Information manager/organizer with tags question.

Discussion in 'Python' started by andrei.avk@gmail.com, Nov 11, 2007.

  1. Guest

    Hello,

    I would like to write an information manager/organizer type of app but
    first I'd like to ask if there is something like that already
    existing. I asked on yahoo questions but did not get a response. I
    also searched freshmeat but even though they have plenty of projects
    that are tangentially related, I was unable to find anything close
    enough.

    What I'm thinking about is this: a database with an interface that
    stores records by tags and allows filtering and sorting by these tags.
    When I enter a new record, I enter a title and any number of tags.
    Interface would have a filter by: pull down menu separated in two
    sections, favorite tags and recent tags. To the right of that would be
    a button to add another filter, which would create a new pull down
    menu to filter current results further. Then there would be a search
    field where you'd type in a word and it would show a list of all
    matching tags; then you would click on one of the tags to add it to
    last filter menu's 'recent' list. Interface would be two-pane with an
    option to switch to single pane, where one pane is a list of matching
    records and the other is current record.

    List of matching records would be sortable by clicking on column
    titles.

    Going into the record would bring up a screen with title and body text
    of the record, if the record is a file it'd show title, list of tags
    and a button that opens that file. (unless it's a text file that can
    be viewed and edited there).

    The idea is to have a central hub of all information, that is very
    easy to search and locate not only the exact document you're looking
    for but also a specific subset of documents, including all of the ones
    you do need and excluding ones that you do not, which allows you to
    work with them as a set without the need to specifically select each
    and every one you need.

    For the first version it'd be enough to have plain text body field.
    Later I'd like to have a rich document format, probably html.

    Later I'd also like to add an option for matching synonymous words to
    tags. If you search for certainty, it would match assurance tag if the
    option is on.

    For instance, if I wanted to find this message, I'd search for Usenet
    posts, tag, my name (as author). I would know that I only made one
    Usenet post about tags. If I made unrelated posts about html tags, for
    instance, I'd filter by 'information manager', and then I'd find this
    post and more posts that I might make about this. If I wanted to
    include possible replies, I'd remove my name from filters. Then I
    could sort by date to see latest posts.

    The reason for this idea is that right now I keep my information, or
    at least most of it, in an outliner program called treepad. It's a
    tree-like view program where you make a hierarchical structure similar
    to file system, where each 'file' is a text entry field. This is
    reasonably useful but is limited to only one possible subset, i.e. you
    could put all posts under 'Usenet posts/info manager/a, b, c' but it's
    impossible to filter it further or to combine it with some subset of a
    different topic. Many chunks of information belong to multiple topics
    and you can't always remember if you filed under one or the other.
    Therefore I think this tag-based approach would be much more flexible.

    I have experience with doing a few simple apps in Tkinter and also a
    db driven site in TurboGears. I'm not sure what framework I should use
    for this. I generally would prefer gtk because of responsiveness and
    nice looks, but it may be a bit tough since I never did any gtk
    development at all. Should I prototype in Tkinter? Would Django be
    better suited for this or TurboGears?

    Of course there isn't any need to do anything if there is already an
    app that does this. Please tell me if it does, or if there is
    something very close that could have this set of features added
    easily. I was thinking about wikis, in fact. I might be best off
    starting with a wiki done in TurboGears and going from there. I'd get
    html markup pages right away, with links, nice formatting.. TG has
    many components that could be useful for this app.
     
    , Nov 11, 2007
    #1
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  2. On Nov 11, 5:44 pm, wrote:
    > Hello,
    >
    > I would like to write an information manager/organizer type of app but
    > first I'd like to ask if there is something like that already...


