Tinderbox Forum

I finally understand now that Tinderbox is best for, specifically, 'data/information whose structure you don’t priorly understand commonly due to it being unclear/unknown' - borrowed words

edit: i finally understand now that tinder is best for, specifically, 'data/information whose structure you don’t priorly understand commonly due to it being unclear/unknown’

old post,

seems the fundamental function of tinderbox is that it auto-transforms text into various kinds of ‘relational views’ such as mind-maps?

confusing, unclear


good youtubes gifs of how tinderbox helps you would be good

@usevalue: it might be better to turn this around. What are you working on? What problem are you trying to solve?

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i’ve 1,000,000+ problems, since you’ve essentially said different things of what tinderbox does not do

then currently i dont know what tinderbox does, so do not know what to say

i need to know how it helps you

seems like someone said tinder,

transform all kinds of data into structured information using all the different views

  • (Maps, Outlines, Atribute browsers, charts…)

tinder collects?

  • what’s the most popular & common ways it ‘collects’? like it auto-collects?
  • not sure they mean

tinder analysis?

  • what’s the most popular & common ways it does ‘analysis’?

To avoid confusion we normally use the terms ‘Tinderbox’ or ‘TB’ here when referring to the app. Tinder is, I believe, a dating app which isn’t really something that crops up as a Tinderbox task.

Tinderbox isn’t a utility. Utilities usually do only one, or a few, things well; that is their value. Tinderbox is a tool(box) for notes. The ‘notes’ are your information, whatever it may be. The toolbox is the large range of things you can do with that information. Unlike much software, Tinderbox doesn’t assume a particular task tasks. More powerfully, it helps you explore the structure - perhaps guessed but not yet known in your structure. It then lets you, in a forgiving way, insert that emergent structure into your notes. Which views you use, one or more, is up to you. It’s role is not visualising but helping understand your notes (on whatever subject that might be).

I repeat though, it in not a utility where you pore your data in, fill in the required boxes and the answer pops out. Tinderbox is a far more powerful and exploratory tool. So, ‘how it helps’ varies by user. I can say with confidence after 14+ years helping this community, that it varies more than you my intuit. Conversely, it doesn’t do everything. I would say its strong points are being able to take data/information whose structure you don’t understand and

You may indeed have many problems. But, just describing one or two will help calibrate both you and us (as Tinderbox users) on those problems where Tinderbox will help and where other approaches might be better.

On a personal note, I’ve have found Tinderbox is peerless in investigating a subject where the structure is either unclear or probably misdescribed. In my doctoral researchI’m looking at data for which I can’t predict the (metadata for the) important relationships in the data, so the IT approach of defining the structure before you start is no use. Although academic research is a common use, even that purpose varies in style from person to person. Meanwhile, others use it for different things:

  • Blogging
  • Creating hypertext
  • Planning/writing books
  • Consultancy analysis & reports
  • Investigative reports
  • Flight logs
  • Expense tracking
  • Speech planning/writing
  • Syllabus design/publication
  • Inventory
  • Space layout (kitchens, gardens…)
  • GTD/time management
  • Qualitative analysis for marketing
  • Zettelkasten
  • Contact management
  • and many I’ve forgotten.

Don’t get hung up on what the tool does:

Do not try and bend the spoon, that’s impossible. Instead, only try to realize the truth…there is no spoon

…think more about how you might apply its toolbox to your work.

So, tell use some things you’re currently struggling to do.

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that’s helpful

wish that was the first thing said

would’ve avoided alot of other unnecessary confusions

this is helpful

this is also helpful, i didnt know that

oh this whole thing makes a lot more sense now

this appears to be the main use and helpfulness

Good, looks like we’re getting some useful traction. :smiley:

One confusing point is different people use a different subset of features/views and thus their experience of the app (how they ‘see’ it) can be very different. Someone writing a daybook will have a different viewpoint of the app to someone writing a book. Indeed, depending on how you envisage writing, two different authors might use Tinderbox with a quite different.

For me, the most compelling part of Tinderbox is being able to add structure (i.e. TB 's attributes, aka ‘fields’ to my research data as I go. Plus, strong prototyping means that once I’ve figured and added that structure it is easy to modify many (00s or 000s of) notes at once via inheritance. I also use quite complex export templates to generate documents; aTbRef is a case in point, but it is not just for HTML.

Strongly visual thinkers may like to use mainly the map view, either as a form of mood-board for ideas or using box-and line argumentation to flesh out their ideas. And so on…

sure that would always be a problem, limited use = limited perception = limited experience = limited

things that would generally be helpful are:

  • a ranking of features/functions

  • the largest % of usage of the ‘views’ since apparently there’s maybe 3-7 ‘views’

  • a ELI5 overview of the things that tinder does

  • etc

ofc none of these exist most likely cos someone probably would’ve linked it way early on at the first question if they did exist

while this also doesnt typically exist for other common softwares, the non-problem is that those things are generally well-understood

but in case thsee exist it’s asked

I think we are going in circles. It’s already been explained that the subset of features a person uses will depend on what they are trying to do. This renders the above moot.

I’m not aware of any survey of Tinderbox users and how they use the app. From years of experience supporting this community, and meeting users at Tinderbox conferences, I’ve also learned not to extrapolate from the topics that get the most coverage here.

I’m not sure of what ‘ELI5’ is. Is it some kind of productivity method?

It’s reddit slang for “explain like I’m 5.”

In which case I have just the answer, in keeping with the zeitgeist: ¯_(ツ)_/¯