Tinderbox Shell Tools

These shell tools have been developed during a sabbatical (Oct 2003 - Jan 2004) as part of an investigation into hypertext support for literature surveys. The Tinder/tool/box allow a shell programmer to manufacture a new file of notes for Eastgate's TinderBox hypertext writing environment, or to modify an existing file. The tools (which have only been tested under OS X 10.3) are in alpha development stage and can be obtained by emailing me so that I can provide personal support to supplement the current lack of documentation and functionality!


make an empty Tinderbox file - only an outerlevel note is created. It has the same name as the file, except [-_] are changed to spaces.
adds a new note to a file. Takes the name of an existing note which has the new note added as a new child.
adds a link between two named notes in a file.
Internal command to make a new note given an ID, a title and some contents
Internal command which given an id, extracts a specific note and contents from the file
Internal command which given a name, provides the id of the note
Internal command which given a note ID and a file, replaces the note with a new note read from the standard input
Internal command which takes the names of two files representing the old Tinderbox and its new version with added notes and replaces the old one with the new one
Script which runs a google query and adds its results to the Google note in a specified Tinderbox file
Script which runs a BBC News query and adds its results to the News note in a specified Tinderbox file
Script which runs an ACM Digital Library query and adds its results to the Literature note in a specified Tinderbox file
directory of templates of empty tinderboxes and empty items

How to Use the Tools

sudo mv wherever-you-put-the-tinderbox-tools-directory /usr/local/tinderbox After Safari has unpacked the tinderbox.tar file into your download directory, move it to /usr/local
set path=($path /usr/local/tinderbox/bin) Make sure that the tinderbox shell tools are on your path
mktinderbox t1 Create a new, empty tinderbox called t1.
addnote -c red "Top" - t1 < /dev/null Create a new, toplevel container called "Top".
addnote -c orange -x 3 -y 4 -w 5 -h 2 "Note1" "Top" t1
This is the contents of Note 1
Add a new note called "Note1" which is inside "Top" in Tindebox t1. The note is colored orange, has (x,y) location (3,4), width 5 units and height 2 units. If you want to know what a unit is, you'll have to ask Mark Bernstein :-)
addnote -c green -x 1 -y 2 -w 3 -h 3 "Note2" "Top" t1
And here are ethe contents of Note 2
Another similar note is created, with a different color, position and size. The default set of colours that Tinderbox supports is: black, blue, bright blue, bright green, bright red, cool gray, cool gray dark, cyan, green, magenta, normal, orange, poppy, red, warmgray, warm gray dark, white, yellow (don't forget to put quotes around color names that have spaces in them).
addlink response "Note2" "Note1" t1 Make a response-type link between Notes 1 & 2. (The default set of link types that Tinderbox supports is: agree, clarify, disagree, example, exception, prototype, response, update)
open t1 Open t1 in Tinderbox.

Example Tinder Boxes

Right-click on the following and do "Save As" to stop the Tinderbox codes coming up on your browser screen. You will probably need to run the command SetFile -c Cere -t Cere mytinderboxfile after it downloads.