Harlan Show full post »
enkidu
Thank you once again Mr Harlan

Visible roadmaps are essential for us users nowadays.
There are just too many products out there, and nature does abhor vacuum.


It's conforting to know that TheBrain team has a vision, and I personally am very glad to know that this forum's views are not ignored.

kind regards
enkidu
Quote
metta
Thanks so much, Harlan, for the update!  It is always helpful to know where things are headed with the development of TheBrain and, like many others, I'm eagerly looking forward to seeing the next major update.

In the meantime, I just wanted to put in a vote for KEEPING as many of the current notes features as possible (albeit in whatever new format the team is designing).

I personally use (and rely on) almost ALL of the notes features/functions quite heavily, and I would certainly miss any features/functions that might be removed in a future update.

My concern was triggered when you said:
-- "The new notes editor is simple..."
-- "Rather than focusing on features and capabilities, the new notes editor does its best to stay out of the way."

In light of this, I am wondering: may we assume that all of the current notes functions/features will all remain in the new update, with simply a new emphasis on a streamlined design?

Also, will there be a way for us to set the notes editor to be visible as our default?  In terms of my current use of TheBrain (16,000+ thoughts with over 6500 notes), it would be a huge setback to have to manually open and close the notes on any of the thoughts I want to view.

With my personal thanks to you for the magnificent software you've created,
Metta
Quote
mikesingleton
Thanks Harlan, sounds good looking forward to the new version.
Mike
Quote
mcaton
Thank you Metta for the feedback.  I rely on the Brain Notes quite heavily as well and will be keeping a close eye on it's development and progress.

- and I'll remind the developers if features are missing... [wink]

Thanks,
Matt
Quote
metta
Sweet!  Thanks for your prompt feedback and support, Matt.

I'm really grateful for your oversight on this exciting new update, and your continuing availability to those of us "in the field" who are now relying so heavily on TheBrain. [smile]

FWIW, I've never found another application that I've enjoyed, relied on and used as much as TheBrain -- and the more I've come to depend on it (since adopting it wholeheartedly in March 2012), the more invested I am now in keeping up with these new developments.
[thumb]
Quote
danlandrum
Woo hoo, Harlan. Thanks for the detailed update, sir.
OSX 10.13 
iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2015)
3.3 GHz Intel Core i5
32 GB 1867 MHz DDR3
Quote
HeinrichUnger
Hi Harlan,

thank you for update - this is the stuff we want to read - you see the positive feedback.

Now I am happy deciding to stay at TheBrain - which is the center application of my electronical life.

Heinrich
Quote
Kriggel23
Hi Harlan,

thank you for this information.

Can you tell us something about the technique in the background?
Are we still using a relational db? (... or will be get a graph db?)
What about the query capabilities? (... will it work when the brain is on a network drive?, ... will we get an API? ... will we get a query language?)

I'm looking forward to the next version of TheBrain,
... but not really to "TheNiceUserInterface 2.0" [wink]

Kriggel23
Quote
pthompson
Great questions Kriggel23. I'll ping Harlan to see if he can comment on this.
Quote
Harlan
Kriggel23 wrote:
Hi Harlan,

thank you for this information.

Can you tell us something about the technique in the background?
Are we still using a relational db? (... or will be get a graph db?)
What about the query capabilities? (... will it work when the brain is on a network drive?, ... will we get an API? ... will we get a query language?)

I'm looking forward to the next version of TheBrain,
... but not really to "TheNiceUserInterface 2.0" [wink]

Kriggel23


The storage backend is designed in such a way that it can be implemented with a variety of techniques. The actual database that is in use will depend on the platform. In other words, the mobile and desktop versions will have different databases as will the server. This is not something that will have any impact on the user, aside from it being reliable and fast.

In terms of the details, I'd prefer not to discuss specific database types and implementations. What I can tell you is that it is an order of magnitude faster and more reliable. With TheBrain 8 for example, you can have a Brain of hundreds of thousands of thoughts comfortably. With the new version, millions of thoughts can be easily accommodated. While most of you may not be anywhere near to 100,000 thoughts, if you are thinking longer term, it's always nice to know what the system is capable of.

No, it will not work on a network drive. The reasons are that to work from a network drive, it would have to either accept the inherent latency or load the entire system into memory. Since neither of these is acceptable, a network drive support is not possible.

Yes, we are planning an API. No timeline or details at this time, however I can tell you that there will be a multiple client front ends, at least one of which will be utilizing an API which may be made suitable for external access in the future.

While I appreciate everyone's concerns with features and functionality, please keep in mind that to a great extent user interface is the limiting factor of functionality. For example, if something is possible, but takes 10 seconds, you will be much less likely to do it than if it took just 1 second. The user interface is sometimes what makes things useful instead of just possible by allowing it to cross the threshold where the benefits outweigh the time and effort required.

