This version is out of date, covering development from v9.0.0 to v9.3.0. It is maintained here only for inbound reference links from elsewhere. It is no longer actively updated.

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A Tinderbox Reference File

aTbRef source TBX last updated: Thu, 8 Dec 2022 13:06:58 +0000 :: XML RSS 2.0 Feed RSS 2.0 Feed :: XML Atom 1.0 Feed Atom 1.0 Feed :: JSON Feed JSON 1.0 Feed

"aTbRef" is a reference file aboutTinderbox's objects and functions. It has been written and updated since 2004 by Mark Anderson a long-time user of Tinderbox (see more) and it is offered to the Tinderbox community as a free public service under a Creative Commons BY-NC-SA licence (licence details).

As a reference file, aTbRef is explicitly and deliberately not a 'how-to' resource, i.e. it explains how parts of the app work rather than how to employ those app features in the context of a user's personal work tasks. The latter are questions that can be addressed by tutorials or in the user-to-user forums (more on other Tinderbox help resources).

aTbRef9 is baselined on v9.0.0b523 (released 10 December 2021) and includes changes up to and including v9.3.0b566 (4 Aug 2022). This web resource of c.2,500 discrete static HTML webpages is created from 2,652 discrete notes and a further 46 aliases within the source Tinderbox document. The overall number of notes, agents, adornments and aliases in the document is over 8,800 items containing over 331,500 words and employs over 5,500 internal (i.e. inter-note) links.

A Change Log section lists significant per-release changes since v9.0.0b523 (10 December 2021), that being the baseline version for this re-release of aTbRef. Those users who always update to the current version can generally just ignore the text's references to version numbers (apart from checking the most recent changes) whereas users of older versions can easily see whether their installed version includes certain improvements or not. Some legacy syntax is no longer documented. Those needing to use legacy syntax should refer to older versions of aTbRef. Release dates of versions prior to the current baseline are listed here.

Quick jumps to: System Attribute List (392) :: Export Code List (45) :: Action Operators List (285) :: Designator List :: Site Map 



The HTML pages include a Google search box in the footer. Note that if using a local copy you must be online to use the search; Google will search the online pages—that might possibly be more recent than your own—and the search result links will likewise be to the online pages. If you have downloaded the TBX source, simply use Tinderbox's own Find tool to look for things.

If reading the TBX source file, ignore the UTILS section which contains agents, prototypes, etc., used to create and maintain this file.


Not all Tinderbox users are English speakers so to try and help with that all pages include an in-page Google Translate feature (below). The feature offers automatic translation of page content into any of the languages supported by the Translate service. Doubtless the translation it is not fluent but it may help non-English speakers get more out of this resource.


By design aTbRef is a document intended to be exported to HTML and the TBX of this file includes the necessary templates to enable that process.


This file is supposed to go along with the existing manual & release notes (available via the app's Help menu) as well as the Tinderbox forum. It is therefore incomplete regarding the global Tinderbox culture. Its main aim is to serve as an "on the go" (online) as well as a personal (TBX file) reference to Tinderbox use. Tinderbox's author Mark Bernstein has also written a book, The Tinderbox Way, that discusses some of the design ideas encapsulated in Tinderbox as well as some practical examples as to usage.

If you are using the source TBX file version of aTbRef, bear in mind nearly all of the caret (^) symbols will be written doubled in order that they do not get interpreted as export codes when outputting the HTML pages. A further benefit from using—or just viewing—the source TBX is that is contains all the export templates needed to produce this site and which can be instructive if learning the HTML export aspects of Tinderbox.

This file is shared "as is", the author will not be held responsible for its content; it may be used/republished under a Creative Commons Licence.