I have a need to track many different industry consortiums.   Each of these organizations has a defined set of information, organized as children below them.   Use of outlines makes setting up the children on a new organization (thought) quite easy.  

A Simplistic example organization:

XYZ Alliance (thought

  • Charter (Child)
  •  Executive Summary & Abstract
  • Legal
    • Membership Agreements
    • IP Policy
    • Engagement Rules
    •  Public & Private Review Policy
    •  Voting Policy
  • Members list
  • Work Groups...
  •  etc-many multiple levels deep

The Brain does a good job of allowing rapid access to this information.   The Problem however, is that it becomes difficult when there are perhaps 12 to 40 other organizations like the "XYZ Alliance", all with the same children.  So, say I'm working on a spec for Bluetooth, which references one from IEEE.  Both Bluetooth and IEEE are organization thoughts,  but have different IP Policies. I link the Bluetooth Spec to the Bluetooth IP Policy that governs it, but also want to link to the IEEE IP Policy which governs the referenced spec.   I create a jump and type in "IP Policy",  and see a list showing 40 "IP Policy" items the system found, like this: "IP Policy  <  Legal".

This gives me no ability to see which one I'm looking for.  So far, I have not found a reasonable way to do this in the Brain.   Any suggestions or help?    The Brain is good at managing data, seems like it must have away to do this.

I do something similar - all of my accounts have the same basic outline of information (contacts, closed orders, etc).

I solved this issue using the comma trick... so before each outline item - it contains the company name.

So I have Company A, Contacts; Company A, Closed Orders; Company B, Contacts; Company B, Closed Orders

So if I need to link to a thought for a particular company - I can find it very quickly.

The downside is if the company name is long (I have 1 client that is a large law firm...) I can't see all the words because the instant search only shows so many letters.


I've used a variant of that option too, the problem is that  it works reasonably well for direct children of the thought, but not for children of children.  As the structure gets more involved, with multiple layers, this method begins to work less and less effectively.  

Thanks for highlighting that option in case I hadn't tried it yet. 


I'd create an additional child thought called ", All" for each of your organizations. Categorize all the descendants of OrgName, however deep, as first-level Children of "OrgName, All". Now your searches will show something like:
  • "IP Policy  <  Legal; Bluetooth, All"
  • "IP Policy  <  Legal; IEEE, All"                                         
  • Etc.
As a convention, I sort in the Plex by Thought Type. The thought ", All" would be of type "A-Subgroup" and colored deep gray, to sort near the top and be easily distinguishable from ordinary children.
First off this is functionality that should be part of an advanced search and result presentation screen.

A workaround would also be tags. Then you can search on multiple dimensions. The advanced search tab provides searching on multiple items, ie Names, Labels, Tags, etc, along with restrictions on thought type. That is if I'm understanding your issue correctly.

ottohirr wrote:
First off this is functionality that should be part of an advanced search and result presentation screen.

You're right. PB could go further to distinguish duplicate node names in reports. If those nodes fall under a replicated hierarchy it could:
  • Trace the ancestry further up the chain
  • Hide the levels that share names (i.e. Legal)
  • Display the nearest level that deviates (i.e. Bluetooth vs. IEE)
The display could use ellipses to hide duplicate paths:

IP Policy  <  ...Bluetooth
IP Policy  <  ...IEEE

or perhaps a count of the number of generations hidden:

IP Policy  <  (1) Bluetooth
IP Policy  <  (1) IEEE

dyslucksia wrote:
... need is a breadcrumb chain in Reports, ... to indicate hierarchy.

That would be helpful.

First issue is to be able to have a better, xpath like and/or regexp on name, along with 'of type exactly', or 'of type and any parent', or 'of type and any child type', searching. (Think of class hierarchies, a 'cat' is an 'animal', so one could specify either more general or more specific. Tags in the advanced search helps in being able to cut orthogonally across the thought domain. There is so much implied information in linkages, but limited methods of searching on that information.

Presentation would be the other part.

As a simple example, I would like to "blank" the plex and say, "give me all the thoughts having a tag of 'xyz' value - and it would show those thoughts and if they were related, there would be a link between them, if not they would simply stand alone in the plex...  that should be a simple minimum.

It should be a simple manner in which one could define a template of how the presentation of search results is presented.  As some have suggested they have named their thoughts in a specific manner so as to see context. It should be possible to turn on a template of search results presentation in which the user specifies something like
or like what is now presented

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