Feedback after 1 Year of usage (of the App, the community page, AnyType Docs & Website)

:wave:t3: Hi fellow reader

I try to write feedback on AnyType about every 6 months. Since it’s been more than 12 months now, here it comes.
A lot :chart_with_upwards_trend: :star_struck: :exploding_head: :scream: has happened throughout the AnyType app, on the community page, in the docs, and on the website since my last feedback post, so I would like to share my thoughts here. And even this post won’t come close to listing all the changes. So if you have any questions, @Angelo or anyone else, feel free to ask specific questions and I’ll be happy to answer them. :smiley:

Feedback Posts

Here are my last feedback posts, if you are interested:

1. AnyType App

Usage

I have to admit that I haven’t used the app regularly since I installed it the very first time. There were and are times when some missing features prevent me from using it more and fully engaging with it.

In order not to write a huge text that nobody wants to read because it takes too much time to read, I have presented all the information in table format. This of course in AnyType …

:pause_button: = no real data stored
:x: = not possible yet
(1) Data Tracking & my current Journaling Template
(2) My opinion on Timeline & Calendar View

:bomb: My dealbreaker with AnyType (which may soon belong to the past)

Please don’t get me wrong. I have taken notes in two different classes and tried some templates which have worked very well, however I do not have a large portion of my data on AnyType yet. The reason is simple. There is no easy way to Self-Hosting & no Custom Storage Location yet.

Since this is the most important message I want to convey with this post, I need to explain this in more detail. These two points are the most important ones I would like to see in Anytype.

  • Ability to easy set up your own (backup) node to become completely independent from the Anytype backup node.

  • Having the choice to choose the data directory of AnyType.

Because since the beginning with AnyType I just wanted an app that looks like similar to Notion but works completely offline, nothing more … :neutral_face:

:mountain_biking_man:t4: Migration

I will not migrate form alpha because:

  • I don’t have a lot of data in the alpha (I’ll only recreate/copy & paste some templates from the alpha)
  • the beta version is a big leap in functionality (viewed positively :heart_eyes:)

Suggestions / wishes (sorted by descending priority) :question:

There are so many that after much thought and back and forth, I came to a prioritization with some trade-offs. :see_no_evil:
I linked everything so you can find it faster and @sambouwer doesn’t have to link everything like in my first post: First impressions & suggestions (of the App and the community page).

  1. Easy self-hosting (still on the roadmap :face_with_peeking_eye:)
    I would like an app whose data is stored only on my hard disk (including the node), to make sure that it really belongs only to me.

  2. Custom Storage Location (still on the roadmap :face_with_peeking_eye:)
    I would like to be able to select the data directory where my data is stored, as is the case in Logseq or Obsidian.

  3. Automatic Bi-directional linking + Rollups / Transclusion
    IMHO to build a second :brain: this is an essential feature of the note taking app in order to connect knowledge.

  4. Inline LaTeX Addition
    Since I will need this in the future and the research community has made some compelling arguments for it. :man_scientist:t4:

  5. Calendar view & Timeline view
    I substitute this with calendar & excel for the time being …

  6. Derived Relations ( Formulas )
    For efficient tracking essential, but I can wait …

  7. Support to generate various charts
    For visual representation of the values of formulas.

  8. Split view feature
    Just two windows side by side to work more efficiently. Until then I’ll open multiple instances and switch between them …

  9. Option to apply template to an existing object
    Very useful, but I would rather have another new feature like (3 - 6), than having to work less.

  10. PDF annotation with Anytype
    Useful, but I would rather have another new feature like (3 - 6).

  11. Sets: Style of grid view - Dividers between object relations in Grid View
    Possibility to adjust the font thickness, visibility of rows & column lines and cell hight.
    Right now not lot of data can be displayed in grid view. :confused:

  12. Simple tables improvements
    Ability to create tables with unequal number of columns (merging/splitting of cels).
    Useful, but I would rather have another new feature like (3 - 6).

  13. Allow sticky table of contents block (for quickly navigating between page sections)
    Useful, but I would rather have another new feature like (3 - 6).

  14. Add options to change font size and style
    It’s rather aesthetic, but it would be nice to have.

  15. Random input generator
    It would be inspiring for a quotes section in my setup, but more as an addition than a must.

  16. Spaced repetition plugin
    Useful for acquiring knowledge, but the already existing toggle feature is already a good start. So there is no rush for this.

2. Community Page + Nightly Type :ninja:

Since the last feedback I have spent little time as nightly type testing the new versions of the app. I’m sorry, but the incident where I almost lost all data scared me a bit. Thus, I put my energy and time on the community page, writing posts. But I will test more with the beta version of the app again. I promise.

