Priority card appears at top level in outline when parent is not priority


I just did a reorg of one of my cards. It had loads of children, so I created a new set of five children (as organisational categories) and sorted all the original children into those five. So now the original card has only five children.

This caused a bunch of the original children to appear in my outline, at the top level of the outline. I’m assuming the original child cards were already in my outline but I didn’t realise because they are several generations of cards deep. I think they then appeared at the top level of my outline because their new parents weren’t in the outline. This is reproducible: a child set to priority with a visible parent will appear at the top level of the outline. I find it odd that the original child cards suddenly appear at the top level of my outline, so I’m posting this as a bug.

Would it make more sense for the newly created parents to appear in the outline so that their children can appear in the outline beneath them? This would mean that moving a priority card into a visible card would make the visible card priority? Hmm. Maybe the alternative is better: moving a priority card into a visible card makes the priority card visible.

I’ve noticed that opening new cards no longer seems to add them to my outline, which isn’t the behaviour documented here: Visibility | Supernotes Help. Also that documentation doesn’t mention the persistence of the visibility setting.

As it happens, I prefer it this way - I don’t want cards to appear in my outline just because I open them.

Perhaps it might be worth considering a shortcut (such as shift-alt-click) that instantly adds or removes cards from the outline (i.e. toggles between visible and priority). Also… might it be more intuitive to change priority/visibility to “outline”, “not-outline”?

Also, in experimenting for this report and trying to see how things behave, I’ve encountered some buggy behaviour, which hasn’t sorted itself out after logging out and logging in, quitting, or restarting the app. I currently have a card that say it’s priority but doesn’t appear in the outline. Correction: not a bug! Just silly me not realising the priority card had a parent so wasn’t top level in the tree.

Finally, I think I have requested this before, so my apologies if you have already explained why you’re not in favour of this, but is there any possibility of a recursive removal from outline? Removing a parent from the outline only to find it spawns babies is… like videos of killing spiders that turn into millions of baby spiders.

Thank you!

A post was split to a new topic: Priority child cards with multiple priority grand children will only be expandable in one location within the Outline

Hi @daniela1, thanks for the thorough feedback, very helpful.

Cards on Supernotes are designed to always exist in their own right. Because of this priority cards will appear at the top level in the Outline when the parent is not priority – as that card itself must be shown in the Outline somewhere.

Child cards will never affect the Visibility of parents, and vice versa, because of the structure of Supernotes – child cards are never actually inside of anything but have a parent link relationship to a card. This allows for a multi-parent hierarchy that is one of our strengths and unique to Supernotes.

Thanks for pointing out the Visibility Help Center article is out of date. We’ve just improved this to reflect the recent changes to the Visibility mechanic. Opening cards no longer affects a card’s Visibility – glad to hear you also prefer this.

We prefer to use the terminology of ‘Priority’ rather than ‘In Outline’ as this affects the Universal Search algorithm and potentially other places cards appear in the future.

  • Add cards / quickly check they are in the Outline by focusing on a card and pressing Cmd / Ctrl Shift O
  • Remove cards quickly from the Outline by hovering and clicking on the ellipsis button on desktop (or on mobile by holding down a card name in the Outline), then pressing ‘Remove from Outline’ which demotes the status from ‘Priority’ to ‘Visible’.

Recursive addition / removal from the Outline can have severe performance issues (imagine a grandad card with 1000s of children, grandchildren etc. that all need to be updated), so it’s unlikely we will do this and it also goes against the methodology where cards do not affect their parents and children directly. Although you can use the new multi-select to bulk update cards, and we’ve designed this to be performant as it’s done in one request.

To sum up, I’m marking this as “intended-behavior”. However if anyone else shares the same workflow as Daniel above, please like his original post or share how you’d like to improve the Outline below and we will look into this further.

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Thanks for the thorough reply Tobias!

This helps me understand your thinking better. The cmd-shift-o short cut is useful. I’m glad the docs page is updated.

My friction with this probably comes from viewing the outline as a means of using Supernotes through a traditional directory structure, even though of course Supernotes is not confined to single parents. I’m used to acting on a parents as an efficient means of acting on all the children - but that’s not how you’re building Supernotes. In future, I will remember that if I want to change the visibility of a parent, I may need to deal with its descendants first if I want to avoid unexpected changes to my outline.

With regards to recursive removal from outline, the solution you suggest is to go into the parent, flatten all the child cards (view depth infinite), select all the cards with cmd + A, then edit to make them visible rather than priority. Then make the parent visible too. Would this do what I want? If it does, then it seems you already have implemented a way of doing this, it’s just more cumbersome for the user than a single-click option.

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Hi Daniel, no problem that’s what we’re here for.

Totally get where you are coming from when it comes to the mindset switch from traditional folder file hierarchical structures. The Supernotes structure is quite unique with the multi-parent hierarchy, and while this offers greater flexibility, it also requires being mindful of how to use it correctly.

And yes you are correct, it is a little bit more thorough than a single-click option. There are other varying use cases as well so having a single user interface for Multi-select / edit seems to be the best way to go rather than multiple single buttons – it still takes less than 30 seconds!

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