Remember outlines? They were all the rage back in high school. For many, that was the last time an outline was used, yet the value has never changed. Outlines are like typing and riding a bike. Once you learn, you never forget the value, or forget how to use one.
As a teacher, I use outlines regularly, so I’ve trudged through more than my fair share of Mac and Windows outliners. There are many, but they all follow the basics. What makes Cloud Outliner different is, 1) feature set, and, 2) it runs on Mac, iPhone, and iPad.
As Apple has expanded from the Mac to iPhone to iPad, I’ve come to appreciate applications which run on each device and sync files between devices on iCloud, Dropbox, or whatever. Cloud Outliner works with iCloud and syncs outlines between devices. And, the app is instantly familiar to anyone who has used an outliner on Mac or paper.
Just think of the outline format you learned in school and apply it to a digital version on the Mac. The sidebar to the left holds all your outlines, organized however you want, and synchronized between Mac, iPhone, and iPad via iCloud.
On the top is the toolbar. Select a line item to move up or down, indent left or right. Plus, you get check marks for lists, an option to collapse or expand the whole shebang, or even change the font and size.
Yes, it all looks much the same on iPad, too.
What we were taught in high school about outlines holds true with the digital version, except these are more visual. Not only do they work well for task management, check lists, even projects, but they are excellent for writing, brainstorming, organizing, and setting up procedures and processes.
Many outline apps do that and Cloud Outliner is no slouch. The advantage for Apple customers is the easy synchronization of outline files between Mac, iPhone, and iPad. Start a task list or project on one, and later it shows up everywhere else.
- Drag and Drop functionality for sorting and reordering rows
- Multi-selection feature to reorder rows, change indentation, or delete them all at once
- Optional checkboxes that facilitate selection
- Optional automatic numbering (3 styles)
- Adding notes to data and list items
- Customizable text size, color, and style
- Highlighting important rows using different text colors and styles
- View completed tasks
- Collapse/expand functionality for all items
- Filters for displaying only checked or only unchecked items
- Undo/redo operations
- Cut/copy/paste data to outlines or even external apps (Notes, Mail, Safari, etc.)
- Automatic highlighting of links and phone numbers
Screen real estate is your friend. The Mac version works best, especially thanks to keyboard shortcuts and a larger screen. The iPad version is excellent, though, and a good way to sit and relax while outlining a project or processes or simply creating a task of checklists.
The iPhone version is a bit different; thanks mostly to the smaller screen size which requires a bit more focus and use of gestures.
If you work on outlines at all– on paper with pencil, or on Mac or iPad– there is no way not to like Cloud Outliner. Outlines can be protected with a password, exported or imported using standard OPML files for outlines. Yes, this one even syncs with Evernote.
- Flexible multi-tier document manager
- Highly visible color stickers to mark important records
- Password protection
- Customizable document templates
- Duplicate document operation
- Export of outlines to PDF and HTML
- Import and export of OPML files
- Sending outlines by email or an instant messenger
- Share outlines to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Reminders, Notes, Email, Messages
As a teacher, it’s been my experience that using an outline is an acquired taste. It does take some discipline but there is no better way to organize tasks, projects, check lists, plans or procedures than an outline. Cloud Outliner makes it easy because it works on each device.