Feature request: More consistent keyboard-only navigation


First of all: Fantastic job guys! I am relatively new to Findings but really like it thus far. I like the minimalistic design that really lets you focus on your work. I also appreciate the responsiveness of the developers in this forum, which is why I am adding my two cents here.

My general issue and feature request:

Findings has tons of great hotkeys that allow for undistracted writing, but in comparison the keyboard-only navigation of the three panes lacks basic features, forcing one to frequently use the mouse during writing for very simple and repeatedly performed tasks/navigations like creating a quick note or jumping between two experimental protocols. Ways to navigate using the keyboard alone are standard in most productivity apps (Sublime, Slack, Scrivener… somehow can’t come up with an app that doesn’t start with S;), it would be great if Findings had it, too.

Detailed description:

1. Navigation between panes

Current situation:
I can use the arrow keys to go up and down through the entries of either one of the three panes (i.e. list of entries in the left panel, list of experiments/protocols in the middle, or content of an individual file on the right), BUT there is no way to navigate between panes using the keyboard (at least not that I am aware of), I always have to use the mouse.

It would be great if e.g. Option+Cmd+left/right arrow could be used to navigate between the three panes. (This would be identical to the common shortcut that e.g. Chrome/Opera and Sublime Text use to jump between tabs)

2. Navigating between Title/Summary and Body of entries

Current situation:
When I e.g. create a new research note using Shift+Cmd+R I can enter the title and then press Tab to enter the summary of that note, but I can’t navigate from the header to the body of that note to write the actual note without clicking it with the mouse.

It would be great if it were possible to use the keyboard to jump from header to note body and vice versa. Something like Cmd+Option+arrow up/down maybe

3. Active pane after selecting entry category via hotkey

Relatively minor point: After using hotkeys like Shift+Cmd+1 that let you jump to a specific entry category (e.g. Experiments), the arrow keys let me navigate to other entry categories (the left column), instead of within entries of the category I selected via hotkey. It would be great if selecting a category with a hotkey would automatically put the focus on the second (middle) pane that contains the entries of that category so one can scroll through them with the arrow keys.

Anyways, keep up the good work and thanks for reading!

All very good points. A full-keyboard navigation would be great.

I wonder if I could simply allow the use of the left/right arrow keys, though in the left sidebar, it would also expand sub collections. Though I would still need a way to exit the document and go back to the middle pane.

Maybe there, I could make it simply tab from the summary into the document. Again, I would still need a way to exit the document and go back to the title/summary header.

Many thanks for your feedback!


Thanks for your answer Charles!

Yeah I’ve been thinking about which keys would work for navigation -Left/right arrow keys would work well in the left/middle pane but once you are in the right pane you’d get stuck because arrow keys are used to move the cursor within a document (and same is true for cmd+arrow key combinations). Likely the reason why many programs use cmd+option+arrows or something similarly complicated for higher level navigation.


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