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Import from OmniOutliner Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
I have a tasklist that I've created in OmniOutliner which has 5 columns. Note, Task, Depends, Resources, and Category. The last four columns are rich text. When I import, I bind "Task" to "Task", "Depends" to "Dependencies", "Resources" to "Assigned", and "Notes" to "Notes". Everything imports fine except the text, I end up with "Task 1", "Task 2" and so on...

Which is pretty much useless.

What am I doing wrong?

[Note: This is a trial license, if it had worked I'd already have paid.]

Dan

Last edited by Dan Smart; 2007-04-18 at 06:14 PM..
 
Unfortunately, you're not doing anything wrong. This used to work, but (embarassingly!) some of our 1.1 changes have broken it. It's high on our 'To Do' list for an upcoming release.

If the data you're using is not confidential, could you please email a copy of the Outliner file to our support ninja at omniplan@omnigroup.com? That'll give us more test data to work from and help us address the issue more completely.
 
There are many more things than that broken when importing from OmniOutliner to OmniPlan. I love Outliner, and am doing heavy evaluation of Plan this week. Some more problems:

OO->OP IMPORT ISSUES
(very partial)

1. NO DATA IMPORTED IN CUSTOM COLUMNS --
Importing custom columns simply does not work. For example, I have a column in OO called "System Integration" with a combobox list: MAS-90, mail server, ADP Payroll, etc. Upon import I select the choice to import custom data, and OP creates the column but NO DATA IS IMPORTED.


2. OP JUST MAKES UP NUMBERS FOR BLANK CELLS --
There is no "effort" column type in OO so I set up my hourly estimates (this is a software project tool for me, if that was not obvious already) as a Duration column type. However I do not wish the cell values in that column to be multiplied by the number of persons I asssign in OP so I targeted the Estimates column at the Effort (not Duration) column in OP.

There were numerous tasks in OO that I cannot yet estimate for my project, so I left the Estimate (again, of type Duration) column blank and added a checkbox column called "Not Estimated" which is checked on rows with no estimate. In the Effort column in OP into which the Estimate was imported, any cell that was blank in the Estimate column in OO was populated wtih "8h" in OP. Of course many of my actual rows did have an estimate of 8h in OO, so in order to fix up OP's version I need to manually compare the task lists in OO and OP side by side on my screen to delete the cell values in OP that should actually be blank. This is not acceptable and has pretty much ruined any chance I can use OP (also has made me much much less likely to spend this much time evaluating OP in the future).

3. NO WAY TO EMBED WORK DONE IN OO INTO OP --
I find it amazing that OO was not made into a data server for OP. I do a very significant piece of work in OO and then have to go through contortions to correct & tweak the results of an import, and then if I make changes in OO **I NEED ALSO TO MAKE THEM IN OP**. Again, a total show-stopper.

4. COLUMN TYPES DO NOT CONFORM BETWEEN THE TWO APPS (and another import issue) --
I created checkbox columns & combo-box columns in OO, only to discover that OP does not handle these two formats. Perhaps because of this disparity, OP populated every cell in my "Not Estimated" checkbox column with the number 1!! I could see if my checkboxes were translated into a binary 0-for-unchecked, 1-for-checked, but *EVERY* cell is a 1. Even more odd, the summary row for the Not Estimate column in OP displays a zero even though its children each has a one in that column. How do 3 ones total zero??

...

I was so excited to discover OmniOutliner, which makes it so easy for me to think through how to organize my software project, including the ability to make a checkbox column called "Batch Process", for instance, or a Work Type combobox column with values like "Research", "Fix", "Enh", "Docs".

And then I was so disappointed to discover that although OP claims to import OO there is such poor integration between these tools that one might as well say:

"THERE IS NO INTEGRATION BETWEEN OMNIOUTLINER AND OMNIPLAN"

I would basically have to double-maintain everything in OP that I put into OO, which calls into question why I should not just get Merlin2??

It is rare for me to feel this strongly about poor product-direction decision making.

There you have it.

kazar
http://www.datatude.net

Last edited by Brian; 2007-06-01 at 10:28 AM..
 
Kazan, it's disingenuous to say "I don't mean to insult <foo>" and then to level an insult. Your post has been edited. For the record, folks are free to discuss our products, and we love it when they bring problems to our attention. Personal attacks, however, are not acceptable.

I'm working on the remainder of the issues you raise in your post. More info later today.
 
Just for the record, the issue the original poster found will be fixed in OmniPlan 1.1.1; there's a release candidate of that version available on the OmniPlan download page.


