There has got to be a better way (Finder Tags)

I have hundreds of tags at this point and I need a better way to manage them than Finder provides. My main gripes are:

  1. Whenever I deselect tags to show in the Finder sidebar, they show back up within a few minutes. Sometimes it happens before I’ve even finished clicking the boxes for the tags I don’t want there. Poof! All of a sudden, all the boxes are checked again. All of them.
  2. Tags aren’t displayed alphabetically unless you manually sort them that way, and you can’t drag multiple tags at a time to do that. It’s one tag at a time through a seemingly endless list.
  3. Finder will only type ahead match an entry if the string matches entirely from the first character, so you can’t find partial matches to select from existing tags that are close. Also, good luck finding that spelling error you know slipped through.

I’m guessing I need to be in the Finder-alternative category to get these issues solved. I’ve used Path Finder in the past, but it, too, has a problem with forgetfulness and losing my settings; at least there, I can save settings to get them back. Does anyone have a (non-command-line) tool that might scratch these itches? I’m after tags that will travel with the files, not something where the tags only exist within an app.

Once I have the tags assigned, I think Finder is okay for working with them; although, that’s probably more Spotlight than Finder, at that point.

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I have been using “LEAP” from Ironic Software

Although it has been developed quite a while ago, it looks like it is going to get some developer love in 2020 to add some features and dark mode.

There is also a newly developed program in Beta now called “Taggytagger” that will monitor folders and then automatically assign tags. This can also be done with Hazel but this program has a more user-friendly UI.

I have done a lot of research looking for Tag management software and have not discovered anything that would graphically display the tag interaction so I probably will experiment with entering them into TheBrain database to get a different perspective.

It would be nice to have software that could graphically display every link between tags. So the software would have to read the tags assigned to each file then connect each similar relationship, count links, delete duplicates then display graphically tag names with lines with each connection along with usage count. I still have not found this gem yet.

LEAP will display tags in a Word Cloud (This may be an incorrect name of this type of graph)

Just lately I have discovered that Evernote allows one to have multi-level stacking on Tags, unlike file folders that are limited to one level of stacking.


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Ammonite is a nice menubar utility for tag searching. Covers the filesystem and DEVONthink databases, but works just find if you don’t have DEVONthink.

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  1. Your icon wins. Full stop.

  2. It feels like Apple got 80% of the way with tags and just stopped. For years. I’d love to hear why that is the case some day.