Reciprocal reference when using "/" commands in entities

“/” commands have really been well developed at this early stage by you guys, congrats! But I think there is a big piece still needed to complete the feature - reference back to the originating entity where the “/” refers to another. This is a big feature of a lot of other apps, including TargetProcess itself, Aha, Jira, even ClickUp does this.

I’d also like to see “/” commands work with full functionality in comments, wrote about that here: "/" commands in Comments - really missing them

Thanks guys and eager to see the continued evolution of “/” in Fibery!

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Ah neat. Something like a “Referenced In” list.

Hey @rickcogley, yes that’s exactly right. If you’ve used Jira or Aha, this is a cornerstone of the way they are set up. We have a lot already going in Fibery with the related fields between entities, but with the ability to use the “/” to quick add, this gives even more capability. For example, you don’t need to set up first a certain type of relation field, which limits what can show to just the selected type, and not all types across Fibery. The “/” gives you access to all, and that’s very useful!

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haven’t used those, but it’s a feature in other systems I’ve used :slight_smile:

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Hey guys, sorry this may be poor form to comment back in a post I started, but this is a real big one for me, so just curious if you would be able to share with the community when you may have it? In particular, when converting bulleted lists to entities, it would be terrific for the entity that is created to pick up the reference to where it came from. Otherwise, we may have entities that get into sprints one at a time, and you can’t easily see that they started out as part of an outline in one particular entity’s notes.

Thanks guys!

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I think this would be an amazing addition and make the entities more graph-like. I can see benefits of this for simple things like meeting notes or minutes where you may want to reference specific tasks/actions/projects and then be able to recall the context from the meeting notes.

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Hi again,

I wanted to post some more examples of how I think this could work. I’ve communicated directly with the Fibery team on these, and I’d be curious to hear what the rest of the community thinks about these ideas:

First, there is some great handling of this feature right here in the app that hosts the community, Discourse. Here are some of the specifics I really like:

  1. It renders an excerpt of the related post inline, so you can see a lot of the context. This is much more useful than just a link all by itself.

  2. There is a drop down arrow that will allow the user to expand further that preview to see the entire embedded view, without having to leave the current post. That is a real boost to navigating and speed in the app.

  1. At the bottom of a post, there is a list of all related posts. Again very useful to see this summary.

Another source of some good ideas and approach is a new app for note-taking called Roam that is getting a lot of press roamresearch.com. The premise is to approach note-taking from a “systems” point of view, and not just a flat hierarchy of “folder” and “note.” The main feature is every note consists of a “block” of text, that can can be related to any other block or page, and also “built out” by later isolating the block and adding to it.

For example, you’d write some notes, which might include:

Plan for Customer Ramp Up:

  • build out some drip Email campaigns
  • Ask for $50 commitment from each lead.

These bullet points act as “blocks,” and easily get referenced into the originating doc, but later can be manipulated and built out. So you can quickly write up the concepts in an outline, and then later grab them and expand into full projects, etc.

I think this would be a great evolution of what Fibery already has in Rich Text, as each bullet is also a block. But for now we can’t do anything aside from convert into an entity - itself a nice feature - but the full referential context is still missing. Any entity now that currently gets created from these blocks has no context back to the originating block, the larger doc that contained the block, related entities created at the time. All that info is stuff I am really hoping to see around my items in Fibery as I build them out, so I can get the very best sense of importance, priority and context around work my team goes.

Thanks guys and hope you find this useful!

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Hi, sorry just wanted to add some more to this thread: I wanted to point out as well that the reciprocal referencing of Wiki Docs is a big piece of this as well. As I currently understand Fibery, Docs are a of a different type of entity as they lack many of the attributes of other entities, ie they don’t seem to be able to have any relations, and they are omnipresent in all apps, not just types of entities, so kind of like views in this regard. But you can @mention docs with the “/“ command.

One great way to use Fibery in “flow” mode to provide some of the benefit of the Roam app I mentioned is to simply compose notes about entities (work plans, goals, product specs, etc. you name it) free form with bullets points and tables. As these are all treated like blocks in Fibery, you can essentially “promote” each and every bullet as an entity around Fibery and act on it. However, unlike Notion, Fibery doesn’t force these into being ‘only’ blocks, and you can in fact treat an entire doc just as that - something with outlines, bullets, tables, but still a regular document.