Quote:
Originally Posted by kazar
Importing custom columns simply does not work. For example, I have a column in OO called "System Integration" with a combobox list: MAS-90, mail server, ADP Payroll, etc. Upon import I select the choice to import custom data, and OP creates the column but NO DATA IS IMPORTED.
OmniPlan's import of pop-up list columns in Outliner documents is currently broken. We've got a bug open on this, and I've attached your post to that item in the bug database so the development team knows this affects you. I did the same for the bug you found with checkbox columns, as well.

However, the custom data importer does support data from every other column type that OmniOutliner offers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kazar
In the Effort column in OP into which the Estimate was imported, any cell that was blank in the Estimate column in OO was populated wtih "8h" in OP.
I can see that this wasn't what you expected, but it isn't a bug. I'll explain.

Open a new OmniPlan document. Add tasks to the document. Just hit the return key a couple of times; don't edit anything else. You'll see that those new tasks are created with a default duration of 8 hours.

Now make a new document in OmniOutliner. Add a duration column. In the duration cell of the first row, enter "0". Add a second row, but don't touch the duration cell for that row. Save the document and import it into OmniPlan. You'll see that the two rows get treated differently. The first row becomes a milestone - a task with no duration - because you explicitly entered a value.

The second row had no value whatsoever, so OmniPlan treated those tasks the same way it treats a task that you create with the enter key; the behavior may not be what you wanted, but it's not random.

In any case, we can probably make this less confusing. I'll add a feature request to give the user some control over how rows with no value should be handled.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kazar
I find it amazing that OO was not made into a data server for OP. I do a very significant piece of work in OO and then have to go through contortions to correct & tweak the results of an import, and then if I make changes in OO **I NEED ALSO TO MAKE THEM IN OP**.
Each of our applications has an individual file format that's tailored to the needs of that application. OmniPlan can open OmniOutliner documents, and it will work with that data; in that respect, OmniOutliner is a 'data server' for OmniPlan.

What you seem to be asking for, though, is beyond that; you want to open a document in either app, make edits, and have 'the right thing' happen in either one.

We've all seen those news stories about the guy that takes a car and turns it into an airplane. It's an impressive technical feat. But should everyone that wants to get to work in the morning buy an aircar, even if they're not a pilot? Does the aircar get the mileage of a Prius, or perform as well as a Porsche?

In short, purpose-built devices are generally better than all-in-one devices.

Do OmniPlan and OmniOutliner have some features in common? Yes. Should they work well together, where it makes sense to do so? Yes.

But the folks that do script writing in Outliner could care less about gantt charts. And OmniPlan customers don't care nearly as much about text formatting as OmniOutliner customers do. Neither groups should have to pay for features they will never use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kazar
OP populated every cell in my "Not Estimated" checkbox column with the number 1!![/i] I could see if my checkboxes were translated into a binary 0-for-unchecked, 1-for-checked, but *EVERY* cell is a 1.
In this case, OmniPlan appears to be doing a "does this cell have a value assigned?" check; both checked and unchecked rows are set to "1".

Written up as a bug.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kazar
Even more odd, the summary row for the Not Estimate column in OP displays a zero even though its children each has a one in that column. How do 3 ones total zero??
Open an OmniOutliner document. Create one parent row with two children. Give the document a checkbox column, and set the summary pop-up to "State". Check one row, but not the other.

Now switch that column to either "Number" or "Rich Text". You'll note that the summary cell doesn't have anything in it. OmniOutliner doesn't store values for summary cells when the doc gets saved to disk. Since the leaf node values are stored on disk, we read those in when we load the document and display the data in the appropriate place on screen.

OmniPlan can't import data that's not in the file that you're importing. That's what you're seeing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kazar
I would basically have to double-maintain everything in OP that I put into OO, which calls into question why I should not just get Merlin2??
It sounds as if you really like OmniOutliner, and it does some of what you want from a project planning app. It doesn't do everything, or you would have no need to export your data at all. Exporting from OmniOutliner out to some other app that does have the project management features that you need is the way we're going to approach this, for the reasons I stated above.

Obviously we'd prefer if that planning app was OmniPlan. We have some bugs that are tripping you up at the moment. We'll get those fixed. But converting a document from one format to another is always going to require you to be mindful. Outliner can save documents to the PDF format, too; that doesn't mean that we should read in any PDF document you throw at it and try to make it into an Outliner file.

Last edited by Brian; 2007-06-01 at 02:35 PM..
 
 


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