Scapple Beta - New Users Please Read

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KB
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Sat Oct 20, 2012 8:19 pm Post

mitchellm wrote:Here's an example of how structure could be included: any links made with a one-way arrow indicate the base of arrow is "parent" and end of arrow item is "child."


What if A has a one-way arrow to B, B has a one-way arrow to C, and C has a one-way arrow to A?

(On the contrary, if structure matters so little to you, why offer OPML support? Why not go whole hog with your beliefs and forego OPML?)


Purely because it's a common format and it's easy to support. If users feel this particular export option is of limited use, though, or that it implies that Scapple is the sort of app that it is not, I would certainly consider dropping it.

I realize I was a bit unclear about the notes issue. In Tree Outliner I can have outliner "items" plus add "notes" if I want within each item. If I export to OPML, then import into Scrivener, I get a binder that is structured according to my outliner OPML, PLUS any embedded notes are positioned as text within a particular binder file. It's very sweet and nice.


Ah, like in OmniOutliner. Scapple avoids that whole title/note paradigm and just has individual notes.

All the best,
Keith
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ilottg
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 1:53 am Post

Downloaded today, and loving it. I use iMindMap, Freemind, xMind (free basic version) and MyThoughts. All are good in their own way, but sometimes they feel like a bit of bloatware or otherwise the map looks simplistic and annoying (Freemind comes to mind). I have some observations already.

1. Nomenclature: you use the term "note" where others would use "node". This is confusing. Can you actually place a full note here?
2. The idea of arrows vs. dotted line is not immediately clear. I guess the manual will clear this up.
3. If I right-click a note, I should see all options. However, the option to create new linked notes is not there.
4. Surely a strong interface into Scrivener will come? I don't see an option to export into Scrivener, or even into OPML. The Scrivener link will be the killer point of difference for this app.
5. Just with half an hour of testing and I can tell that I will buy this app for $10. If I get it from the MAS, will it work as well with my non-MAS Scrivener?

Many thanks,
GI.

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mitchellm
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 3:57 am Post

Keith: Your arrow example (A to B, B to C, C to A) was a good one. Understood now. (I see how more structured products avoid this scenario just by their basic organizational structure.)

I'm liking Scrapple very much. Was just exploring how far I could extend it. I'll surely buy when it's released.

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KB
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:18 am Post

mitchellm wrote:Keith: Your arrow example (A to B, B to C, C to A) was a good one. Understood now. (I see how more structured products avoid this scenario just by their basic organizational structure.)


Glad it helped!

I'm liking Scrapple very much. Was just exploring how far I could extend it. I'll surely buy when it's released.


Thanks!
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KB
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:31 am Post

ilottg wrote:1. Nomenclature: you use the term "note" where others would use "node". This is confusing. Can you actually place a full note here?


A "node" is a point connected to other points by lines. In traditional mindmapping apps, nodes are always connected to other nodes, leading back to the central idea node. In Scapple, that's not the case. Notes can be all on their own connected to nothing. What you create in Scapple are notes. It's best to come to Scapple without any preconceptions gathered from other mindmapping software, and instead think of Scapple as a huge piece of paper, on which you can make notes anywhere and join them together with lines.

2. The idea of arrows vs. dotted line is not immediately clear. I guess the manual will clear this up.


It is immediately clear - you've already covered everything you need to know in your sentence. The idea is that you can join notes with dotted lines or arrowed lines. There's nothing else to know. These lines have no meaning to the software - the meaning is provided entirely by you, just as when you draw lines between notes on a piece of paper those lines are for connecting your ideas, not to tell the paper anything.

3. If I right-click a note, I should see all options. However, the option to create new linked notes is not there.


I'm not quite sure where you got the idea that all options should be available in the contextual menu, but they shouldn't. Contextual menus should only provide the most common actions that users are likely to need there. The contextual menu therefore focuses more on making amendments to existing notes since there are already quicker ways of creating new notes using the mouse (double-click, and hold down the Option or Command keys while doing so to make connections).

4. Surely a strong interface into Scrivener will come? I don't see an option to export into Scrivener, or even into OPML. The Scrivener link will be the killer point of difference for this app.


You can already export to OPML (as a flat list - see the discussion above), and, as mentioned in my first post, if you download the latest beta of Scrivener, you can drag notes from Scapple into Scrivener's freeform corkboard. I'll also be adding the ability to drag into the binder, though.

5. Just with half an hour of testing and I can tell that I will buy this app for $10.


Great, thanks!

If I get it from the MAS, will it work as well with my non-MAS Scrivener?


Yes, it will work the same no matter how you buy it.

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

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ilottg
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 9:36 am Post

Thanks Keith. I agree with everything you say, except the contextual menu. But first, let me apologise for being lazy with the OPML export. Yes, it is there, I don't know what I was thinking :(.

When you say the contextual menu does not have to show everything, just the most common things, yes you are right. But don't you think that adding new notes with dotted/arrowed links would be a common task? Seems to me that this would be an expected feature of the contextual menu.

