Some dashboard-like extensions and 'overviews' for org roam

I had written a little package called Delve to enhance the experience of “browsing” or “collecting” org roam notes (which I like to call Zettel). It’s basically a list application, where you can search the database and insert its results in the same buffer, like opening a directory in dired.

Since V2 is now taking over, I feel that this approach is not working anymore. If you can have result sets with thousand nodes (=Zettel), it does not make sense to list them in a buffer.

On the other hand, I feel the need to have some kind of “entry point” or “dashboard”, and I am sometimes dreaming of a simple way to collect notes by quickly adding them on a stack (which was one of the basic functionalities of the soon-to-be-outdated package mentioned above). But then, I feel that org roam links can most easily and most powerfully handled in org mode buffers, which is actually what I do when I collect stuff and work with my notes. And it works fine.

So my question is: Do you guys see any need for a kind of “dashboard” entry point, or something to explore the Zettelkasten, and what exactly do you think would be needed? Do you miss some functionality of that sort, and how would you want to integrate it into your workflow? I need some ideas to move Delve to the next level, or to abandon it. Interested in your thoughts!

I have personally found index notes to be pretty effective for this. An index note is basically a not that doesn’t have its own content, its only purpose is to link to other notes. I use them to create entry points into different parts of my notes. The advantage of these manual indexes is that I can put some text around each link, and curate them so that only relevant links are there.

Of course to create index notes I have to browse my notes, so I could definitely see a use case for a package that makes it easier to find stuff.

So you are thinking of an initial listing of all index notes, right? OK, that’s a point. Something like “common entry points”.

I don’t think so? An initial listing of index notes could also be an index note. It’s more that in order to create an index note I need to find what should go into the index note, so having a tool that helps with that would be useful.

But how would you collect these links? Won’t you just insert them in the newly create note file? That’s what I too when I collect notes for a project. I see no real need for an extra tool.

Maybe we are talking past each other?

As I understand your package, it provides functionality for browsing your notes by using some custom searches and generally providing useful meta data. I think that could help me find notes that I want to put in my index files. Yes, I will just insert links to the interesting notes in a new note file, but I have to find which notes to link to first which is where something like your package could come into play.

You understand the current package perfectly, and my point is exactly that this kind of “searching” does not seem to be feasible anymore. Searching becomes quite complex: “search for all notes matching xy in the title, tagged with z, but not with y”, etc. And most of all, searching can be done easily in the completion interface (I can even negate tags using orderless completion style). So it does not look really helpful to me anymore to do some searching in any other way than using the completion UI.

Of course, if you still think that would be useful, I’m glad to hear that; this kind of feedback is exactly what I am looking for. I might just be lacking imagination for a use case.

Hm, alright yeah I think I understand your point.

One thing that stood out to me, that could fit well with upstream (i.e. org-roam) is the thing that indicates how many links and backlinks a note has. I think that could fit well into the backlink buffer (at least how it looks like in v1, but I think it should apply to v2 too).

The new backlinks buffer for V2 is far superior than the older. So here too, the “default” tools seem to be sensible and no need to replicate.