Groups & Collections

Document Filter

When working on a project, you certainly create a lot of documents which need to be managed in some way. By default, all documents are kept in a flat hierarchy in your Document Browser. If you only work with 10 or less documents, keeping an overview should be pretty easy. Once your project and the number of your documents grows larger and larger, you most probably want to structure them in some way. Ulysses gives you two powerful tools that allow you to keep all your documents always at hand: the Document Filter and Groups & Collections.
Before going into the very details of these tools, lets first go over the interface of the Groups & Collections panel.

On the very top of the left panel, you can see the Document Filter. It is used to only show a portion of the Document Browser below. It consists of two elements: The Filter Field and the Filter Button.

The Filter Field is your primary location to search in your project and works pretty much like any standard search box: to find a string, select a search range via the magnifier on the left and then enter the string you're searching for. Documents matching the search criteria will then be moved to the top of the Document Browser with the search phrase highlighted. All other documents will be moved to the bottom of the browser with their titles grayed out.

If you click the Filter Button right next to the Filter Field, Groups & Collections are shown. This panel shows all Filters, Groups and Collections that you have created so far. Clicking on one of these will reveal their respective contents in the Browser. If you want to create such a new Filter, Collection or Group, Ctrl-click inside the panel and select the respective entry.

Let's finally come Collections, Filters and Groups. With these powerful tools, you can create views of your whole project, which consists of a subset of your documents. This way you can not only structure your project better, but also get a quick overview of your project access your documents faster.

Each instance of these tools has a color so you can always identify them easily. By default, Filters are green, Collections are yellow and Groups are blue. As always, you can change these colors in the Preferences if they're not fancy enough.

Ulysses also has two special views in the Groups & Collections panel: Unfiled Documents and the Document Trash. The first view contains all documents that are neither part of a Collections nor of a Filter. The second kind, Document Trash, is kind of like the trash of Mac OS X. If you move a document to the trash, it's removed from every Filter and Collection it belonged to and is only available in the Trash. You can always "put it back" and everything will be back to normal and all its relations to Collections and Filters are kept intact. Documents are only irreversibly deleted when you empty the trash.
If you want, you can keep your trashed documents visible in the Groups & Collections view; they'll be grayed out and you can only preview them, not open them. We've got some more neat tips on the Document Trash in Hidden Gem #9 Web Resource.

If you Ctrl-Click inside the Groups & Collections panel, you can find plenty of options to adjust the appearance of the panel. For example, you can Show/Hide the Document Trash or the Hidden Filters. Another useful option is "Cumulated View". If this view is enabled, the documents are not grouped by Filter/Collection anymore in the Document Browser, but are shown as a simple list. If you want to edit a single entry in the panel, simply double-click it. Especially interesting are the entries for unfiled documents or the Document Trash. For instance, you can set its position in the panel or automatically switch to the Unfiled filter when you create a new document.
Another set of options are available when you set up a new Collection, Filter or Group. For instance, you can display the document count by clicking on the appropriate checkbox. Or you can hide the Filter or Group when it becomes empty. You know, could there be anything better than a Todo-Filter that vanishes when all documents that still needed some work are finished and no documents belonging to that Filter remain?

We have created a Screencast Web Resource that covers Collections, Filters, Groups, the "All" and "Unfiled" View and the Document Trash.