Quick tagging (adding multiple org roam tags)

Org-roam newbie here. I never used Roam itself, I don’t know how Org-roam really compares to it, but my initial reaction - it is truly fantastic. I only regret not trying it out sooner.

I already started building my “slip-box” - linking notes, using tagging, roam-capture templates, etc.

One thing though I can’t figure out, and I’m sure somebody already has - how to quickly add multiple tags (#+roam_tags) to a note.

I’ve been using org-roam-tag-add, but it only adds one tag at a time, I wonder if there’s an equivalent to org-set-tags-command (vanilla Org interface for regular tags) but for roam_tags?

  • I tried typing multiple tags at once, separating them by spaces , e.g. “foo bar”, that just creates a single, multi-word tag;
  • I tried using : (like for vanilla Org tags) - that didn’t work;
  • I tried even using comma, that’s the default value of org-roam-tag-separator, that didn’t work either;

Welcome to org-roam!
I’m sorry but I don’t have an answer to your question, but I suggest you may want to use links to empty org-roam notes instead of roam_tags. The latter are better used very sparingly, for example for things such as note types that require special handling by the code. Personally I only use a handful of roam_tags (mainly by placing notes in sub-directories) and never need to add multiple tags to a note.

Can you elaborate on that a bit more, please? I’m not sure what you meant.

I want to categorize and group my notes (primarily for search), just like vanilla Org does with the regular org-tags, and I thought roam_tags is the right tool for that. I guess it’s just “yet another way”. But what’s the canonical way of grouping notes in the roam database?

How do you folks search for related notes? In regular org-mode parlance, I’d just tag the headings and then use org-agenda, but maybe I’m just stuck in the “old way”, and the slip-box model doesn’t really need that kind of grouping? Sorry if it sounds dumb, but I’m very new to the zettelkasten/slip-box model and never used Roam or Zotero or anything similar before. And I’m having a hard time finding precise “cookbook recipes” for workflows with Org-roam. Of course, there’s no single workflow that fits everyone, but for someone like me (who’s new to org-roam) would be great if there were a few recommendations. But to be fair, I had to initially deal with the same problem when I was learning Org-mode.

I’m not sure this answers your question but to illustrate the most basic use case for org-roam: let’s say you’re on a org-roam file peer_gynt.org. You can add a link to theater_play.org using org-roam-insert as:

#+title: Peer Gynt

Peer Gynt is a [[file:theater_play.org][Theater Play]] written by Ibsen.

Clicking the link you are now in theater_play.org:

#+title: Theater Play

Depending on you configuration, you’ll see a pop-up buffer to your right containing the list of all backlinks to Theater Play: Peer Gynt, Hamlet, etc… You can toggle the presence of this buffer using M-x org-roam.

This would be the most idiomatic way: a “tag” is no different from any other note.

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Holy mother of Alan Turing. I am an imbecile. Of course, when anything can be linked to each other, one can just use links. And suppose you need to combine the categories. In that case, they can be interlinked, so for example: if I’m studying events of different times, I can have zettels titled: Paleolithic, Climate, and Species and if I need to “group tag” a thing I can just create a zettel titled Paleolithic Climate that links further out to Climate and Paleolithic.

That is so awesome. Zettelkasten, just like many intelligent solutions, is so elegant in its simplicity. Thank you for helping me see that.

Maybe you would like to use my delve tool (available on github: GitHub - publicimageltd/delve: Delve into your org-roam zettelkasten.). It’s expressly made for tagging many notes in a row, and for using Zettel for creating hierarchies. It’s still beta beta, but it works.

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@public_image_limited wow. this looks amazing. I’m definitely gonna try it at some point.

IMO, it doesn’t beat “group tags” because not only do you have to foresee combination of categories that will interest you in the future and create the relevant link (as opposed to coming up with a combination of tags on the spot and looking to see what comes up). i.e., #animal (group tag) + #black (from the group tag #color) to return a node like “Black cat” among others. You can’t summon information in a Zettelkasten, you can only stumble upon it or navigate in its direction until you eventually get there. I wonder if there is a way to group tags in the style of org-mode but across your whole database in org-roam.