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Wikis ?Edit

I see this phrase at the beginning of the article: "Mind Mappers and Wikis are related types of software." ... I agree with mind mappers, but not really with wikis... I do not know of a wiki that would offer outliner capabilities. Including this one for a start. wikis do not offer as a typical feature the ability to manage hierarchies neither to expand/collapse them nor to manipulate these trees. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Pombredanne (talkcontribs) 09:56, 2 June 2010 (UTC)

Macintosh outlinersEdit

I added two links under the Macintosh only site: Notebook (Circus Ponies) and Notetaker (Aquaminds). Feel free to edit the name, but these are certainly pieces of software that should be included in the list. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 15:37, 16 July 2005

TVO/VMO comparisonEdit

TVO is described as a better vim-based outliner than Vim Outliner/VMO. I'm curious about the reason for this. I use VMO a little bit, but am not strongly biased either way. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 03:36, 22 July 2005

I am curious about TVO vs VMO as well. The TVO web page ( was last updated 13 October, 2004 where as the VMO web page has postings as recently as 21 December, 2005. If nothing else, development on VMO seems more recent. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 23:50, 16 January 2006
TVO is a cross-platform solution that requires only Vim to work, while VMO requires a Perl-installation. TVO also has support for the UTL-script, making it easy to hyperlink between different outlines. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 19:59, 17 January 2006

Add a reference to Dave Winer?Edit

Suggestion: Perhaps there should be a reference to Dave Winer as well as Doug Engelbart?? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 11:58, 30 August 2006 (UTC2)

Agreed! Plus links to his papers on the history of outlining. No? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ftwrks (talkcontribs) 16:45, 28 November 2006

Outliner ToolsEdit

Commercial interests here, which is almost OK. There's no claim of notoriety, just seems to be a fairly random selection that isn't authoritative, with the list getting long. See WP:NOT advertising. Widefox 11:03, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

Ayup, the link spam is pretty overwhelming. We're not a web/software directory either... We probably should have articles about actually relevant and notable software. As things are now, it's a minefield for spam. --wwwwolf (barks/growls) 22:36, 21 December 2006 (UTC)

clarify or omitEdit

The commented-out section is either inaccurate or imprecise enough to be confusing. For example:

  • Microsoft Word *does* allow both 'extrinsic' and 'intrinsic' outlines to be exported to other formats (intrinsically as HTML with headers, for example, and extrinsically with stylesheets);
  • jEdit does support View/Edit/Search operations on outline elements (either natively or with plugins);
  • the node-relationship constraints mentioned in this article are supported by both Word and JEdit. dr.ef.tymac 20:47, 16 November 2006 (UTC)

Still no outline mode in OpenOfficeEdit

Article suggest most word processors have outliner built-in. Alas OpenOffice's Writer is still missing this feature as of Jan 2007 its been Number 3 on the wish list for the last 4 years ([1]). 15:05, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

External link cleanupEdit

I've removed a fairly staggering collection of commercial and promotional links that has gathered here over the last year. Please refer to WP:NOT and WP:EL before re-adding any links. If I've removed a link that improves the article and is not simply a vendor link, please start a discussion here. Kuru talk 05:22, 4 February 2007 (UTC)

You just rendered the article useless. --The NeveR SLeePiNG 12:23, 4 February 2007 (UTC)
I think you have over-interpreted the guidelines. Removing the links without testing the water strikes me as bring heavy-handed. The links to the specific outliners does not conflict with Wikipedia guidelines. While Wikipedia is not, according to guidelines, a directory, the Outliner topic is difficult to understand without examples. Many people have difficulty grasping the nature and possibilities of the topic, and seek examples. The guidelines list circumstances in which lists are advisable. There is nothing spammy about an objective, annotated list of outliners. Outliners have very interesting diversity of GUI's, features, and overall design. It is very interesting and gratifying to compare them. Many of them are free. The Open Directory Project does not have a list of outliners that I could find, and it has several drawbacks that make it troublesome to rely upon as a source for this kind of information (e.g., poor organization, politics, terse and vague annotations, and editors who may ignore public input and allow their topic to go out of date). The list of outliners was not staggaring, it was a useful list that contributed to the article. I found it very useful. The links should be restored. That list appears to have taken a lot of work to create. It even contains historical references that some will find useful. Robert A. Yourell, LMFT 19:08, 7 February 2007 (UTC)


I'm visiting almost a year later and no more comments. But thank you (whoever you are) for leaving in these links. They are important to explorers of this form of information organizing. It would be great if a die-hard outliner lover would add some history and some key concepts in using this kind of software. Robert A. Yourell —Preceding comment was added at 09:57, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