    Your outline sounds like a killer app, and I don't know of anything
    like
    it (especially for free). However, I have to plug nucular as a
    possible
    back end data store that may make it easier for you to implement the
    app you outlined. Please have a look:

    http://nucular.sourceforge.net

    See the "demos" for examples of what you can do with it very easily.
    -- Aaron Watters

    ===
    http://www.xfeedme.com/nucular/pydistro.py/go?FREETEXT=unsuspecting victim
     
    Aaron Watters, Nov 12, 2007
    #2
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  3. Guest

    On Nov 12, 2:24 pm, Aaron Watters <> wrote:
    > On Nov 11, 5:44 pm, wrote:
    >
    > > Hello,

    >
    > > I would like to write an information manager/organizer type of app but
    > > first I'd like to ask if there is something like that already...

    >
    > Your outline sounds like a killer app, and I don't know of anything
    > like
    > it (especially for free). However, I have to plug nucular as a
    > possible
    > back end data store that may make it easier for you to implement the
    > app you outlined. Please have a look:
    >
    > http://nucular.sourceforge.net
    >
    > See the "demos" for examples of what you can do with it very easily.
    > -- Aaron Watters
    >
    > ===http://www.xfeedme.com/nucular/pydistro.py/go?FREETEXT=unsuspecting+v...


    Sounds interesting and thanks for reply but I need something that will
    work in windows also.. -andrei
     
    , Nov 12, 2007
    #3
  4. wrote:
    > Hello,
    >
    > [snip outline of an information editor]


    Maybe the Literary Machine?
    <URL:http://sommestad.com/lm.htm>

    It is a bit weird at first, and Windows only (altough I have had it
    running under wine once). But it is actually really well designed and
    very powerful.


    Or, if it ever comes out (I've been waiting for it for YEARS now),
    perhaps Ceryle would fit the bill:

    <URL:http://www.altheim.com/ceryle/wiki/>

    There once was some code to download, but I couldnt get it to compile.
    The guy who writes the software is a really approachable, nice guy.
    Maybe if you contact him and politely prod him into finally getting the
    thing out, nobody will ever need to write any information manager anymore.

    /W
     
    Wildemar Wildenburger, Nov 13, 2007
    #4
  5. Guest

    On Nov 13, 12:42 pm, Wildemar Wildenburger
    <> wrote:
    > wrote:
    > > Hello,

    >
    > > [snip outline of an information editor]

    >
    > Maybe the Literary Machine?
    > <URL:http://sommestad.com/lm.htm>
    >
    > It is a bit weird at first, and Windows only (altough I have had it
    > running under wine once). But it is actually really well designed and
    > very powerful.


    I installed it and looked at flash demos, however, I have a couple of
    questions.. is there a way to filter by several keywords? Is there a
    way to sort by keywords? Is there a way to add a new keyword to a
    topic
    that isn't in the list of keywords?



    >
    > Or, if it ever comes out (I've been waiting for it for YEARS now),
    > perhaps Ceryle would fit the bill:
    >
    > <URL:http://www.altheim.com/ceryle/wiki/>


    This is also interesting.. the biggest two issues for my purposes is
    that it doesn't have a UI geared for the usage I was thinking of. I
    was thinking of something along the lines of Treepad, which is an
    incredible program because it makes operations so easy and quick to
    do. ceryle seems like emacs to treepad's (and my intended program's)
    vim. It just occured to me that I might want to try to hack vim into
    doing this.. I'll have to think about that. It's also a little
    alarming
    that they didn't get it out in years. This is a very bad sign. It
    looks
    bloated imho.

    My idea is that several key actions should be incredibly easy to do,
    i.e.:
    1. add keyword - already a field on screen, just click and type
    2. add existing keyword out of favorites list - click a toolbar button
    3. sort by keyword - popup already on screen
    4. filtering by two / three keywords is the most common usage scenario
    and
    therefore should be possible in 3 clicks - one for each keyword.

    Otherwise, if these actions are buried somewhere, you will simply not
    use
    them often enough to make the whole thing consistently searchable by
    the
    tags. You will think "oh wait I can search for that tag and that other
    one"
    and then you will think "did I add keywords to that item?".

