tcahill

I keep catching myself using both thoughts and types redundantly. Both are very similar ( a type is a special kind of thought -- right?), and both have an inherent hierarchy. Of course, types can have only one parent, while thoughts are not limited that way, and I've never seen a report for "parentless types". 

I have not been able to come up with a consistent rule for when to use one or the other, and often, I've found some utility (not much, but some) in having the same name for a thought and a type. 

So, for example, I have a parent thought called "issues", and it has child thoughts like "environment" or "economics" So far, there isn't anything inherent in these relationships to suggest that some or all of them should be either a thought or a type. (Don't get me started on tags -- they're great).

No, lets talk about tags, too. These things are like hammers, when you have one everything looks like a nail. But a nail is a fastener, and it might be anodized. It is definitely made of some metal or other, OR other non-metal (they are out there - trust me). A nail is not a screw, but in a pinch you can hammer in a screw (not recommended) Then there is the intended use for the nail, how long it is, how wide it is, what kind of a head does it have?  Etc.

Clearly you could use thoughts, types, and tags in a million different permutations, just with nails, and none of the ways would be WRONG. Argh. 

What say you good people?

Be vewy quiet. I'm hunting wabbit.
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zenrain
I use Types to assign groupings of what a thought represents to me, if I need to report on them (access them easily from other contexts) or assign default icons or colors. 

For example, Book, Contact, Movie, Project. Then I can view a list of these types of thoughts in their own context and in useful ways (for example, unfinished projects). This allows me to keep the types I use limited.

I use the hierarchical structure of Parent/jump to set context and a loose hierarchy that I can search by. For example, Genre, Nonfiction. Or Author name (which is assigned a type of Person). 

I use tags to represent states I need to address. For example, current, next, research. 🙂
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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Kirby
As a beginning Braineer, I have nothing actionable to contribute, but I think I can help with the search for an answer.

Your question is about _grouping_.  In my use of TheBrain so far, I note that I resort to two _distinct_ Thought types (small "t"): I distinguish these (in my mind only) as _Content Thoughts_ and "Grouper Thoughts".

So the first thing is to realize that you are referring to (what I call) Grouper Thoughts.  Grouper Thoughts always have children (they exist to make family units).  In my use of TheBrain I am trying to limit any content contained by any Grouper Thought to "meta" content — comments about the group.  I try to put actual content (that is to say, not my commentary) in Content Thoughts.

In your example, "Issues", "Environment", and "Economics" are _all_ Grouper Thoughts.  (In practice, all terminal-child Thoughts are Content Thoughts, and almost all parent Thoughts are Grouper Thoughts.  The degree to which a Brain adheres to this is a measure of how "normalized" — I'm using the word as it applies to databases, about which I know, unfortunately, only a little — it is.)

TheBrain provides other tools which group Thoughts: Types, and Tags.  Note too that Thoughts can be grouped as Jump Thoughts.

Each of these built-in "groupers" is privileged in the UI in different ways.  As part of learning how to best apply TheBrain to my needs, I'm in the process of listing the UI (and other) characteristics of these different ways of grouping Thoughts.
. Parent.Thought↔︎Children.Thoughts groups
. Thought↔︎Jump.Thoughts groups
. Type(Thought)↔︎Thoughts groups
. Tag(Thought)↔︎Thoughts groups

I list Type and Tag as "(Thoughts)" because the UI treats them that way when they are the active object.

(To be complete, you can also have Child.Thought↔︎Parent.Thoughts groups, but this is not likely to be useful or used.)

The question — a _central_ one, imho — becomes: which of these I should I use to group Thoughts?

The answer, from what I can tell, depends on two things:
. What functionality do you want from the group you are making? and
. Which set of UI privileges best provides the functionality you seek?

I will post my list of UI privileges when it is complete.

HTH.



--Kirby.
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metta
@tcahill ~

Here's a summary of the approach I use in assigning types and tags, in case it might be helpful:
> Assigning Types & Tags

FWIW, this summary is part of a larger overview in a  mini-demo brain I created to answer questions about how I use thought types and tags in my megabrain.

Hope this provides additional food for thought (no pun intended).
😉
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Kirby
metta wrote:
Here's a summary of the approach I use in assigning types and tags, in case it might be helpful:
> Assigning Types & Tags [ ... ]

Hope this provides additional food for thought (no pun intended).
😉


O Fantastic!  Beautifully presented — exemplary.  Kudos.  Learned much, quickly, and haven't ventured past the first four Thoughts.  Thank you  😊 👏 👏 .
--Kirby.
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tcahill
Very nice stuff, Metta. I'm liking what you've written about redundancy. It brings me back to Emerson's " A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds". That's me: teenie brain.
Be vewy quiet. I'm hunting wabbit.
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metta
@Kirby and tcahill ~

Thank you both very much for your kind and generous feedback! ðŸ˜Š

I'm very glad if this demo has been helpful, and I appreciate you both taking time to share your thoughts.

