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Oh knowledgeable ones ...

There's a bit of functionality that I've seen in OO that I've not seen elsewhere. What's the difference between a window title bar that doesn't contain a diamond, a window bar that contains an empty diamond, and one that contains a full diamond - see attached images?

(I understand that the red dot in the close icon in the top left of the window means that there's data to be saved.)

Thanks - J.
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Window title bar with no diamond: no changes of any sort
Window title bar with filled diamond: content changes, not yet saved
Window title bar with clear diamond: no content changes, but view changes, not yet saved

An few examples of the last would be hoisting a different section of the outline, scrolling elsewhere in the document, collapsing or expanding some rows. You can save the file and preserve this information, but it won't pester you about doing so if you quit, unlike if you have made actual content changes.

I wondered about this for a while myself, and just happened to stumble across the answer while looking for something else :-)
Bare Bones Software's venerable BBEdit text editor uses a similar custom of a hollow or filled diamond character with the same meaning (although it doesn't appear in the title bar). That's how I came to be familiar with it.

Although, I vaguely remember the diamond symbol also appearing in classic Mac OS apps, where it meant the same thing. Of course, BBEdit was born in the classic era, so maybe they just carried it over. The diamond symbol seems to be less common in Mac OS X, perhaps because the OS provides the "dirty" indicator in the red close button in the upper left of app windows, as jsturtridge pointed out.

I'm not familiar with the history of OmniOutliner though. I didn't pick up my first copy until relatively recently (OmniOutliner 2 sometime in 2004, I think). My impression is that OmniOutliner wasn't available on the Mac platform prior to OS X.

Two other things that have always troubled me about OmniOutliner's use of that diamond:
  1. I haven't done much AppleScripting of OmniOutliner, but when I did, it always seemed a hassle to identify a specific window because the diamond is part of the name. Maybe there's a better way. Like I said, I didn't dig very deep.

  2. I've always wondered why hoisting/unhoisting a section is considered a content change (solid diamond) rather than a view change (hollow diamond). That doesn't seem right to me.

Originally Posted by Toadling View Post
I've always wondered why hoisting/unhoisting a section is considered a content change (solid diamond) rather than a view change (hollow diamond). That doesn't seem right to me.
Hey, you're error! Ironically, seeing a diamond show up when I hoisted a section was what finally prompted me to investigate the semantics, but I didn't remember the details correctly for that very case! Sigh...

I agree that hoist/unhoist doesn't seem like a content change.

Last edited by Brian; 2009-01-29 at 05:53 PM.. Reason: removed some stray BBTags
Gents - thanks for the answer! J.

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