    I'd like to try to make it possible to have tags as an integral and
    inherent
    part of each and every doc. Otherwise they'll end up like webpage tags
    -
    a bit of help with adding weight to full search.

    I don't mean to criticize these programs, they're very interesting and
    I'm
    glad you brought them to my attention. I'm not sure I understood the
    first
    one properly, it may be that it is possible to do what I'm thinking of
    in it,
    I just didn't spot that in the interface. Please help if that is the
    case!

    However they seem to have different focus and that's important because
    both
    are closed, at least now, so it's not the case I was thinking of of
    some
    light simple wiki system where I'd have to add a few features.

    Again, thanks for your response! -andrei

    >
    > There once was some code to download, but I couldnt get it to compile.
    > The guy who writes the software is a really approachable, nice guy.
    > Maybe if you contact him and politely prod him into finally getting the
    > thing out, nobody will ever need to write any information manager anymore.
    >
    > /W
     
    , Nov 13, 2007
    #5
  6. Guest

    On Nov 13, 12:42 pm, Wildemar Wildenburger
    <> wrote:
    > wrote:
    > > Hello,

    >
    > > [snip outline of an information editor]

    >
    > Maybe the Literary Machine?
    > <URL:http://sommestad.com/lm.htm>
    >
    > It is a bit weird at first, and Windows only (altough I have had it
    > running under wine once). But it is actually really well designed and
    > very powerful.


    I installed it and looked at flash demos, however, I have a couple of
    questions.. is there a way to filter by several keywords? Is there a
    way to sort by keywords? Is there a way to add a new keyword to a
    topic
    that isn't in the list of keywords?



    >
    > Or, if it ever comes out (I've been waiting for it for YEARS now),
    > perhaps Ceryle would fit the bill:
    >
    > <URL:http://www.altheim.com/ceryle/wiki/>


    This is also interesting.. the biggest two issues for my purposes is
    that it doesn't have a UI geared for the usage I was thinking of. I
    was thinking of something along the lines of Treepad, which is an
    incredible program because it makes operations so easy and quick to
    do. ceryle seems like emacs to treepad's (and my intended program's)
    vim. It just occured to me that I might want to try to hack vim into
    doing this.. I'll have to think about that. It's also a little
    alarming
    that they didn't get it out in years. This is a very bad sign. It
    looks
    bloated imho.

    My idea is that several key actions should be incredibly easy to do,
    i.e.:
    1. add keyword - already a field on screen, just click and type
    2. add existing keyword out of favorites list - click a toolbar button
    3. sort by keyword - popup already on screen
    4. filtering by two / three keywords is the most common usage scenario
    and
    therefore should be possible in 3 clicks - one for each keyword.

    Otherwise, if these actions are buried somewhere, you will simply not
    use
    them often enough to make the whole thing consistently searchable by
    the
    tags. You will think "oh wait I can search for that tag and that other
    one"
    and then you will think "did I add keywords to that item?".

    I'd like to try to make it possible to have tags as an integral and
    inherent
    part of each and every doc. Otherwise they'll end up like webpage tags
    -
    a bit of help with adding weight to full search.

    I don't mean to criticize these programs, they're very interesting and
    I'm
    glad you brought them to my attention. I'm not sure I understood the
    first
    one properly, it may be that it is possible to do what I'm thinking of
    in it,
    I just didn't spot that in the interface. Please help if that is the
    case!

    However they seem to have different focus and that's important because
    both
    are closed, at least now, so it's not the case I was thinking of of
    some
    light simple wiki system where I'd have to add a few features.

    Again, thanks for your response! -andrei

    >
    > There once was some code to download, but I couldnt get it to compile.
    > The guy who writes the software is a really approachable, nice guy.
    > Maybe if you contact him and politely prod him into finally getting the
    > thing out, nobody will ever need to write any information manager anymore.
    >
    > /W
     
    , Nov 13, 2007
    #6
    1. Advertising

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