Github for Tinderbox

(Steve Scott) #1

Continuing the discussion from A Call for Starter Templates:

I’ve been using a github repository for 6 months with a few key TBX files and I love it! I know there is versioning built into TBX, but it has been very helpful for me to deliberately create snapshots of where I’m at with my work. It gives me freedom to experiment without the fear of losing work. I think it could be even more powerful if a group were working on a shared project, i.e. creating starter templates.

(Pat Maddox) #2

The versioning built into TBX always crashes on me if I try to use it :-1:

Versioning with git is awesome though. I wouldn’t ever do branching and merging with it (can’t say I’ve tried though, maybe it would work fine), but for storing snapshots and running experiments it’s great.

(Ottmar Klaas) #3

Could someone point out how to access the versioning that is presumably built into Tinderbox? I fail to find it in documentation. Or are you referring to the versioning of files that is built into MacOS?

I use git myself for versioning, but keep it local on my machine instead of pushing it to github. With the free GUI SourceTree (, I have no association other than using it) git is relatively easy to manage, especially when all you really want is to create snapshots at specific times that you can revert to should things go wrong because some agent had some unintended consequences.

(Steve Scott) #4


Here is a screenshot from TBX 6.4.4. Browse all versions takes you into a sort of time capsule mode. I don’t use it. I’d prefer to just make a copy from an older github snapshot.

(Ottmar Klaas) #5

Thank you. I was not aware of that. Visually it looks like it is the MacOS version system. Anyway, thanks for pointing that out to me.

(eastgate) #6

It is the MacOS version system.

Getting Revert to work well with Tinderbox has been a challenge. It’s a lot better in 7.

(Andreas Grimm) #7

@ottmar & @eastgate
Is there a way to close a tbx-file without saving it?

Every time I close a tbx-file it does save the changes – even if I don’t want them being saved.

That’s quit problematic once using a versioning-tool like git … since every time one opens a tbx-file – even without doing anything (and that means: not even touching the trackpad and thus not moving the map even a tiny bit): as soon as one closes the tbx-file again, git/sourcetree tells that there are changes to be commited.

I definitely don’t want this.

Ideas? Cheers!

(James Fallows) #8

I would be grateful for this option too. Even if hidden, so it didn’t show up on the menu until you held the Shift key or something (like the two current varieties of Close, Cmd-W and Shift-Cmd-W).

The reason is that sometimes you make changes that you don’t want to preserve, and that can’t easily be backed-out of with Cmd-Z.

I know that there is a Rename command, but it seems to work differently from (say) the familiar, standard Save-As function in most apps. That is: If you have a file called OldFileName.Tbx, and then you Rename it to NewFileName.Tbx, the result (I believe) is to replace the old file with a new one, under the new name, rather than to make a Save-As additional copy of the file.

I could be wrong about that, but as a user I would be grateful for one or both of: (a) a Save As function that works the way that does in most apps, creating an additional copy of the file under a different name; and (b) some “close without saving” function.

(eastgate) #9

The Save As function DOES operate the same way that it does in other apps. ⇧⌘⌥-S. (It’s on the menu but hidden, like the examples you cite; press cmd and option to see it.)

File ▸ Revert To ▸ Last Saved Version may be what you want. File ▸ Revert has been a challenge for Tinderbox, but

Now that Macintosh documents autosave and automatically adopt versioning, “close without saving” is a strangely slippery concept. For example, you can open Vancouver.tbx, make some changes, and Quit without ever saving; when next you open Tinderbox, you’ll continue to edit the changed copy of Vancouver even though you never gave commandment for its saving.

(James Fallows) #10

Ahah! I did not know that, because I had not thought to hold down both keys when looking at the menu! Live and learn, and thanks for the clarification (and for inclusion of the command).

(Andreas Grimm) #11

I’m afraid I haven’t quite understood yet.

My problem was and still is: TB is saving every document that I open and close again – even without touching the trackpad and thus not even moving the map. ––> In respect to Git-Version-Control it means: Every tbx one opens, takes a look at and closes needs to be check into the Git-version-system.

@ottmar seemed to have got along this quite well for which reason I was asking for his suggestion how to handle this.

macOS versioning, although nice in concept, still does not work consistently solid enough for me in order to exclusively rely on it.

(Ottmar Klaas) #12

I only check a tbx document into git if I’m at a point that I want to be able to revert back to. I do not care whether Tinderbox decides to save a file to disk. git isn’t really useful as a revision control system for Tinderbox as you can’t do useful diffs between versions. So I’m really using git here just like TimeMachine, except that I have more control as I decide when a document gets saved. It won’t get deleted based on some TimeMachine scheduling and I can add a comment to have a bit more information what state my document is in.

(Andreas Grimm) #13

Thank you, @ottmar, for the clarification of your Git-use for tbx-files. That makes sense to me.