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Author Topic: which hierarchical note program?  (Read 19396 times)
nudone
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« on: May 18, 2005, 04:44:42 AM »

i would like to 'branch' out and begin using a hierarchical note program. but i have only one idea so far of which to go for: the one that Zaine mentions on his site - TexNotes Pro.

i know mouser uses something (i can't remember if you've mentioned the name of it before, mouser) and can well imagine that a lot of other visitors to this forum use one. so i ask: what are they?

i use ADBIdea http://happyjackroad.net/...etpc/ideaLibrary/idea.asp on my pocket pc so i can see the usefullness of these programs but i'd really like something that can link to, or open directly, pretty much any common file type you care to mention. or is that asking too much?

TexNotes looks really good - but if there is something even more versatile i'd like to know your opinions. thanks.
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mouser
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« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2005, 05:25:04 AM »

first of all, let me repeat what i have said before,
a hierarchical note system is one of my most beloved apps, i wouldn't live without one.

but having said that, i'm not sure it matter all that much which one you ultimately decide on.
we will do a review of them at some point,
but basically i would look for simplicity, ease of use, ability to search.

you also have to decide if you want to be able to add pictures and stuff to your database (which i do not use, in fact i prefer just plain text).

some good ones:
  treepad
  jot+
  maple
  keynote (GOOD AND FREE! -> http://www.tranglos.com/free/keynote.html )

another thing that i have been experiment with lately,
is to use a help file making app for storing my notes...
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kfitting
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« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2005, 05:40:26 AM »

Let me second the Keynote nomination!  EXCELLANT interface.  Also, 2.0 is in the works and looks to incorporate many of the features missing in 1.65 (eg built-in table support, real hyperlinks, picture support, etc.)  If you want a good preview, do a search on the TRichView component since this is the component Keynote will use in the second version.

Other programs I have tried: MyInfo, GSNotes, TexNotes.  But, none of these have the same file structure as Keynote and their interfaces are clunkier. 

Kevin
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nudone
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« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2005, 06:08:10 AM »

thanks mouser and kfitting, they all look like decent programs for the text based kind of note taking.

i'll just explain why i was wanting something that would work with common file types but in truth my requirements are more specialised than that.

i'm main pc use is for graphic design, so as projects grow or ideas arrise i tend to have lots of images that are works in progress. the usual image viewers you can get are great for just that - viewing images. i'd find it helpful if i could keep notes about images or groups of images with links between the separate files - something like a hierachical text note program but for image files instead.

it's not just the image display i need it's the ability to keep notes on the images too - something where i can quickly write down ideas and see what comments i've made in the past relating to certain files.

the text style note programs you've both mentioned still look useful to me for other jobs so i'll try those out - i was just sort of wishful thinking that there might be some super duper program that would cater for images too.

(now that i'm thinking about it i can probably get something working with acdsee to a lesser extent.)
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mouser
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« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2005, 06:38:19 AM »

there are such programs.. for images i believe
programs for photographers that help you catalog images.
maybe acdsee already does it.  what about picasa?
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mouser
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« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2005, 06:39:31 AM »

i have to say they KeyNote is a little overwhelming for me..
i prefer a simpler user interface.. i always liked the minimal approach of jot+
until they tried to charge me for an update i thought should have been free for members, and slowed down the start up of the program by using Aramadillo protection.  Nice way to take care of your customers  Angry
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nudone
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« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2005, 06:53:28 AM »

yes, mouser, acdsee does sort of do it (probably picasa will do in some way - i shall have to investigate).

i can adapt to how acdsee wants to categories files. to be honest, it's very good when you make the effort to work it out.

i think i just need to devise a coherent way of making the notes amongst all the images.
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JeffK
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« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2005, 07:06:39 AM »

I don't really know if it would meet your needs, but maybe try Ultra Recall from www.kinook.com

Jeff
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nudone
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« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2005, 07:24:38 AM »

thanks Jeff, ultra recall looks like it might just do it - depends on what image formats it can handle - downloading it now.

thinking about it a bit more - directory opus could do it in another way.

with it's 'file collections' feature i could group imags and notes (and anything else) together and get previews at the same time. just one thing...

...anyone know if it's possible to add comments to files within directory opus. like in a metadata way that would be searchable?
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JeffK
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« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2005, 07:32:14 AM »

Supports the following images AFAIK

gif jpg jpeg eps jig tga tif pct tiff wmf bmp emf dib rel.   Looks like png is missing, might be an issue.

Only problem is it is a bit expensive at $US99.  You may be able to use its customisable attributes facility to add your notes to images

Jeff
 
« Last Edit: May 18, 2005, 07:48:35 AM by JeffK » Logged
kfitting
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« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2005, 08:04:19 AM »

Heh heh!  Your "too complicated" comment makes me laugh mouser!  Just goes to show that two different people have totally different needs/wants.  I was comparing Keynote to TexNotes as far as user interface.  Talk about cluttered!  Not that TexNotes isnt powerful...

Kevin
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JeffK
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« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2005, 02:53:39 PM »

Ultra Recall would definitely be too complicated for someone who wants a simple note keeper.

Jeff
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Bitwise
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« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2005, 04:03:33 PM »

I've written just such a program. It's called Mentalika and (to date) I have only distributed to a small number of people as it was originally intended to be a note-taker and learning tool for mentalists (this is getting complicated, but in brief a 'mentalist' is a 'psychological entertainer' like Derren Brown and this happens to be a hobby of mine). I may think of releasing a version of the program more widely though. It has a tree structure for note headers with a separate note-taking editor (with full formatting) plus a popup word processor. You can move and copy tree nodes, and (naturally) save and restore the tree and associated notes to and from disk (something which can be tricky if you've never done it before!) Each note can be assigned a category and the notes can then be sorted according to categories and viewed in a tabular structure instead of on the tree. You can flip between the tree and the table instantly and carry on editing the selected note.