To the community:

  • There are long texts from users about great ideas/concepts for the future of Anytype, which should perhaps rather be written using different formatting, graphical representation or in abbreviated version (to get ot the point). Otherwise, there is a higher probability that these will not be read by the community. :warning:
    As an example: Databases, spreadsheets, and tables - a meta discussion

To AnyType Team

  • Categories are more structured with the new sorting options (votes, Status board etc.) :white_check_mark:

  • I don’t feel so lost anymore :arrow_right: more reading/writing posts (Community involvement) :white_check_mark:
    Maybe that’s also because I spent more time on the page… :thinking:

  • There are still a few reports and requests with the same content, but this will settle with time. :warning:

  • I’m still learning some tricks on how to create links, quotes and text to be displayed differently etc. on the community page. A tutorial/post for beginners on this would be cool … :warning:

Nice work :+1:t3: Thank you very much AnyType Team and ModTeam for the good work :pray:t3:

3. Anytype Docs

  • Helpful webpage with good videos. :white_check_mark:

  • The content is in my opinion up to date. :white_check_mark:

Nice work :+1:t3: Thank you very much AnyType Team :pray:t3:

4. Website

  • More understandable website with better terms. :white_check_mark:
    Here good post about this: First impression about the website (not good)

  • The style, in my opinion, takes some getting used to in terms of mixing retro images, and two very different fonts. I would unify the image style and fonts more. But maybe the variety shown is the goal: the everything app. :face_with_monocle:

:person_in_lotus_position:t3: Please Remember:

If, like me, you are sometimes nervous about a future feature/change to Anytype that you’ve been waiting/longing for a very long time, and that may take what feels like an eternity to appear, always remember…

Good things

As always I will:

  • cheer for every new update and test it immediately :partying_face: :nerd_face:
  • honestly fill out any feedback questionnaire you send me :innocent:
  • hope for the best - I am rooting for the Anytype team :muscle: :muscle:t2: :muscle:t3: :muscle:t4: :muscle:t5: :muscle:t6:
12 Likes

Hi @AnyChris, thanks for the long-format post! I wholeheartedly agree with almost everything (maybe not so much with inline LaTeX because I don’t need it :see_no_evil:).


@Angelo and the moderators team (myself included) are actively discussing this as an option. Please elaborate if you want to share your vision about the organization of the forum.


Correct, and we do our best to get this reduced asap by merging topics. Feel free to flag any topic if you think its a duplicate of some other topic you found somewhere. I don’t know how many topics here are (not sure how to get this metric out of the system), but I’ve read 4.2k of them by now, which is too many to remember :brain: .


There is YouTube content being created by users for this exact purpose, and the team is continuously investigating how to make it as easy as possible to get started with Anytype, which includes improving the docs (which should be docs.anytype.io IMHO).


Keep posting and see you in 6 months (or less, or more)

2 Likes

Hi, @sambouwer, thanks for answering o fast! :racing_car:


Actually, I think it’s fine the way it is now. What is your opinion?


I am very sorry to hear this. :see_no_evil: But I’ll :triangular_flag_on_post: more, I promise.


:rofl:

2 Likes

great breakdown and post @AnyChris !

A lot of what you have written resonates with me too.

But overall, I’m very optimistic how where Anytype is headed (and the amazing progress made in the last few months once the groundwork has been laid is awesome!)

3 Likes

We struggle a bit with the many ways we can group topics to track their status. One is what we are currently doing: using tags. Another way is using (sub)categories instead of the status tags (like “Triage”, “Implemented”). The complicating factor is that, apart from tagging or categorizing, we can also mark topics as “Solved” and we can also close them (lock icon). What we are doing right now works well enough. I think the change we recently made (addition of a bug graveyard, but we stick to tagging for status tracking) is a step in the right direction, but there is still quite some overhead in tracking hundreds or even thousands of topics across multiple systems.


:rocket:

2 Likes

Hey @AnyChris, just wanted to check if you’ve seen that we released the ability to self-host on the same day you wrote the post? Self-hosting - any tech docs
It’s not easy, as it requires some technical skills, but it’s definitely possible.
Our next step is to allow for app configuration, so users can set their network address in settings instead of having to build apps from code.
The community, including @sambouwer, is committed to providing a simplified way to set up your own infrastructure.

4 Likes

Hey @fuksman thanks for letting me know. :grinning:

To be honest, I already saw it the day the Beta was released. But it is still too difficult for me at the moment to set it up.


This sounds awesome !!! That will be the day I will really celebrate. I am already counting the days until it will be possible. :spiral_calendar:

2 Likes