A plea for non-flat Collections (or equivalent functionality)

Mi
Michael Shapiro
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Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:36 pm Post

As projects grow complex, being able to visually focus on a subset of the content becomes vital. (Apps like OmniOutliner exhibit this philosophy perfectly.)

Collections are great, but as they don't support folder hierarchies with the same convenience as the Binder, they are limited in their ability to cut down visual clutter through selective focus. A flat sprawl of documents starts to become unwieldy without a convenient nestable visual subgrouping mechanism. (I know you can technically have a folder in a Collection, but the interface for accessing its contents is awkward.)

I'm sure that getting a Collection to support disclosure-triangle folder hierarchies is complicated. (If you move a document into a hypothetical Collection Folder, is it also being moved into a folder in the binder? Is there a separate folder that only exists in the Collection?) But I'd like to suggest that we actually need this functionality in order to effectively work with large projects, which is Scrivener's raison d'être.

Another solution might be implementing a true focus feature for the Binder: click on something, click on a focus button, and Scrivener hides everything but that thing you clicked on and its hierarchical descendants.

But I'd like to suggest that one way or another, a selective-view feature that allows for arbitrary subfolders is badly needed. Personally I'd like to see a folder hierarchy in Collections rather than the addition of a redundant feature, even if those folders were "imaginary folders" that had no weight in the Binder.

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KB
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Sat Nov 17, 2018 5:07 pm Post

If I understand your reasoning, I think the feature you want already exists: "Hoist Binder". Select a folder in the binder, then go to View > Outline > Hoist Binder. This hides everything in the binder except the contents of the folder that was selected.

All the best,
Keith
"You can't waltz in here, use my toaster, and start spouting universal truths without qualification."

Mi
Michael Shapiro
Posts: 26
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2015 9:40 pm
Platform: Mac

Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:32 pm Post

That's pretty handy!

The only thing I'd ask for now is ease of access. Is there a way to jump to a particular folder in hoisted state? i.e. Can you save a folder and its hoisted status as a Bookmark?

Alternatively, is there any kind of quicker way to hoist/unhoist a folder? I don't see the option of adding a toolbar icon.
The number of steps in the sub-menu drill down makes this ergonomically prohibitive (to me) for frequent use.

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KB
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Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:49 pm Post

I think it could do with an easier way of accessing it, come to think of it. Let me ponder on it. I might make a toolbar item available for it.
"You can't waltz in here, use my toaster, and start spouting universal truths without qualification."