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Think big. Really big.
I'm glad you found something interesting in it.
Because every user is different, I think it would be important that people can set up their own rules for how this activity tracker would function... so that one user that might not want to record every detail, or images, or perhaps at certain times (a work-related brain only for example, not personal life recording) can opt out of features or details that might interest a different user.

The inbox functionality sounds interesting, I look forward to seeing how it works.

The mobile version needs to be able to alter the view - I work almost exclusively in Outline view, while to mobile version seems to only cater for Normal view.
Basic Spreadsheeting across thoughts and throughout Brain
A feature that I would LOVE to see implemented in this awesome software is spreadsheeting.  Basic maths across the thoughts.  I think this would really change the way the software could be used and make for some really great applications.

I put a bit of thought into it this morning and how it could be done, and came up with this (online brain) so far.

Any input from other readers (ie: you) would be very welcome... I'm not a programmer so forgive me if it's a bit clumsy.

So above is the basic structure of some business records done in Brain as an example.  The business owner might want to record how many customers they've got, how many sales they've made, and what the total of those sales are.

So each Sale might be linked to each customer, and of course all thoughts are normal thoughts with notes and tags and types and so on, but the one additional thing they have is variables and spreadsheeting maths, perhaps all accessed under a new tool tab... but I've shown them above under NOTES.

The business owner creates a thought for a new customer, and makes it a child of "Customers" thought.  At the same time they create a new sale thought, and make it a child of "Sales" thought.


The customer thought has a small spreadsheet code in it.  Something like:
[SUM VAR(A)LINK]  - Tells the thought to calculate the sum total all of the individual variables named "A" under all of the thoughts linked/jumped from this thought.

[TOT LINK] - Tells the thought to calculate the total number of thoughts linked to this thought.

The business owner might want a total of the sales shown in a single thought, so they would use a code that might for example be:

[SUM VAR(A)CHILD] - Which tells the thought to calculate the sum total of all the variables named "A" in any child thoughts of this thought.

Each individual Sale would have a variable named whatever the business owner chose.  An unlimited number of variables could exist in each thought, as they can be named whatever the Brain owner wants.

These are what the spreadsheeting maths scrapes when told to, either from parents, links/jumps, or children of the thought containing the spreadsheeting maths.

Spreadsheeting maths could include functions like subtract, add, sum, basically anything that you find in a traditional spreadsheeting software, and each thought is treated like a cell in a spreadsheet.

Using this structure it would be possible for a Brain owner to produce extremely complex and powerful spreadsheeting abilities that are dynamic depending on how the thoughts are linked and unlinked, created and forgotten.

Your thoughts?
Think big. Really big.
So this software is great.  I don't think there's too many people that would object to that in any major way.

But as seems to be recognised and discussed fairly often from what I've read, one of the biggest let downs is initial entry of data.  Brain can only recall what is entered, and entering is slow, time-consuming, and necessarily selective.  Especially if you want to tag or type things with any degree of detail.  And, ironically, the more detail you create the more effective it is later with recall... so it's a trade off and the chief constraint currently is the initial data entry.

I have played with the Android version of Brain released recently, and sadly it is a bit of a let down currently for a range of reasons.  However it is on the right track... moving this program to a mobile platform is definitely where the future lies.

My feature suggestion is a bit more than a feature... it's more of a core design direction.  I suggest to Brain publishers to take advantage of your position in the market to do what someone else eventually will if you don't.  Something that will make somebody a LOT of money.

I suggest you create an app that integrates thoroughly and intuitively into mobile devices to make it a snap for users to record events such as meetings, locations, pictures and sounds and automatically time-date stamp things and even classify them using GPS locations.  Using a form of currently available AI it is also possible to have the app be smart enough to know what the user is currently doing or about to do (for example if they're using maps to navigate, then the app would know that the intended location is important to the user and also likely a new location, and could then record events that happen at that location to be recalled later or dumped depending on homework done later through a "suggested brain entries" list or similar).

The aim here is simple - create an app that automatically or with minimal user input records sound, images and other relevant information and compiles it into the brain's plex.  Later this app can then easily recall events in perfect clarity, some years later if necessary.  This will then truly represent artificial memory that has perfect inarguable clarity, and THAT is where the money is.

Criminal encounters can be submitted to police, giving the user a great degree of security.
Agreements can be recalled and presented years after the agreement, putting an end to verbal agreements being worth little to nothing and making shams and cons much less likely, again giving the user a degree of safety.
Encounters with new business collegues or managers can be recorded and recalled later, so that instructions or suggestions or new ideas are recorded and able to be recalled perfectly.  No detail missed.
...You see where I'm going with this.
Much like a dash-board camera is currently used, except that it's mounted on the user, and the information being recorded is linked to other items in the plex such as businesses, people, tasks, events, etc in the more traditional Brain plex format.