Also, I've always loved the quote from Emerson. Thanks for the reminder of its applicability in this context! ðŸ˜‰
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iOnChristopher
I'll get to your examples - just a note to clarify WHAT (in terms of information theory / program design) thought Types (and Tags) are. This follows a utilitarian / UX primacy model: please comment / add / modify / answer.

A. "The only thing(s) useful / problematic about"
     A1. TYPES:
  1. Icon (shared and unique to Type)
  2. Coded / change text color / background color by Type (Edit Type and click color boxes)
  3. Default as Label - pops-up on hover (Default / Edit Type and add as Label)
  4. (Dedicated) shorcut lists / two ways to access
  5. No (visual) links needed
  6. Limited to one per Thought - defines "Thought Type" - (a hard but arbitrary boundary)
  7. Limited database tools: commenting (like for Thoughts)
  8. No nesting, associations (like for Thoughts) Pending update
  9. Grouping: Possible to sub-group thoughts by their Type (if assigned) in any plex presentation.
  10. Filtering
  11. Search result same as for Tags, except status as TYPE is visually represented by custom Icon and colors.


     A2. TAGS:
  1. Visually look like mini-children in plex (No custom Icon)
  2. - (No custom colors)
  3. - (Custom labels NA)
  4. Dedicated shortcut lists (like for Types)
  5. No visual links (like for Types)
  6. Unlimited number per thought - defines "Thought Tags"
  7. Limited database tools: commenting (like for Thoughts)
  8. No: nesting, associations (like for Thoughts)
  9. - (Sub-grouping NA)
  10. Filtering
  11. Search differs from thoughts in that there is one result that returns a plex of all such tagged thoughts. (Bug= tag-item is not indicated by search result.  Not visually distinguishable as a tag.)
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iOnChristopher
YAY! I can now edit my comments - had to tweak NoScript.

So I think a simple outline like the one I started here that would be found on general internet searches, complies with the priority of people who are in the process of learning by using and need quick answers.

Looking at your Mega Brain - it's narrative / programmed learning.  That said, it would provide an excellent searchable help-file for the above condition.

Also, it's in a brain, which isolates it from Google / General Internet Search.  That makes it "deep web." This would not be true if you export to HTML and post.  So it's essentially walled-off from discovery. (I know - I have to deal with this this kind of thing from a conceptual / practical / universal POV.)

I also note that self-hosted videos are not accessible to internet search, making all TheBrain tutes and seminars inaccessible by text search.  That's unfortunate.  YouTube includes speech to text "transcript" (three dots / open transcript) for most videos these days - and Google search indexes this text.  Of course it's HIGHLY inaccurate - but still useful.

Best,
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iOnChristopher
Going further, I think about TYPES and Tags the way that they're designed.  They are essentially thoughts that have a special / simplified interface -
They are a plex of one parent.  They show up in search and hint lists. They only accept children. You have a dedicated list to get to them through edit menus. That's the front-end.  On the back end you can filter by them. They differ from each other in that for types in the plex you can group by them, and for tags you can use a lot of them per Thought.

I have gone ahead and documented an explanation based on Mind System (a subtype of Information System) beyond a bulk Information Managment system, because this would define a minimalist, low-calorie, high-metabolism approach for the Brain, versus using it as a directory.  I would not object to posting what's relevant, but it's designed for my own edification. And, full disclosure - I am in the final stages before public offering / release of a larger system that employs theBrain as a component application - you should be pleased with that. Thus I am only here to learn from the best.

But, per that concept, I am presently using the model that TYPES are long term, higher in the Thought hierarchy, and tags are short term - affecting only what you are working on low in the hierarchy. (Tags will span across Types.) Also that Types, Tags, and Thoughts should be understood as a massively parallel linear system to connect the mind to, and that for this to function means self-enforcing a high level of garbage prevention and collection.  I show examples of why and how to do this, and by a technique of employing a schema library system in names and text as well as for tags and types. A schema that more or less can be memorized and used as a personal tool for understanding innate kinds of the substance we call information, making our attempts at structure far more precise / non-arbitrary.
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iOnChristopher
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iOnChristopher
Explanation of novel (?) theory of types and tags and how to you's them (heh heh.)👌
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