gmalone
I'm checking back in on The Brain after a few years away... again.  I've paid for Pro (multiple times, as I recall), and have perspective.

I just downloaded v9 and immediately run into deal breaking frustration.

Specifically, I want to do a simple thing, copy text from another text source -- a text list, in fact -- and paste into The Brain as an automatically created list of child nodes below the current selected node.  Clearly, The Brain has no idea how to do such a thing.

So, found the File > Import > Text list option... just wants to create a new brain.  Tried copying and pasting a thought and children between brains, hah has no idea how to do that, or if it does makes the process myopic.

Ok, I can see where this is going, and I'm having painful flashbacks to previous incarnations w/ The Brain.  Either I spend the next 12 work hours struggling with the confusing UI of The Brain, or get smart and delete and not upgrade to the latest Pro license.  I'm outta here.  Sorry.  I'll check back in a few years, but don't hold out any hope til the current lead designer is gone gone gone and someone with clearer vision recreates The Brain.  Sorry for the downer post, but you've wasted my time again, but this time only 30 minutes.
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zenrain
It's a bug, I just tested and it's not currently working. I submitted it as such in the appropriate location.

Anyway, sorry you had a bad experience. See ya!
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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zenrain
Update, not a bug, I was just using dashes. Just copy a few lines of text, right click the plex and paste as outline.
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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gmalone
Thanks for that information. I recall right clicking on a node and not seeing that paste option. And when clicking/selecting a node and Ctrl-V pasting, it would paste into the search box as though the node had nothing to do w/ my intent.  I'll reinstall and take a peek again just to verify.

I dunno... way back w/ version 3, as I recall, way before it was even called "The Brain" officially, I got the hang of using the system and thought it was genius, which intrinsically it is. 

But many years and versions ago we users were told adamantly that there'd never be a mobile/tablet version of it, which was discouraging and shortsighted. And with increasing versions certain design choices become more notably annoying. 

I don't mean to be negative, because I truly respect this program, but over time I abandoned The Brain, revisiting every couple years, purchasing the Pro version update each time. 

My personal feeling is that the program is overwhelmed with old legacy notions and methods that if given a full modern re-write would make it a much nicer and friendlier program.  Just my two cents.  
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jmesteve
I'm going to have to chime in here with a similar piece of feedback.

I've been using the brain on an off for years now, and had high hopes for the brain 9 being a rewrite of the product. I too think that the core idea is great, and as of today there's no product that covers the same needs.

The biggest problem is that the brain doesn't seem to have caught up with the times: both the web version and the mobile apps feel as mere afterthoughts, completely unusable for anything but the most trivial tasks. If the brain is to honour its name, it needs to be available when I need it, and that is a browser or mobile. So much so that, just like any other of the major software products, it is the desktop version that ought to be glorified versions of the mobile interfaces, which would incidentally also help with the problems with cross platform development.

I don't mean to be entirely negative, since as I said above, think the product is a great idea at its core, but in my opinion it is only the lack of true competition in this niche market that is allowing for the above flaws to continue, combined with the steep price of the Pro licences (for the value provided, given the state of affairs) that makes me wonder how sustainable this is in the long run. I love mind mapping, have invested countless hours dumping knowledge into the brain and other solutions like Evernote, but I'm also saddened by this archaic backwards development philosophy, and think that it only takes one good (even if simpler!) competitor to do some serious damage to this product. 

To round up my points: the brain was getting awfully stale, and the renewed development efforts taken on with the brain 9, the boldness of undertaking a full rewrite and the great job on providing a constant stream of patches and updates feels truly like fresh air. However some of the design philosophy still feels dangerously outdated to the point where we risk ending up with a rewritten brain 8. It can be stated with objectivity that the world is web and mobile, and the majority of people won't be sitting down on a desktop computer when they need to use the brain. Heck, I'm a software developer who spends 8 hours a day in front of a computer and  I'd still rather use the brain (actually use it, not painfully zooming in tiny boxes and completely broken notes) through the day. 

For the last two years I've been paying for the pro licence  just for sheer fear of loosing all the information I've stored in my brains. But the reality I find is that I just don't use the software anymore because it simply is not there when and where I need it, and when it is, I spend more time fighting it than getting something useful out of it (no need to bring up how getting the flow right is crucial for a product which aim is to facilitate thought processes).

I really appreciate the work that Harlan and the team are doing, and I'm very aware Rome wasn't built in a day - but please, please, please do listen to both your hard-core users and also to those voices who express dissatisfaction.

Thank you 
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gmalone
jmesteve wrote:
I'm going to have to chime in here with a similar piece of feedback. 


Thanks @jmesteve for affirming my observations.  History doesn't offer encouragement that there'll ever be a departure from the current stance.  Meanwhile, the world moves on and other tools emerge.

That said, Team Brain, you'd have at least a couple -- and likely many more -- dedicated, willing and skilled design consultants and alpha/beta testers if you ever choose to venture into a major rethink and rewrite.

Best of luck.
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zenrain
That's actually very humorous, because even with some of the changes 9 there has been quite a counter argument from some people who use it, and who really just want v8 back. And for others there isn't enough change. 😃

As for me, it's a tool that I've put to good use for many years now. I've tried multiple other products, and nothing else fits the same way that TheBrain does for me. Is it perfect? Nope. But it's better for me than most. Are there things I would change? Yup, and I actively advocate for those changes and otherwise help and participate as I can in this little community. 

Not a particularly compelling argument for anyone else either way, nor is it supposed to be. But it's my perspective, and it's all I have.
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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jmesteve
Glad you find the discussion amusing.

However the counter argument that "it'll never please everyone, and it could be worse" (if you excuse my paraphrasing) is hard to rebate per-se. Yes, we've all agreed that the product is great in principle, and that there's not much out there in the terms of worthy competitors, but that doesn't lessen any of the stated concerns.

We don't have to use The Brain but, you see, we'd like to, and are respectfully trying to raise our concerns. 
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zenrain
I don't mean to lessen any of the stated concerns, and your paraphrasing was not the intent of my post. Nor was it supposed to be a compelling argument (which I said point blank), it was simply a differing perspective from a long time user.

And I don't find the discussion amusing. I find the contrast between the different perspectives themselves amusing. Neither is wrong, or right, except for the person with the opinion. That is funny, because trying to meet all these differing requirements would be like herding kittens. And just that statement itself could be read as another dismissal of your concerns, but it's really not meant to be. It's just an explanation of why I find it funny. Sometimes a duck is just a duck. 
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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zenrain
Oh, FYI there is a Mobile section and WebBrain section under which you could submit actionable specific items, as well as a feature suggestion sub where the same can be done. Or you could just chime in your support on requests that have already been submitted. If it helps, I'm in complete agreement with mobile and web versions need to be fleshed out more, and would love to see more voices in that particular choir. [wink]
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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