What is Explode?

Tinderbox allows a large text note to be converted into several smaller text notes by specifying where Tinderbox should make the divisions. There are options for where splits should occur and what text should be used to title the resulting notes.

Start with a single note containing text

Start with a single note containing text

Here is a note with several paragraphs. The note will be used as the source for the Explode in the tutorial. The note's $Text content was created by copy/paste and has resulted in blank lines between actual paragraphs (indicated above). Don't worry, Tinderbox will ignore these.

Select for Explode

Select for Explode

Set Tinderbox's focus on a major view (Outline, Map, etc.) and not a note text window. Select a single note only, noting that the note must contain some $Text.
Unless these conditions are met the Explode option will be unavailable. Note also that there is no shortcut (or action) to initiate an Explode.

Choosing Explode

Choosing Explode

Explode can be invoke only via a main menu. Use File menu, Explode… which is found towards the bottom on the menu. Next, the Explode dialog will appear.

The Explode dialog

The Explode dialog

The default, which will be used here, is to break the source $Text into paragraphs making a new note for each. By default, the first sentence (or first 512 characters of the sentence if very long) of the paragraph become the title of the newly created notes.

As can be seen there are options both for how the source text is broken up and how the new notes titles. The other options are discussed in aTbRef.

When happy with the options selected, click the Explode button.

New notes are added

New notes are added

The source note now becomes a container

Reveal the new content

Reveal the new content

Click the disclosure triangle to the left of the source note. This will expand to show an 'Exploded Text' container. In turn, this expands to show the 'exploded' notes. An Explode always creates an 'Exploded Text' container holding the results of the process. This makes it very easy to find such content and also to allow agents to work on such new content.

Notice that the blank lines (paragraphs) in the source text haven't resulted in unwanted new notes. Only paragraphs with text content generate a new note.

One of the new notes…

One of the new notes…

In the first exploded note, paragraph #1 of the source note has become the text ($Text) and the first sentence has become the title ($Name). In this screen grab the sidebar has been hidden for the grab - it's not a specific result of the Explode.

What attributes get inherited from the source note?

Pretty much every (non-intrinsic) attribute except $Prototype, $OnAdd and $Rule. These are understood to be pragmatic design choices to avoid unintended runaway results after Explode. These limitations are easily circumvented by various methods. Two popular choices are:

  • Set the source note to use a prototype whose $OnAdd sets children to use the same prototype. Thus as the 'Exploded Text' container is added it receives the parent's prototype and does the same for the children that get added to it.
  • Use an agent that looks for items in 'Exploded Text' container(s) and apply changes to the child notes via the agent action.

Need the 'Exploded Text' container be retained?

No, if not needed, simply move the child notes out of it (or the ones to be retained) and delete the container.

An easy way to empty the container is to select all its contents and then click Shift+Tab. The selected items are promoted as junior siblings to the parent container (the 'Exploded Text' container) which my be deleted. this leaves the new notes as the children of the original source note. However, the user can move these exploded notes anywhere desired in the document - they are normal notes albeit automatically created.

Still stuck?

If unsure on the procedure, read the Tinderbox manual and see aTbRef. If still unsure contact Tinderbox tech support or ask in the Tinderbox User-to-User forums.