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Originally Posted by nick101 View Post
I use Notebook too. Its sync to Dropbox is very useful (and is a main reason why I use it in preference to OO, although there are others), but is a very partial implementation. If you edit a notebook at either end (Mac or iPad), you have to sync *before* editing at the other end. If you don't, you have to choose which copy to keep. It's less like syncing than like document sharing. I've had issues with the process, although I've now got a workflow that seems to get around them.
Yes, but it's a working partial implementation. It's not a sharing solution, but if I take notes on my iPad, and save to Dropbox, I can keep working on my desktop, as long as Dropbox has synced first. Unless I use Omni's proprietary sync (which again, I have no reason to believe is either more secure or more robust/reliable than Dropbox) there is no way to do this with OO.

Has anyone here looked at CarbonFin? As far as I can tell, it is vastly inferior to OO, but it has two syncing options for its iPad app: Dropbox and its own proprietary service. Both work flawlessly.

CarbonFin also has a feature that would make Omni's proprietary sync server instantly useful: You can publish outlines to anyone, whether or not they have the app. If Omni had a way to publish the excellent dynamic HTML export online, quickly and easily, and keep it synced with the originating outline, that would make the proprietary Omni sync worth paying for.
Goodbye Omni Outliner - Hello CarbonFin Outliner.

This thread was started by Rich Beam back in February 2012. My comments on the topic are peppered throughout as posts #7 and #9 back in February and then in a much more frustrated tone in August as post #27.

Yesterday I decided another 2 months had passed and it was time to once again touch base with Ken Case to see if we were any closer to either Dropbox and/or iCloud Sync for OmniOutliner. The OmniGroup website did after all still say they would not be offering DropBox sync, but they would be providing iCloud sync.

So in a progressively more agitated (on my part) thread of emails with Ken yesterday, I learned OmniGroup now has no intention of providing iCloud sync either. When I emailed Ken the link from their own website which stated they still planned on providing iCloud sync, he nicely enough apologized for the wrong information and moments later the page was edited/removed.

Mr. Case was also kind enough to offer me a refund which I not so respectfully declined. I explained to Ken, it's not about the money. I could care a less about the $20, or whatever the cost of the App was. What I care about is out-of-the-box functionality which in my view includes sync with one of the most widely used sync services, DropBox. Once again the BS line from Omni, is that Omni this or that WebDav server is better, open, blah, blah, blah!

I don't understand, or want to understand, redirected proprietary solutions. I want simple and vanilla industry-leading solutions like DropBox or iCloud, but preferably DropBox.

Yes I am frustrated. Yes I am pissed that I invested so much time using and being loyal to OmniOutliner which was otherwise a great application, sync limitations aside.

In a late and harshly worded email last night I told Ken I was done waiting. As soon as I could find a replacement app that sync'ed with DropBox or iCloud, I was gone.

Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would find the solution less than 12 hours later. A little bit of searching and I stumbled upon CarbonFin Outliner. The iPad version is $4.99 as is the iPhone version. It is fully compatible with Dropbox sync'ing, and I was effortlessly able to export my OmniOutline files in OPML format and import them in CarbonFin Outliner. It took less than 5 minutes to be up and running and from what I can see CarbonFin Outliner more than meets my needs. It also has a Web Access portal that allows you to access your outlines from a Mac or PC. How complete is that?

So, after years of using Think-Tank, the ECCO, and then OmniOutliner, as of an hour ago I have moved on to CarbonFin Outliner that lets me access my outlines via DropBox regardless of which device I am using.

/Ciao ... Dan.
It is sad, isn't it? I got a refund for the iPad version as well, but again, that was not the point. I would happily pay more than $20 if the Omni folks would just LISTEN.

I like CarbonFin a lot. It's also got a great feature allowing you to publish HTML versions of your outlines on the web, where they can be shared with anyone. This is extremely useful for working with clients who don't use outliners.

CarbonFin does NOT support columns but given that the Omni folks seem insistent on limiting the usability of their product, perhaps we would have better luck asking CarbonFin to improve theirs.
To: KenFicara ...

Just to be clear, I did not get a refund for the iPad version of OmniOutliner. Ken offered it, but I turned it down. I do not want to take a refund and leave the impression Omni somehow satisfied my concern. On the contrary, I want them to know they took in $20 in revenue from me, but its going to cost them a heck of a lot more in terms of customer [dis]satisfaction.

I don't use columns very much so it's not a big issue for me, but I like your way of thinking that we ask the folks at CarbonFin if they can deliver. If they were smart enough to provide DropBox sync, then surely they are smart enough to figure out columns for those who may need it.
Originally Posted by Dan Baril View Post
Just to be clear, I did not get a refund for the iPad version of OmniOutliner. Ken offered it, but I turned it down. I do not want to take a refund and leave the impression Omni somehow satisfied my concern. On the contrary, I want them to know they took in $20 in revenue from me, but its going to cost them a heck of a lot more in terms of customer [dis]satisfaction.
In other words, you spent $20 on self-righteous indignation. You bought something based on what you hoped it would eventually be, grew impatient with the perceived lack of progress toward that goal, and refused the offer of a 100% refund of your purchase price, pledging instead to drum up customer dissatisfaction. I agree, someone is being unreasonable here! You were right to vote with your feet, but leaving your shoes behind hurts no one but you.

