Way back in 1986, my then-company Living Videotext shipped a product called MORE.
We called it that because there was so much more in it than the earlier outliner, ThinkTank 512, we didn’t have any idea which new feature, if any, would be the one that turned people on.
We didn’t have the luxury of picking among them because our company was on the verge of going out of business. We needed help from Apple to make it to shipping. They gave us a loan of $400K, and we put our source code in escrow in case the company failed, which looked like a real possibility.
Well the product was an instant hit. And now, so many years later, I can tell you for sure which features made the difference — tree charts and bullet charts.
Here’s what a MORE tree chart looked like:
You’d edit an outline, click a button
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