User wants to visit a new shop they've heard about.  They enter into their navigation maps app the name of a shop titled "Abbey's Boutique, Melbourne" and their nav app duly locates and displays the location.
...Meanwhile Brain app perks up it's ears and knows the user is interested in this particular shop.  Firstly, it catalogues in a journal that user was interested in the app, and creates (according to rules set up by the user) a child thought of "locations" perhaps this location's name and some basic information that it can glean from the net about it, for example that it's a shop and the address of the location, or phone number, or similar.  This information is readily scraped from google, no new technology necessary.
So the user meanwhile tells the nav app to navigate to the location, which it does.
Now Brain app knows the user is en route to the destination, and again makes a journal note of this.  It might at this point prompt the user to ask if they'd like to make a sound recording or video log of the location when they arrive.  Perhaps the user would like to record a sound track of the encounter with the shop owner without being distracted by prompts when actually there.  The user selects a sound recording to be automatically recorded upon arrival.  Brain acknowledges and waits, tracking user's location until user arrives.
User arrives at the car park near the location, walks the final distance, and arrives at Abbey's Boutique, and Brain app begins recording sound silently at the same time as the nav app announcing the user's arrival. Still no new technology required.
The user browses through the shop, and finds an item that would make an excellent gift for their partner.  User photographs the item and price, and leaves the shop.  Brain stops the sound recording, and files the pictures away as children of the Abbey's Boutique thought created under the Locations thought card.
Later that evening when it suits the user, the user browses through temporary thoughts created by Brain that day, and confirms to keep (or re-links) thoughts.  User decides the sound recording was unnecessary after all (unlike the one taken three days ago that recorded a shop owner promising a full refund if they weren't happy with their purchase) and Brain forgets the sound recording and permanently records the images and links it to that location.  The user also enters a few other snippets of info to Abbey's Boutique thought such as "parking is easy", and also notes next to the pictures taken that they'd be a great gift for their partner, linking it to their partner's thought card.

So far this is a small leap from what Brain currently does, except that it includes a few GPS-inspired prompts and some active listening and smarts based on user activity - a bit like Siri does now.

However where the big coin comes in is in a few years time when mobile devices become far more integrated into normal life, like Google Glass broke ice on a few years ago.  When video can be activated on a device that doesn't need to be held up by the user then visual recording and later recalled with absolute clarity by being located within the plex based on user-set rules such as tags, types, children or sibling thoughts... however the user wants to record these things as per the current design of the plex software.

Creating software pre-emptively to do this now means that when worn video recording devices become more normal (or even currently with police for example) this software is in a position to be able to dominate the market.

Also, currently the software could record things like location names, and automatically present suggestions such as catalogs of the shop being visited, or integrate with friends' brain plexes to note that they too visit a particular bar quite often, and how often you've met up at it, the dates, and what was discussed while there 3 months ago with them.

When this technology becomes available (and it will) it will give users the edge by providing them with an impressive and essentially perfect memory.  One that can be shared on demand. People with this augmentation will have a distinct advantage.

The world will never be the same.
Using Brain as a cataloguing software
A fascinating collection, and a very different style of braining it to me... interesting to see how other people construct a plex.  Thanks!  I love yer collection too, just a little bit jealous.

Yeah I'm always a big fan of pictures.
I would have linked my entire collection web brain online (which I've now done here) but there's no pics yet until I re-subscribe to online services, so it's a big dull to look at at this point.  I intend to subscribe again to online services and upload pictures once I've catalogued everything already in albums and have moved on to what I've got in boxes... probably in a 3 - 8 months at my current rate of cataloging the collection.

I have altered it already since reading this forums based on ideas I've seen from other people.  I've decided to make it a bit more like ink on paper in colours for ease on the eyes, and I've also included all tags now as you suggest zenrain.  You may notice that tags have #001 through #005 in front of them... this is to put them into an order both in the Tags window, as well as at the end of a stamp thought card... controlling the order they display in.  I come from a Lean Manufacturing background where everything is visual for quick reference and speedy identification of status.... anal as hell.  [wink]

Since my last post I also learned about docking tabs (tag tab on the left now) as well as Brain Buttons to link between different brains within the top bar.  Thanks Brain Forums!

I've also tried using the calendar-only idea that I read by another forum user for journalling, but I prefer to cross-link to things written about in the journal (companies interacted with for example), and the calendar doesn't seem to support that...?

Using Brain as a cataloguing software
I've been using Brain for a couple of years now for various things, including journal, thought mapping, to-do lists, data compilation and a range of tasks.  It's such a useful piece of software that has so many unrealised future applications but don't get me started on that.

At the moment I'm using it as a cataloging software... in particular stamps.  I will also experiment with it for coins, bank notes, etc.  But the basic principle is the same for anything, even warehouse inventory... anything you want really.  Has anyone else used it for this?  I'd be curious to know layouts and tips.

Currently I have each individual item has it's own card/thought, and on that card/thought it includes a uniform set of information... in my example it includes information such as condition, notes, face value, estimated value, etc.  Obviously this set of note information could include a whole bunch of stuff.

Each card's parent is the country of origin, and in many cases the series that the stamp belonged to, with siblings being other members of that series.  This makes linking up with other siblings later much easier, because as you link a newly cataloged item to a series you can immediately see what others you already have in that series, and so forming sets becomes a snap.

Additionally each stamp item thought is sibling-linked to other generic types such as whether it's a block, a SE-tenant, a horizontal pair, a Cancel To Order, and so on... although I'm playing with the idea of making these tags instead of linked siblings.   In fact, as you can see in the image I have already got a cross-over where both tags as well as sibling thoughts are the same thing...

And finally I have some tags such as "requires further investigations" for items I come across that I want to follow up on later for some reason, or "spare" (for obvious reasons) etc.  This will allow me to quickly find these items later in my growing catalog.

And of course, inserting the image of the stamp within the brain ensures not only that this stamp's picture is permanently cataloged and recorded, but that I can preview it instantly by mousing over the icon on each stamp's thought...


Already I've discovered sets that I had no idea I had without using this software, despite using other purpose-built cataloging software in the past.

The only thing that is letting me down is a way to compile value information.  For example if I have let's say 300 stamps from let's say England, and some are a penny, some are 1.25 pennies, others are a pound, and so on... how can I have an automatically-updating way of compiling the total value of these stamps.  I can do it manually of course, but it would be nice if when I add a new item card/thought that the value of that item card/thought automatically gets compiled into some sort of running total.




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