Automatically create a research container?


Was just wondering if there was a way to automatically create a research container when a new draft container is created.

I create an outline of my paper by adding new containers in the draft section. Any research related to that draft container gets put into the research container. I just find myself having to manually create a research container and placing it in the right position evertime I add a new topic (i.e. draft container) to my paper.

Any help would be much appreciated.

There isn’t a way to do that. However if your notes are so bound to the structure of the draft, might putting them directly in the draft be an easier approach? That is what the “Include in Compile” checkbox is for, in the Inspector. By default it is on, so the assumption that everything you put into the Draft will be visible text is typically valid, but you can make the software work another way for you. Of course, if your research involves PDF files and other material that solution won’t work for you.

There are other approaches you could take as well. References, also in the Inspector, allow you to establish importance between two items in the binder, no matter where they are. Growing a habit of maintaining and using those would allow you to sort your research on its own merit, rather than conforming its organisation to the draft. That approach would be better for some types of work than others, particularly those where one research item might be used from multiple places in the Draft.

But perhaps these two could be combined? Then you would use Reference links for PDF and other material of that nature, and non-included notes and imported documents embedded in the Draft.

Brilliant, thats a perfect solution. I will place all my text research in the drafts container and choose what I compile with the inspector. I will then use references to link to any files or other relevant attachments.

I think you’ll find it works well. I use this method myself so often that I have built a document template type for embedded notes. If you started with a template, you should already have a container with a blue ‘T’ in it, for templates. If you do not, you can make a new folder anywhere you like (I prefer below research but not within it), then use the Project menu’s “Set Selection as Templates Folder” menu command to mark it with the blue ‘T’. Now anything you put in here will show up under the green plus button if you hold the mouse button on it, or in the Projects/New From Template/ sub-menu.

As for the prototype itself, of course “Include in Compile” should be switched off. I prefer a different icon so it stands out from the draft material in all views. Documents/Change Icon/Notes/Yellow Notepad is what I usually use, for example. Since you are applying this to the template, all new items you create from it will use that icon as well. Next, I change the font so that it’s obvious I am in a note context. I use sans serif for that (since I write in fixed width fonts otherwise). The trick here is to use Format/Font/Remember Typing Style if you change the font. That tells a blank document to not otherwise discard your font settings.

Now, the top template in the list will get a special shortcut, Shift-Opt-Cmd-N. Use that to make a new note instead of a regular document.

Even if you don’t want to get fancy with the icons and font changes, you can still make a template that does nothing more than have the Include in Compile switched off by default.