They're gone now anyway, and won't be coming back. See WP:NOT#REPO, WP:EL. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 14:19, 18 February 2009 (UTC)
What about one of those "Comparison Of" or "List of" pages a-la the List of personal information managers? MarkTAW 4:31AM March 20, 2009 (UTC)
For anyone else curious, Outliner&oldid=271217873 shows the linklist that was pruned.
I'm going to add a few images to get a least some links to the ones we have articles on, and I agree that a comparison list is a good idea. See the List of mind mapping software and Comparison of e-mail clients for inspiration. -- Quiddity (talk) 08:52, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Broken link(s)Edit

This link, seems broken (404, no redirection) -- (talk) 07:22, 15 January 2011 (UTC) (|Hibou57)

Weasel WordsEdit

Don't you think "Generally Acknowledged" is a bit weasel wordy? How do I add the (bracket)weasel words?(bracket) thing to that? I'd like to see it marked. It seems like we should have sources, not pretend that it is supposedly "generally acknowledged". Just so you know, I agree with the comment, but not with the wording. Ryaxnb (talk) 18:33, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

Google search result looks oddEdit

When I searched for an item related to the topic of this article, I noticed the Google search result looks odd. Can someone fix this?


--RahiDelvi (talk) 02:09, 19 October 2014 (UTC)

Google is showing you a section of text from the Wikipedia page with the word "WorkFlowy". The section contains a number of "Yes" which surround "WorkFlowy". To rid the Google results of the "... Yes Yes Yes WorkFLowy Yes Yes ...", a number of approaches could be taken.
  • An article titled "WorkFlowy" could be made, then the Google result would likely show that article instead.
  • The "Yes" / "No" could be replaced with an {{aye}} or {{nay}}  Y or  N. I don't know how that would show on a google search, but it wouldn't likely contain "yes".
  • The word "WorkFlowy", if placed earlier in the article would probably show the text around that word instance rather than the one in the table.
If you do attempt to "fix" this, please take care not to disrupt the article with tests. I would suggest copying the pertinent part to your sandbox and test it there first. Jim1138 (talk) 10:31, 19 October 2014 (UTC)

OPML support in desktop applicationsEdit

I would love to see the information on OPML support of desktop applications, like there is for the web-services. --eugrus (talk) 22:48, 27 December 2014 (UTC)

Computer program, or also a feature in programs?...Edit

The article says in the first sentence: "An Outliner is a computer program". If I understood correctly what is an Outliner, it's a common feature in many Text-editors (like Notepad++) and IDE's (like Webstorm), so it's not necessarily solely a computer program. What do you think? Should the sentence be changed to "An Outliner is a computer program or feature"? Ben-Yeudith (talk) 06:23, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

It's still a computer program, even if it's only one feature of that program. Rwessel (talk) 09:04, 6 December 2015 (UTC)
I've never seen an "outliner" being an entire program - so, no - it's a feature of a program - or a function or library that implements that feature. It's not a "program". SteveBaker (talk) 15:56, 6 December 2015 (UTC)
Try about half the apps listed in the article. And you're trying to draw a very fine, and largely illusionary, distinction between a program and a library/feature/function. Rwessel (talk) 20:51, 6 December 2015 (UTC)
I've tried many of them - in absolutely every case, there is functionality other than outlining. The outlining is *ALWAYS* just a part of what's going on. But even if you were correct and we could find entire programs that do nothing whatever but outlining - the statement that "An outliner is a computer program" would be incorrect - I'm sure that even you will concede that outlining is done in programs as a tiny, almost incidental, part of a greater whole. In those cases, the outliner functionality is a small part of a computer program - hence "An outliner is a computer program" is blatently untrue. Take, for example Squirrel-mail - the program I use to handle my webmail. It has an outliner allowing me to see collections of emails from a particular folder - which I can open up to reveal more folders inside. So it DEFINITELY does outlining...but the program is an email client that just happens to include an outliner as maybe 1% of it's functionality.
So, sure, it's possible that there are programs that do nothing whatever other than outlining (I've yet to find one) - but without any shadow of a doubt, there are programs that are not entirely outliners that contain outliner functionality.
Ergo the statement "an outliner is a program" is not always true - and such a statement should not be included in a Wikipedia article because it is blatently obviously FALSE. Hence I'm reverting your reversion. SteveBaker (talk) 02:42, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
Again, you're making the (invalid) assumption that "computer program" refers only (or even mainly) to a complete packaged application. Rwessel (talk) 07:24, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
To be more concise: A computer program is a non-empty set of instructions for a computer. An application is a type of computer program. A program is not limited to an application. (talk) 14:24, 7 December 2015 (UTC)

