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Wiki for Fiction Writing

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Posted by Randall Shinn
Jan 3, 2009 at 06:35 PM

 

I moved to OS X for music production, and because the system demands for what I am doing there are intense, I have tried to avoid using emulators and Windows programs on my Macs.  While there are cases in which the Windows versions of programs are ahead of OS X versions (MindManager is one example) and vice versa, the only area where I feel comparatively slighted with OS X is with financial management software. And there seems to be no remedy for that in sight before next summer. (So in the meantime I am keeping an XP laptop in service.)

I have not tried ConnectedText, so I don’t know how it compares to the latest version of VoodooPad. And as I said, I’m not sure that I actually have a use for a personal wiki. I suppose all of us, assuming we have a choice, choose the operating system that allows us to efficiently work in the software that we spend most of our lives in. And I am finding that for me this ends up being surprisingly few programs. In fact, one of the benefits I found in switching operating systems was questioning why I had purchased any number of software programs, given that I was never using them.

Randall

 


Posted by Stephen Zeoli
Jan 3, 2009 at 10:08 PM

 

I have a license for both Connected Text and Voodoo Pad, but as of yet do not use either one extensively. I like the idea of a personal wiki, but have yet to really commit any serious work to them. However, I did want to add a couple of comments to the comparison of these two programs. Manfred is absolutely right that CT is far more powerful and packed with useful functions. Where VP has the upper hand, in my opinion, is in two ways: First, it is pretty easy to learn and use right away; and, Second, its editor is far superior. Basically it is a full-fledged word processor. One of the problems with CT and other PC-based wikis is that the editors are generally fairly limited… and you need to use arcane commands to add bullets, bold type, italics, etc… When I saw “arcane,” I don’t really mean difficult, but there is no standardization in these commands, so the way to make bold type in CT is different than the way to make bold type in Wikidpad, for instance. In VP, you format text pretty much the way you would in any word processor.

Beyond that, VP is the only personal wiki I’ve found for Mac.

Steve Z.

 


Posted by Manfred
Jan 4, 2009 at 05:01 AM

 

Stephen,

yes, you are right that Voodoopad behaves more like a word processor. This has to do in part with relative ease with which rich text can be implemented on the Mac.

CT (and other wikis) behave more like databases with separate modes for editing and viewing. I find the markup very easy, but I understand that one might prefer the mode-less approach. But you do give up power.

Voodoopad is by no means the only Wiki on the Mac. See http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?PersonalWiki for some that run on several operating systems (including the Mac), like Notebook, Wikit, and Zulupad, and there are some that are specific to the Mac (which do, however, seem to suffer from the dominance of Voodoopad).

I find that there are a lot of exaggerated claims about Voodoopad. Thus, you find, for instance, on Wikipedia, you find “essentially invented the modern personal/desktop wikis”, which is a blatant falsehood. VoodooPad 1.1 alpha 2: came out only in May 11, 2003. By this time, there existed already a number of multi-OS desktop wikis and some specifically designed for the PC. Notebook goes back at least to 2002, and Wikit goes back even further. Pepys (which is no longer developed, but which was also mode-less) also goes back to at least that time.

That being said, I agree it’s a nice application, no more, but also no less.

Manfred

 


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