Tinderbox Forum

How to export attributes?

Hello everyone!
I’d like to export some of my reading notes including the content of my attributes: tags and pages especially. I tried to do it and export in OPML format using Excel or Omnioutliner, but it seems not to work.

How could I do that?
Thank you for your help.

Unless you want something specific, it sounds like you just need a basic template placed in the templates container. If so, all you need is something like:

<p>Tags: ^value(Tags)^</p>
<p>Page numbers: ^value(Pages)^</p>


  • The ^value(attribute name)^ places the attribute value.
  • I’ve included a heading in front of each value to identify it.
  • The <p></p> puts each attribute value on it’s own line.
  • The ^text^ inserts your notes.

If you assign this template to your prototype, then it will inherit down. Then you can export the notes you want or simply copy/paste from Preview in the Text Pane.

If you want specific formatting you can use HTML tags in the template to do this. In my current project file, I have the following template assigned to notes for book chapters to create a roughly formatted bibliographic entry followed by my notes:

In <em>^value(BookTitle)^</em>, 
edited by ^value(Editors)^. 
pp. ^value(Pages)^.</p>


Actually, the easiest approach for this would be to use the Attribute Browser. Add the attributes to the browser, then go to file export attribute browser menu. This will create an RTF file. Open the RTF file and save it as plain text. You can now open it in Excel. Here is a thread where i give an example of this: Conditional AgentAction to create new child agents - #7 by satikusala


I think this is a really interesting option because it’s not an option I’d ever use. And I don’t mean that to be dismissive.

The attribute browser export feels like a data dump to me, which is useful in many contexts but it’s not anything I’d want to do with reading notes. My reading notes aren’t casual data. They’re me speaking to my audience privately in preparation for speaking to them publicly. When I export those notes, I have an idea of what I’d like to see and how. And with that constraint in mind, export templates are near perfect because, when exporting individual notes, they offer a nice combination of control and simplicity. Easy formatting is drop-dead easy; complicated formatting isn’t that hard.

I’m glad I have both options though! TBX’s openness and flexibility is, for me, one of its killer features.

ps—I like that templates hang around. I can cobble together a quick template for an export and then a few weeks later when I’m exporting again, I can fiddle around and make that template better.

I can easily imagine Attribute Browser being handy when I want to look at both the Tony Hillerman and Anne Hillerman books about Leaphorn and Chee :slight_smile:

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Thank you for your answers!

I agree with you. There is no one right view. For my writing, I prefer templates as well; to be honest, 80% of the time I use your template approach. The Attribute Browser is great when you are actually looking for a quick tabular data dump, with the added bonus of some analytics.

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