Frittmann
I have been tinkering with various versions of PersonalBrain for a while now, but have finally decided to get myself properly organized. I am using PersonalBrain v5.0.3.6 for a personal ontology. I have created individual brains for the major domains of my ontology, so that I can take a relevant part of my ontology with me on a USB thumb drive. For instance, with my academic studies, I don't need immediate access to my Family brain, but I do need access to my Education brain. This allows me to further compartmentalize and isolate. I have linked the various domains of my ontology through an indexing brain at the centre, and the link thoughts each have attachments that point to the next relevant brain, all of which reside normally on my home fileserver, but can be quickly copied individually onto a USB thumb drive.

While this all works fine at present, I am concerned about the possible ramifications of moving the entire collection of brains to another computer. I have read the post by Spacenexus in reply to a question from Jacques about absolute and relative addressing, and have also read the threads that Spacenexus suggested. However, the solution of moving the documents into the brain is not feasible in my situation, as a brain cannot become a document within another brain's Thought Folder, especially if there is a link thought going in both directions!

As an example, the Home Thought of my indexing brain at the centre of this group of brains is my own name, and under that thought are thoughts for each major domain in my ontology, such as Family, Friends, Employment, Education, Faith, Finance, Goals, Interests, etc. Each of these thoughts in the indexing brain has a link attachment that links to the relevant brain for the respective major domain of my ontology. In theory I could locate each of these brains in the Thought Folder of each respective thought. However, the problem comes when a major domain brain has a link back to the indexing brain. A subset cannot be a subset of itself!

The only way I can see around this is the request that Jacques made earlier about relative addressing. Does anyone else have a solution that would resolve this issue, without me having to lump all of my ontological domains back into a single brain? I want to maintain the compartmentalization and isolation that my current solution affords, while avoiding the possibility of having to re-address all of the inter-brain link thoughts if I move my brain collection to another computer with different drive letters.

Any thoughts?


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Darkstar
Why not? If you drag in the [brain].brain file into PB to make a shortcut, then you can indeed have subsets refer back to their parent brain. Having a child refer back to the owning parent isn't a problem.

Pathing, on the other hand, can be a problem. The pathing problem might be overcome by setting up a "drive letter" that maps down to your "brain" container. In other words, a share or network drive (for Windows). Then map that out to where you need for items to work. But that would be extra work to make viable when running off a USB.
-Darkstar
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Frittmann
Thank you both for your replies. Darkstar, I see where you are coming from as far as the technical ability for a child brain to refer back to the parent brain, but my concern was more about the referencing, which always seems to be absolute, whether the file referenced is within the Thought Folders or external. Moving a sub-brain into the Thought Folder of a parent brain doesn't seem to remedy this problem. I agree with dyslucksia on this.

As for the size issue that
Darkstar raised, I have only recently started my new brains under PB5 and can already see the bloat. That was why I set up my brain collection originally in segmented form. However, I am already finding problems with my original design. What happens when a thought lower down for the nearest link-thought needs to link to a thought in another brain? I may yet end up throwing the whole lot out and starting again with a single brain strategy.

Again, thanks for the replies. It has given me more to think about.
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Darkstar
If PB allowed for crosslinking of thoughts between brains, you wouldn't have any issue to worry about, other then the pathing issue. However, PB does not currently allow this (although it USED to, back in PB 3 and prior). I look forward to when it does.
-Darkstar
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jostber
Linking brains is quite popular over at Uservoice:

http://thebrain.uservoice.com/pages/4597-personalbrain/suggestions/70766-linking-brains

Hope that means something.


TheBrain 8.0.2.2 Slackware 14.2 KDE 4.10.3 Java 1.8 / (Windows 7)
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zenrain
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It might be, but ask yourselves why this hasn't been implemented years ago? It's because they don't want other applications to link into (call up) PB's Thoughts. PB wants to be boss dog wagging its own tail, not have its tail wagged by another dog. Yet it's quite happy to import mind maps, etc. Heck, we can't even (officially) create a URL attachment in our own brains to call up a thought in the same Brain, let alone another Brain.

That's quite a leap of logic there Dyslucksia...
It could also be that creating an api for a very complex database, as well as documentation and QA is an extensive task and will take quite a while to implement.
Importing another file format is much easier.

Windows 7
J-1.6.0_22
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OSX 10.6.3
Java SE 6
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Darkstar

dyslucksia wrote:
It might be, but ask yourselves why this hasn't been implemented years ago?

It was. PB version 1 through 3 could do this. We just LOST the ability when they rebuilt PB in Java in version 4.

I've discussed this before. There is zero reason for them not being able to provide this, as far as I can see. It should be fairly trivial to have PB start another instance in whatever brain at thought GUID. That's just parameter passing on startup. I think it would be a slightly more dev resource consuming to make it figure out that you are linking to a thought in the currently open brain, but even that wouldn't be a big deal.

I just don't think this have been high on the wish list. After all, TheBrain steers everyone to go with a "Everything in One Brain" use, and if it is all in one brain, you don't need to link to any other brain on that machine.
-Darkstar
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jostber
For me the "Everything In One Brain" solution is impossible because of the need and demand to separate work brains and my personal brain. This is both because of confidentiality and legal issues, but also because of privacy issues.

A possibility to link different brains would then be an optimal solution for this.
TheBrain 8.0.2.2 Slackware 14.2 KDE 4.10.3 Java 1.8 / (Windows 7)
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Darkstar
I completely understand jostber. And I know we have fellow users who need to have multiple brains as they have multiple clients and DO NOT want to have another client's data visible when dealing directly with a client. Linking between brains would be ideal for them as well.

Of course--- if we had USER DEFINED VIEWS then we could stick everything into just one brain, and use views to show ONLY the relevant info (project, client, work, etc).
-Darkstar
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jostber
User Defined Views would be a great feature of PB, that I would certainly use a lot. More on this in your previous thread here:

http://forums.thebrain.com/post?id=3234283&highlight=views





TheBrain 8.0.2.2 Slackware 14.2 KDE 4.10.3 Java 1.8 / (Windows 7)
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Frittmann
Well, it looks like I may well have to rethink my strategy on this after all, and possibly rejoin my brains back into a single file. Our member mbass has done me the great disservice  of introducing me to David Allen's book "Getting Things Done", and now I have been reassessing how I am going to structure my main brain, to bring it into line with the principles of GTD.

I am really grateful to mbass for bringing this to my attention at this stage, as I haven't invested too much time in my new brain yet, and can quite happily scrap it for a more effective model.

As I now begin restructuring my brain again, I would really appreciate any further insights that people may have to offer, particularly in implementing the various features of PB5 with GTD, such as, how best to leverage the tags in PB5 for maximum effect in the GTD model. I have read Shelley Hayduk's post and will definitely be using tags for the contexts as she suggests. However, I am thinking that there must also be a use for tags to denote the stage of the GTD workflow model that a particular thought is at. The question is, for this should I be using a tag, a thought-type, or a parent thought?

Please bear with my if my question seem simplistic. I am learning both about PersonalBrain and also about GTD, and trying to marry the two together as I learn about them both.

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