Uses of VO

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Uses of VO

Steve Litt
I use VO for project management, design through decomposition and
rearrangement, and storage of content and configuration (EMDL etc). Some
others use it for calendering. Noel is setting up VO so it can be a graphic
presentation tool.

What else is VO used for?

Thanks

SteveT

Steve Litt
Recession Relief Package
http://www.recession-relief.US

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Re: Uses of VO

Henrik Holst-5
On Thu, Sep 18, 2008 at 10:52:21AM -0400, Steve Litt wrote:
> I use VO for project management, design through decomposition and
> rearrangement, and storage of content and configuration (EMDL etc). Some
> others use it for calendering. Noel is setting up VO so it can be a graphic
> presentation tool.
>
> What else is VO used for?

password wallet.

http://img71.imageshack.us/my.php?image=vimpasswordwalletpngvi4.png

--
Henrik Holst, Sweden      | TYPING IS NO SUBSTITUTE FOR THINKING
holst CHR(64) matmech.com | - A Manual for BASIC,
                          |   Darthmouth College, 1 October 1964
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Re: Uses of VO

Martin Lange-2
In reply to this post by Steve Litt
On Thursday 18 September 2008 at 16:52:21 Steve Litt wrote:

> I use VO for project management, design through decomposition and
> rearrangement, and storage of content and configuration (EMDL etc).
> Some others use it for calendering. Noel is setting up VO so it can
> be a graphic presentation tool.

> What else is VO used for?

I use VO for:

- todo lists
- "getting things done"-filer
- account- & cash-book
- storage of all and every snippet of information
- some kind of "project management"
- "plot device" for my novels (character profiles, story locations, time
lines etc.)

Martin "vi"
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Re: Uses of VO

Steve Litt
On Saturday 20 September 2008 01:45:40 pm Martin Lange wrote:

> I use VO for:
>
> - todo lists
> - "getting things done"-filer
> - account- & cash-book
> - storage of all and every snippet of information
> - some kind of "project management"
> - "plot device" for my novels (character profiles, story locations, time
> lines etc.)

How does the plot device usage work for you? How do you use it without killing
the fiction feel?

Until now, I've always refused to outline fiction. Two disclaimers here:

1) All my fiction over 5000 words was written to get across information about
troubleshooting, not to entertain.

2) The longest fiction I ever wrote was the 35,000 word "Heather's Revenge",
and we all know that difficulty increases exponentially with length so longer
writings require much more design.

Instead of designing fiction, I've started by deciding what sort of
transformation I wanted to put the reader through, then thought up some kind
of protagonist, then a bunch of problems he/she had to solve, and various
antagonists and character foils, and then just pretty much write it linearly.
When I paint myself into a corner, I recurse back out much like a maze-runner
computer program recurses back out of a dead end.

The other thing I try to do in fiction is put a lot of sensory stuff in it,
especially relating to weather etc.

If I were to outline fiction, I'd be scared it would turn choppy. Also, I
think if I outlined fiction, it would be too predictable and those hairpin
turns that come during the linear writing process would be absent.

But of course I could be wrong, so I'm very interested to hear your thought
patterns when you're outlining a novel.

By the way, when I write a nonfiction book, I outline it down 6 levels deep.
The outline for "Samba Unleashed" was 2800 headlines.

SteveT

Steve Litt
Recession Relief Package
http://www.recession-relief.US

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Re: Uses of VO

Scott Scriven-2
In reply to this post by Henrik Holst-5
* Henrik Holst <[hidden email]> wrote:
> On Thu, Sep 18, 2008 at 10:52:21AM -0400, Steve Litt wrote:
> > What else is VO used for?
>
> password wallet.
> http://img71.imageshack.us/my.php?image=vimpasswordwalletpngvi4.png

Oddly enough, this is one thing I don't outline much.  I treat it
like a list in most cases, with as much on each line as possible
to make things more greppable.  It's still organized about the
same as what you showed, but the server name, account name,
password, email address, and other info all goes on one line.  
Then, when I want to look something up, I just type 'pw foo' and
all matches for 'foo' are displayed.

I have more details here, including some basic gpg encryption:

  http://community.livejournal.com/crystalcitybbs/1251.html

It would be nice if I could avoid writing the plaintext content
to disk while editing it in vim, but I haven't found an easy way
to do that yet.  Instead, I just use 'shred' instead of 'rm'
afterward.


-- Scott
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Re: Uses of VO

Martin Lange-2
In reply to this post by Steve Litt
On Saturday 20 September 2008 at 21:18:56 Steve Litt wrote:

> But of course I could be wrong, so I'm very interested to hear your
> thought patterns when you're outlining a novel.

You are not wrong. There is no such thing in a creative process. Of
course, sharing experience is a way to improve ones own processes, even
in rejecting the shared information.

Rejecting is an important part of my process and the role of VO as a
tool. Let's say, there is a guy, who has a part in my story. This guy
has a name. I jot that name down in an OTL-file. But then, my brain run
wild -- this guy has had a name, he was called by his friends way back
in high school. Another one, some aunt uses, when he was a child and he
didn't like it.

I'v tried with pure discipline, but that didn't work. Each time, I
stopped the free flow of associations, I walled up a part of my mind,
until I couldn't write anymore, since I stumpled over Stop-signs at
each turn. Now, I write that names -- and weight, height, color, faith,
social security number, whatever haunts me -- in the appropriate
OTL-file and keep my "working area" -- my brain -- clean. If I got
another glimpse about that guy -- let's say, his hate for that
childhood name is the reason, he went bad --, I could dump it there and
went on.

That's true for characters, locations, devices, organizations and
whatever turns up in my mind.

