The point of Hook is to have a set of links immediately at hand in a given context.
A document turns out in practice (at least in my experience) to be a weak or even dysfunctional proxy for a mental context or project. The file name of that document is an even weaker proxy.
For example, if I collect some notes around draft-001.txt (assuming that file to be pivotal in a current project) Hook inevitably fails me when:
- The focus of a project shifts to a different document within it, and
- when I increment the filename to draft-002.txt
- Where have all my links gone ?
- How do I transfer them now to a newly focal document in the same project ?
- How even do I transfer them to a different version of the same file, if the filename is adjusted in any way ?
Such questions obviously trip the user over – distracting and frustrating – ramping up unrewarded cognitive costs, just when Hook should be making it easier to holding a train of thought and focus on a project.
These sudden costs, sudden disappearances of sets of links (in whose collection significant effort has been invested), are hard-baked into the current design, which is structured by what looks to me like a category error.
The understandable initial hypothesis of Hook has been that a filename might prove to be a workable proxy for a mental context.
A perfectly respectable hypothesis, and worth testing.
But it doesn’t survive experiment.
The universal (and user-scriptable) url scheme is a value.
The idea of document ⇄ document links turns out to be a liability and real cost. A failed experiment, I think.
- The group of links accumulated for a project needs to be immediately available to a set of documents.
- The totality of links needs to be viewable and editable to the user.
- In particular links need to be transferable from one (project/context) to another
I don’t use tags myself for other purposes, but in this context I probably would.
The Hook graph/network of links needs nodes which are editable named projects, between which links can be copied and pasted. Tags are one already well-supported and well-understood route to that, and seem worth considering.
If several links are attached to a tag, that tag could be applied to a folder or to a subset of files.
The set of links attached to a tag could also be edited.
Essentially the links for a project need to be:
- available from more than one document,
- transferable between documents, and between projects
- visible to the user as a named set, and editable.
Universal (possibly tag-based ?) bookmark management for projects.
‘Hooks’ ? Not really. Something closer to artist’s palettes. Each daub of paint a tag.