I have been thinking about this for a while now and think with Canvas all the ingredients are in Obsidian to be able to do the following…with a little addition needed which is the idea for this plugin:
In qualitative data analysis, meaning deriving insights from unstructured text data (those might e.g. interview transcripts), what we do in e.g. thematic content analysis method is this:
- highlight a section of text that represent something relevant to the research
- assign one or more tags to that text to create a snippet
- write a summary for snippets from one tag or tag group to create a memo
- cluster memo’s together (often visually using a virtual whiteboard) to create higher level groups of meaning to create an insight group (add all memos to a separate insight page)
- develop a theory based on the insights
3 to 5 are possible today, 4 with using canvas.
What we lack is the ability to highlight a text section and assign one or multiple tags to it, visually mark that section as highlighted and to populate a canvas automatically with the snippets in groups related to their tagging.
Below a screenshot from a software I am using now called Dovetail (source)
- rendering a text section highlight in a certain color related to a tag color (which is helpful when reviewing the data)
- populating canvas with snippets dynamically
- keeping all content dynamically linked up unto the insight page level
Seeing there are so many academic folks flocking to Obsidian and the already existing tooling for academic research I am almost surprised this doesn’t exist yet but would assume there to be interest in this.
Interested in your thoughts!