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  • Name Jim
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Brain Constrain (Problem importing very large V8 Brain) (#4283)
Just double checking, in version 2.0.219, I see a fix:
  • (#4282) In a rare case, importing from TheBrain 8 can lead to an encoding exception

Is that actually addressing #4283 (the error marked for this thread)? Just wasn't sure if it was a typo as the errors both relate to importing.



Brain Constrain (Problem importing very large V8 Brain) (#4283)
OK, I've confirmed the simply obvious. As I've been rerunning the import attempt to be able to generate an error file when c:\ disk space runs out (http://forums.thebrain.com/post/error-importing-the-brain-8-file-9295710?pid=1300090244) I checked and confirmed that the c:\windows\temp\thebrain\... folder location is indeed being used to store the thought folders with attachments. This clearly fills out the c:\ drive before process completion.

This could be solved by having all these attachment folders being copied directly to the target directory defined in preferences, and then seamlessly being re-used for the imported end configuration. There can't even be a temporary directory of file attachments and then another permanent one being then copied from that; it has to be a single copy routine to be effective or the problem can reoccur on the target disk (If I have a 2TB brain size, I shouldn't have to have a 4TB drive just to double import).

I know these will be effectively single event upsets for any large import, but for
those generating long term large brains with attachments this is an essential configuration option. Until this or some other solution is placed I'll not be able to test with the main brain.

I recognise it might be a low priority since there may only be a few instances of this issue, but do look forward to the update when available.


Error importing The Brain 8 file.
Thanks Matt, will generate an output.log file and send to you.


Error importing The Brain 8 file.

I've also been having difficulty importing my TB8 megabrain file into TB9 on windows, but I suspect it's down to running out of disk space during the conversion process. Could that be an issue in your case too on Mac?

Brain Constrain (Problem importing very large V8 Brain) (#4283)
shatcher wrote: Hi Jim,

That is an impressively large Brain. It should work if you directly import the .brain file. TheBrain 9 would just need to rebuild the database, and not extract the entire BrainZip. Let us know if it works for you.

Cheers, Sean

Thanks Sean, unfortunately, the very process of rebuilding the database causes the windows\temp folder to use up 260GB of free space on the c:\ drive and stall the process due to lack of further storage space for the conversion. That was the point of my post. Let me ask the question from another angle: is it normal to have the conversion process take up hundreds of GB's of temporary space, even for a megabrain, if all it is doing is rebuilding the database?

Either it's a current design limitation in TB9 or there's an error, either way I am unable to import my brain and I am unwilling to invest the time and effort to set up a 2TB+ of free drive space on c:\ to find out. It would be helpful to understand nominal behaviour of the import process and the expected size of temporary files in c:\windows\temp\thebrain\... folders during the process.

Metta, I'll share my experience once it's done of course. Has anyone else managed to convert a large brain and get around the temporary c:\ location limitation?


Brain Constrain (Problem importing very large V8 Brain) (#4283)
Greetings fellow brainiacs and TB team

Although I have not had bandwidth to participate in TB9 testing actively on the forum, I have maintained some TB9 brains and explored the installs as they have been released. Admiration and kudos to the team and to the active beta testers.

I'm not sure I'm comfortable yet converting my primary megabrain (120k thoughts, 2TB size) to TB9 on a permanent basis, but I wanted to get a first impression of how it performs in TB9. Using a separate laptop, I tried importing a USB backup of the TB8 megabrain to a blank USB drive where I tried to point the TB9 megabrain to sit. However, it appears that interim import data is stored in c:\windows\temp\thebrain\... folders which wipes out the c:\ drive available space pretty quickly and then the process stalls.

I did notice the recommendation dialogue not to use TB9 with brains on a network or USB drive, but I can't get around that for now and am not worried by corruption risk at this stage as it's simply a test process. Is there any way to repoint the Temp import directory manually? Otherwise, I'm kinda stuck testing out my main brain, which will be a pain if constrained.

I had thought of installing TB9 on the blank import drive directly, if that somehow tricks the import function to temporarily store locally, but wanted to get advice first.



Seriously cool 3D Brain visualization
Right, it was a concept development for for UI demonstration rather than as an actual knowledge system. My point was that whilst having an immersive sea of information floating in front of you has its uses and looks cool (and TB's expanded view serves that purpose quite nicely), the actual utility for information assimilation or retrieval is limited to specific use cases.

Probably around a decade ago i recall posting a cosmetic feature request to create a range of font sizes within a single plex view to create the equivalent visual effect of a 3D arrangement. Just as we can currently sort by name, date etc, adding this simple effect to the z-axis and also applying the same sort by criteria means we could sort alphabetically on the x-y axis, and use a smooth range of 10 or 20 font sizes to create the effect of sorting by 3D depth for modified date, as an example. An optional refinement could be a simple tapering / expanding of the link size proportional to the delta between active thought and other thought font size (ie perceived depth), but this is just a refinement.

