Outliner Applications

“Outlining” is the activity of creating and arranging content in tree structures. The tree structure concept for organising things or information is everywhere you look. For example, the arrangement of disks, folders and files on your computer or in your email application. Just organising a document such as this into headings, paragraphs and other structures like bullet points is a hierarchical or tree structure. Word processing apps like MS Word or Google docs typically have an “outline view” which is useful for rapidly capturing and restructuring hierarchically organised ideas.

In the early days of the PC revolution, Outliners became a strong segment of the application marketplace: some might put them into the “Killer App” category. Applications like Grandview were dedicated to the function of outlining.

But the concept of outlining spread rapidly to many other applications and became a “built-in” UI construct that is so common that most people don’t even think about it. Outlining apps still exist, but they’ve progressively morphed along the “mind-map” pathway and have lost much of the “hard” tree processing capabilities that were present in the original outliners.

Those features were probably only useful to a small subset of users anyway.

If you check in the support section of the TreeWiz product web pages, you’ll find examples of how we can use TreeWiz in conjunction with other apps, both other members of the Microsoft Office suite, and other products like online outliners and mind mapping tools.


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Picture credit: sourced from https://welcometosherwood.wordpress.com/2009/10/10/grandview/

The above post contains a lot of useful information about Grandview.

And this post https://jessems.com/outliner-list contains a long list of historical outliners with links to other sources of information.