Inspired by @jtaekman’s original post, I’ve started working on a somewhat similar kind of document. However, instead of adding all my abstracts, I’m making a topic-based document. And instead of including only abstracts, I’m including all the quotations from each paper. This is intended to be a more-or-less permanent reference document rather than one for a specific project.
The document has two major sections (though depending on people’s responses to this that may go up to three):
Agents: Pretty much the same as Jeff’s, though I’m planning to also leverage tags
Source Containers: Each container represents one paper. Inside it is multiple notes, each representing 1 quotation from that paper with the page number and sometimes with my comments.
I like using Maps and Treemaps as well as Outlines, so it’s preferable to be able to grasp the essence of each note without reading the content. Therefore, I take some time to choose a suitable title that captures the essence of each quotation without being mega-long (usually one sentence without subordinate clauses). And I use Andis-Regular as the NameFont for Maps with -1 NameLeading so that I can see a reasonably long portion of the title in most views. (That font choice seems to have carried over to other views, too, which wasn’t intended, but tant pis, as they don’t say in Germany.)
In Map view I have been using an oval note for the abstract, and rectangular notes arranged in concentric circles around the abstract for the quotation notes.
That brings me closer to my question related to organization. I have each paper in Sente, which is where I originally made the notes. Sente has good communication with Bookends (for which I also have a licence). Bookends has good communication with Tinderbox, so I’m copying references from Sente to Bookends and then option-command-dragging them into Tinderbox. (This has the desirable side-effect of speeding my transition away from the abandoned Sente.)
Two ways of organizing the References dragged in from Bookends occur to me:
(1) I could drag each one into the relevant source container. This is the one that occurred to me first and, at least at first, felt most natural. I could add a Reference-gathering agent to gather all the notes of Reference type for when I just need a list of all references.
(2) I could make a References container and put all the items dragged in from Bookends there. I could create a link from each source container to the relevant reference.
Any thoughts on the implications of choosing one or the other? I’m sure there are ways of rearranging things if I regret my choice but now that I’m just starting I’d prefer to go the way that is most likely to be the most sustainable/useful.