Scrivener, anything to learn from it?

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Scrivener, anything to learn from it?

Christian Ridderström
Hi,

I just read about a software called 'Scrivener' in NY Times:
  http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/06/magazine/06wwln-medium-t.html?ref=technology

The writer seems very pleased with it, here's the Scrivener page for Mac:

  http://literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.html

This page has links (and short descriptions) to other writing software:

  http://literatureandlatte.com/links.html

Has anyone tried Scrivener, and what can we learn from it?

Btw, I think there's a demo available for Mac.

cheers,
Christian

--
Christian Ridderström, +46-8-768 39 44               http://www.md.kth.se/~chr
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Re: Scrivener, anything to learn from it?

Bennett Helm-2
On Jan 6, 2008, at 11:40 AM, [hidden email] wrote:

> Hi,
>
> I just read about a software called 'Scrivener' in NY Times:
> http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/06/magazine/06wwln-medium-t.html?
> ref=technology
>
> The writer seems very pleased with it, here's the Scrivener page  
> for Mac:
>
> http://literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.html
>
> This page has links (and short descriptions) to other writing  
> software:
>
> http://literatureandlatte.com/links.html
>
> Has anyone tried Scrivener, and what can we learn from it?
>
> Btw, I think there's a demo available for Mac.

I just tried the demo. (Note that it's only available on Mac; there  
is a video demo here: <http://literatureandlatte.com/ 
Scrivener_intro.mov>.) It's really a system for doing research,  
taking notes, outlining and organizing ideas, and creating a draft. I  
seems to have some of the same virtues as LyX in that it attempts to  
separate logical structure from formatting, though it does not on its  
own produce the final output, but merely exports to other formats  
(.rtf, .doc, and even a form of .tex), and the expectation seems to  
be that after the draft is written, you export and then fix things up  
in another application in the process of producing the final  
document. Its strengths seem to be to provide a place where you can  
dump all the files you run across or create as you work on a project  
and then organize all that material in the process of writing. But  
its weakness also seems to be that it is such an all-in-one system:  
it forces you to work in a certain way, buying into that system,  
which may not be suitable for everyone. (It doesn't suit me, and I'd  
prefer to use multiple applications for different purposes as I do  
research, organize, and write.)

What can LyX learn from it? I'm not sure. I don't think LyX should  
try to become a do-everything application the way Scrivener tries.  
But, in line with the recent thread on outlining, I do think we could  
focus a bit more on outlining *in the main window* rather than in a  
separate dock (or the drawer on Mac). That is, I'd like to be able to  
manipulate document headings (Part/Chapter/Section/Subsection/...)  
with the keyboard in the same way we now can manipulate levels of  
enumerate environments. Thus (on Mac), <Cmd><Opt><rightarrow> should  
demote a document heading from Chapter to Section, just as it  
increases depth of numbering. And <Cmd><Opt><uparrow>, when the  
cursor is in a section heading, should move the whole section, text  
and all, up one level (something like what can be done with moving  
single paragraphs of text up or down). Yes, I know this can be done  
with the outlining dock with the mouse. But it would be useful to  
have keybindings *and* to do it in the main text.

I also find it useful to fold sections (and text) up and down and --  
a feature in OmniOutliner (<http://www.omnigroup.com/applications/ 
omnioutliner/>) -- to "hoist" a section: to focus only on that  
section and its subsections, temporarily hiding (and not just  
folding) all other sections. (This is something like the  
"Scrivenings" feature of Scrivener.) "Hoisting" doesn't sound that  
useful until you try it on a long, highly structured outline; then  
it's great.

Bennett
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Re: Scrivener, anything to learn from it?

Pavel Sanda
> drawer on Mac). That is, I'd like to be able to manipulate document
> headings (Part/Chapter/Section/Subsection/...) with the keyboard in the
> same way we now can manipulate levels of enumerate environments. Thus (on
> Mac), <Cmd><Opt><rightarrow> should demote a document heading from Chapter
> to Section, just as it increases depth of numbering. And

binding lfuns outline-in/out/up/down to keyboard shortcuts is not enough ?
pavel
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Re: Scrivener, anything to learn from it?

ljofre
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In reply to this post by Christian Ridderström
I think that the research panel is a very good feature for to attempt emulate in futures LyX releases.