Support for new DEVONthink-style transclusion tag

This request can be ignored, as DEVONthink will optionally use the same syntax as Obsidian, so there is no reason to change anything

Use case or problem

A current beta for DEVONthink 3 introduces transclusion in markdown files internal to or indexed in DEVONthink 3 databases. The syntax in the current beta is:

{{path to included file}}

This is different than the Obsidian-supported transclusion syntax

![[path to included file]]

Proposed solution

I believe a number of users are indexing their Obsidian files in DEVONthink or otherwise working with files in both app. Please consider supporting both formats for transclusion tags – the “DEVONthink method” and the Obsidian method. This will facilitate greater interoperability.

Current workaround (optional)

The less desirable workaround is to use both transclusion tag syntaxes in a document, making the bet that one or the other will work. This isn’t horrible, but clutters the note with non-functional tags.


How would this interact with the way that {{ }} is used for Templates?

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I am not suggesting using {{ }} for transclusions – I am reporting that DEVONthink 3 is using it and that it is not compatible with Obsidian. This only affects someone who accesses the same file in both apps.

Is there scope for asking DEVONthink to change their syntax before the release version?

There’s precedence in markdown for using [ for linking and ![ for attaching, whereas { tends to be used for variables and attributes instead.


Agreed. DT’s developers, however much I like their work, should take into account the vast precedence of that syntax.


MultiMarkdown has used the {{...}} syntax for file transclusion since at least MultiMarkdown 4 which was released like >7 years ago. And on the Mac, apps like Marked 2 also support the MultiMarkdown transclude syntax. So there’s also some precedence in Markdown for the {{...}} syntax (which I personally would prefer and which I also plan to use in my own app).

Lack of standardisation and continued development currently is one of the biggest drawbacks of Markdown, so everyone invents his own flavors/extensions. It’s not (yet) as bad as with BibTeX but we’re getting close.

Yes. And I did. And they responded. So, based on what I heard, I believe (fingers crossed) that they will support both syntax options that I showed in the post above. So, for those of us indexing Obsidian documents in DEVONthink databases we would an option to do transclusion with the ![[filename]] syntax in both apps.


Ah, fair enough. I wasn’t aware of MultiMarkdown - likely due to there being no Linux binary available. Software implementing it also seems heavily skewed towards Apple, which would explain why DEVONthink went with it.

My background in using markdown is from academia, where nearly everyone uses pandoc. Looking at the citation syntax for multimarkdown I can see why it didn’t get the same foothold.

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Thanks for your advocacy! It doesn’t sound like they need more voices on this, but I’d be happy to send in a note as well if you think it would help our case.

Let’s stand by and see what comes.

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Confirmed and tested (20210326)::

The latest beta of DEVONthink 3 (3.6.4b3) includes support for the Obsidian-style transclusion syntax:

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