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The ultimate outliner

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Posted by Chris Murtland
Jan 17, 2013 at 02:21 PM

 

* hoisting
* cloning
* mark and gather and other multi-item and organizational/structural operations
* complete control via keyboard
* multi-platform with synchronization but ability to work offline on every platform
* two types of search result displays - a flat list of matching items, with contextual snippets around the search term(s) shown, and an outline view of search results (in other words, the outline structure is still shown, but filtered to only include matching items)
* word/paragraph counts for selected item, selected branch, and entire outline
* extensive import/export capabilities

 


Posted by Dr Andus
Jan 17, 2013 at 03:17 PM

 

I’d add ability to break down a large piece of text into outline items (title + text fragment), such as “Split with Selection as Title” in Scrivener, “Cut to new topic” in CT, or “Split Event” in O4D and then be able to re-attach them to a new outline (such as drag-n-drop of topics onto outline in CT) or re-arrange them quickly with keyboard.

 


Posted by Franz Grieser
Jan 17, 2013 at 04:43 PM

 

Wait a moment:

Chris Murtland wrote:
>* two types of search result displays - a flat list of matching items,
>with contextual snippets around the search term(s) shown, and an outline
>view of search results (in other words, the outline structure is still
>shown, but filtered to only include matching items)
>* word/paragraph counts for selected item, selected branch, and entire
>outline

Dr. Andus wrote:
>I’d add ability to break down a large piece of text into outline items (title + text fragment), such as “Split with Selection as Title” in Scrivener,

Now, we’re leaving outliners and getting into writing environments.
Or do you really write that much in Bonsai, Noteliner, Notemap, OmniOutliner, Neo, etc. to REALLY need these features?

Sorry, I am just trying to keep the feature set as small as possible :-)

Franz

 


Posted by Dr Andus
Jan 17, 2013 at 05:02 PM

 

Grieser wrote:
>Wait a moment:
>Now, we’re leaving outliners and getting into writing environments.
>Or do you really write that much in Bonsai, Noteliner, Notemap,
>OmniOutliner, Neo, etc. to REALLY need these features?

>Sorry, I am just trying to keep the feature set as small as possible :-)

In the first post I did say “‘Outlining’ in this sense though could still span the entire writing process, from brainstorming, note-taking, organising, analysis, to synthesis, outlining, drafting and writing up.”

But I understand your concern. Nevertheless, it is already possible in Outline 4D to switch between a skeletal outline and one with long inline notes with a single mouse-click or hotkey combination.

My biggest problem with outliners recently has been how to move from the initial skeletal outline to one with inline notes and then to the first draft. it throws up all kinds of conceptual and technical problems. And the solution has been to use an outliner (O4D) rather than a “writing environment” (such as Scrivener) for the drafting/writing up, so that reverse outlining can be carried out (which is what the above feature can also be used for).

 


Posted by Dr Andus
Jan 17, 2013 at 05:09 PM

 

But I’d also say that managing textual fragments (notes, quotes) and outlining are closely related and it’s a bit of a poorly served area. CT and PiggyDB seem to have some answers to it, but generally it’s not all that easy to create an outline first, and then quickly link its items with existing text snippets of notes and quotes so that they become integrated as the “inline notes” of the outline items, as part of the process of turning the outline into a full draft.

This is kind of what I was getting at this blog post:
http://drandus.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/academic-writing-workflow-with-connectedtext-freeplane-and-outline-4d/

 


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