This would be a ridiculously straightforward 3D effect to code (font size as a function of 'arrange by...!). It would also have real value for data visualization within TB.


Seriously cool 3D Brain visualization
Ha, Dag even calls it a brain!

This kind of thing has been around for a while:
[Feature Request] Portable TheBrain
I suffered this issue for about 10 years! I've only every used laptops with my brain as a laptop has always been an appendage for me. For most of the last decade I've kept my brain and most of the files on a local disk on the laptop and then had an external HDD with additional data as External Files linked from the brain. Since that was an encrypted drive, it was always possible to define the drive letter.

Currently i'm using the super versatile Thinkpad Yoga 12 with a 512GB m.2 SSD as c: drive and an encrypted 2TB Samsung 850 Pro SSD just dedicated to my megabrain (currently 1.6TB on the disk).

This configuration solved mulitiple issues. Now my megabrain is fully integrated onto one disk (with four separate identical backups in different locations), and the use of an SSD with highest spec Broadwell i7 processor totally eliminated the lags and hangs which had dogged my megabrain for years. One could draw a conclusion that the platter speed of HDDs wasn't quite up to the read needs of TheBrain, especially when activated heavily linked thoughts.

I think sibleyd's point is that the problem you have has a very robust solution already. If you have all the files in the same drive, then there is no more drive letter issue, correct. I have all my files always moved internally to TheBrain and don't have external file directories to worry about on my local drive. (But don't get me started on the issue of shared drives... oh, already started on another post).

[Feature Request] Dropbox, GoogleDrive, OneDrive etc harmonization capability
I'm not sure how this would be best architected, but a few insights are clear to me now after nearly 10 years of increasing online collaboration:
  1. There ain't no getting away from collaborative tools online of increasing variety and annoyance!
  2. The friction push of TheBrain onto unsuspecting colleagues is high compared to the uptake pull the majority of other linear collaborative platforms enjoy (Dropbox, Evernote, Basecamp, BusinessOne etc).
  3. The resultant observation of the megabrain I have nurtured still never fails to amaze over the 20 years creation of what is effectively a single massively integrated dataset. Perhaps that initial reaction is part of the issue, establishing perceived barriers to adoption.
In parallel to the above, my team is currently in a procurement discussion for our online database / repository of a significant amount of curated technical data across many domains. We have the budget for a full TeamBrain deployment with local server option but the residual barrier to adoption appears to be the combination of (perhaps perceived) factors:
  • data isolation / silo
  • lack of initial interface logic (blank plex syndrome)
  • the limitations of complex relational database queries. I've posted recommendations for boolean queries in years gone by, which may be more appropriate in TB9
There is practically no-one I know who doesn't use Dropbox personally or professionally. Pretty much the same for Google tools (drive, email). Harlan, last time we met you shared some of your ideas of increasing third party tool integration and the possibility of using API interfaces. I can see TB9 is laying strong foundations for this and I can't stress strongly enough how much this could help new user adoption, not only as a bottom line boost for our favorite software team, but as an aid to allow existing TB users to create robust adoption in their circles.

I am now spending a significant percentage of braintime MANUALLY synchronizing data between my collaborative teams using various online tools and my own megabrain. I have separate identical copies of files in dropbox, copies in individual thoughts with the dropbox link also added. Thoughts are tagged with GoogleDoc, Dropbox, Basecamp or other tags for identification which is associated with a semi-systematic updating of files. I'm probably operating at around 30% efficiency on this activity, not having time to individually capture every new file in external collaborative locations. Perhaps some utilization of the old spider function needs to be resurrected, but applied not only to local directories but online repositories behind username accesses.

This issue is only going to increase in necessity and urgency in my view and is now less of a feature request but now a core system necessity. For the last 20 years of using TB we've been able to ignore it or kludge manual solutions to this issue. Now we're out of time. The balance of information flow in closed collaborative ecosystems is now as great as my own personal inputs into TB and the relevance of both is equal; however, the information integration remains at the opposite ends of the scale for these two information sources.

I know there have been several comments reflecting these sorts of integration requests and that the team is working on it, the very existence of TB9 is the foundation for this. Just throwing some more light on the matter.


[Feature Request] Local mhtml copy of webpage (#2051)
Would be very vlauable to have the ability to either drag link or local copy of a webpage into TB9. It would also be good to retroactively add weblinks in thoughts as local pages. Given the length of time many of us are using TheBrain, I find my brain outlasts the longevity of key websites.

I know this has been requested before. Evernote has it and it's not an overly complex feature, but a good one for the queue.


[Documented Issue] Error opening megabrain copy
Thanks Harlan, I see where it is now. Was just a few attachements, thanks!

A data integrity issue has been detected with this brain
I get the message 'A data integrity issue has been detected with this brain' flashing in the menu bar on my newly opened megabrain. Sending link to rather large output file to support for reference.

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