TLDR: In a deep tree that is changing, I want to be able to rapidly inspect the properties of all the parent groups of a note, and keep all the notes ancestors consistent. Less interested in neighboring notes or finding members of categories.
My use case at the moment is animal and plant taxonomy. These trees can be many levels deep, and each layer adds a new “feature” or two (bilateral symmetry, exoskeleton, develops with mouth first or with anus first etc). A quick review of all the ancestral categories provides a nice summary of the properties of the organism.
It turns out there are a few different systems and the organization is in constant flux. Initially, it was all naturalist observations but now there are sequenced DNA genomes and the structure is changing.
Also, for ease of use often not all the ancestors are shown, but an abbreviated version and one skilled in the art fills in the gaps (I am not skilled in the art).
So as my understanding improves, I can quickly change the hierarchy for many cards consistently.
I like to link to each of the parent groups, and preferably not hierarchical (that would be another approach), so that I can use the mouseover feature to quickly see what properties each group has (tags can’t do that afaik).
First, I made many cards with explicit, handwritten parent groups, just to find that I was off, and I had to go revise many files. That’s error-prone and I don’t like it.
My interest is mainly quick review from the leaf node back up the tree; there is, even with the ~~~query syntax, no trivial way to list the members of a group just now. I’ll probably add tags to the cards as well so they are searchable.
I considered making a script that updates the md files (based on an indented list or yaml file or something); it would update the taxonomy line and add the relevant tags, but this works well enough for now.
(Tree of Life Web Project is a nice taxonomy tool)