SiYuan as an Outliner?

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Is it (or will it be) possible to use SiYuan as an Outliner app, similar to RemNote?

At first glance, it seems this might be possible if I keep all my content within Lists. However, I'm not sure if this is the intended use for this feature.

I'm also not sure if this could lead to peformance issues. I noticed that there is always a short loading time (a spinning wheel shows for about half a second) whenever I unfold a header or list item in SiYuan. This happens even if there are only a couple of blocks nested within. I also noticed that most docs in the "SiYuan User Guide" Notebook are relatively quite short.

For comparison, I have documents in RemNote that are a few times longer than the entire "SiYuan User Guide", with deeply nested structures, and there are no noticeable lags. This is essential for my workflow, as it allows me to quickly navigate and restructure my notes, with almost zero friction.

Of course, I understand if you're not interested in focusing on outliner features for SiYuan. The app already looks and works great as a note-taking app!

    1 Operate
    forestknows updated this article at 2023-07-07 00:55:46

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    • mka

      I've been using Remnote almost since the beginning. Lately the experience has improved a lot. There are still several bugs and small problems with how the app was designed. Performance is good. The community is small and the majority are students. App very focused on flashcards. I'm still testing Siyuan. I've already found some bugs but I don't intend to point out each one here. I prefer to wait for development.

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    • Nhan 1 Comment

      Hi @leolee9086 , I know you're both a long time and a power user of SiYuan and you migrated over from Obsidian, a very performant app (Yes, I understand it's not an outliner, just talking about performance here in general). Could you give some impression on the speed of SiYuan?

      Also when you @forestknows say you "keep all my content within Lists", you mean you have a giant list and everything is just a bullet in that list and you just zoom in and zoom out as needed? I can see that would create a giant document in SiYuan and can be an issue.

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      Nhan updated this reply at 2023-07-07 02:09:03
      Nhan updated this reply at 2023-07-07 02:08:56
      Nhan updated this reply at 2023-07-07 02:08:43
      Sorry, pinging @leolee9086 again because when I posted I messed it up.
    • MonkCanatella

      I'm currently evaluating SiYuan vs Logseq. Anytype is in the mix as well. At first I really didn't want an outliner like Logseq which is why I avoided it though it met all my other needs. That said, after having used it for a month or so, it's hard to imagine not having at least some outlining feature set. What exists in SiYuan currently is just bullet points and the ability to nest them. This isn't sufficient to translate what logseq has.

      In SiYuan you can "focus" blocks which is pretty neat thought it doesn't seem to be first class functionality. I think there's room for some quick wins on this front that'll make migrating from an outliner style app easier. Considering the speed of development of SiYuan, I imagine this will be improved in the future, though who can say when.

      Here's a quick comparison between outline style content in SiYuan vs in Logseq
      in SiYuan this is about 360 pixels tall, or about 90 pixels per line! The same in Logseq is about 280 pixels or 70 pixels per line.




      Ok, so how about changing the font size in SiYuan?


      Nope. Just more blank space - it's no more compact.

      I'm only just beginning with SiYuan so somebody may know better than me, but I believe you can write custom css to make line height more compact for lists - that said without writing your own code, it's about 30% more space in SiYuan, which adds up really fast.

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    • forestknows

      Also when you @forestknows say you "keep all my content within Lists", you mean you have a giant list and everything is just a bullet in that list and you just zoom in and zoom out as needed?

      In RemNote, yes. Though I rarely zoom in/out. Usually I'm just folding/unfolding, so I can focus on the branches that I'm interested in. Keep in mind that in RemNote everything is essentially a bullet list (you can choose to hide the bullets themselves, but the blocks always behave the same way - they can be freely nested, folded/unfolded etc).

      Edit: to add an example.
      I just grabbed the full content of Elvis' wikipedia page (supposed to be one of the longest), pasted to RemNote, then did a bit of nesting (not too much). Runs slower than a normal-sized page, but still quick and smooth (quicker than unfolding Headers in SiYuan).

      Edit2: oops!
      After reading @Nhan 's comment (explaining that the lag only happend with headers, not with Lists) I just did the same with Siyuan (pasted entire Elvis wikipedia as a List, then did some random nesting) and... it's faster than RemNote. Much faster. Pasting was instantaneous (on RemNote this took a minute). After that, folding/unfolding was super quick. So I guess it's totally possible to do this in SiYuan in technical terms. I'll probably do a Feature Request soon for a few features that would allow an outliner workflow (not much would need to be added, to be honest).

      By the way, I deleted the images I had added here because they didn't add much to the discussion.. It was just screenshots of the content within RemNote.

      1 Reply
      3 Operate
      forestknows updated this reply at 2023-07-07 03:57:16
      forestknows updated this reply at 2023-07-07 03:56:23
      forestknows updated this reply at 2023-07-07 03:21:11
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