Finally, while this thread has had a lot of discussion about the user interface, that's not all that is new in the new version. Literally everything has been rebuilt to be better, stronger, and faster.
Regards,
-Harlan
Quote
Harlan
HeinrichUnger wrote:
Now I am happy deciding to stay at TheBrain - which is the center application of my electronical life.


Thanks Heinrich. We know many of our users (and me especially) truly use TheBrain as their digital identity. We understand how important it is to you beyond just a piece of software.

The decision to rewrite everything from scratch was not an easy one as it involved a lot of investment. This change has been a monumental undertaking. However, I am happy to report that now we have accomplished a lot of what we set out to do originally and it has turned out even better than we had hoped. Everything I am describing to you all here are things that we have already completed. We just can't release anything for you all to try yet because there are still other things left to be done. [smile]
Regards,
-Harlan
Quote
Harlan
metta wrote:
...
In light of this, I am wondering: may we assume that all of the current notes functions/features will all remain in the new update, with simply a new emphasis on a streamlined design?

Also, will there be a way for us to set the notes editor to be visible as our default?  In terms of my current use of TheBrain (16,000+ thoughts with over 6500 notes), it would be a huge setback to have to manually open and close the notes on any of the thoughts I want to view.

With my personal thanks to you for the magnificent software you've created,
Metta


Hi Metta,

First, you're welcome. Thanks for your support. [wink]

The notes editor on TheBrain 8 is what I now consider to be UI-heavy... There are many buttons and menus that take up a large portion of the screen even when you are not using them. In the new version, the entire UI for the notes editor disappears until you need it. The actual notes (your content) is always visible by default.

TheBrain 8's notes editor is a third party component that we integrated. This has had both benefits and drawbacks. On the one hand, we didn't have to invest as much time into developing it, however we had little and sometimes no control over problems and often had to wait for the provider to deliver changes that we needed right away.

The new notes editor is something created by us entirely based on your OS's HTML editor. This means that it will be much more responsive and we will be much more in control over how it works. At this time, we have not implemented all of the features and functionality from TheBrain 8's notes editor, but we plan to do so for the vast majority.

One thing that i find particularly vexing with TheBrain 8's notes editor is the way it handles the placement of the cursor and insertion of new text. It just doesn't always do what you expect. This is particularly bad when editing bullets, something I do a lot. This problem does not exist in the new notes editor.

When all is said and done, I think most of you will prefer the new notes editor hands down (I already do and it's not finished yet). Using it makes the old notes editor feel clunk and glitchy. I can't promise that all of you will feel the same, but I think most of you will.
Regards,
-Harlan
Quote
pshanks
Harlan wrote:

The storage backend is designed in such a way that it can be implemented with a variety of techniques. The actual database that is in use will depend on the platform. In other words, the mobile and desktop versions will have different databases as will the server.


Interesting, could this mean that The Brain will now work offline on a mobile device?

TheBrain 10.0.30.0, iOS V9.1.2
Windows 10 (V1809), Windows 7 SP1, OS X V10.14.x
Using The Brain since V3 (1999)

Quote
Harlan
Very observant Pat. [smile]

Yes, the mobile version will work offline. You will be able to view content and make changes offline. The mobile backend includes full synchronization capabilities, just like the desktop. iOS and Android platforms will also benefit from dramatic performance improvements due to both the new code as well as having local storage instead of a constant reliance on the cloud.

On a related note, we expect to be able to support multiple view types (not just the normal view) on the mobile versions also.

Regards,
-Harlan
Quote
Hephaestus
I would like to echo enkidu. The Brain is, for the most part, a Write-Only-Database. When you put information into it, it's almost impossible to get out in any usable manner. I have licenses for virtually every mind mapping program available and nearly all of them allow you to export all or part of the map as an outline that can be opened in Word or Excel.

Despite the fact that it is an abomination, the reality of American business is that the majority of communications with management are done through Microsoft PowerPoint. Building a complex brain that contains all the details for a project is an exercise in frustration, because you soon find that you're unable to get any of the information back out. The integration with Outlook is all one-way: you can import messages into thoughts, but you can't export thoughts back into messages.

The Brain is wicked cool and I'm glad that you're working on improving the infrastructure and some of the UI elements, but until I can select a group of thoughts and export them with their associated notes, it's only a novelty and neither a communications nor a collaboration tool.
Quote

Newsletter Signup  Newsletter        Visit TheBrain Blog   Blog       Follow us on Twitter   Twitter       Like Us on Facebook   Facebook         Circle Us on Google+  Google         Watch Us on Youtube  YouTube       

TheBrain Mind Map & Mindmapping Software     Download TheBrain Mind Mapping Software