Plugin: The History Panel

Based on previous requests (1,2, and thanks @Daeraxa for the idea) for a Joplin browsing history plugin, I created a simple history panel that uses a note as a database of previously viewed notes. Hope you will find it useful.

Installation

  1. Install the History Panel plugin from the Joplin app settings.

  2. Create a new designated note to keep your history logs, which will be formatted and displayed in the history panel.

  3. While this note is open, set your history note from the Tools menu --> History --> Set history note.

  4. Set additional preferences in the History Panel settings dialog, such as the Min seconds between history items and the Days of history to keep.

Preview

Use cases

The above setup enables some interesting use cases.

  • View your (desktop) history on mobile by opening the history note.

  • Sync and combine your history across devices.

  • Keep separate histories for work, different projects and so on, by maintaining multiple history notes and switching between them during app use.

  • Backlinks / referrers will point back to all the visits of the currently viewed note that are documented in any of the history logs.

13 Likes

This is great! I hadn't realized how useful something like this could be.

Would it be possible to adjust the panel title? I also use the note link system and outline plugins and right now the text "History" in the panel title is noticeably larger and not aligned compared to "Referrers" or "Outline" text for the other panel titles.

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1 Like

I really like the fact it stores the data as text in a note, so it's mobile friendly. Thank you @shikuz for sharing this elegant plugin!

2 Likes

Sure, I will add an option to customize the title.

2 Likes

I added more customization to v0.2.2, along with some indentation to the text. On my computer, however, Outline and Referrers are not aligned, so I'm not sure how to align all three. :smile: You may use the custom CSS field in the plugin settings to change such properties. for example, maybe *{text-indent: 5px}, but I'm not a CSS expert and will be happy for suggestions.

I also added a few minor improvements to the logic.

Thanks, @shikuz! Changing the font size from 11 to 10 matches the rest of the panels. It actually does seem to be aligned on mine now with the others.

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There's still inconsistency in how much space there is above the title but it seems each plugin uses a different amount. Not sure how that could be solved. :man_shrugging:

v0.3.0

  • Added a display of links between history items in the panel (named "thought trails", previewed below)
  • Added a link from the panel title to the history note
  • Misc stability, styling, and customization improvements

7 Likes

v0.4.0

  • feature: new panel section of frequently viewed notes (previewed below)
  • feature: new option to exclude certain notes from history
  • feature: customizable font size in panel
    • note: all font sizes are now measured in px units
  • fix: note is now considered linked to itself

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2 Likes

Thank you for this useful plugin! Unfortunately it stopped working today: Doesn't show today's note-visits in the panel. I am on Joplin Version 2.8.4 - no updates, no setting changes since yesterday.

Hi @schwa, great that you like it, and thanks for reporting.

I wonder if something corrupted your history log somehow (either manually, or that the plugin somehow did). Can you create a new note for logging your history and set it (Tools-->History-->Set history note), and see if the problem persists?

Another thing that we could check, is whether the plugin is being throttled by Joplin 2.8.4 (there was a new safeguard mechanism introduced in this version). I haven't experienced such issues yet, but this scenario could explain why some of toady's notes won't be logged in your history (I don't expect it to block it completely). Let's start with the first step (switching history notes).

1 Like

Problem solved by setting up a new logging-note. Thanks!

Great!
It could also be beneficial if you shared (privately, if you prefer that) some of the top lines in your corrupt history log, and by that I mean enough lines so that the problem is reproduced if you set such a note as your history note. Maybe there's a way to make the plugin more robust and avoid crashing in such cases. (But I'd understand if you decided not to share it.)

1 Like

Cant share the log, but i think i got it (since it stopped working again). Last line in the history-log is a note called "untitled" which doesn't exist anymore. That error happens, when i create a new note, stay on it for 3 seconds, don't write anything and go to another note. Joplin deletes it, because its body is empty, history-plugin won't find it anymore and stops logging. Something like that...

1 Like

Thanks! I was able to reproduce it, and just published a new version with (hopefully) a fix.

v0.4.1

  • feature: paging of history display in the panel (for faster rendering)
  • fix: handling of deleted untitled notes
  • fix: skip parsing of corrupt history items

How do I change the background color?Thanks.

If you wish to set a custom color, in the settings go to the History Panel, and under Show Advanced Settings set your Panel: Stylesheet. I use the following setting for changing the background color and it should work, but maybe there are cleaner ways, CSS-wise.

html {background: [your_color_here];} .container {background: [your_color_here];}
1 Like

thank you.

v1.0.0

  • feature: to-do note indication in panel (preview 1)
  • feature: additional options to exclude notes from history by
    • tag (default: #exclude.from.history)
    • type (note / to-do) (preview 2)
    • notebook (preview 3)
  • feature: detection and indication of backtracking (e.g., when using the native Back / Forward Joplin commands) (preview 1 + 2)
  • feature: highlight items in the panel instead of creating new history items when clicking links in the panel (preview 2)
  • improved: ignore conflict notes

preview 1 (panel)

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preview 2 (plugin settings)

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preview 3 (Tools menu)

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5 Likes