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Posted by MadaboutDana
Apr 8, 2022 at 09:36 AM

 

Some interesting thoughts in the midst of that cloud of wide-ranging reflections.

I think you answer your own question, in fact. Scrivener is a tool developed for a specific purpose: writing a book (or long-form text).

This it does / helps users to do extremely well. The macOS version in particular, but I would disagree that the Windows version is “bad”; it’s perhaps not quite as refined as the macOS version.

But Scrivener isn’t optimal for other things. I’ve tried using Scrivener as a general knowledge-management system, and even as a task manager. But it is not optimised for these purposes. If, however, you want to concentrate your energies on producing a book, with all the associated research, scraps of written text, thoughts, ideas etc., then Scrivener works as a mighty platform.

There are other solutions out there, of course: notably Ulysses (and others that are so expensive they tend to be overlooked, like the German app Papyrus Author [https://www.papyrusauthor.com]). So there is some competitive pressure, despite the popularity of each of these tools.

None of these solutions necessarily represent total, all-in-one knowledge management/personal management/writing/thought development/ideation apps, however. Nor would their (in my experience, very amiable and responsive) developers pretend that they do.

So I’m not quite sure what you’re criticising.

- The failure of these apps to be what they were never intended to be?
- The failure of their developers to respond to the (in my experience, enormously broad) range of requests from users to turn them, effectively, into something they were never intended to be?
- Or the complacency of the developers who are failing to optimise them even further (while still focusing on what the apps were intended to be)?

That software models still don’t match the enormous potential now represented by modern hardware is clear. But this clearly has significant implications for human cognitive processing abilities – while an enormous number of incredibly ingenious knowledge-management methods have been developed, none of them are seamless or omnipotent, and no-one has yet succeeded in bringing all these wonderful ideas together to form the Ultimate UI/UX.

In short – if I may adduce a film reference (enjoy!) – we’re still a long way from the apparently 100% intuitive interface shown in “Minority Report” or, to a lesser extent, in “Avatar” (an interface which, of course, is still very far from intuitive and relies on significant familiarisation to work at the speeds achieved by good ole’ Tom Cruise).

An interesting muse, nevertheless.