Importing from Tinderbox

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KB
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Sun Mar 11, 2007 6:12 pm Post

That said, the last few things I've written have been completed using Scrivener. I don't see it as a Tinderbox competitor in any way...


:( It's not meant to be a competitor to Tinderbox any more than it's meant as a competitor to Photoshop. :)

I have to admit that I never quite "got" Tinderbox, but then again I never was much of a mindmapping person...

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Keith

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AmberV
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Sun Mar 11, 2007 7:31 pm Post

Gordon wrote:If you think you might enjoy the product, but aren't quite sure, invest just a small amount and buy the book The Tinderbox Way. Read it, and you'll know if the product is for you.


Incidentally, I've been considering buying this book, but holding off until I hear some feedback on it. In your opinion, is it worth the price for a reasonably advanced user?
.:.
Ioa Petra'ka
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Gordon
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Mon Mar 12, 2007 6:51 pm Post

Keith -- That's OK, I'm not a "mindmapper" either, but I understand that some people see Tinderbox as a tool for doing that. Perhaps someday I'll try it. And of course, in regards to competition, just pointing out that trying to decide between Scrivener and Tinderbox is like trying to decide between eating breakfast and tying your shoe. :-)

Amber - I think there's a lot of value in The Tinderbox Way, and if you're anything like me, you'll discover several "aha!" bits that make it worth the money. It's also much more interesting to read than the TB documentation.

Now, Keith, when will The Scrivener Way be out? :-)

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KB
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Mon Mar 12, 2007 7:21 pm Post

The Scrivener Way cannot be out because it cannot be in - the Scrivener Way is everywhere. It is all around you.

Um.

Interesting that you say that you have never used TinderBox as a mindmapping tool - I guess I am missing a lot in that program. I agree with your analogy - the two programs do completely different things, and they can probably be used alongside depending on your workflow...

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Keith

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Mon Mar 12, 2007 7:48 pm Post

Gordon wrote:It's also much more interesting to read than the TB documentation.

That's an understatement! :wink:

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Mon Mar 12, 2007 8:16 pm Post

While I haven't been able to "delve" into TB due to lack of unicode, I own it and have used it at times. For those who don't understand what it can do (I don't say "what it does" because it can do many things), or who feel it's just like Stickies, or who aren't sure about the difference between it and other outliners, I'd recommend taking a look at some of the screencasts they now have up on the Eastgate site...especially the ones about setting up a "diabetes tracker"; they show the basics of what TB is really capable of.

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Tue Mar 13, 2007 5:29 pm Post

I do think that's the BIG problem with Tinderbox: just what the hell IS it?

I am in a minority of users in that I "got" it pretty much straight away. There is one conceptual flaw (lack of semantic linking, for Tbx fans here) but otherwise I'd have to describe it as an almost limitlessly flexible thinking/writing environment. I've used it for three books & currently on the fourth, and for numerous other projects (a couple of academic papers, lecture notes, a stage play in progress etc etc), and I'd not want to be without it.

The downside is that the almost limitless flexibility comes at the price of almost limitless complexity. Out of the box it's fine as a note-keeper, organiser and retrieval system, but to go beyond that you need to get under the hood. As for the price -- it's like saying "I drive a Volvo and the hell I'd pay $400,000 for a Cessna"... until you realize that a Cessna can actually fly. Then the cost/benefit equation changes somewhat...

For me, earning my living from words, $200 is a small price to pay (especially written down over three years) for something I use every day. I think we've got used to Really. Cheap. Software. Tinderbox costs me $0.25 a day. That's cheap.

And, yes, I would have paid a lot more for Scriv
8)

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Tue Mar 13, 2007 7:04 pm Post

The strange thing about typed links is that Tinderbox does allow you to create them, whether from note to target, or from text link to target. You can say, "This link means 'supporting evidence.'" Then comes the oddness in that you can do very little with that information automatically. Sure you can manually browse it, but that is tedious. The latest release does include a template function that allows you to export link lists, filtered by type, which is getting there -- but you still cannot say in an agent: Status=unverified & #linkedTo(supporting evidence), to find all notes that need to be fact checked, that also have been marked as being supporting evidence by some other item in the network.

