OK, I got sucked back into this forum due to posts I hadn’t read and I see all the discussion of pros and cons of Tinderbox relative to DT. I use them both and integrate them to some extent. Below is from an email to one of the people in charge of our online course development at my college. She has never used TB and I thought these screenshots would help her understand how I’m approaching getting my Environment and Society course online. Hopefully this will illustrate that TB is awesome, DT is awesome, and between the two they are awesome^2. Here we go:
Tinderbox is one of the most amazing and extensible applications I’ve ever seen. With that comes a lot of complexity. It is rumored that no one knows everything about all its capabilities or what can be done with it. Even the developer has to go back and check coding sometimes. I’ve been using it for over two years now, so I understand it well enough to do some pretty good project planning in it. I used it for the Risk Assessment for the Enbridge Line 5 Pipelines under the Straits of Mackinac as well as a couple of other things before this. I’m primarily using it for mapping, tracking goals and their completion, taking notes, storing specific information of various sorts as it comes up, and I have it automatically updating certain containers in TBX that scans for changes in a program I use as a database called DEVONthink 3, which is used as a repository for files of all sorts.
OK, if you look at screen shot TB1, you will see the main goal of the entire file in the blue box at the top of the shot. From this everything else branches and sub-branches off. You can see from this that I used it extensively for getting my online certification and my masters certificate! Each of the items you see is either a regular note, a task note, or a container that holds other items. As I was going through these certifications, I captured important information that I can now readily access if I run into questions regarding our online courses going forward.
TB2 shows the area in TBX where I’m developing the actual course. To the right you see automated systems I have set up, prototypes, etc. If I designate a type of note as a prototype, I can then tell another note to use that prototype and all formatting, meta fields, etc. are put into that note. You will see shortly how I’m using that capability for setting up our Curriculum Map that will finally be in Word format per your needs.
TB3 is after entering the “Curriculum Planning” container that you see in the upper left of TB2. You can see a lot of branches from “Planned Course Structure,” to various other items, such as a topic list from the Master Syllabus (and a link to the original MS), etc. Most importantly at this time is the layout to the right side of the figure. This shows the current version of the layouts of the course in weeks and which module is in which week. I like doing it this way, rather than in the Word document, due to the increase in flexibility of moving things around, editing, etc., as needed for improvement. For example, I could move module 4 to week three without all the pain and suffering of doing it in the Word document.
Finally, TB4 shows what is in selected Module 2 in the window on the right side of the figure. Because I used a “module template prototype,” (you can see this at the top of the figure) all I have to do is make a note, tell it that is its prototype, and everything is inherited from that template and set up as you see it in Module 2, with all the categories that need to be filled in, etc. When completed, I’ll just copy and paste each of them into our Word document for submission.
So hopefully this is helps a little bit with understanding how TB can be used and how DT can be integrated with it. Oops, I meant to add that even these screenshots are stored in DT3.