June 24, 2010
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Tinderbox Tales

A Tinderbox user writes:

I am the head of a committee for a nonprofit organization which is working to get a history book written about a local historical site here in Vermont. We hired an author and last June he turned in the first draft. After each member of the committee read the draft, I had a collection of six different sets of comments. It would have been cruel to have just handed these over to the author for him to make sense of -- not to mention entirely unproductive. But how to collate such a variety of input, which included comments on factual errors, content (missing or unnecessary), style, and organization. I puzzled over this problem for several weeks, until I belatedly realized that Tinderbox could be very helpful. Going through one critique at a time, I clipped each discrete comment as a separate note into a Tinderbox map. It was then a snap to organize these by subject and type using prototypes, adornments and key attributes. I then exported the results into a word processor to dress it up. In one afternoon, using Tinderbox, I had produced a five-page, comprehensive and -- most important -- coherent critique to let the author know the will of the committee.

I truly don't think I could have done this -- at least not nearly as well -- without Tinderbox. For this project alone, Tinderbox was worth every penny.