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Outliner

I would love to find an old-fashioned outliner, like the ones that used to exist prior to the modern GUIs. It would make writing structured documents, or organizing thoughts in general, so much more convenient, productive and faster. Ideally it should allow saving files in txt, OO and markdown formats...

Does anything like this exist that can run in a terminal window under Centos??

Comments

Re: Outliner

By Warren Young at 04/14/2019 - 16:30

On Apr 14, 2019, at 4:42 AM, H < ... at meddatainc dot com> wrote:
Since you included Markdown in the list, my initial question was why don’t you just write in that format, since the Markdown list features capture most of what I want in an outliner. Then I saw in a later post that you’re using an editor (Geany) without intelligent formatting for Markdown.

So that’s my recommendation: switch to a text editor that does intelligent things with Markdown like continuing the list when you hit Enter from within a list item, adding a level to the list when you hit Tab within a list, returning to the prior level with a Shift-Tab, auto-indenting list items when you hit the editor’s wrapping limits, etc.

I’m not sure what distinction you’re trying to make by listing “txt” output along with Markdown, so I don’t know what transform to suggest.

As for “OO”, I assume that means OpenOffice, in which case what you actually mean is ODF, its file format. And for that, I suggest that you use Pandoc, which will get Markdown into that format and many more:

$ pandoc --to odt x.md > x.odt
$ pandoc --list-output-formats

As for the actual editor, there are several choices. The first one I reached for was VSCodium, which is Microsoft Visual Studio Code with the branding, telemetry and non-FOSS licensed stuff stripped out. (Shades of CentOS vs RHEL…)

I’m working with a text-only CentOS VM here and couldn’t get a GUI running on it — a problem I’ll take up in a separate thread — so I’ll just point you at the VSCodium Linux install instructions and hope they work for you there:

<a href="https://github.com/VSCodium/vscodium/releases" title="https://github.com/VSCodium/vscodium/releases">https://github.com/VSCodium/vscodium/releases</a>

Once you’ve got VSCodium running, you’ll need to install the “Markdown All In One” plugin. (Ctrl-Shift-P, install, search for Markdown, select first option [currently] listed.) That will do as described above: auto-number, auto-indent, Tab/Shift-Tab to change indent level, etc.

The availability of such plugins is a large part of the reason Code is taking over so much of the programmer’s text editor world. Give it a try.

If VSCodium doesn’t work on CentOS, you could try Visual Studio Code, the original project, which probably has better packaging:

<a href="https://code.visualstudio.com/docs/setup/linux" title="https://code.visualstudio.com/docs/setup/linux">https://code.visualstudio.com/docs/setup/linux</a>

I used that for probably a few years before VSCodium came along. Don’t be scared by the branding: it shares almost nothing with Visual Studio other than branding and a parent organization.

If you really want a CLI-only experience, I got a suitable setup working with Vim and the Bullets plugin:

<a href="https://github.com/dkarter/bullets.vim" title="https://github.com/dkarter/bullets.vim">https://github.com/dkarter/bullets.vim</a>

Instead of Tab and Shift-Tab to change indent levels it uses Ctrl-T and Ctrl-D, which I find odd, but that’s the sort of affordance you have to give up on when you’re working in an ANSI terminal.

Re: Outliner

By Hakan at 04/15/2019 - 08:21

On 04/14/2019 10:30 PM, Warren Young wrote:
Thank you for your thoughtful reply. Ideally, I would like something similar to PCOutline and similar that once were popular with the PC-DOS crowd. In other words, a very simple, non-GUI that does not require a mouse to be productive, minimal formatting in the program itself, simple keyboard combinations to copy, cut, move trees around in the document. No formatting required but it should have the ability to export to markdown, OO and simple txt-format.

Too much to ask for?

Re: Outliner

By Denniston, Todd... at 04/16/2019 - 11:00

Although I don't use an outliner myself, those things get discussed often enough over on the LyX users mailing list for me to remember them happening.
Mr. Litt seems to prefer vimoutliner[1]. I assume vimoutliner runs in vim, inside of a text terminal (or in gvim GUI if you are so inclined), so vimoutliner may be closer to the DOS environment you remember.
The 'Fragility' thread[2][3] lists a few different outline tools, and some of Mr. Litt's essays on outlining[2], which may include other outline tools.

