I was recently playing around with a project management program called airtable. It is basically a fancy online spreadsheet with extra task / project management features. In terms of comparing to dynalist, a single row on an airtable spreadsheet can roughly be thought of as equivalent to a bullet point (e.g. a single task).
From playing around with this I realised one major feature airtable had over dynalist for life management (of course dynalist has many, many advantages) was the ability to assign customisable named numerical variables to an item (e.g. a number between 1 and 100). Any time I want to use numbers I turn away from Dynalist and use a spreadsheet. Numerical variables can of course be used in so many ways: to indicate completion, difficulty, size, number of hours it should take to complete, the cost in dollars … well anything really …
I think a similar feature would be hugely valuable in Dynalist and could transform the usability for more advanced work that one would typically use a spreadsheet for.
So what I am imagining is either via the right click menu or via a trigger (like ! triggers the date function, perhaps another punctuation mark could trigger the opening of the ‘variable creator’ dialogue function).
This variable creator would allow you to enter the name of the variable and the number (and perhaps the unit e.g. ‘hrs’ ‘$’ etc) - that’s it. So people could call the variable ‘hours’ and put in the number of hours the item should take to complete, they could call the variable ‘dollars’ and put in the number of dollars it cost. This variable would be associated with that bullet point.
So this would almost be like a secondary tag system, except with numbers instead of strings.
If you opened these variables up to the API for developers, there is unlimited potential for what could be done. Further, as they just constitute a name and a number, they really shouldn’t add much ‘data bulk’ to dynalist at all.
Once these are in place, it would be amazing if you could get parent nodes to sum or average these variables from children (e.g. total cost for a project from summing children nodes), but perhaps this would be best left to third party developers.
I really think this feature could take Dynalist to the next level of functionality and allow dynalist to compete with spreadsheets / databases even when numbers are involved.
Thanks for reading!