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Tinderbox Users >> Exporting from Tinderbox >> Best way to export to Scrivener
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Message started by Ian Greig on Jul 5th, 2012, 6:12pm

Title: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Ian Greig on Jul 5th, 2012, 6:12pm

Apologies if this has been covered before but a search didn't turn up what I need...

I have upgraded to 5.11.2 and installed the Scrivener template etc. My export could be read by Scrivener but as rtf with all the XML formatting showing. Not quite what I wanted...

Could someone walk me simply through the export and import?

FYI I am aiming to use Tinderbox to work up my outline and structure, to write a book chapter(s) in Scrivener -- this seems to be the golden partnership.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 6th, 2012, 3:33am

OK, using TB v5.11.2 with built-in Scrivener export templates and Scrivener 2.3, on OS 10.6.8...
  • I added the built-in Scrivener templates to my document.
  • I set the root container of the data to export to use the Scrivener export template as its HTML export template (via the drop down on HTML view)
  • From HTML view I clicked the export button. You could use File Export as HTML, though that exports the whole document, not just your HTML.
  • I took the OPML file generated and dropped it onto the Scrivener Binder as per Scrivener manual Appendix B paper pages 493-494.
  • Expected data imports into Scrivener.
    • OPML format is plain text only, bold, italic, font face/colour, highlighting etc. do not transfer. This is to be expected
      because of the OPML format's limitations. Similarly, links are not transferred.
If you are still having problems I suggest you sent your OPML file to Tinderbox support (info@eastgate.com).

Sidenotes:

If you're wondering whether you need to set the extension of the exported OPML file, you don't need to bother. The template does that task for you via code in the template: ^action(HTMLExportExtension=".opml")^. By running as part of the export it copes with the user forgetting to set the '.opml' extension or setting it incorrectly.

As I came to test this morning I noticed Scrivener v2.3 update was out. I didn't see anything in its release notes indicating changes to OPML handling. I believe the OPML import should work in v2.0+.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 6th, 2012, 7:15am

OK, here's a little tutorial on the process: http://shoantel.clarify-it.com/d/63vggj

[Interested to know if these Clarify demos are useful, as they take a while to plan & make]

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Ian Greig on Jul 6th, 2012, 8:19am

The Clarify-it is really good  a very helpful resource.

Actually the brief step-by-step you posted earlier is also a clear guide. Thanks for taking the trouble.

I still have the original problem -- on bringing the .opml into the Scrivener binder and opening it, I see .html rather than outline-format text.

I'm using Scrivener 2.3 and as far as I can tell, doing everything by the book as per Manual pp 493-494. I'll ask about this on the Scrivener forum but if you (Mark) or others have any insights, I'd be grateful.

Thanks again for a very good resource.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 6th, 2012, 9:23am

Does the OPML file have a '.opml' extension, if not give said extension and try again.  Otherwise contact support for one of the apps, attaching you OPML file.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Ian Greig on Jul 6th, 2012, 10:25am

It has a .opml extension but when you open it up, it is a .html file.

Looks like I need to tweak the export settings somehow. (Can't see a way to attach the file...)


Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 6th, 2012, 4:39pm

I'd delete your templates, re-install from built-in, re-connect and re-export. It might fix the problem.  That said, to the less-trained eye OPML looks like HTML in terms of it being data with tags in angle brackets, so you may be seeing raw OPML. I think you probably need to speak to support.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Ian Greig on Jul 6th, 2012, 5:20pm

Mark B is taking a look at the export file. It seems to have the .opml header but Scrivener is not seeing it as such. I'll do what you suggest with the templates.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Bernstein on Jul 6th, 2012, 10:15pm

I imported Ian Greig's file into my copy of Scrivener without difficulty; I think this may boil down to an issue in the Scrivener manual.

You want to drop the OPML file onto a Scrivener binder icon (e.g. "Research"), not onto the Scrivener dock icon.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 7th, 2012, 3:38am

Indeed, as Scrivener newbie it actually took me quite a while to figure out what the Binder actually was. Anyway, I made sure the Bider showed - i.e. the left column with the overall outline. Within the Binder, you can drop pretty much anywhere including between items and for some (?) items as a child of it (i.e. as with moving items in a TB outline).

I'll take a look at making the above clearer in my demo and to drop a line to Scrivener support that the manual (unintentionally) ambiguous.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Ian Greig on Jul 7th, 2012, 4:58am

Where I was tripping up was thinking that importing, and dragging on to the binder, in Scrivener, performed the same action -- not the case.

Drop on to Binder means bringing Scrivener to front, and dragging/dropping the file on to the Binder tab (left hand pane). This carries out a different action on the file, from importing.