[1] <a href="https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg86203.html" title="https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg86203.html">https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg86203.html</a>
[2] <a href="https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg104538.html" title="https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg104538.html">https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg104538.html</a>
[3] <a href="https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg104539.html" title="https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg104539.html">https://www.mail-archive.com/lyx- ... at lists dot lyx.org/msg104539.html</a>

Re: Outliner

By Frank Cox at 04/14/2019 - 13:51

On Sun, 14 Apr 2019 12:42:56 +0200

Best structured document editor that I know of:

<a href="https://www.lyx.org/" title="https://www.lyx.org/">https://www.lyx.org/</a>

I personally don't use it enough to be really good with it since I don't have that many structured documents to write. But on the occasions that I do use it, it certainly works well.

Re: Outliner

By Hakan at 04/15/2019 - 08:23

On 04/14/2019 07:51 PM, Frank Cox wrote:

Re: Outliner

By Peda, Allan (NY... at 04/15/2019 - 08:18

Emacs Org-mode ? <a href="https://orgmode.org/" title="https://orgmode.org/">https://orgmode.org/</a>

On Sun, 14 Apr 2019 12:42:56 +0200
H wrote:

Best structured document editor that I know of:

<a href="https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.lyx.org_&amp;d=DwICAg&amp;c=Ftw_YSVcGmqQBvrGwAZugGylNRkk-uER0-5bY94tjsc&amp;r=Tou2GfskafF_UnC0yPjAjEzLDhbALx-0EDoLp3_iSss&amp;m=XyN1aQH_08AmI4hrpknillITiZVBp6Gv2vFeHoZ2wDs&amp;s=1OU7snu-2bPrKsvBjIhWFZYiMv_SJ1xF3nJBE5TARCY&amp;e=" title="https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.lyx.org_&amp;d=DwICAg&amp;c=Ftw_YSVcGmqQBvrGwAZugGylNRkk-uER0-5bY94tjsc&amp;r=Tou2GfskafF_UnC0yPjAjEzLDhbALx-0EDoLp3_iSss&amp;m=XyN1aQH_08AmI4hrpknillITiZVBp6Gv2vFeHoZ2wDs&amp;s=1OU7snu-2bPrKsvBjIhWFZYiMv_SJ1xF3nJBE5TARCY&amp;e=">https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.lyx.org_&amp;d=DwIC...</a>

I personally don't use it enough to be really good with it since I don't have that many structured documents to write. But on the occasions that I do use it, it certainly works well.

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Re: Outliner

By Hakan at 04/15/2019 - 08:22

On 04/15/2019 02:18 PM, Peda, Allan (NYC-GIS) wrote:
Suggested earlier but since I do not use e-macs as my programming editor no go.

Re: Outliner

By Gordon Messmer at 04/15/2019 - 10:17

On 4/15/19 5:22 AM, H wrote:

I guess I don't understand what you view as a problem.  If you're
looking for a new application, then it logically follows that you aren't
using it now.  If you object to applications that you aren't currently
using, on that basis, then you will reject all suggestions.

You don't have to stop using Geany as an editor in order to use Org
mode.  Whatever outliner application you use will probably be in
addition, rather than instead of, the editor you're using for other
purposes now.

Re: Outliner

By Markku Kolkka at 04/14/2019 - 07:47

H kirjoitti 14.4.2019 klo 13.42:

Re: Outliner

By Hakan at 04/14/2019 - 07:54

On 04/14/2019 01:47 PM, Markku Kolkka wrote:

Re: Outliner

By Johnny Hughes v... at 04/14/2019 - 12:15

On 14.4.2019 13.42, H wrote:
<a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Org-mode" title="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Org-mode">https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Org-mode</a>

Org 9.2 was released in December 2018, so the development seems not to
be dead.

I have no personal experience with any programs of this type. I
sometimes use the outline mode in MS Word, just because I'm lazy.

- Jussi