Saved tab AB views for file w/o notes?

I often use Tinderbox files with a standard set attributes, and set up the AB view with saved tabs that are based on these attributes.

I’m currently refining the TBX template file that I use for these files, and I’m wondering how it’s possible to save the AB view with the same saved tab set up — but without any notes in the template file.

My first sense is that it’s only possible if I create a dummy file that populates values for each attribute so that the AB view can show the each of the saved tabs.

Is that correct or is there another approach for setting up saved tab AB views for this template file w/o notes?


Not sure I understand. You can save views with the Gallery. These views can be saved with or without notes. Having synthetic data would just take up unnecessary space.

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Right, but the attributes don’t appear in the AB view unless there’s some data (notes) that populate them.

Sure it does. It appears as a column head along the top of the page.

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The view—or rather the tab showing the AB view (especially if saved via the gallery) remembers it’s AB settings from last use. What is shown in the listing part of the view depends on the scope (‘container’ control).

If you aren’t seeing anything but think you should it is likely down to how you’ve configured the view, possibly filtering out erverything.

A saved view doesn’t save any ‘contyent’, i.e. any note listing.When saving an AB view to the gallery, it saves the settings. A view saved in the gallery is not a functioning view - i.e. it isn’t interrogated but is instead just some stored metadata.

Indeed, what a tab (regardless of view type) is not currently selected is isn’t running so to speak.Rules an agents run where they are defined regardless of the current view. Remember, any single view is just a visualisation of the existing underlying notes/actions. Once a view is not current it as little different to a saved gallery.

Given the possible misunderstandings addressed above, is there still a problem? If so, can you re-state it more narrowly defined?

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Thank you for your helpful replies. I think the problems I’m facing might just be a result of not using AB view enough, so I’m probably overlooking some basic ways of configuring it. But to better clarify what I’m aiming to do, and answer your question…

I’ve set up file in which I’ve saved tabs for each user attribute I’ve created which, in this case, consist of basic research categories that I’ve organized (e.g., I’ve created a user attribute named “EventsLocations”).

Here’s my setup with AB view:

This set up organizes my notes by attribute, groups them values, and sorts the values’ names alphabetically. It’s beautiful. And saving them as tabs makes it easy to navigate through the file without having to set up AB view each time I need to check values - notes for my research categories.

The problem I’ve had with this set up is that it does not produce an AB view whenever there aren’t notes with values for my attributes. Again, I might just be overlooking way to set this up!

Anyway, that’s fine for a one-off file, but I’m trying to figure out how to set up a template file so that these AB views and tabs are pre-organized. That’s why I thought that I needed temporary data – notes containing some values per each attribute – in order to create and save this AB view and tab set up.

Please let me know if I can answer any more questions about this.


Based on what I share in my last post, I’m wondering: Are there any other container controls I need to employ in order to create saved tab views for the attributes / containers for my template file?

Happy to provide additional info, if that’s helpful.


  1. What is your query?

The customisations—visibly so in the grab are:

  1. The target container is set. Likely this is right for this saved tab given #2 below.
  2. The categorised listing is for $EventsLocations.
  3. The categorisation summary is count fraction. As this AB view has 49 items, each category in the listing of discrete $EventsLocations values will summarise as N/49 (category count/overall list count).
  4. Per category, items sort by $Name (this is default behaviour),
  5. Action. We can see what the code is but we can see you’ve set one.

My hunch is that given—what I remember of your doc (shared via other channels)—the target container is an agent so already filtering the doc content, so #5 is probably unnecessary in that it is probably repeating the query of the target agent container (but I may be wrong).

If your different docs use the same user attributes and the same doc structure (i.e. the target agents/containers) then I think a generic saved gallery isn’t possible. But a per-attribute saved gallery does make sense. In these you’d set #1, #2, #3 and possibly #5.

In the case of #5, unless you want to query-filter what is already an agent’s results, #5 is likely not needed.


My apologies for failing to reply sooner. Been a bit underwater lately, and am just coming up for air. To clarify and answer your observations…

I actually haven’t set anything under Action.

Right. I haven’t set up anything under “query” – it’s only identifying the scope of the AB view for that tab.

My docs do use the same user attributes and doc structure. Ultimately, you’re saying that even though I’ve filled out everything properly with the AB view selections, “a generic saved gallery isn’t possible,” correct?


I don’t think that’s what Mark Anderson is saying.

I’m sorry if I misunderstood.


I see, you’ve opened the Query, given it a title but no code. That’s fine.

I think I may have missed a not. Let me back up. If your docs use a common structure—at least for the containers you want to target—then a generic approach is possible. But, tabs can’t be copied between docs (and not in the soon releasing v9.5.0 either). So saving AB views at this point makes it easy to delete and add back pre-configured AB view, e.g. one per attribute/scope of interest.

The was to make a generic is to make a new document with only your planned common structure, prototypes, templates, etc. and add/configure the AB views you want and save them to the TBX’s gallery. Now save that doc as a ‘favorite’. For OS reasons how Tinderbox handles these has changed over the years so I strongly urge re-visiting the linked page and checking your understanding of the process.

Once set up, when you start a new project needing this special structure, rather than create a new TBX, you use menu FileFavorites and pick your previously saved favorite. This opens a new, unsaved, copy of that file. Any changes you now make are not saved back to its source. So name and save the new document, and then commence on your project.

This route may seem more effort up front, but until/unless tabs are transferrable between TBXs, using a copy of a pre-configured ‘favorite’ file is your best approach.

You may be tempted to tear down an existing file to make the favorite file, but in your case I suggest not. It might seem less work to to get to a ‘bare’ file but it’s likely you’ll leave overlooked notes/data in the file that will cause later confusion.

I’ve just updated the (atbref95 draft) page on favorites to cover how you edit a favorite file.

I hope this helps better address your scenario. :slight_smile:

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