This is all in the interests of making a contribution, and not a complaint. I like this minimal app. Just what I was looking for. Great work.

GI.

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Sun Oct 21, 2012 9:43 am Post

mitchellm wrote:...I'm liking Scrapple very much... I'll surely buy when it's released.


+1.

Uz Penwithians got as'pport yoos Carrick ikes, un uz Kev? :)

I've tried, but have never really been able to gel with the plethora of Buzan-style mind mapping software offerings available. All a bit too visual and structured for my taste. When I feel I need a hierarchical structure, Incubator always seems to hit the spot. But now I've got Scapple I fear my handwriting will become unreadable, even to me.

Thanks Keith.
Can't write right. Don't care neither. Er...either.

Scrivener 3.1.1 on macOS 10.14.
Occasional player of the old Scappleodium...

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KB
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 10:00 am Post

ilottg wrote:When you say the contextual menu does not have to show everything, just the most common things, yes you are right. But don't you think that adding new notes with dotted/arrowed links would be a common task? Seems to me that this would be an expected feature of the contextual menu.


Whilst it's definitely a common task, it is also one that can be achieved in a much quicker way by double-clicking. I'll consider it, though.

Juddbert wrote:But now I've got Scapple I fear my handwriting will become unreadable, even to me.


Sadly, mine already is. Thanks for the kind words!

All the best,
Keith
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 1:09 pm Post

I have tried a number of these mind mapping programs and have found them cumbersome, and unusable for the purpose of brainstorming.

Scapple is quick and stupidly easy to learn. I haven't found any bugs yet either.

You write killer software, dude!
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richardnagel
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 5:04 pm Post

I'm curious how and why people think they would use the Fade function. Does it correspond to something you'd do in the analogue world?

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Sun Oct 21, 2012 5:28 pm Post

DL Scapple and am really enjoying it a lot. I just got some feedback on a story of mine and I really needed to work out some plot points. Scapple has really helped. A lot.

It is a digital version of how I would work things out analog. And I had been using the freeform corkboard to do this kind of "thinking."

I do think that by keeping things simple, it does put a lot of focus upon the work at hand. Why, it almost makes things ... playful!

Thanks for this great app and as I find bugs, they will be reported.
---
BTW, re handwriting: Heh, try being a comic letterer. Some things you just don't forget how to do. :D

KB wrote:
ilottg wrote:When you say the contextual menu does not have to show everything, just the most common things, yes you are right. But don't you think that adding new notes with dotted/arrowed links would be a common task? Seems to me that this would be an expected feature of the contextual menu.


Whilst it's definitely a common task, it is also one that can be achieved in a much quicker way by double-clicking. I'll consider it, though.

Juddbert wrote:But now I've got Scapple I fear my handwriting will become unreadable, even to me.


Sadly, mine already is. Thanks for the kind words!

All the best,
Keith
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Camy
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 5:37 pm Post

Sad I am you've dropped PPC support with scapple - though I do understand why. I trust you'll keep it for Scrivener.
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AmberV
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 6:04 pm Post

Since it doesn't run on any versions of the OS that can run on PPC, it wouldn't make sense to have PPC support. Keith already outlined why 10.6 is the floor, it's just become far too difficult to support older versions of the OS these days.

That aside I do agree it is a pity, but the pity really needs to be placed where responsibility is due, and that is that Apple isn't a very backward looking company.
.:.
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pupillam
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:43 pm Post

This is truly great software. It is so much easier and more natural to use than mind-mapping software. Once you have got used to the shortcuts (it took me about 20 minutes of use to get used to what I needed), this is just fabulous. I'm looking forward to the next beta and final version. You have a guaranteed buyer here!

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entropydave
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Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:52 pm Post

Hi Keith

I have just been trying out Scapple. It seems very good. I say this as someone who uses a lot of mind mapping and finds that most of the software adds too many features. The non-hierarchical nature of Scapple is very appealing. The feature set seems to me nearly complete as given.

I have solely one request. I would like to be able to "circle" groups of notes. The paper equivalent would be drawing an enclosing line around a number of notes. The idea is that I have various notes, some of which have some relations by dint of arrows, but some of which are related by being members of a group. That group is indicated by an enclosing line.

This is not my intent, but you could use it to do some simple venn diagrams.

Stacking will not achieve this, because the "circles" may be many and may overlap.

Arguably what I want could be achieved by selecting the notes to be circled and then creating a new note to which all are attached. The problems with this are two: line explosion; not representing the association in a spatial way that is readily perceptible. This latter is achieved because circles can be of differing colours (stroke at least, preferably fill too).

I would propose that the feature work as follows for limited complexity. Select all the notes to be circled, choose a menu item for circling, draw the tightest shape that pleasantly encloses all notes. Fill that shape with a 50% opacity colour. Overlapping colours should be gently cumulative, i.e. be darker, but not necessarily by straight addition of luminance values.

At any rate, thank you for building Scapple and for considering my request.

David.