Mellel 2.2 rediscovers the freedom to cite, enhances charact

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Post by Taman » Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:46 pm

Have to join in.

Very happy with the new release. Although I am eagerly awaiting the cross-reference functionality, I think the bibliographic improvements are great. I really enjoying using Mellel and feel so happy to have moved away from the cumbersome and buggy Word/Endnote solution that I used previously.

Two minor point. On doing a bibliography scan, it would be nice if the cursor remained where it was rather than being repositioned at the end of the bibliography. Not a major point!

Secondly, it would be nice if it were possible to set a default bibliography style rather than specifying it each time a scan is performed. And more to the point, it would be really nice, if the scan only scanned new and changed references rather than going through all the references.

With the new format, it's nice to have references in post-scan format. I'm working on my thesis and each time I do a scan it takes quite a long time.

All-in-all, though, a nice improvement.

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Post by nicka » Wed Mar 21, 2007 4:26 pm

Previous posts have commented separately on the addition of markers and the non-appearance of cross-references.

Looking on the bright side, markers make it a little bit easier to do cross-references manually. Just choose one marker colour and apply it to any text that is a cross-reference as you go along. Then at the very end of writing you can quickly skip between all your manual cross-references, manually updating them.

And when proper cross-referencing arrives you will be able easily to find the places in your documents where it needs to go.

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Post by BreakNeckRidge » Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:07 pm

Text wrap around on images is absolutely essential to almost everyone writing scientific papers. Period. Until that feature is in Mellel I'm forced to write my drafts in Mellel, which I prefer, and then export to one of the other word processors to insert all the necessary images.

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Post by ptram » Wed Mar 21, 2007 10:23 pm

BreakNeckRidge wrote:Text wrap around on images is absolutely essential to almost everyone writing scientific papers.
A trick, that has been cited sometimes, is to use 2-cell tables, and put text in one and the illustration in the other. A bit odd, but it may work while waiting for true text wrap around.

All considered, LaTeX users are obliged to use an external package only to do this. Tables are a sweeter medicine.


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Post by FA1 » Thu Mar 22, 2007 12:37 am

What are the new bibliography features? Are they explained anywhere?

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Post by joewiz » Thu Mar 22, 2007 2:29 am

FA1 wrote:What are the new bibliography features? Are they explained anywhere?
They're outlined in the release notes, and explained in the Mellel Guide (download or select Help > "Mellel Guide" in Mellel 2.2), from pp. 241-254.

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Post by bljacob » Mon Mar 26, 2007 4:18 pm

I just want to throw in my echo of an earlier allusion to FrameMaker ... there is a large community of displaced Mac/Frame users out here, waiting for an alternative to become available -- currently no app does what Frame does, but Mellel seems one of the closest options. Like others have said, it is impossible to please everyone, but I would venture to guess that this community shares a few common desired features (maybe one of the reasons you see the complaints in this thread).

Typically, people in this category are responsible for both content creation and layout (camera-ready art) -- e.g., authors of manuals and academic papers/books -- so things like cross-references, indexing, etc. are very important (yes, even in short papers ... once you get used to xref, you really don't like going backward). Flowing text around figures is important for reducing page count (makes the document more dense), though personally I can live without it.

Something I asked Redlers about several years ago was support for widescreen monitors -- two-up displays (viewing two pages of the layout side-by-side on the screen) make paper-writing and layout much, *much* easier. It is why I have purchased nine widescreen monitors for myself and my students. I was told then that Mellel would have a two-up display "really soon now" ... such is life. Being able to draw simple figures (boxes and arrows) is important, but personally I can live without it (though I'd rather not live without it).

So I keep watching this website, waiting for a release that does what I need. At that point, I'll purchase licenses for myself and my students, and we'll make the switch from FrameMaker ... but I'm not going to move our whole document-creation process onto a new application until it meets all of our needs. I would suspect there are quite a few more like me out here. Heck, there are whole publishing houses still running Mac OS 9 just so they can keep their Frame production alive ... these guys would probably love to move on to OSX and new hardware, but no upgrade path exists.

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