the other by the writer's husband.
But not Scrivener. I think it's robust and I can see that it might support a number of efficient workflows, but I've not found any yet myself.

Dormouse

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2007
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Okay

Typora works as you type,  but that's it. Gives the impression it won't do color,  but will. Not usable with mouse,  so I  can't use it for editing. And isn't on Android.

I've given up on plan A.

Plan B. Write text, Edit in one of a variety of rich test options, Save as text, Export to publish. Markdown not excluded but not definitely included either. I already know this works and workflow functions.

Plan C. Use Notion. It will import. I can colour edit on screen including on Android. Will export as Markdown. Though apparently it may need cleaning up. And colour is the only editing tool it has. Can probably find a way to make it work. Big advantage is that it works on Android.

Plan D. Or maybe anyway. Writage. Writes Markdown and takes it into docx. Forces me to docx rather than rtf. Whatever - I'll go with the lingua franca. Convoluted workflow. But might act as lubricant in a workflow that's getting stuck. I've not tested this one yet.

Notes and other stuff I'm happy to write in Markdown. Main issue would be robust file management. Notion could be tempting if I was already using it, but it's another database. And unnecessary.

I noticed all the glitching and rough edges in these newer approaches.

panzer

  • Participant
  • Joined in 2008
  • *
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 778
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Roam Research - a note-taking tool for networked thought:
https://roamresearch.com/

https://www.youtube..../watch?v=vxOffM_tVHI