Project sidebar suggestions


#1

First off, I LOVE TP3 preview - ordered it the second I saw it. Here are some suggestions for improvements to the project toolbar which I would love to see implemented:

  1. Highlight the current project - it get visual to see where I am currently at in the document if the project on the project sidebar would stand out (simply bold)?

  2. Allow for rearrangement of projects directly in the sidebar.

  3. See the project title in the editor window

  4. Fold / Unfold projects (subprojects) directly from the sidebar

These would be great additions, thanks.


#2

I’ve added (or some were already on my list) these items except for #4 I’m not sure about.

I think having an outline to manage in two different panes starts to add more complexity then I want to TaskPaper. Right now the sidebar is a simple list of all projects, if I started adding folding/focusing/etc then you’ve got a whole new outline to manage.

With that said I could imagine other customizations… for example maybe make the sidebar only display top level, or top two levels of projects? For most cases I only need to focus top level projects, so limiting things that way might work well?


#3

Thanks Jesse, and apologies for late response.

I think it could be valuable to have the outline in the project sidebar reflecting the outline in the main window, i.e. if I fold something in the main window, it folds the same in the project sidebar. Right now this gets me confused some times, especially if I focus on a project I still see everything in the project sidebar. To me, that adds noise that I am trying to filter out when focusing. Same thing when I do a search for a tag, I would love it if the sidebar only showed the projects that were actually included in the search.

A use case: I have my project list divided in two major parts, private and work. After that comes area of responsibility in GTD-terms, such as ‘Product Owner for X’, ‘Project Manager Project Y’, etc. Under each one comes a list of projects, such as ‘Publish Release Plan to Home Page’, ‘Next Years Budget handed in’ etc. This list becomes quite long, and it is really useful to able to focus on just ‘Product X’ without seeing that I need to buy a new pair of shoes for my daughter, contact a customer on a different errand etc. Thus, focusing on that main project removes all noise EXCEPT for the project sidebar. If that was focused as well, with the ability to fold/unfold, it would make it more clean for me to work in.

Does this make sense?


#4

I like this idea better then what I thought you were talking about originally. I definitely don’t want to add a separate outline that you control in the sidebar… but reflecting changes in the main outline makes more sense.

A long time ago I worked on a space tree visualization. And I think (not the full visualization), but the choosing which items to display based on the hoisted item, available space/folds/etc might work well. But I think it would require quite a bit of trial and error testing to get it right, and I don’t think I have time for that right now.

Another problem is that right now I use the projects list as an index from where you can quickly jump to any project by typing the project name… so if we changed that (show all) aspect of the sidebar I’d need to have another place where you can select any project keyboard typeahead.

For these reasons I don’t think I’ll make any major changes to the sidebar for version 3.0. But I’ve added a few related items to my list to investigate in the future.


#5

Sounds reasonable. I would love the ability to get the selection reflected (as in the space tree visualization), but I fully understand that you need to get in ready for 3.0 release!


#6

I think the point here is that the sidebar should fold and unfold with the main outline and vice versa…