I've been waiting quite a while for filtration on thought & link types in pb4pro, and I continue to wait.  I've also taken note of suggestions about saving the state of an expanded view for later restoration.  But I've never read a suggestion of what I would hope for in the pro product, so here it is:
  1. As architects often define a unique model and various views of that model (model/view/controller, or MVC pattern), in pb4pro, we would define for a given brain various named plexes.  When opening a brain, a preference setting would indicate whether to show the default full plex or to show a chosen named plex.
  2. A user-defined plex would have a name, as a thought has a name.  Saving/restoring a named plex would cause to be saved/restored:
    • A list of thought types to be shown (or hidden).  The full plex shows all thought types.
    • A list of individual thoughts to be shown (or hidden) with the location on the canvas of each anchored thought.  The list for the full plex is empty.
    • A definition of the link types to show (or to hide) between those thoughts and whenever pairs of shown thoughts would have such link types between them.  The full plex shows all link types.
    • A list of individual links to be shown (or hidden) when the corresponding thought pairs are shown.  The list for the full plex is empty.
    • The font setting.  The full plex has the pb4 default font setting.
    • The distance between thoughts setting.  The full plex has the default pb4 distance between thoughts setting.
These capabilities -- together with the ability to save, load, export, import, and select based on named plex -- would finally give me the base functionality I've been seeking.  Now, I can maintain a brain to be a unified body of knowledge and plexes to be presentation-oriented subsets of that body of knowledge.  No longer would I have to maintain brains with redundant thoughts to show different aspects of the same body of knowledge.

Notes could optionally be separated into pure xml for the knowledge base, and css/xsl can be stored in plexes (with the current default css for the full plex).

When I build a brain, I don't want to presuppose a particular use of that knowledge, but rather just the knowledge itself, in the form of thoughts, links, and thought/link types.  I'll craft named plexes according to the intended uses to which they'll be put.

You like?  Other ideas?


I like the idea, I've been also thinking about additional "dimensions" or "views" in order to easier focus on certain aspects of the brain you are looking at. Specifically what config-options would be required to do that - I haven't thought about yet - but your list looks like a good starting point for discussion

2b: are you really saying you'd want to specifically select individual thoughts? I think the selection should be by Thought-Type only (or maybe also by Tag?!)

I think the type lists would be the main lists to use.  I'd generally not use the thought & link lists, but I thought it might be best to allow them for fringe purposes I haven't conceived yet -- maybe for those major parentless link thoughts or whatever.  It might also be nice to use as an exception list -- like all "vendor" thought types except Microsoft or whatever.

btw, I think you could use named plexes to get dimensionality, but you'd probably run out of attributes of a thought or link.  If they would add tags to the criteria, that might extend the metaphor a lot.  I haven't really thought about that.



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