Did what the title says, and installed Electric Drummer. Drummer is Dave Winer‘s new outliner tool, which I mentioned earlier. Dave blogs directly from his outliner, and his entire blog is a single outline. Electric Drummer is Drummer packaged in an Electron shell so I can run it locally on my Mac (as opposed to on a webserver provided by Dave).

This way I can play with the tool locally, to get a feel for how outlining in it works, how smooth it feels as a writing aid, and how it compares with my note taking in Obsidian (which isn’t an outliner but has outlining functionality). After all Obsidian is my core tool these days. I’d be interested to see if there are affordances in Drummer that I see myself immediately taking to, and whether those affordances exist or can be emulated in Obsidian.

One thing immediately stands out: if I import OPML files, like my book lists, that have additional data attributes, those attributes are shown in Drummer. And through the ‘suitcase’ icon I can see, edit and ammend the attribute list. The first time I see that in an outliner, which is extremely welcome functionality.

When I wrote about outlining last weekend, I mentioned Dave Winer’s blog being an outline document. Yesterday, in the context of Drummer he referred to a 2013 posting “Two ways of looking at an outliner“. In it he goes into detail how outliners aren’t only creating files (a single outline, saved in a file), but can be viewed as file systems as well. At the end of that posting he talks about how his entire blog is an outline, all stored in a single opml file. When I mentioned how Dave Winer seems to blog by starting an outline each day, I was partly right. He’s starting a new branch (i.e. a day file) in a month branch (i.e. a folder), in a year branch (i.e. a folder), in the entirety of his blog that is a single OPML file.