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BetaBites article:

ActionOutline 1.5.2 Beta 2 by Tass 05/12/99

It's a TO-DO list ... no, it's an organizer... no, it's a notepad... nope it's ActionOutline! TO-DO list, organizer, notepad, free form jotter and more are what ActionOutline offers. To be honest, I was not expecting much when I agreed to do this preview but WOW was I happily wrong. This is fast becoming one of my favourite little programs. The ability to create an outline in free form with a ton of features is just too cool!

One of the things that struck my right away was the useful sample file. A lot of programs either have no samples or pretty lame ones, but ActionOutline made there sample the tutorial and revision history. As you can see ActionOutline (AO) allows you to group and order items by hierarchy, much like a real outline paper. The title of you entry can be all you have for that point or you can enter in notes on the right hand side of the screen. After spending a few minutes going through the tutorial I started my own list.

One of my main topics is BetaBites, and the first item I put under it was a web link, yep, a web link. AO lets you not only enter text it also allows you to enter links for: WebPages, Email, Phone dialer, Files, FTP and more. That one feature, more than any other, sets this program apart. Your links are in the same area as all your other entries AND you can still enter text notes about the links on the right hand side.

Is that neat or what? When you create a link to an email or file or web page the type of link is displayed when you click on that point. In this case I have a link to a picture file. So when I click once on the outline point AO displays the information on the right. For links it will show the type of link, file: in this case, the directory and name of the file and your note. All you need to do is double click the link to activate it. The more astute viewers will probably be asking "what is up with those little colored flags?" Well, no useful outliner could be complete without the ability to highlight/mark key points now could it? AO gives you a choice of 8 colors and a check mark for when you are done with an item.

The ability to collapse your outlines with a single click is an obvious feature that would be needed, and it is available in AO. But, they give many more handy options. With just a click of an icon, Drag-&-Drop or through the use of keyboard shortcuts, you can change the level an item is in. You can move it to the left, making it a parent or sibling (item in the same level as an item above) or to the right to make it a sibling or child. Or change the order by moving an item up or down. It truly is a a fast and easy to learn outline program that offers a great deal of flexibility.

For those of you that just need to have it look the way you want, you can. AO has a slew of customizing options for appearance, programs, shortcut keys, shell integration, printing and timestamp format. Now, for those of you that may not know, I am Canadian. This makes for some fun here at Beta Bites since I like to do my date formats as YY/MM/DD not MM/DD/YY, and guess what the default in AO is? If you guessed YYMMDD you are 100% right. Plus it defaults to 24HR time. I am one happy Canuck (:

FEATURES: Auto Minimize to System Tray WINDOWS-A shortcut Web, FTP, FILE, Phone Dialer, Telnet, Newsgroup and custom links types 8 Colors for highlighting flags Check-DONE items Custom Browser and Email options Custom Timestamp options This does require you to have Windows 9x on your system. I am running Windows 98 and had no problems. There were no listed system requirements other than Windows 9x so as long as you can get on the 'net you can run this.


ActionOutline 1.5.2 Beta 2 by Tass 05/12/99

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