buddy7
Does anyone else feel like the Brain and Could Services are getting too expensive?  Currently I am switching everything over to google docs since I like to do a lot things in list format anyway.  I have been a Brain user since at least 2008 and have paid for a couple of upgrades and did a year of the online brain but it is starting to move out of my price range. 

Has anyone found a good replacement that they use besides google docs? 

Thanks,

Buddy

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zenrain
Depending on your needs and level of geekiness ConnectedText is fantastic product. I'm currently using it in conjunction with TheBrain. 
macOS 10.12.4
TheBrain 9.0.172
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buddy7
Thanks, Zenrain.  I will check it out. 
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randystokes
I agree. TheBrain has long been a useful tool for me. I have upgraded through several versions, each time for a fairly significant upgrade fee, and also experimented for a time with the Cloud Services (mainly so I could access my Brain on my iPad). I've discontinued my subscription to Cloud Services, as I thought the price was too high, and I'm holding my breath to see what happens with future versions of TheBrain.

I am concerned that Cloud Services is a foot in the door to an all-subscription business model for TheBrain, where your Brain would reside in the cloud and the only way to access it would be by paying a monthly or annual fee. No subscription, no access to your Brain. We might be able -- at least for a while -- to keep using our Brain via the current desktop application, but I expect the company would stop supporting the "old" desktop version and eventually upgrades to computer operating systems would "break" the Brain desktop app.

I could be wrong, but this path wouldn't surprise me a bit. And I have not been adding anything recently to my Brain, in part because I'm trying to judge what the future holds and whether it makes sense to continue to rely on the Brain as I have in the past.

I use TheBrain for both personal and professional purposes, but the upgrade prices and subscription fees come out of my own pocket, so I don't have a corporate deep pocket shelling out the money. Also, although I always planned to continue to use TheBrain even after I "retire" from my current job in a few short years, the cost issue may prove to be the one that forces me to change my plans and find an alternative.

I hope I'm wrong, but as a character in one of my favorite movies says, "Hope for the best, but plan for the worst."

Randy
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schulze
This trail of thought calls for supporting voices and so I am adding mine. For me , the core product is the desktop application. I've been a Brain user since version 2 (and deserve a share in the firm for all the special upgrade offers I accepted) and I now feel something is going wrong here.
The cloud-hype may be nice for marketing, but unsuitable for sensitive of critical data. I am stll waiting for some development on the desktop front, but I admit I am starting to follow every hint on alternatives...

(What's that favorite movie, randystokes? Sounds like some experienced IT philosopher speaking.)

Joerg.
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randystokes
Sorry, no. That quote came from The Bourne Ultimatum, spoken by the actor playing the evil CIA director.

Randy
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zenrain
I would be extremely surprised if they ever drop the desktop version. There is just too much that can't be done on a Web only version.
I would imagine once the iOS and Android applications become available the online web solution will be mainly for synchronization and a method of sharing and exploring other peoples Brains, but not working with your own.

I don't have any special insight, but I would expect that WebBrain is a step towards expanding TheBrain's reach into portable platforms, adding convenience when you don't have any access to your database but you can access a browser, as well as a first step towards social aspects. I would expect them to follow Evernote's model. Evernote has an online version and allows sharing, but use of either is not mandatory. They are features that complements the desktop version, not replaces it.
macOS 10.12.4
TheBrain 9.0.172
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gpatten
I think Zenrain is right: TB won't be dropping the desktop application. What troubles me a bit, I suppose, is the prospect that synchronising it with the coming mobile app(s) might turn out to require this very expensive web subscription, or, worse, that the mobile app might rely crucially on WebBrain in order to function at all. That would be a deal breaker for me.
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nw
gpatten wrote: I think Zenrain is right: TB won't be dropping the desktop application. What troubles me a bit, I suppose, is the prospect that synchronising it with the coming mobile app(s) might turn out to require this very expensive web subscription, or, worse, that the mobile app might rely crucially on WebBrain in order to function at all. That would be a deal breaker for me.

I haven't visited the forum or used PB in quite a while and only arrived again here because I was reading a thread on another forum about personal dashboards. I used PB as a personal dashboard for many years. I decided not to upgrade to V7 for two reasons. Firstly, that a great deal of my personal computing is done on my iPad and secondly, like another poster I used PB at work, but paid for it myself. It has become just too expensive to do that.

I guess if/when an iPad version appears I might think about it again, but since I'm pretty sure use of that will involve some sort of subscription, I will no doubt rule it out because it is too expensive.

Is is just me or is there a conflict between high cost targetting it towards business use and the increasing use of cloud services which most companies dislike due to proprietary information issues and storing information outside corporate networks?
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PaddyVA

zenrain wrote: Depending on your needs and level of geekiness ConnectedText is fantastic product. I'm currently using it in conjunction with TheBrain. 

Thanks for that reference, Zenrain.  I hadn't heard of it.  Downloaded the trial.  Now I am looking at it and wondering just how I might use it as an adjunct to TB, and how steep the learning curve is.  I can see that it probably has benefits in terms of handling a lot of text.

Would you please expand on how you use the two together?

Also, I found some links to a program called Brainstorm used as a precursor to ConnectedText -- have you used it?

Thanks.

Pat

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zenrain
I haven't used Brainstorm, no. 

The learning curve is a bit steep, especially when you start to get into the commands and using predicates for the $SUMMARY functionality. However, the commands are one of the most powerful features, and can be used as the equivalent of the Node Type and Smart Thoughts feature requests I've been hoping would be implemented in TheBrain for quite some time now.

I've only been using it for 6 months myself, so I'm still figuring out the balance between TB and CT. However, CT is much better when it comes organizing and linking to large portions of text, so if there are procedures, lengthy requirements, or project details I have to document I create a CT topic and link the URL in TheBrain.
TheBrain is much better when it comes to quick searching* (instant search is better than ConnectedText's GoTo functionality), capturing information that doesn't have too much text, visual displays, and making huge amounts of data accessible and not overwhelming. There is definitely an overlap of functionality, and each has it's strengths. 

Since CT is Windows only, this is a big limitation for me**. There isn't an iOS version planned either, so I only use it for work as I'm a OS X guy. Honestly, until the iOS version of TB is released my whole data workflow has been in flux as I've been experimenting with different solutions to make my data available. 

Hope this helps.

* In TB there is a bug that makes extended searching challenging for me, I hear it will be fixed in the upcoming update
** Yes, it works if I use Wine, or some derivative thereof, but it doesn't integrate well with the OS (dragging in links to websites or files) which is just more than I want to deal with on a daily basis. 
macOS 10.12.4
TheBrain 9.0.172
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PaddyVA
Thanks, Zenrain for those comments.  I was impressed by this video, by Glen Coulthardhttp://www.connectedtext.com/movies.php . Looks like CT could be useful in researching and writing long articles, books, etc.
So far, it seems to me that getting information into CT and organizing it isn't all that intuitive.  I wonder if Scrivener isn't enough for my purposes.

I do wish there were more ways in which other programs could connect to TB and vice versa, like has evolved for EverNote and Chrome.

Pat
  
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