What would you like to see in a Dynalist extension / plugin?

Hey all,

I’ve been wresting with an idea of providing an extended interface / functionality / feature collection for Dynalist as a separate plugin / app for a while now. I’m infinitely grateful to the creators of this app, but given their shift in focus towards Obsidian (which is more than justified, in my opinion), I feel that it would make a bit more sense to take care of some of the matters personally.

To me, the most crucial missing feature is a notifier for the upcoming calendar events. I love the fact that I’m able to organize my whole life in one collection of simple lists - but not being able to remind myself of the important matters coming up once I have organized everything properly - and even decided the most appropriate moment to keep in mind - upsets me terribly.

The second, mostly convenience-related issue, has to do with how slow the mobile app tends to get once any list in focus becomes reasonable large. With the amount of ideas that tend to appear in my mind, the need to keep them out of my head gets as strong as it can be - but suffering through the lag of unresponsive typing is not something I’m willing to tolerate. For now I have to resort to writing my thoughts down in a separate, list-less editor, before importing them into Dynalist and manually splitting the lines into bullet points in the way that would make most sense. Which, in time, shifts, from being fairly unenjoyable, to a downright pain in the ***.

I’ll be making my own app to cover these pet peeves of mine for myself, but I’m curious - is any of you triggered by something else, which perhaps could be fairly trivial to implement? It might require a bit more polish before the public release, but most things can be arranged.


I’m not planning to release any buggy alpha versions, and polishing anything prior to the final publishing stage might require a significant time commitment - so if it ever gets publicly released, it’s not going to be free. At the same time, Idon’t think it’ll be fair to capitalize on missing features through a bypass of the Premium subscription of the original service, which keeps paying for the hosting / cloud / all the other bills the team has.

The minimum final price I have in mind for whatever might come out at the end is at least $5 (paid once or monthly - depending on the features required, which might or might not need separate cloud hosting) + $10 for Dynalist’s Pro (skippable for those, who have purchased it already). Do let me know if the features you have in mind are only nice-to-have, but you’re not ready and/or willing to commit to any kind of financial expense for them - I understand if you might not be able to afford anything beyond what you’re currently paying, but I’m in no position to dedicate a bunch of my time for the development of features which aren’t going to help my cover any of my own bills right now.

To the team:

Once again, thanks a ton for a beautiful app - and I hope that the overall idea doesn’t sound horrendous to you. If it does and you’d rather be the only source of any significant functionality, implemented for your creation, we’ll wrap things up right there and then.

First of all good luck, that sounds more complicated than I have the willpower for.

But I have questions.

How would you solve lag? The fact that dynalist loads the entire document into memory is what makes a lot of it’s cool functionality possible. So, the lag is a limitation of the javascript engine you use, the RAM in your phone, and the processor. That would be chromiums v8 on chrome, edge, and in the electron app. And it’d be webkit in iOS. The point being, how can one person optimize it further?

Second question - have you tried other outliners? Workflowy, Moo.do, and Logseq come to mind. I’d suggest at tinkering with those, to get ideas, before starting a big dynalist app project.

Third point - just my workaround for the reminders. Create a free google account with a fake name, sync calendar, and in calendar settings tell it to email you 10 minutes, 1 hour, and 1 day before and event. Set gmail to forward the emails to your primary email (perhaps office365). Get the google calendar .ical link and add it to you primary calendar like O365 or iphone calendar. Use IFTTT to further generate reminders from that .ical on it’s hundreds of other services. This is how I get reminders from dynalist, personally.

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To answer the title question - this list is a good ranking of the features we desire https://trello.com/b/z0HxDPNo/dynalist-roadmap

Well, the Rome wasn’t built in a day, as they say.

I only get the lag on the mobile app, actually. If they’re shipping the whole WebView inside of it, that explains why it tends to get so slow. My intention was to split this extension into smaller individual components, with each compiled down to as-native-as-it-can-be code. React Native w/ Hermes or better - Flutter. In the case of the lag when it comes down to inserting new items, having a simple text box with a MarkDown outline, parsed and inserted item by item into the main DL tree would do the trick for my problem. I don’t really care about the lag when reviewing the tree - it’s the insertion of new nodes that drives me crazy with how unresponsive it tends to get.

I have tried Workflowy, didn’t like it that much. The overall style feels off. But I’ve never heard about the other two. Thanks for mentioning them - I’ll definitely take a look.

Quite a hack - too many pieces in the middle for my liking, though. I wrote my own notifier for W10 in the meantime, which picks up on both the upcoming reminders, as well as the tag for the reminders in advance, which for me looks like this: “#R-h-1-m-15-10-5” (Remind 1 Hour, as well as 15, 10 and 5 Minutes before the event). A better (proper) solution would most likely require a separate storage for all the events to come - along with a simple Dynalist-style UI reminder panel for manually setting these options. Which is why I wanted to hear not only what people generally want - but also the things they believe they need ASAP. I know for me the reminders made the difference between forgetting about an important commitment I made entirely and keeping myself on track. The split screen would be nice to have, but it’s certainly not a deal breaker.

I’ll study that a bit closer regardless, though - thanks again for the feedback.

If you’ve got an Android, you can use make use of Quick Dynalist. It’s an excellent tool built upon the API that is offered by Dynalist.

Compared to the official Dynalist app (which is still in Beta, don’t know why), Quick Dynalist works like a charm. The UI/UX is rather different and I don’t have any lags when it comes to inserting new items or scrolling up and down. I use it every day.

The only downside is that the features are very limited compared to what you can have in the official app. But for my use case, it suits well. And it offers also a widget for your mobile homescreen.

Quick Dynalist - Apps on Google Play

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I second Quick Dynalist, awesome app.

It has a home screen widget icon which you click, type something, then click add item, or optionally click the dropdown of favorite destinations. Zero perceptible lag. Minimal clicks. Very efficient for adding ideas on the go.

If adding items, I highly recommend using the API rather than loading the document at all. It’s much faster. I often use my smartwatch - I hold the button on the watch, say “add 1 2 3”, and go on with my day. When I am back at my laptop, 1 2 3 is reliably in my inbox. In the background is an IFTTT recipe between assistant and webhooks (dynalist api)

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