Allow users to create automatically numbered outlines in the traditional academic format as follows:
numbering the rows and having the nubers auto adjust when you move rows around, like change indent levelo r move a row to a different number row, ie move it upo r down. this is what GRANDVIEW could do, and it was one of the reasons that was a great product. without numbering, you almost should just use microsoft word, but that is such an awful section of the word program. i hate the outline feature of word, it is absolutely lousy. i guess if they had made 200 billion on word instead of only 180, they could afford to pay for a decent programmer to do what grandview could do 30 years ago.
Paul Brandt commented
This is called Feature grooming and it is great: what do we mean with this feature.
I can completely agree with Gary, as long as he constrains to the first part of the feature request, i.e., auto-numbering the outline. I still strongly oppose against the second part of the request, i.e., the (traditional academic) formatting aspect.
Gary adds another valuable option, to turn it on or off, just like turning the check boxes on or of. I fully support such feature. Indeed in order to support the different ways of working of different people.
Hence I adjust my support to this feature and elaborate on its specification into the following use cases:
UC1: As a user I want to be able to view each row with an indication of its outline number that represents its depth and its sequence in the list on that depth, i.e., similar as to chapter and paragraph numbers, because I want to maintain an overview of the topic structure and the current working position in that structure.
UC2: As a user I want to turn UC1 on or off in the sense that I don't want to see it, because it can become a distraction. This would function similar to showing checkboxes or not.
UC3: As a user I want to configure a refinement of UC2 that specifies until what depth level UC1 should be showed, because I may want to keep an overview on (i) shallow levels with outline numbering and (ii) on deeper levels just by the current indenting bullit lists.
UC4: As a user I want to see the depth of the outline in reference to the hoisting depth (hence if I hoist a topic at depth level 3, its direct children in hoist mode are at depth level 1 again), because I need to focus on that hoist topic and do not want to be distracted by its context.
UC5: As a user I want to configure a toggle for UC4, being relative (as specified) or absolute (i.e. hoisting does not influence the outline numbering level and depth is always calculated from the absolute level 0) because I want to keep an overview of the structure of the context of the hoisted topic.
Priority internal to this feature would be: UC1, UC2, UC4, UC3, UC5
In relation to other features I'd suggest to:
* take UC1 and UC2 together as the current feature, and
* turn UC4 into a seperate feature, and
* take UC3 and UC5 together as another seperate feature
Gary Matthews commented
I strongly support the auto-numbering feature. Auto-numbering, as I use it, has nothing to do with final formatting. (Mostly I discard it at that point.) It has everything to do with the creative process -- structuring, visualizing, organizing, rearranging, and the like.
In a large outline, I find auto-numbering essential since it signals where I am in the overall structure and what depth I'm working at. It helps me spot orphaned concepts and excessively complex or convoluted sections. Lots of other cues! Naturally, there also are times when the numbering becomes a distraction; thus one would turn it off. Certainly we all could join Paul in opposing FORCED auto-numbering: We should have the option to turn it on and off at will.
And of course, as an option -- not a forced feature -- it would be something anyone could use or not use. People work differently. But for me, auto-numbering is integral to my creative process and irrelevant to final formatting.
Paul Brandt commented
I strongly oppose AGAINST this request.
(The forum only allows you to vote for, as opposed to vote against; hence this comment).
Outlining is about structuring one's thoughts, gathering ideas, reorganising topics, breaking down and combining pieces of texts. All with the purpose to create or improve on a concept about the storyline that you want to tell. The definition of done for an outliner is, not surprisingly, an outline: The outline of the story that you want to tell.
As a consequence, outlining has nothing to do with formatting your text into the final product. This final product being your presentation, book, article, chapter, whatever it is that you select as vehicle for your story telling. Probably you will use another piece of software for creating that final product. Hence leave the final formatting up to that specific application and don't try to stuff it in here. (Besides, it'll probably not being recognised by that specific application as the anticipated format, since there are soo many of them.)
This is true for any formatting, to that end. In reference to the requested format, i.e. the numbering system, even the possibility to identify whether a row constitutes a node, i.e. title of some sort, or a pivot element in a certain list (is there a difference?), or a leaf such as a text block, is i.m.h.o. too much of an intrusion into the creative flow. Or it must be limited to a feature that you can apply just before exporting it to the application that you use to produce your final product. But then again, what difference would it make to use UVO for that, or leave it up to the importing application?
Anyway, my 2 cts.
Derick Miller commented
It would be good if this allowed the user to select the formatting of the numbering system. For any given level, the user could specify upper case Roman Numerals (I, II, III, IV, V), l.c. Roman Numerals (i, ii, iii, iv, v), numbers (1, 2, 3, 4), u.c. letters (A, B, C), l.c. letters (a, b, c). and options to have a "." after each one or have them enclosed in parenthesis "()"
Some prefer a decimal form:
1 ipsum lorum
1.1 ipsum lorum
1.2 ipsum lorum
1.2.2 ipsum lorum
1.3 ipsum lorum
2 ipsum lorum