One-Click Tagging in Mulberry

Now that Mulberry is free/gratis and is being actively developed, I'm much more inspired to write about it. Thank you to Cyrus Daboo for freeing Mulberry! Here is a tip about using Mulberry and IMAP keywords, which are also known as user-defined flags or labels or tags.

As I wrote about in Server-Side Message Labels, I use the user-defined flags named $Label1, $Label4, and $Label5 to mean Useful, To Do, and To Do Maybe. I use these names because they are consistent with the default configuration of the Mozilla-based IMAP clients. Because some of my IMAP clients, for example Horde/IMP, do not support user-defined flags, I use the \Flagged system flag to tag all interesting messages and then use user-defined flags and other system flags, in addition to the \Flagged flag, to distinguish between various kinds of interestingness. For example, I have set up Mulberry with a rule named +ToDo that sets the $Label4 flag, the \Flagged flag, and unsets the \Seen flag. The following table lists some of my rules and what flags they set and unset.

Rule Nameuser-defined flagsystem flags
+Ref$Label1\Flagged, \Seen
+ToDo$Label4\Flagged, NOT \Seen
+Maybe$Label5\Flagged, \Seen
_RefNOT $Label1
NOT \Flagged, \Seen
_ToDoNOT $Label4
NOT \Flagged, \Seen
_MaybeNOT $Label5
NOT \Flagged, \Seen

To make it easy to apply one (or more) of these rules to a message, I've added them to my Mulberry toolbar, which now, in part, looks like this:

Note that in order to be able to add a rule to your Mulberry toolbar, you need to click on the Triggered by: button in the rule's Edit Rules window and make sure that Apply Rules Menu is checked.

Now I have an easy one-click way to tag messages in Mulberry and have at least some of the tags -- e.g. the \Seen and \Flagged system flags -- show up in any IMAP client.

Tag Tip: To get ideas for how you might want to tag your messages, see lifehacker's Geek to Live: Empty your inbox with the Trusted Trio, which suggests using tags named Action, Archive, and Hold. There are lots of other tagging ideas in the comments and at the links that are on this lifehacker page. While reading this or any getting-things-done article, remember that sometimes a mailbox is just not a mailbox. For example:
  • "inbox" can be interpreted to mean "untagged messages"; and
  • "empty your inbox" can be interpreted to mean "leave no message untagged"!
Soon I will write about how to use Mulberry to create virtual mailboxes (saved searches) that are based on tags and other IMAP data and IMAP metadata. To learn about how to do this in Pine, see Index Color Rule and Virtual Mailbox Example on the Power Pine page.
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