Outliner Software Forum RSS Feed Forum Posts Feed

Subscribe by Email

CRIMP Defined




two-pane outliner that can show more than one note at a time in the viewer/editor pane?

View this topic | Back to topic list

Posted by jimspoon
Oct 19, 2013 at 05:47 AM


Thanks very much to all who have replied - your replies led me to look more closely at some of the programs you mentioned (particularly Acute Notes, Sense, Whizfolders, and Scrivener).  I was really thinking about the ability to view multiple items at the same time in a single pane, rather than multiple panes.  I was glad to read about the “multiple items in mulitple panes, one per pane” options as well.

So many of the two-pane “outliners” we see have no “outlining” functions available in the editor pane itself.  So called “single-pane” outliners - where a tree is integrated into the editor itself - not only allow me to see the content of multiple items in a single pane, which is only the first step - but also the ability to split/join items, promote/demote, and reorder items while seeing their full text.  In the usual two-pane outliner, you can’t split/join items, and the only way to promote/demote and reorder is to move to the “tree pane” where you work with “item names” only, and not the actual text of the items.  And moving text between items is especially cumbersome - you have to cut text from one item, select another item in the tree, and paste the text in the desired location in the other item.  This is so easy in a single-pane outliner. 

These abilities make so-called single-pane outliners (where “outlining” is actually integrated into the editor) much more useful to me than most “two-pane” outliners.

And yet many of the single-pane outliners seem to be lacking in the kind of database functionality I want; many of the two-pane “outliners” excel at that.  Often I think - if only these programs (e.g. Ultra Recall, Zoot, MyInfo, MyBase, TreeProjects, etc) would integrate the outliner tree into the editor, I’d have a lot more to choose from.

As it is, the only Windows programs I know of that approach what I want are Ecco and Infoqube.  (OmniOutliner for Mac looks good but I’m pretty wedded to Windows).  Ecco is great but I can’t confidently throw my data into it because it can handle only a limited number of items - far fewer than what I generate over time.  Maybe Infoqube is the solution for me but I would like to have more competitors in the field.

Maybe I am wrong but it doesn’t seem like it would be that big a deal for the two-pane developers to integrate the tree into the editor.  It seems they don’t understand the importance of the capabilities that single-pane outliners provide.