Would you be this bent out of shape if you spent $20 on a meal or a pair of movie tickets and the experience wasn't all you had hoped for, even though the proprietor cheerfully offered you a full refund?
Excuse me "whpalmer4" but check your facts.

I did not make an investment of my time on the basis of what I "hoped" it would be, but rather on what the manufacturer promised, over and over.

For nearly a year Ken Chase has promised and advertised on his website that iCloud sync was coming. He corresponded with me personally (I still have all the emails) assuring me the iCloud sync capability was coming, but was not exactly sure when. Only yesterday did he advise me, via email, and only after I contacted him again, that said sync functionality was not going to happen notwithstanding the fact his website still indicated iCloud sync was something they were going to provide.

So, I was not "hoping," rather I was waiting rather patiently for something that was promised. And yes, to use your analogy, when I sit down to a movie or a meal that is billeted as say Titanic and Steak but instead I get Jerry Springer and Kraft Dinner, I tend to think I have the right to be disappointed.

You need to pay closer attention to what I and others have said in previous posts; it has squat to do with $20. Dropbox or iCloud sync is worth ten times that amount to me. My objection has nothing to do with wasted money or lost time. It has all to do with whatever incompetence comes with the inability to deliver what CarbonFin Outliner is seemingly able to do effortlessly. That is not "self righteous indignation" that's calling a spade a spade.
Fact: you did not enter into an enforceable contract with Omni to sell you software containing a feature which they had yet to develop.

Fact: they are exceedingly careful in my decade or so of experience as an Omni customer to avoid making promises about when any particular feature will ship or even if it will be developed.

They do occasionally share their plans, usually with the caveat that they are plans, not commitments, and therefore subject to change, because anyone who has ever taken part in a software development project of any complexity knows that it is very rare that one does not encounter unforeseen complications. Said complications may make the schedule unduly optimistic, the price uneconomical, or the task may simply prove beyond reach. Ken is a smart guy with plenty of experience in the school of hard knocks, and knows what happens when you promise customers something you don't already have in hand. Here's an example of one of those caveats:

Meanwhile, let me briefly give some updates on our other projects! But first, an important reminder: our plans do change over time, so please don't rely on things happening according to today's particular snapshot of those plans.
Unless matters have changed since I last looked, Carbonfin doesn't handle native OmniOutliner files, only OmniOutliner files exported as OPML. Even Dropbox itself doesn't really handle native OmniOutliner files you cannot upload or download a native OmniOutliner file with Dropbox's web application, nor can the Dropbox iOS app hand such a file off to an application. The people you are calling incompetent manage to do it, however.

The old line about "hell hath no fury" should really continue as "like a customer who didn't exercise due diligence!"
To: whpalmer4,

I gather from your replies to me above as well as numerous other posts you have made throughout this thread as well as elsewhere in these forums, that you have ties to the Omni group that extend beyond that of an everyday customer. That is fine and fair, however, in the interest of full disclosure it would be appropriate for said ties to be disclosed up front.

For my part, I am just a customer with no conflict of interest pertaining to OmniGroup, CarbonFin or ANY other software developer.

At no time did I suggest an enforceable contract with Omni was in play. We did, however, receive clear communication that Dropbox sync was not going to happen but iCloud sync would. That commitment was still clear via email from Ken Chase to me as recently as this past August and perhaps more importantly on the company website until I brought it to Ken's attention on Friday, after which it was removed. I have that via email as well, would you like copies?

Secondly, I am only been using CarbonFin Outliner since yesterday morning as a result of my search for a new Outliner application given OmniGroups now finally advising it can't or won't sync with Dropbox or iCloud.

So, I don't know if CarbonFin has the limitations you are suggesting it has. But I can pick-up my iPad, my Macbook Air, my iMac, or my iPhone open the application and access my fully sync'ed outlines via Dropbox. The message you and OmniGroup (I accept you are one in the same) do not seem get is that Dropbox and/or iCloud sync support is more important to many/most customers. CarbonFin so far appears to understand and appeal to customer demands and feedback.

Finally, what "due diligence" did I not exercise? I bought in and faithfully and loyally supported OmniGroup for a year while they continually advised that iCloud sync would be offered. Are you suggesting there is another level of due diligence I could have carried out that would have shown they were lying and deliberately misleading? If so, I disagree with you. From the few dealings I had with Ken Chase I never found him to be dishonest. The only area in which I found OmniGroup to be lacking had to do with their inability and/or unwillingness to make OmniOutliner sync across Dropbox or iCloud.

Ken Chase did once write to me the only way they could provide DropBox or iCloud support would be in OmniOutliner 4. Sorry, I have waited long enough, and CarbonFin Outliner already does it, right out of the box.
So again, I can't use this product that I have wasted time on; money is not the issue when it comes to a company reputation. :(

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