YAML front matter metadata in markdown export and import

https://github.com/laurent22/joplin/issues/508 is locked, so I try to reopen the topic here

I understand that the internal format how joplin stores meta data will not change, it’s OK.

But what about adding YAML support when importing and exporting notes from and to markdown?

  • Import: YAML frontmatter should also be extracted when importing markdown, if there is corresponding metadata (title, tags, …)
  • Export: It should be possible to create a yaml header containing all metadata to make the export compatible with other markdown based systems. This could be an option. Maybe many users don’t need this.
  • presenting: And it would be fine if the content of the yaml front matter will be hidden in the preview of the rendered file and is available only in the edit mode

Currently I use a markdown plain file based notes system outside Joplin and I have no idea how to make them compatible and how to use them both or at the same time. I like Joplin web clipper and the filtering by tags. I can use external editors on the desktop but Joplin android editor is not so good compared to other android editors.

Supporting YAML front matter in Joplin could allow to synchronize Joplin notes with a plain text notes system outside Joplin and notes could be added and updated inside and outside.

I want’t to own and easy access my data. For example Google keep is good and has features I miss in Joplin (pin, mark as archived, …), but I did not yet find a way how to synchronize with a parallel plain text based notes system. Export using takout could work, but the other way?

So my hope is that Joplin could be uses instead of Keep if I find a way to synchronize with a plain text system.

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This might help: GitHub - kiwiz/gkeepapi: An unofficial client for the Google Keep API.

I agree that using the current import/export system there should be a bidirectional way to synchronize markdown with frontmatter.

Now, when the plugin system will be available in 1.3, we might want to do it as a plugin. I believe the 2 way import/export might not be required for a plugin?

Anyway, there is a naive approach using the current system.

  • Frontmatter in generated from Note metadata and tags.

I'll wait the plugin system to be deployed to see if I can create a plugin without the dirty modification I did in the Interop services :slight_smile:

I tried this export "mode" So I could generate easily a basic Jekyll site from a Joplin Folder.

2 Likes

Hello everybody. Any updates? I'm trying to switch to Obsidian, and I prefer not to do it with plain markdown files, losing all metadata… Also, exporting markdown files which contain a YAML front matter would be vital to the ones who use Jekyll or a static site generator to publish their notes.

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Meetoo, I'd like to use Joplin alongside with other markdown editing tools. We need unobstructive interchangeable format, that's why markdown with frontmatter is important.

I cannot understand. If it is really an "internal" format, it's true, but I'd like to use it as an interchange format. I cannot get the reasoning what @laurent gave:

It's this way because it's more convenient to see the title, body and then the less important metadata.

You won't open it with ordinary editors, but with markdown editors. Those tools will parse (and hopefully hide) YAML frontmatter correctly. You are free to put any metadata to a frontmatter (but better have a joplin_ prefix for application specific metadata).

You also mixed file sync to the soup. But in my opinion Joplin wants too much: note syncing is another problem to solve. Note syncing or merging (via Dropbox) should be completely optional and should not drive the note interchange format. It's a nice thing to provide syncing via Dropbox, but anyone can set dropbox sync up to their note syncing. So yes, I value interchnageable markdown format and don't like "autogenerated" things. I'd like to use other tools to edit my notes, not just Joplin.

I like Joplin, but would not like to lock in myself inside Joplin. But this proprietary format avoids being able to smoothly use Joplin along other markdown tools.

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ref: Joplin note sharing tool