Collapse/Expand Notes like Children

I would like to suggest that notes are collapsed and expanded exactly like children nodes. Meaning, that if I collapse the children of a node, its note is also collapsed.

This would preferably be a settings option that toggles between collapsible notes and the current behavior.

Currently, I’m using notes to write any longer texts and anything multi-line. This makes my notes quite long and they prevent me from collapsing my “notes” to a concise overview, which is very important to me.

So I’m using dummy nodes to simulate this collapsing behavior:

By the way. Sorry for the confusing use of “node” and “note”. :blush:


Now with gifs: :smile:

I was thinking of exactly this behavior:

And if there are no children, you should still be able to collapse the node:


No problem, that’s perfectly clear.

I’m thinking could you set notes to only show the first line? Or do you only want it collapsed when the node itself is collapsed?

We want to help but this use case sounds niche (I might be wrong). You could easily fix this by changing the structure, e.g. put the long note under a child node called “Additional notes” or something.

What do you think?

I was thinking about the second option. That notes are always collapsed and expanded with its parent node.

For me, notes are as important as (children) nodes, so I never hide them and always let them show completely.

Personally, I find it very elegant and pleasing to have only one mechanism to collapse notes and children nodes.

This is exactly what I’m doing now with my example of the dummy node “—” from above; so I can collapse the “note” by collapsing “Heading 1”. Actually, my only complaint with this structure is that it wastes horizontal and vertical space; especially on mobile.

If I’m the only one wanting this, I’m happy to continue using my structure of dummy sub-nodes. I thought, maybe there are more people who want this behavior and it’s easy to implement. If not, it won’t change the tremendous benefits I already get from Dynalist. :smile:

Right, screen space is very precious on mobile. We recently made the toolbar slimmer but that can only help so much.

Do you only use Dynalist on mobile? You can insert newlines inside a node (not note) with Ctrl+Shift+Enter. Would that help?

Thank you @Erica.

We can put this request on hold until more people want this behavior. :blush:

I’m not that unhappy with the current state, as it may seem.

And I have to revise my statement of wasted horizontal space: Apparently, the width of the note is the same for the currently zoomed-in parent and its first layer of children:

How I use Dynalist

I use Dynalist on my mobile Android, via web-browser, and via Linux standalone Dynalist.

Newlines in nodes are a good idea. When I started Dynalist, I didn’t use notes but this method. But it has two disadvantages:

  • I often forgot the shortcut and accidentally made a new node, and
  • pasting a longer text block with newlines, creates several nodes instead of one large one.

So I changed to using notes and got used to them.

I’m really lazy to zoom into nodes. Usually I expand so many sub-layers until it gets awkward enough to zoom in. :sweat_smile:

That looks wrong… the right side should be aligned, at least that would look more “correct”. I’ll take a look at that and see if I can fix it.

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I’ve just seen that @Vincent_Tang suggested to toggle the visibility status of single notes in this [thread] (Option to alter note-reveal options):

@Vincent_Tang, could you comment on my idea to include notes in the expanding/collapsing mechanism of nodes?

I was thinking that if a node has no children but only a note, we still handle it as if it had children: collapsing/expanding by usual mouse-clicks or keyboard shortcuts.

Would this help you, Vincent? Or have you found a different solution for your needs? Either way, I’m interested in your thoughts.

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I agree with you on using bulletpoint’s “note” for multiline text, this is how I’ve been storing long formatted paragraphs of text this way

The only problem I had with it is I can’t copy+paste large snippets of code / text at a time. I’ve just simply decided to throw that all on github instead and manage it there.

For longer spans of writing I decided to just try something like medium or wordpress where I can write markdown naturally

suggestion for handling long formatted blocks of text

@Viktor_Papara I’m not 100% what the solution you proposed was even after reading everything above. But I do understand the problem that you’ve outlined.

I personally would like something like this instead:

Bulletpoint’s “Notes” are nice that it gives you more a traditional microsoft word doc / markdown feel of writing. Bulletpoints by themselves don’t really do this

By letting users add a --- to collapse bulletpoint’s note, it makes lengthier text spans more flexible. They can append information afterwards so you know what information you collapsed.

Unlike bulletpoints though, these --- follow the following rules:

  • Can only be 1 level deep at most
  • It collapses information to the end of bulletpoint’s note, OR until it finds another ---
  • An note’s children thats collapsed has some identifier on it like a (+) sign on it

I’m sure this is doable with an implementation like Piotrs Power Pack

@Vincent_Tang Thank you for your ideas. Looks like we both have notes that get unwieldy by being larger than the screen size.

Your idea with collapse markers in notes is even better than mine. :slight_smile: This would effectively promote notes to a sort of node that can have children that can be collapsed individually. And I do like the idea of a dedicated syntax for the collapse markers because it mimics a “code folding” mechanism from code editors.

Piotrs Power Pack looks great and powerful. Only, I’m not using any plug-ins because I want to work on different platforms and the standalone Dynalist apps.

My solution with the current Dynalist features is to split up longer text into notes of several nodes. Then I can group those nodes and collapse them via the usual node collapsing mechanism. But this adds a lot of dummy node structure just to implement the collapsing feature for the notes.

Then I thought that maybe there is a low hanging fruit, a small change in the Dynalist features that helps with long notes. And I came up with letting the notes be collapsed with the node children:

Admittedly, this wouldn’t help you with single huge notes, but it’s only a small change (hopefully :sweat_smile:).

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+1 for collapse/expand individual notes. I just started using Dynalist (and it’s awesome!), and have found myself wanting this feature as well. I’ve adapted to using @Viktor_Papara’s --- “dummy node” technique. I’m fine with continuing this for now. Just thought I would voice my desire for this feature as well. :slight_smile:

This is not an edge case. It’s driving me crazy right now. And I see that there is an option to set Show, 1st Line or Hide. This is also not good. I can’t understand why a note would not collapse just like everything else does.

Please can a note be just like a node except maybe a node-note can’t have children? I understand that may be this is a code limitation. But it seems so weird that there is this great UX scheme of being able expand or collapse with a click and then there are notes. Completely different. 1st Line and Hide are not good solutions.

This UX is completely frustrating. I still have to double nest notes just so that I can have them function like expected. I guess that’s probably my only option.

When I try 1st Line or hide sometimes when I click it zooms to the note, sometimes it open with my cursor at the beginning and sometimes when I click it takes my cursor to the end of the note. All happening within a few millimeters of my finger clicking to the left or right. Can you imagine opening a Word doc or a pdf and the default is for you to start at the bottom of the document? Or for the Open command to sometimes start at the top and sometimes start at the bottom? That would be crazy.

So to recap:

  • a note should open and close just like any other node, as if it had children.

  • a note should perhaps not allow it’s own children

  • the current 1st line / hide options break UX consistency and have resulted in much frustration.

  • and 1st line / hide options are not very user friendly

+1 for tap to collapse note on Android