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Tour of FoundIt

Vision:

Simply put, with FoundIt we hope to make it easier for you to find your information when you need it, so that you may use & re-use it. This product is about bringing information to you, easily, painlessly, efficiently. This beta release is the first of these attempts, & we are hoping you as our users will play an active part in the shaping of this product. You can do this by emailing us at fsupport[at]artbrush.net) your praises as well as gripes, as also wish-lists for what you'd like to see in the future.

How it works:

Overview | Tag all your files | Create Clips of various files

Overview

You have downloaded & installed FoundIt on your computer. You will next see a screen like Fig 0: Overview. What you see on this screen is all the major file types you have, sorted by recency. There is also a lot more functionality here, that can be accessed through the icons you see. The numbers in the list below refer to the numbers in the screen shot above:

 

Fig 0: Overview: Your opening screen

  1. Close this panel. This is useful when you do not have much use for constant access to a certain panel.
  2. Open / Close panels.
  3. When you rest your cursor on the green header band of any of the panels, the cursor turns into a black cross; this indicates that you can now drag the panel to a new location on the screen. This way, you can position the more important panels closer to the top. The panels retain their last selected position the next time you log in, & your selections stick, till you change them again.
  4. Local search: Clicking on this icon allows you to search within a certain panel. Thus clicking on local search from the Powerpoint panel allows me to search all of my Powerpoint files: by keyword, as well as by date.
  5. Click on the file name to see the contents of the file in text format. This is invaluable when you want to quickly scan what the file contains, without having to fire up the native application.
  6. Alternately, click on 'O' to open the file in its native application, in order to edit it, for instance.
  7. Clicking on this icon allows you to add tags to your file. You can add as many tags as you like to a single file. Tags are a personal way to label files for easier re-findability. You will see that files that have no tags attached to them have an empty circle in the icon, while the ones that do have tags have a filled icon. Go ahead, tag away, it's fun too!
  8. Once you have created a tag for a file, your tag shows up in the tag cloud. Clicking on a particular tag in the tag cloud will show you all the files that have this tag.
  9. This icon allows you to search globally. You can search by keyword and date range.

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Tag all your files

FoundIt allows you to tag every file you have, including emails & images.

 

Below is my view of FoundIt. As you can see, I have a few tags created, as seen in the Tag Cloud panel. In a minute, we'll get to how you can create your own tags for your files, but first take a look at the 2 slightly different tag icons highlighted below in Fig 1. The one with an empty circle conveys that this file has no tags attached to it; the one with the gray fill does have tags. Okay, so we now move on to creating a new tag. Let's jump to Fig 2.

Fig 1: Tagging: Opening view

 

Fig 2: Tagging: Add a tag 1

Now, I have clicked on the tag icon next to the file called Major Problem areas. I get an input area to add my tags here. You can add as many tags as you wish in one go, simply use commas to separate them.

 

Fig 3: Tagging: Adding a tag 2

I go ahead and add the tag 'to_do' in the input field, & next I click on Save.


Fig 4: Tagging: Tag saved

I see that the saved tag appears in the Tag Cloud. Also, the tag icon alongside that particular file now has a gray fill.

 


Fig 5: Tagging: Tagged files

Clicking on the 'to_do' tag in the tag cloud shows the file that we just tagged.

 

Let us know how you are doing with tagging. It can be a fun way to mark our information, in our very own personal way.

 

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Create clips of your files:

Clips can be a very powerful way to organize & find information when you need it. You may want to create a new file out of pieces/ chunks of several other files as a reference for your next client meeting, for example; or for a class presentation. Let's see how you would do this:

 

Below in fig 1, I have clicked on a file in my Word panel ( & of course you could do this with any of the panels); as you know from the Overview section above, when I click on the file name, a new window shows me the contents of the file in plain text. Thus here the window labeled AVS Disclaimer shows me the text content of this particular Word document. Now click anywhere in this window & start dragging your mouse, as you would normally do to select text.

Fig 1: Clipping: Start with the text file

 

 

While you are dragging to select the text, your screen will look like Fig 2:

Fig 2: Clipping: Selecting text to clip

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Once you have selected the text you need, release the mouse. This will open up options for you to save this clip, & tag it, if you wish. ( See fig. 3 below)

Fig 3: Clipping: Selection of text complete

 

You can next start to save your clip. The Tag field is optional. ( see Fig 4 below):

 

Fig 4: Clipping: Saving your clip

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Next, you will see a message confirming that your clip has been saved.

 

Fig 5: Clipping: Clip saved

 

This clip can now be accessed from the Tag Cloud panel. ( see Fig 6 below). As you can see, clips are seen in the tag cloud, & can be distinguished from other tags that you may have attached to various files this way: tags are not prefixed with an icon, clips have an icon attached to them.

Now that you have seen how a clip can be created, recycle your documents, as well as web history to create new content based off these.

Fig 6: Clipping: View Saved clips

 

 

So play with FoundIt, explore it & discover all the different ways it can help you reach information. Tell us what you found useful, what more you'd like to see it do. We are looking to constantly refine this product with you in mind, & we want you to be a part of the design. So write in to us at fsupport[at}artbrush.net. We look forward to hearing from you.

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