At the risk of being boringly repetitious, this is the sequence that I posted on the Scrivener board:

• Selected New Html View in Tinderbox
• Selected the Scrivener template (which I had installed earlier)
• Exported (in my instance, to Dropbox). It showed as .opml file in Dropbox.
• Brought Scrivener to front
• DID NOT IMPORT
• Dragged .opml file from Dropbox on to Scrivener binder

Learning point: In Scrivener, IMPORTING and DROPPING ON TO BINDER mean two different things and have quite different actions on the file being brought in.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 7th, 2012, 8:15am

Dropbox - on the Mac - is simply a Finder [sic] folder albeit with special sharing/replication properties.  So your "Save to Dropbox" is better titled "Save to Finder", at which point it becomes self-evident why nothing happens.  In fairness to the Scrivener manual, having gone back and re-read it it does make the necessary points plain:


Quote:
When OPML files are dropped into the binder, Scrivener will attempt to convert these outlines into Scrivener outlines.


Whilst it doesn't explicitly say so, it doesn't suggest to drag onto the dock or do any other un-focused drop. By the latter I mean where the app has to guess your intent. If the process is still confusing, I'd request a Scrivener feature for File -> Import -> OPML.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 7th, 2012, 5:18pm

OK, demo updated further to take into account options in Scrivener preferences: http://shoantel.clarify-it.com/d/63vggj

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Ian Greig on Jul 7th, 2012, 5:45pm

Thanks for your input on this, Mark

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 8th, 2012, 6:47am

Hi, just discovered via the Lit & Lat forum that in order for File -> Import to allow selection of OPML files you must open Scrivener Preferences, Import/Export, Plain Export Types and add 'opml' to the list (I don't think entries are case sensitive). This is as at Scrivener v2.3 and I understand this will be set by default in due course in later releases (though v2.3.4 only just came out).

I'll update my demo in due course - it still works as written but now really needs a complete re-write. If you do the above preference change it's still very unclear as to where the data imports when you simply hit import.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Ian Greig on Jul 8th, 2012, 11:00am

It took me a little while to 'get' this and make the pref. setting although KB (on Lit and Lat forum) had mentioned it.

Don't think your demo needs complete re-write -- your policy of 'continuous improvement' will be more than enough :8-). It's a clear and very helpful resource.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Jul 9th, 2012, 5:38am

Tutorial updated … again! I think it now covers the Scrivener preferences available. The v2.3 need to add 'opml' as an import type should be temporary as opml will be in the default set form the next Scrivener release.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by mrkwr on Aug 16th, 2012, 10:11am

I kept having problems with the OPML/Scrivener not working (I would just get a blank opml file) until I realised that the Scrivener template is hardcoded to expect the Templates folder to be at root level. Because all my tinderbox documents have a root level folder for internal/non-content stuff – prototypes, templates, other meta stuff – the Scrivener/OPML built-in templates always got added here, and hence didn't work.

Is it possible to modify the template so that it can be stored at an arbitrary level in the hierarchy?

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Bernstein on Aug 16th, 2012, 10:24am

mrkwrk:  You can do this yourself.

In the Scriver template, you'll see the line

    ^children(/Templates/Scrivener/Scrivener item)^

This means, "export each of the note's children, using the template "Scrivener item" inside the container /Templates/Scrivener.  Just change the path to whatever you prefer.

You'll also need to change the corresponding line in the template Scrivener item.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Mark Anderson on Aug 16th, 2012, 10:42am

In fact, the 'path' argument in ^children(path)^ can be a full path ($Path) or just a note's title ($Name), though unless careful a title alone might not be unique within the TBX. For that reason I now tend towards using template names like 't_scrivener_item' or similar so as to be a name I'm very unlikely to use as the name of an actual 'content' note.

An impotant further point is that if you rename or move/nest existing templates you will likely need to reset the template choice in any note(s) already set to use the templates. I mention this as you might assume, as with renaming a prototype, that affected notes update themselves. They don't, which can lead to some head-scratching if you suddenly decide to rename/arrange the templates in a mature document.

If your Templates are stored in "Templates" other than at root level, Tinderbox will find and use that if you try to add built-in templates (i.e. it won't make a new root-level folder**. THe same goes for the Prototypes container. In both cases, TB won't set the $OnAdd action provided when TB makes a new template/prototype container as it will assume the user has set this already (plus there may be other user OnAdd code it doesn't want to damage).

** If more than one such container exists, TB will use the first in $OutlineOrder in which to add the new template note(s).

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Dominique Renauld on Mar 31st, 2016, 10:30am

Hi! I was joining the Tinderbox forum when I saw that topic I had already read. I made a new short video about how to export some selected notes from Tinderbox to Scrivener using File and Export. It's the common way I follow when I have to reelaborate a Tbx map in a more linear way. This is the link to the video : http://www.dominiquerenauld.net/journal/31/3/2016/import-export

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by wajakob on Mar 31st, 2016, 11:25am

Merci! C'est tres utile.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by J Fallows on Mar 31st, 2016, 5:00pm

Indeed! These are great. I put out a Tweet about it, https://twitter.com/JamesFallows/status/715619748520787968, and am really glad you are doing these.

Title: Re: Best way to export to Scrivener
Post by Greg Korgeski on Apr 4th, 2016, 10:41am

D'accord, Dominique! Thanks again!

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