Permanence of Links, Hook housekeeping, and Hook Sets

I hope that you can forgive this torrent of observations that I have, but I have yet another one. Please understand that I am still too new to know all about Hook although this idea has hooked into a passion of being able to stay focused that has been a thorn in my side for a very long time, hence, my passion.

I am wondering about the permanence of links. I know that they should be permanent as it has already been well stated. One problem I have run into is that sadly, my memory seems to have holes in it and when I have put a certain idea down and then come back to it, months or years later, I can’t remember where the documents were put or remember where I was in the project when I put it down.

I am learning about using an idea called “stop notes”. I am wondering if I use the Note taking idea in Hook (haven’t explored this part of it yet), call that piece my key idea, proposal, stop note, outline, whatever, then I would use Hook to link all of my documents to that key idea document. The idea here is to be able to look at an old file and to comprehend where I was going with it the last time I worked on it and where all its pieces are when or if I wanted to continue working on the file.

The key idea here is to be able to review old associations so that when one document is found, the rest of the project can also be found as all the links from Hook will remain active for many years. It would be very helpful to have the confidence that if I had used Hook to set links in all the associated documents, that they would still be there, years later.

As to that, it would be nice if there was any way to search for Hook sets. As I am understanding this, being a version 1.0, there is not currently any way to associate a set of links - but at some point may be. Now I am thinking that there could be a Hook feature for Hook housekeeping so that I could search through all Hook style links and find any Hooked files in that way. Or, conversely, is there any way to identify what a Hook style link looks like so that I can find it using HoudahSpot?

I ask this related to my previous comments about loosing track of things over time. Sometimes it has been so bad for me that I just cannot remember a thing but I can remember for example that I worked with a Hook file with it. So that would just be a way of discovering what I have already done using Hook should it become necessary. And no, that would not be necessary using Hook in an active process, but only for managing many Hook connections over time.

Any files you link using Hook have the ‘Hook’ Finder tag added to them. This doesn’t help with things in databases rather than files though.

If you wanted, you could create a file with links to all your seed files for different projects. Call it ‘Hook Index’ or something, saved as a plain text or Rich Text file. Then whenever you start a new project, create a seed file where you keep your stop notes etc — link project files to the seed file and link the seed file to the index file.

Then, when coming back you could open the index file and invoke Hook to see a list of where projects are. You could even use Hook to copy all links and then paste that into the index file, and you’ll have a Markdown formatted list of projects with links to them.

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As noted by @stevelw, Hook can apply a Finder tag. (Check your General Hook preference tab to make sure that is on – we give users the choice).

Hook can link to all kinds of items. As long as the app whose scheme you’re using continues to honour the scheme, you’ll be fine. For instance, if you link to tasks in OmniFocus or Things, you can be pretty confident those apps will be around for a while. To give an example, if you link to a webpage that goes away then of course the link will break too.

As noted, we intend to provide additional ways to find Hook-linked items , beyond Spotlight, and to tell that something is linked, etc.

However, it is important to emphasize that search will not be a key feature of Hook. There already exist many great search tools. When searching for content, users will rarely need to parameterize their search in terms of " has this item been linked" – that’s why we don’t yet have a “find all Hook-linked items” feature. Compare web searches. Google does not provide a search parameter “find all pages that are linked to some other page”. The links are already in the pages.

Once you find an item in the set, then if you created any links from it, Hook will enable you to access the linked items. I do not recommend thinking of networks of Hook-linked items as something you need to manage. Hook calls for a slightly different mindset than other personal information management tools. Again, Hook complements rather than replaces them.

If you suspend a project for a long time and come back to it, then to return to this project, you will typically use traditional organizational structures (folders) or do a search (whether you parameterize the search with tag:Hook or not).

But yes, if you get in the habit of using Hook for key projects, then the Hook search parameterization (e.g., tag:Hook or upcoming Hook-linked item search facilities) will help you zero in on key information – because anything you link with Hook is likely to be of greater importance than info that was not worth linking in the first place.

I hope that I have not been misunderstood. I am not trying in any way to suggest that Hook should be made into a search app. I was only referencing my search tool as way to explain that, knowing my own mind, if I have forgotten the linked documents that I was using, if I can remember that I once had them in a linked set, perhaps if there was some way to search for Hook links that could be one way to rediscovering them later.

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Thanks, @levelbest. I think we’re on the same page. Enabling users to search /list within Hook makes sense; as does enabling existing search tools to access Hook via its upcoming automation.

Sorry, this is a digression. Can you explain or point to something that explains the “stop notes” concept? It sounds intriguing.

Katie :sunny:

Stop notes was suggested to me as a method of putting down dated notes to myself regarding where I was going with an idea before stopping. It is an idea that, the next time I pick up the project, I have left notes to myself as to the steps I had taken such as when I sent it in an email as a PDF for someones editing, who else reviewed the draft, or, what my thinking was on the section I was working on when I had to stop and do something else.

I also use date and time stamps expansions using Typinator. I love Typinator and find it to be extremely useful. I used to use TextExpander but found that Typinator was a much better product. Regardless of this, you could use any one of many apps that you could use to time stamp a stop note.

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Nice :smile:

Thank you @levelbest.


I hadn’t noticed this. It went right by me. Thanks for the tip. Since Hook already places a somewhat unique Finder tag on any file that becomes Hook-Linked, this satisfies my question.

I made a decision a long time ago that I am keeping my Finder structure as intact as I can, rather than using database organizer tools such as DevonThink. Yes, DT can also index files but many people use it as a database, as well as other popular ways of organization.

I am sticking with systems that agree with my learning to better organize my electronic filing which eventually also has to support my paper filing systems. That is why Hook is so nice, it helps keep me in the here and now rather than going off on another hunt for misplaced things.

Thanks again.

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