With some good reciprocal linking, Fibery will actually give a very close experience to Roam and become much more flexible in composing and creating in fact plans for teams. To illustrate, if I wanted to just write free-form some ideas about work, or jot down notes from a brainstorming meeting, I can do that in Fibery and I know that later I will have the notes intact and I can convert everything into actionable items. In Coda however, to provide comparison, I’d have to be able to quickly add all these hierarchical items and various thoughts correctly into some forced sheet hierarchy. That takes a lot of mental effort on the fly. Coda does have a free-form rich text field, but no way to reference anything you write in there without painstakingly manually creating rows and relations on your own, unrelated to the notes.

I know I can get I think all the functionality of docs simply in the Rich Text field in an entity, but all the same I’d like to see Docs get some more robust treatment and have a full “role” in Fibery’s web of related content and activity as things move forward.

Thanks as always guys!

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@B_Sp I am quite intrigued by roam. It is something I have been thinking (and dreaming about) for a long time for a perfect project and idea management platform. I often find myself in meeting where an idea/issue comes up that links two different projects or initiatives together. Unless I make a concerted effort of making a note of it in the other projects files, the idea gets lost in the notes.

Why have it in Fibery
What I don’t like about roam (as I’ve tried it so far) is that it is a bit unstructured. I still think there is value in having some structured entities (that can be represented by a set of attributes 90% of the time) which can also be linked together in flexible and unstructured way. I think this is an area where Fibery can shine since it already has the entities as well as structured relation classes. What is missing is the capability to make unstructured reciprocal references (by unstructured I mean not defined by the entity model, I’m sure there is a technical term for this ).

Thoughts on rendering

  • I would love to see this in the rich text fields across the entire platform (not just for documents).
  • It would also be great if you could define how referenced items would display. For example links to tasks in a document could be rendered as checkboxes which are then checked or formatted as strike through when the task is completed in a bi-directional way (i.e. you could update status of the task in the tasks app or in the document).
  • I think that on the freeform document/rich text side, it would be great if you could get a quick pop-up some basic information about the entity that is linked to by hovering over them (like links to other articles in wikiepedia).
  • On the entity sides, I think it would be great if you could see a bit of the context from the freeform document to quickly get an understanding of where this linkage came from (e.g. a popup with a couple lines before and after or something like how muse “wormhole” feature allows you to see a preview/thumbnail of where a particular excerpt has come from).

Other thoughts/dreams
While we are dreaming up an ideal system, I would also propose that if unstructured reciprocal references ever becomes a reality, it would be great if the linkages that are established could also be given some semantic context/tag (if desired). Being able to define triples on the platform and generate graphs at some point would be quite amazing.

Apologies for the long and scattered post. Just had a flood of ideas when reading through these posts.

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Hey @anayericov all great stuff! This thinking goes along very closely with some of my vision of how to relate entities across Fibery ideally, and UX around this, so the process is as quick and easy as possible to do while working in situations where quick movement around Fibery is required, like meetings as you point out.

I think there is a lot of potential around this request:

One other customization I’d like to see is what part of a related entity to display in the Rich Text canvas. Currently you just see a name, and a color. Things like Status, ID, and some other info would be very useful. You are also talking about some functionality that I think could be well-handled by a checklist-type entity, which I think would be a good extension:

One more point that I think supplements a lot of the functionality you are speaking about: I think some general concept of “source” of an entity is a very strong attribute. In particular, if the entity got created out of another entity, and not just entered in the system from “Scratch.” Roam has a very strong timeline integration, as from what I understand, the idea is that you can more easily trace your notes if you have a good view of when you added them into Roam. Similarly in Fibery, if we had some feature that let you see if an entity was created out of a Doc, or another entity, and when, it would really let a team continue to massage the work inside Fibery over time. How often to teams in Jira get a huge, unwieldy backlog, and lose track of a lot of the stuff in there after 6 months, because nobody knows where they came from?

I am considering setting up a button to create new entities out of other entities, for example the concept of “follow-on” tasks. Then, use the API to notate in the resulting entity’s comment stream that “new entity x was created from original entity y.”

An example of when I would use this would be: You cancel your phone service, but realize you need to return the phone itself in 6 months. Create a follow-on related task, that way when the task to return the phone comes on the calendar way in the future (6 months later), you can see where this task came from.

Thanks for these suggestions, I support them all!

WIP

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Thank you for sharing Michael, super exciting to see the prototype!