Tinderbox Forum

Ziplink feature for basic links

I find the zip link feature a great addition to Tinderbox 8 as it allows quick linking of notes across the note hierarchy by simply typing [[ followed by the first few letters of the destination note. I find it much more convenient than dragging across Outline views or parking the links and dragging them out again as for basic note to note links. Over smaller documents this is not a problem - however my main working document is quite large and the hierarchy deep so generating cross cutting basic links is more work and error prone.

I may have misunderstood but I believe that this keyboard centric approach is limited only to text links e.g. it will generate a entry in the $Text field of the source note with the link as for example below.

The challenge I face is that I would like to use the zip link discovery feature e.g. [[ + note name but what I’m interested in is a basic note to note link e.g. I don’t want to link text. For the moment I like the zip link functionality so much that I simply with the additional entries in my $Text field. Ideally I would like to see a similar functionality but with a basic note link as the output.

Currently, the Ziplinks link-creation method can only create text links which that have no link type.

This is an interesting idea.

Perhaps: [[!note name]] creates a basic link to note name. Other suggestions welcome.


I agree, I like this idea too…but can’t that be done with the “parking lot” feature?

It can!

Funny - [[! was the exact syntax I had in mind too ideally combined with the other zip link options e.g. <> and others.

For the basic links the entry in $Text field should be deleted once link specified so as to leave the $Text field unchanged.

Yes - it is meant to complement rather than replace the parking lot feature. I find zip links much faster and more convenient when making connections across broad and deep hierarchies (all you need is an idea of the note name).

In my case I’m working with satellite missions which are individual projects of their own but draw on a pool of references (for instance applications or instruments which might be similar across missions). Having a quick way to link these references to each mission or note within a mission project would allow me to trace out better the commonalities across missions/projects and answer questions such as which projects refer to radar instruments more easily.

If you are linking across a deep hierarchy, how do you use those links - hyperbolic view? Another approach to such wide ‘linkage’ is to use user attribute(s) which allows easy review via an agent or attribute view. Currently, it is easy to overwhelm hyperbolic view with too many links (though the view’s design is evolving still) an an attribute-based ‘link’ approach scales better—at least for now.

Ah, that makes sense. BTW, do you use link actions? I could see link actions be an effective way for you to moving data between notes as you make your links. As Ziplinks today don’t leverage link actions as you don’t associate link types with them, using the link action feature may justify the extra couple of seconds you’re saving with Ziplinks to justify using Parking Lot.

I forget all the “arcane syntax” currently available, but what about [[>note name]]? The > being a universal “link to” arrow-looking thing? The only reason I’m not a fan of !is that I will confuse that with ![[note name]] for transclusion in Obsidian and similar apps!

I would like to second that argument!

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“Arcane” is usually a matter of perspective. I think what you are aiming at is a visual clue on the nature of the link which I agree is often easier to remember. It’s an implementation issue for the TB designer and there are definitely other issues to consider but taking your idea a little further one can imagine something like the following initial symbols to implement the links:

  • [[> for a text link from the current (this) note to the other note identified using zip links
  • [[< for text link from the other note to the current note
  • [[-> for a basic note to note link from this note to the other note
  • [[<- for a basic note link from the other note to this note
  • [[<> for text links both ways
  • [[<-> for a basic note link both ways
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Since we are all wishing , I’d like a $Text to $Text link with a proper visual indicator in destination note to the link.

But that’s already possible see Ziplinks section Adding a backlink from the link target. Or art you referring to an ad hoc link target.

Aside, I do find a lot of this is more accretion of “I want Tinderbox to be more like [some other app] with which i’m more familiar.” which just adds cruft for users who’d rather be using [some other app]. I’d like to see things added in a manner that benefits Tinderbox users as a whole.

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HI Mark,
Thanks for the reply .

  • When I try create a $Text (Note A) to $Text(Note B) Link
  • Using Adding text to the target note
  • Currently $Text of Note A show cases clearly a link is created and even adds the text to Note B , but NOTE B doesn’t have any zip links (visual indicator) which showcases that my link exists
  • Yes I can see the link from Links section but it would be visually pleasing to see visual indicator in text field itself.
  • See my 3 poor screenshots

You’ve omitted the < > wrapper as described here. so, as per your first screengrab you would type in note ‘2’:

[[<1::My Link Here>]]

This adds a text link from note ‘2’ to note ‘1’ with anchor text in note 2’s $Text of “1”. In note ‘1’ the text “My Link Here” is added to the end of the $Text followed by the anchor text “2” which is a text link back to note ‘2’.

Oh no ! You are right I indeed missed this ! Right under my nose , thank you for guiding me to this . It helps me with quite a lot