Another thread, I'm spinning my yarn from, are "hard facts". If that guy
has to go fom Frankfurt/Main to New York City, there is a real distance
in miles and hours, there are real proceedings to board an airplane and
to enter the USA and such. Those informations go to the appropriate
OTL-file and I can grep for that stuff. That file is growing and I'm
looking around for something else, but a wiki is way to slow -- an
inherent drawback of all web-based applications -- and a full-fledged
database would be a lot of development work. So, I'll stay with VO for
that stuff, using intermediate "tag cloud file" -- OTL-files
themself -- and interoutline linking.

That was the "static part", which isn't entirely true, since the "dump
files" change often and even the "fact files" could change (another
schedule or a change in some policy). But neither "dump files"
nor "fact files" are really part of the story. I can always choose to
ignore this or that snippet. The main purpose of the "dump files" is to
dump that stuff out of my brain, and the main purpose of the "fact
files" is to keep that stuff at hand, if and when I need it.

The "dynamic part" -- the plot, as it went -- goes like this:

I open a file and put some headlines in it. It's a rough outline of what
should happen in that chapter and subject to change. I don't observe a
strict rule of "top-down" or "stepwise refinement". Let's say, one
headline is "The meeting" and since I've suffered though sufficient
meetings to know them by heart, I could write on and on to the level of
real narrative text. The next headline level 1 would be "The ambush".
Since I never was ambushed, I don't know, what to write. So, I leave
that headline alone, until I've got some information how to ambush and
being ambushed. But I jot down a little remark, that I'll use this
ambush to get rid of a particular tedious sidekick. The next headline
may be "The interview", but it's late, my brain is clogged, my wife is
snoring, the dog wailing -- um, the other way around -- and so, I jot
down some 2nd- or even 3th-level headlines and call it a day.

Again, VO is used as a "dump tool". I can write, what I can write right
now. I can jot down some vague ideas. I can insert, delete, move,
promote or demote paragraphs, sections and even whole chapters.

The main thing is: I never need to stop writing. Whatever comes to my
mind can be written immedialy (and properly dealt with later).

Martin
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Re: Uses of VO

Steve Litt
On Sunday 21 September 2008 09:12:13 am Martin Lange On wrote:

> On Saturday 20 September 2008 at 21:18:56 Steve Litt wrote:
> > But of course I could be wrong, so I'm very interested to hear your
> > thought patterns when you're outlining a novel.
>
> You are not wrong. There is no such thing in a creative process. Of
> course, sharing experience is a way to improve ones own processes, even
> in rejecting the shared information.
>
> Rejecting is an important part of my process and the role of VO as a
> tool. Let's say, there is a guy, who has a part in my story. This guy
> has a name. I jot that name down in an OTL-file. But then, my brain run
> wild -- this guy has had a name, he was called by his friends way back
> in high school. Another one, some aunt uses, when he was a child and he
> didn't like it.
>
> I'v tried with pure discipline, but that didn't work. Each time, I
> stopped the free flow of associations, I walled up a part of my mind,
> until I couldn't write anymore, since I stumpled over Stop-signs at
> each turn. Now, I write that names -- and weight, height, color, faith,
> social security number, whatever haunts me -- in the appropriate
> OTL-file and keep my "working area" -- my brain -- clean. If I got
> another glimpse about that guy -- let's say, his hate for that
> childhood name is the reason, he went bad --, I could dump it there and
> went on.
>
> That's true for characters, locations, devices, organizations and
> whatever turns up in my mind.
>
> Another thread, I'm spinning my yarn from, are "hard facts". If that guy
> has to go fom Frankfurt/Main to New York City, there is a real distance
> in miles and hours, there are real proceedings to board an airplane and
> to enter the USA and such. Those informations go to the appropriate
> OTL-file and I can grep for that stuff. That file is growing and I'm
> looking around for something else, but a wiki is way to slow -- an
> inherent drawback of all web-based applications -- and a full-fledged
> database would be a lot of development work. So, I'll stay with VO for
> that stuff, using intermediate "tag cloud file" -- OTL-files
> themself -- and interoutline linking.
>
> That was the "static part", which isn't entirely true, since the "dump
> files" change often and even the "fact files" could change (another
> schedule or a change in some policy). But neither "dump files"
> nor "fact files" are really part of the story. I can always choose to
> ignore this or that snippet. The main purpose of the "dump files" is to
> dump that stuff out of my brain, and the main purpose of the "fact
> files" is to keep that stuff at hand, if and when I need it.
>
> The "dynamic part" -- the plot, as it went -- goes like this:
>
> I open a file and put some headlines in it. It's a rough outline of what
> should happen in that chapter and subject to change. I don't observe a
> strict rule of "top-down" or "stepwise refinement". Let's say, one
> headline is "The meeting" and since I've suffered though sufficient
> meetings to know them by heart, I could write on and on to the level of
> real narrative text. The next headline level 1 would be "The ambush".
> Since I never was ambushed, I don't know, what to write. So, I leave
> that headline alone, until I've got some information how to ambush and
> being ambushed. But I jot down a little remark, that I'll use this
> ambush to get rid of a particular tedious sidekick. The next headline
> may be "The interview", but it's late, my brain is clogged, my wife is
> snoring, the dog wailing -- um, the other way around -- and so, I jot
> down some 2nd- or even 3th-level headlines and call it a day.
>
> Again, VO is used as a "dump tool". I can write, what I can write right
> now. I can jot down some vague ideas. I can insert, delete, move,
> promote or demote paragraphs, sections and even whole chapters.
>
> The main thing is: I never need to stop writing. Whatever comes to my
> mind can be written immedialy (and properly dealt with later).
>
> Martin

I might try that. I'd feel ugly about outlining plot, but as a place to put
ideas -- that sounds good to me.

SteveT

Steve Litt
Recession Relief Package
http://www.recession-relief.US

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