You can somewhat work around this problem in certain scenarios, but it would be so much easier if agents reacted to the notion of whether or not a note is networked, and why. Hopefully that gets addressed in the coming year.

Agreed on the price. If you actually figure out how to pull back on the yoke and take off in Tb, the cost is a pittance for what it does.
.:.
Ioa Petra'ka
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Wed Mar 14, 2007 1:59 am Post

AmberV wrote:
Gordon wrote:If you think you might enjoy the product, but aren't quite sure, invest just a small amount and buy the book The Tinderbox Way. Read it, and you'll know if the product is for you.


Incidentally, I've been considering buying this book, but holding off until I hear some feedback on it. In your opinion, is it worth the price for a reasonably advanced user?


I bought it and have yet to get too deep into the text. I've read a bit and am enjoying the book. I am definitely a Tinderbox newbie however.

Too many apps, too little time, I'm afraid.

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Wed Mar 14, 2007 11:44 am Post

AmberV wrote:The strange thing about typed links is that Tinderbox does allow you to create them, whether from note to target, or from text link to target. You can say, "This link means 'supporting evidence.'" Then comes the oddness in that you can do very little with that information automatically. Sure you can manually browse it, but that is tedious. The latest release does include a template function that allows you to export link lists, filtered by type, which is getting there -- but you still cannot say in an agent: Status=unverified & #linkedTo(supporting evidence), to find all notes that need to be fact checked, that also have been marked as being supporting evidence by some other item in the network.

You can somewhat work around this problem in certain scenarios, but it would be so much easier if agents reacted to the notion of whether or not a note is networked, and why. .



Yes -- I was surprised at the lack of that functionality. As you say, it can be kludged, sort of, but a simple "Show me all the "see also" links from this note" -- a sort of Nakakoji view but useful -- would do more than anything else to demonstrate to new users the power of Tbx. (That, and a live Road Map view, which Tbx users here will immediately grok.) I've been harrassing Mark Bernstein about this for years but without success, so far.

Perhaps Scrivener 3 will have something...

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Thu Mar 15, 2007 4:10 am Post

michaelbywater wrote:As for the price -- it's like saying "I drive a Volvo and the hell I'd pay $400,000 for a Cessna"... until you realize that a Cessna can actually fly.


That analogy made me laugh out loud ... I drive a Volvo, and I wish I could afford a Cessna, because I'm learning to fly one :-)

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Thu Mar 15, 2007 8:49 pm Post

AmberV wrote: If you actually figure out how to pull back on the yoke and take off in Tb, the cost is a pittance for what it does.


And then when you figure out how to pull back on the yoke even further and stall and spin in, the cost is ruinous :shock:

(From one who, playing with rules, replaced the text of an entire book draft with ten thousand notes saying "This is some note text blah blah yadda" and then, in a hideous reflex, hit Save.)

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Thu Mar 15, 2007 8:57 pm Post

Aaaaargh! :mrgreen:
In theory, there's no difference
between theory and practice.
In practice, there is.

Yogi Berra

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Thu May 31, 2007 6:36 am Post

I never do more than scratch the surface of Tinderbox, but it has run my blog for years, and I did plan my last book in it. Tbx now comes with Yojimbo, an excellent database thingy. And as a newcomer to Scrivener - just writing my first article in it (liking it enough to recommend to my book editor) - I can foresee a workflow for the next book that goes something like Safari -> Yojimbo for research, then Tbx for planning the structure, and Scriv for the writing, pulling relevant material out of both into the Scriv environment.

Pip pip!
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AmberV
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Thu May 31, 2007 1:54 pm Post

I think that would be an extremely flexible workflow. I auditioned Yojimbo a while back, and while I liked it, I didn't like it enough to shell out any cash. The next time I upgrade Tb I'll be glad to have it. It looks like it will be a nice "inbox" kind of application. The type of place where you stash things that interest you, but do not have the time to fully read.
.:.
Ioa Petra'ka
“Whole sight, or all the rest is desolation.” —John Fowles