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RE: Differences between Org-Mode and Hyperbole

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: Differences between Org-Mode and Hyperbole
Date: Mon, 4 Jul 2016 22:26:47 +0000 (UTC)

>   > The beauty is that only that specific line has to contain the TODO
>   > information. The whole buffer is not a TODO list. If you think along
>   > those lines, org-mode has made it possible to have different major
>   > mode like behaviors in the same buffer.
> If you want to keep a todo list in the same file as your code, and
> have special editing commands, you'd want to be able to do that in any
> kind of file, with any major mode.  Not only in files for which you
> use Org mode.  In C files, and Lisp files, and LaTeX files, and HTML
> files, and so on.
> Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think Org mode doesn't do that.
> So what we would want is a general package for having different major
> modes in different parts of a buffer.  I believe there is at least one
> such project under way.

Not to get into the meat of this discussion about Org mode (which
seems already to have drifted from the subject of RMS's original
message), but here's a quick comment about TODO items.

Judging by the Org doc (http://orgmode.org/manual/TODO-Items.html):

  Org mode does not maintain TODO lists as separate documents.
  Instead, TODO items are an integral part of the notes file,
  because TODO items usually come up while taking notes!  With
  Org mode, simply mark any entry in a tree as being a TODO item.
  In this way, information is not duplicated, and the entire context
  from which the TODO item emerged is always present.

  Of course, this technique for managing TODO items scatters them
  throughout your notes file. Org mode compensates for this by
  providing methods to give you an overview of all the things that
  you have to do.

  * TODO basics: Marking and displaying TODO entries
  * TODO extensions: Workflow and assignments
  * Progress logging: Dates and notes for progress
  * Priorities: Some things are more important than others
  * Breaking down tasks: Splitting a task into manageable pieces
  * Checkboxes: Tick-off lists

Org mode thus lets you mark bits of a notes file as TODO items,
and it gives you easy ways to change their state, including their
progress and priorities.  It lets you easily split (and I presume
combine) items.  In this it is a bit like a workflow application.
It also apparently provides ways to filter and display TODO items.

The TODO items are bits of structured text - essentially markup.

I'll mention another approach that Emacs offers, for at least some
of this: bookmarks.  Not that bookmarks are specifically designed
for this, but they do offer you some similar features, with this

Bookmarks are saved separately from the file, so they do not require
(or take advantage of, out of the box) a particular text structure.

To get some of what is described for Org TODO items, Bookmark+ can
help.  The various bits of metadata that you can associate with a
TODO item - priority, class, dates, associated other items or other
TODO lists, etc. can be associated with a TODO-item bookmark using
Bookmark+ tags,which are a bit different from Org tags.


Bookmark tags are delicious-style: they are arbitrary strings (or
arbitrary strings associated with arbitrary Lisp values).  They
create, in effect, ad hoc sets of bookmarks, which you can use to
organize them.  It is easy to add, remove, and edit tags for a
bookmark, or for several bookmarks together.

(You can also create specialized types of bookmarks, in effect
associating any metadata you like in a way you define.)

A bookmark can also have an associated annotation, which with
Bookmark+ can be external: a separate file, a URL, or another
bookmark of metadata.  Or it can be internal: included as part
of the bookmark it annotates.  In Bookmark+, the default mode
for viewing and editing an annotation is Org-mode.


There are various other possibilities for organizing and
displaying sets of bookmarks.

Bookmarks do not replace Org TODO features.  I don't think
that Org TODO or Org mode replaces a solid multiple-major-mode
feature (TBD) - or vice versa, for that matter.

Just wanted to point to bookmarks as a way to do some of the
same things without needing to use markup.  And yes of course,
there are uses for markup (or more generally, structured text)
that really do require a specific text structure (aka schema).

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