OPML is an XML format for encoding hierarchical information ‘outlines’. It is supported for import/export by many of the desktop mindmap applications and a number of other apps - including iThoughts. It’s not a very ‘rich’ format as it only really stores textual notes and their relationship with each other. Information such as colours, icons, images, positions etc. are not supported. An example document is as follows:

<opml version="1.0">


<title>My Ideas</title>



<outline text="Big Idea">

<outline text="Details"/>

<outline text="More details"/>

<outline text="Other stuff"/>




It might not be a ‘rich format’ - but it does enable some pretty powerful workflows. David Sparks over at www.macsparky.com talks about a way he uses OPML (and iThoughts) in his workflow over at http://www.macworld.com/article/162266/2011/09/from_brainstorm_to_outline_why_i_use_opml.html

OPML is a great way to transfer information between apps like Scrivener, CabonFin Outliner and OmniOutliner