If anyone thinks this sounds of interest, let me know, and I may think of writing some articles on how to do it....  smiley

all the best
Huw
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nudone
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« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2005, 02:24:14 AM »

a special note taking program just for mentalists - that sounds truly bizarre, Bitwise.

as for Derren Brown, i think his act is absolutely fantastic (makes David Blaine look quite silly). if you can do anything similar Bitwise, then i'm well impressed.
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zridling
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« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2005, 08:23:59 AM »

Nudone, although it costs $99, consider Microsoft OneNote. It's GREAT on a tablet, and you can drop photos into it and take all the notes you want — it's incredibly simple and seriously fast. I have over 6,000 "pages" in one of my OneNote setups and it's no problem.

The "busy-ness" of TexNotes Pro is its complexity. It's a great program and well-supported, and its interface can by customized for simplicity, but don't kid yourself: TexNotes Pro is an advanced program required a good measure of immersion to fully take advantage of its broad features.

Mouser guessed it: ACDSee 7 does have good note-taking abilities. Just right-click, select Properties to open a task pane that has a host of info and Notes section. Version 7 is great; version 6.x was bloatware, but users griped so much that they actually reduced the feature set in the current version and made the program really fast again.
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nudone
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« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2005, 03:08:41 PM »

yeah, thanks Zaine. i've started using the note feature with ACDSee - never looked under the hood in that section until now but it looks like the best method of keeping notes with images (kind of sad that it's been there all this time and i've been scratching my head on wondering how to make notes).

i've downloaded the trial for TexNotes Pro - not honestly sure if i could put that to use or not.

if OneNote works with photoshop files then that's worth a try - i'll take a look...
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Bitwise
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« Reply #16 on: May 19, 2005, 03:58:28 PM »

a special note taking program just for mentalists - that sounds truly bizarre, Bitwise.
Um, yes, I suppose it does....  embarassed

The truth is, I'd long wanted a program that had categories attached to each tree node and note. This was something that was introduced by a DOS program called Grandview (the successor to PC Outline) yonks ago but nothing much was ever made of it. In years of coding for PC Plus articles (this project happens to be written in Delphi) I'd developed a fairly decent little word processor, a modest tree-view outliner and a whole bunch of other bits and pieces which I decided to integrate to form Mentalika. As I said, mentalism is a hobby of mine (no, I don't claim to be as good as Derren Brown but then I doubt if his Delphi programming is up to much either Wink ) and a number of professional mentalists started talking about the merits of various note-taking software. I told them about mine; they liked it and so Mentalika was born. It's fine for other types of note organisation too just as long as you don't use mentalist databases....

all the best
Huw
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nudone
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« Reply #17 on: May 19, 2005, 04:26:41 PM »

okay, i'm intrigued. is mentalika available to non-mentalists?  huh
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Bitwise
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« Reply #18 on: May 20, 2005, 05:42:05 AM »

okay, i'm intrigued. is mentalika available to non-mentalists?  huh
Not yet. I'm currently working on an updated version which I shall probably make more generally available. As I said, I'm thinking of writing some articles for Bitwise explaining how to program some features (e.g. how to attach rich text notes to the nodes of a tree view and save and restore these to and from disk). The entire program is far too complicated to explain in a few articles but selected features such as the above would probably be of interest to people.

I'm also thinking of doing a .NET version of Mentalika (the present one is Win32) and may recode some things in C#.

all the best
Huw
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nudone
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« Reply #19 on: May 20, 2005, 06:12:50 AM »

okay, i'll keep checking the Bitwise magazine for any updates but could you please post back here when you feel Mentalika is ready for a more general audience - i'm sure i won't be the only person that would like to know.
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Bitwise
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« Reply #20 on: May 20, 2005, 06:42:34 AM »

okay, i'll keep checking the Bitwise magazine for any updates but could you please post back here when you feel Mentalika is ready for a more general audience - i'm sure i won't be the only person that would like to know.
Okeydokey. As you might imagine I'm a bit snowed under with other matters just at the moment. But I'll get my mind tuned into other things again some time after June the 1st....  smiley
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« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2005, 02:38:03 AM »

Hey, I would like to bring back to life the topic of hierarchical notes - it's handy that the posting window tells me just how far out of sync with the rest of the world I am: at least 120 days!  I'm new to working this way, and it's making a real difference in my work - I'm mainly using it for to-do lists, and mainly working on my pocket pc with Pocket Informant, which does this very well indeed.  But when I synchronise with Outlook or Calendarscope, my notes are all flattened and not nearly as useful.  Can I gather some views and experiences on using hierarchical notes and to-dos on a Pocket PC and syncing with desktop?  I'm soon going to contribute a mini-review of MyLifeOrganized, but the PPC version of that's in beta and doesn't yet sync....  I've downloaded a trial of Listpro, but I haven't really giving it a proper trial yet.  What do others use?
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mouser
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« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2005, 03:49:52 AM »

there are now so many tools for keeping hierarchical notes -
a review + recommendation of such tools would be so useful.  it would also be the mother of all reviews, and i've not yet found someone who has the stomach for it.. if there are any takers.. let us know..
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XMinus1
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« Reply #23 on: November 09, 2005, 04:02:52 AM »

I'm a registered TexNotes Pro user.  It's a great app, with many outstanding features.  My greatest disappointment with it is it's lack of PDA (Palm, in my case) support.  The Developers claim that such a feature would be worthwhile, but there's been no notiveable advancment towards.
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jpfx
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« Reply #24 on: November 09, 2005, 06:28:05 PM »

Another shout for texnotes pro.
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