I have actually established a lot of systems I use to keep files and tasks connected on my Mac: wiki-link services that connect notes to to-do products, Curio projects that connect emails to jobs, and extensive tagging systems to keep all sort of files together. Each one is, in one way or another, restricted in scope (and linking e-mails is an everlasting battle). That’s why I’m so excited about Hook.
[Full disclosure, I’ve been a beta tester for Hook over the course of its development, and their blog discussed integration with two of my own apps recently, unrelated to my reporting for this story.]
On macOS, Hook is a tool you can utilize to connect all the parts of a project together: documents, notes, e-mails, websites, and even to-do items in your favorite task supervisor. It does this by utilizing file system bookmarks and a database to create links in between these products. Hook’s only interface is a menu bar product and hotkey-triggered popup window that you can use to link files or access anything connected to a file– whether you’re copying links, opening files, or exposing files in Finder.
To create a link in between two files, open Hook on one file and choose “Copy as Link,” then open Hook’s window when picking another file selected and choose “Link to Copied Address.” You can also pop Hook open in the menu bar and drag multiple files to its window. They end up being cross-linked, and opening Hook on any of those files will reveal all of the other related files so you can rapidly open or reveal them, similar to Spotlight.
You can copy links to files as RTF or Markdown links, and these links are “robust”– moving a file does not break the link. You can even send out another person a link to an email or a shared Dropbox file. If they’re utilizing Hook, the link will open their own copy of the file. When I was communicating with Hook’s developer, Luc Beaudoin, he utilized this to reference me back to a previous e-mail thread. The link in his email found and opened our previous correspondence in my own email app (MailMate) with no searching on my end.
Hook can also generate brand-new associated files utilizing design templates. For instance, if you’re reading a web article, you can open Hook and create a new mind map in iThoughts (or a Markdown file in your favorite text editor) and begin taking notes, utilizing Hook to jump in between your browser and your notes. Add a couple of more reference web pages to the collection, and when you start composing your own piece based off of the research, add the working document to the list. You’ll then have all your recommendations a hotkey away while you’re writing.
While you can constantly connect files from Finder, Hook supports connecting files across a broad array of common applications. It’s possible to include support for brand-new apps with a little Applescript, but Hook’s designers are likewise constantly working to broaden its list of supported apps.
Hook is presently in public beta and complimentary to use Anticipate to see a paid variation (hopefully together with a free variation) when the app’s last variation shows up.