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Outlinely gets a (minor) update

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Posted by satis
Jun 22, 2018 at 03:05 AM


Smithers wrote:

>I just don’t like having the editor and final product look

I get it.

I love the customizability of Ulysses - I’ve spent far too much time tinkering with the look to be honest - and I don’t mind the incomplete WYSIWYG experience (I’ve spent decades in BBEdit before this), but there are enough niggles for me to be less than fully satisfied. One major disgruntlement: there are times when I want to attach a note to a paragraph but the notes implementation is for an entire sheet, so I end up filling my documents with non-printing inline comments that have uniquely coded ‘tags’ for easier search. It’s a messy-looking kludge, and I’d rather be able to have notes attachable to words, paragraphs or even attachments. And the whole Styles export is terrible (and I’m glad I don’t need to use it), with no obvious info on what a style offers (eg font/size/formatting) other than trying it (and remembering later), no way to customize it, and no easy way to create your own styles. Unfortunately, it’s hard to know what’s being prioritized in terms of features and fixes (I love that Dynalist has a Trello board showing you and letting you vote).

So, I’m mostly satisfied but still not really settled in with the app. If I needed to I could switch to another app I own, be it IA Writer, BBEdit, or Nisus Writer Pro, or even Pages. But Ulysses gets so much right that I don’t mind, for now at least, living inside it for most of my writing.

I feel that unsatisfied with every single writing app I use, each for different reasons. I use Day One multiple times a day, on both Mac and iOS, but I hate not being able to use my own fonts (and tint my background), and hate that nice iOS features like ‘On This Day’ aren’t in the Mac app, and the primitive, insufficient search is irritating. I enjoy IA Writer considerably, but not the restricted font/size/background choices or the inability to move folders in the Document Library. Scrivener is powerful and flexible but incredibly opaque and labyrinthine (just look at the books and sites and video training courses for it) and it’s the type of app I tend to come to hate because if you get away from it for a few weeks you come back and have to relearn odd, specific procedures and tricks. (One reason I don’t use a text expander.)





Posted by MadaboutDana
Jul 25, 2018 at 09:37 AM


Well, I’ve been taking a good look at Outlinely recently, as I reassess my various Apple subscriptions.

And I have to say, I reckon it still knocks Workflowy and Dynalist into a cocked hat - as long as you don’t create too many outlines (at which point Outlinely slightly frustrating lack of rearrangeable structure becomes an issue!). But use just a few outlines, and the true power of Outlinely (including its excellent tag filtering, as well as the general filter and navigation filter, not to mention the search function) becomes apparent. It’s also quite configurable.

It’s got many more features than either of the above, and the sync facility is, as it happens, on a par with those of Ulysses or Bear. I’ve been playing with Diarly recently (as mentioned elsewhere), and although the lovely developer of the latter has made some great changes (the search function now highlights all search terms inside notes!), syncing is a wee bit hit and miss. Outlinely is fast and generally accurate.

So it’s staying on my subscriptions list for now. I think I’ll send an encouraging e-mail to Glam Development.

Now to take an objective look at Ulysses, by far the most expensive of my subs at the moment… I love it, but is it worth it (especially in view of Bear, Outlinely, MWeb)?



Posted by Franz Grieser
Jul 25, 2018 at 11:28 AM


MadaboutDana wrote:

>Now to take an objective look at Ulysses, by far the most expensive of
>my subs at the moment… I love it, but is it worth it (especially in
>view of Bear, Outlinely, MWeb)?

Bill, are you aware of a “stay with us” offer for long-time supporters? It’s 25% off the annual subscription? The offer expires Juli 31 (and won’t come back, they said).


Posted by MadaboutDana
Jul 25, 2018 at 12:23 PM


Thanks for that, Franz. Hm, didn’t realise they were offering another discount. I’ll take a look before it’s too late!



Posted by Luhmann
Jul 26, 2018 at 03:43 AM


I have to say, although I love having a native iOS app, there are so many little things in Outlinely that don’t work right or don’t work as expected that I just find it frustrating. Small example: toggling a list item from a bullet list to a task and back again gives you a bullet list PLUS a task, not just a bullet list. Bear does this right. It is only one small example, but it shows why Bear is justifiably at the top of the App store and Outlinely is not. There is just a lack of attention to detail like this throughout the whole app. Another example: hitting backspace after an item with a note puts the cursor in the note, not the previous item. Most other outliners all get this right… I really want to like Outlinely, and when I was a subscriber I wrote a lot of feedback about such small issues so I know the developer is aware of them… I’ll wait and see if they ever get cleared up.


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