I completely understand the primacy of getting SmartEdit to where you want it to be. You’ll get no doom and gloom moaning from me!
I own both Scrivener and Scapple but prefer A.S. for its writing environment. I’d say Scrivener/Scapple wins when it comes to planning. Atomic Scribbler is a writing dream, IMO.
The biggest problem with the Scapple/Scrivener pairing is the lousy way Scapple integrates with Scrivener. Sure, one can import the Scapple nodes into Scrivener, but the relationships created by linkages is completely lost. So, after import into Scrivener, you have to spend time reordering and creating meaningful note titles, if you weren’t smart enough to do that when doing the mind maps. And when one is doing ‘blue-sky’ thinking, it is disruptive to start planning that far ahead.
As far as the marketability of add-on modules. I think the best way to approach this is to look to the most successful “plug-in” effort that I know of. That is the Adobe Photoshop plug-ins. It is my belief that it was the vigorous plug-in market and the user community that grew from it, was a major force in creating Photoshop’s ubiquity.
They allowed 3rd party software developers to license their plug-in interface and left it to the developers to market them. Now, you don’t have the ubiquity that Photoshop has, but there are ways to ‘sweeten’ the offer for software publishers to consider creating modules for your software.
- Offer to create a sales page on your website for quality 3rd party add-ons (you get a sales commission)
- Offer Licensing rebates for those titles that reach a certain sales level.
I’m sure there are other things you can do, but these are just two off the top of my head.
Also, I would point you to various Reddit writing subs. Every month there are a couple of Reddit users who think they are good enough to create a new writing app and are looking for ideas. If you could divert a few of the more capable ones to writing applications that benefit Atomic Scribbler, that benefits you in not only outsourcing some of the development but in adding a monetizing effort to A.S. without changing its status as “free software”. Also, it diverts developers with potential who actually might develop a competitor.
These are just the ramblings of a guy who can’t stop thinking about how much potential you and your software has. I used to tell people on my photography blog that there are no ‘wrong’ answers, just choices. Please feel free to accept or reject my suggestions as you see fit! I won’t become a pest about this, I promise this is my last post on this. There are many paths to heaven!