Joplin for collection management


does anyone use Joplin for collection management? Which experiences did you have?

I only found one related thread: Recipe collecting and organizing

Background: I have been looking for a general collection management software for some time. Mostly for movies/series and coins. Currently, I'm using Tellico, but I'm not completely satisfied with it. The lack of a mobile client and sync are missing features for me. Other requirements would be open source, Linux and Android support.

Of course, markdown is not an optimal format for structured data, but I don't need sorting or complex filters (yet). So Joplin would somehow cover my requirements. And I wouldn't need an extra app.


50% of my notes are recipes. just collected in one folder. many of them web-clipped and all of them tagged. OCR used where needed, but not regularly. I use plugins to create (back)links of recipes that I want to connect for whatever reason. search brings me to the recipe I need everytime and everywhere, as I sync on every device I use. linking recipe and shopping list makes it needless to transfer ingredients in many cases.

Its a common example.

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How do you use the tags, if I may ask? I can imagine everything from no tags (doing all the searches in the note content) to tags for every ingredient/difficulty/rating etc. (and searching in tags only).

it simply has grown, I just type in

  • the typical course or event the recipe belongs to (main, desert, finger food, barbecue…),
  • if it’s a vegan or vegetarian or non-veggie dish - then I add keywords like chicken, pork…,
  • seldom a tag for my favourite ingredients, if included,
  • a tag for the country or culture the recipe might origin from,
  • sometimes if it is an easy or quick dish.

And a special to me is, that I mark recipes made in holidays. There are a few, I only cook, when I’m on vacation.

All in all I don’t practice an elaborated system, but, hey, i’s not my job, it’s just kind of a hobby :blush:
The main thing difference to others might be, that I do not use different folders.

What do you have in mind to “collect”? Just curious…

edited: I use tags to support my search on desktop devices only or show groups to get inspired (eg showing “barbecue”)

Thanks for the insights!

I think I would go with this approach, too. There are usually too many categories to decide for a specific one.

I already use Joplin to save trips and recipes. The "collections" so small that I will find everything easily and don't need to bother about organizing them.

Movies and series

  • I tend to forget which movies I watched and even large parts of the plot, so it's better to write them down :smiley:
  • Movies/series to watch:
    • Alone or with friends, provider, genre
    • With Joplin, I could quickly note a title on the way and refine it later with metadata. Without caring how to migrate the data, since it's synced.
  • In total my list contains around 1000 items, so if I migrate it to Joplin, I want to be sure that I do it only once.


This collection is more static. But it would be nice to have it accessible without searching for another website/app and password.

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Isn't that one of the weaknesses in Joplin when compared to Evernote? Maybe I've missed out on a plugin that does the job, but I don't think any of these have reached a point of maturity.

the webclipper does it…not perfect, but ok for my needs.

Ah, I see. I had thought of OCR for attachments, that's why I mentioned the plugins. This is a standard feature of both Evernote and OneNote, and it's a pity that Joplin can't do it out of the box.

sorry, I was wrong…my age…it‘s a plugin, not the clipper, and as said, it‘s ok for my needs

OCR should be part of version 2.14 if all goes well. The PR is there: Add support for OCR by laurent22 · Pull Request #8975 · laurent22/joplin · GitHub


nice :blush:

Great news indeed - and a huge step to catch up with those commercial big shots, which are all lacking in terms of privacy.

In case anyone is interested, here is my current workflow for adding movies/series:

  1. Add the title in the note title from mobile or desktop.
  2. Fetch data from TMBD via the collector plugin from desktop. I don't have plans to release it as official plugin, since there are some hardcoded things. For example the providers are only fetched for germany and the information fields are fixed. I likely don't have time to make everything parametrizable. You could download and install the .jpl, though.
  3. Do some searches. For example to get all movies that are available on Netflix, but aren't watched yet: notebook:Watchlist Netflix -"Watch State: watched".
  4. Save the search in the favorites plugin for convenience.

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I've been using Joplin to keep track of my movie collection for years. Covers, backdrops, main actors (with vitals), roles, links etc. Works well and with a few plugins (backlinks are great) makes things much easier than navigating to IMDB all the time since I use primarily offline tablets around the house and store everything on a Synology NAS. I also use it to keep track of purchases as it lets me have photos, invoices, receipts and especially manuals in the one place. There's about 3000 records (2GB) instantly available. For movies, it only takes 5 minutes to catalog a new movie (copy/paste from elsewhere) including scanning the cover (Canon flatbed @ 4800dpi makes for LARGE files) and once done, everything I'm interested in is available instantly. Highly recommend Joplin for tasks like this.

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That's good to hear. I had concerns about the performance with >1000 records.

I will definitely look at this plugin, as I never used it. How do you use it? For linking similar movies or for linking the actor vitals?

It's "Automatic Backlinks" and for instance, I have a bunch of movies starring Humphrey Bogart and each title record (in a Titles notebook) has a markdown link to HB as one of the cast. The HB record these links point to is in a different notebook and contains some trivia and a few photos of HB or whatever. Automatic Backlinks will create markdown links in the HB record for every title he is listed under. Saves doing a search for HB in order to find his movies. Link HB in a Title record and his Actor record is updated automatically to show the Title.

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I was using a package called Movie Collector (now called CLZ Movies) which does a fantastic job of adding movies to a collection. It grabs all the IMDB data and loads it onto your system. The drawback I found was that I didn't need (or want) every little scrap of data about a movie. It just slowed things down terribly. So I started years ago using Nevernote and then switched to Joplin where I keep only the info I might have an interest in. If I want to know who the 2nd backup costume designer for the first ten minutes was, I'll use IMDB. But, if I just want to know what HB movies I own, I'll use my Joplin data.

Thanks for the insights. I will find out how much information I want/need. I. e. if I will use backlinks with more information or if a simple search is enough for me.