Columns in table of OutlinersEdit

IMO the list of Outliners would be much more useful, if it had columns for each important platform (W, M, L, Python, POSIX, Web, other ...), and a "license" type column (GPL, BSD, PayWare, AbandonWare, FreeWare ...). Of the two, I find the license column has the highest value/effort ratio. I am aware, that the platform columns would be quite some work to choose the initial set, and keep that accurate, and therefore may not be desirable. The additional columns would be very helpful to separate the wheat from the old, unsupported/abandoned mono-platform commercial/non-free chaff. (talk) 17:32, 8 December 2015 (UTC)

Define 'Hoist'Edit

The way 'hoist' is used in the article seems assume some definition other than physically lifting something up (per Wiktionary). Can we get an expert in this topic to add an example of what is meant in this case by 'hoist'?

Thanks, WesT (talk) 19:52, 1 September 2017 (UTC)

@Westley Turner: Outliner § Design says: "Hoisting an item hides all parent and sibling items; thereby focusing, or zooming in, on a particular branch. De-hoisting again reveals the full outline." Is this not clear enough? Biogeographist (talk)
Yes, that's the problem. It's not clear when the word 'hoist' is being used to refer to hiding items rather than elevating them. I like GermanJoe's suggestion as it explains (using the words 'lift' and 'drop' back into place) first, then gives the term. Much clearer. I'll make the edit and see how it fits. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westley Turner (talkcontribs) 18:57, 8 September 2017 (UTC)
Here is a Google Books link (page 18) with the same definition, just phrased slightly different (lifting a section entirely out of context to focus on it exclusively). GermanJoe (talk) 14:26, 2 September 2017 (UTC)
Perfect! Thanks, @GermanJoe:. That's what I needed. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westley Turner (talkcontribs) 18:57, 8 September 2017 (UTC)

Outliner museum?Edit

Why have a list of desktop outliners if quite a fraction of the entries concerns outdated products no longer available? Shouldn't we make a distinction between items of only technical or historical relevance and actual products currently available? Anyway, there seems to be only a small group of people still using desktop outliners today; most of them seem to be members of the forum; so maybe we should ask these people which products are relevant? And do you really think that emacs org-mode is the right species representative to be presented in the top right display? A console application? Is this meant as a joke? (talk) 22:52, 6 November 2018 (UTC) R.K.

The list covers only "notable" applications (in Wikipedia's sense of the term, see link). But an additional "status" column with sourced information about the applications' current status could be useful indeed. The "Notes" field might also be useable, but would probably be less clear. GermanJoe (talk) 01:18, 7 November 2018 (UTC)

Non-notable addition removedEdit

I have removed a list entry for the CrossLine outliner, a small 8-month old GitHub project without any independent sources to establish its notability. Without such sources such applications don't belong in an encyclopedia - Wikipedia is no venue to promote personal projects and minor applications. Please discuss here if needed. GermanJoe (talk) 01:13, 7 November 2018 (UTC)

Means: you don't know it so it cannot be notable; at least change the title to "presumably non notable" ;-) (talk) 01:32, 7 November 2018 (UTC) R.K.
No. It means: what I (or you or any other editor for that matter) "know" is irrelevant. Wikipedia is based on independent published sources to verify its information, although a lot of articles are obviously still lacking in that regard. Our personal knowledge, opinion or most self-published information don't matter. But I'll admit that the term "notable" is often confusing for new editors - we had literally half a dozen discussions or more about this term, but never came up with anything better. So it's "notable" (with or without scare quotes) for now in Wiki-internal jargon. GermanJoe (talk) 01:48, 7 November 2018 (UTC)
Well, let's dream on; no wonder that so many authors give up - or like me - don't even consider to get a login. (talk) 02:03, 7 November 2018 (UTC) R.K.
Create an article on that outliner. See wp:article for creation. Make sure it meets wp:notability. I'm available to help. Cheers Jim1138 talk 05:06, 10 November 2018 (UTC)

Outliner historyEdit

In my edit summary for this edit (which reverted a sudden addition of a massive collection of external links), I noted that the knowledge and effort that was used to amass all of those external links could be used instead to create a 'History' section that describes outliner history in prose, based on reliable secondary sources, per WP:V. I would be very interested to read such a history, and I imagine that I'm not alone in such interest. Biogeographist (talk) 16:30, 18 June 2019 (UTC)

Return to "Outliner" page.