fixed line spacing and subscripts

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sclf33
Posts: 4
Joined: 2006-03-10 07:29:24

fixed line spacing and subscripts

Post by sclf33 » 2006-03-10 08:18:17

Does anyone know how to get fixed line spacing in NWE in the presence of subscripts?

I know there was a previous thread discussing the lack of fixed line spacing in early versions of NWE. As far as I can tell, the current versions of NWE have "fixed" this issue for superscripts, but not for subscripts.

This seems to be a persistent problem in OS X text handling -- I've encountered this problem in variety of other packages as well. For those of us in technical fields, superscripts and subscripts show up everywhere, so fixed line spacing is pretty important in getting a decent-looking document.

- scl

rev
Posts: 2
Joined: 2006-03-16 11:14:06

Re: fixed line spacing and subscripts

Post by rev » 2006-03-16 12:59:30

sclf33 wrote:Does anyone know how to get fixed line spacing in NWE in the presence of subscripts?

I know there was a previous thread discussing the lack of fixed line spacing in early versions of NWE. As far as I can tell, the current versions of NWE have "fixed" this issue for superscripts, but not for subscripts.

This seems to be a persistent problem in OS X text handling -- I've encountered this problem in variety of other packages as well. For those of us in technical fields, superscripts and subscripts show up everywhere, so fixed line spacing is pretty important in getting a decent-looking document.

- scl
This seems to be a bug in NWE, I frequently work with Word, Pages, InDesign, Quark and others for OS X and they all seem to handle subscripts fine. I think the issue relates to the raising and lowering of the baseline. The Baseline Raising function seems to work fine, but the Lowering Baseline seems to have a bug.

For fun try this exercise, assign a key board short cut to Baseline Raise and then assign a key board short cut to Baseline Lower (this just makes things go faster). Then select a word in a normal paragraph with fixed line spacing and raise and lower it. When you raise the baseline the word seems to move as expected, but when you lower the base line the rest of the line moves instead of the selection. My guess is that this bug with the baseline engine is why superscript works correctly and subscript does not.

Hopefully they will fix this in 2.7.

sclf33
Posts: 4
Joined: 2006-03-10 07:29:24

Post by sclf33 » 2006-03-18 21:51:55

This seems to be a bug in NWE, I frequently work with Word, Pages, InDesign, Quark and others for OS X and they all seem to handle subscripts fine. I think the issue relates to the raising and lowering of the baseline. The Baseline Raising function seems to work fine, but the Lowering Baseline seems to have a bug.
I'm not sure about the origin of the problem, but I agree that baselines aren't handled properly. My suspicion that it has something to do with intrinsic text handling calls in OS X is based on seeing the same problem in Mellel, Textedit and Keynote (in the version I have, v1.1); all of these programs resemble each other in the way they handle subscripting / superscripting.

The text engines for Word, InDesign, and Quark appear to be independent of OS X -- they don't share the Mac look and feel, so it I assume that their text handling was written independently of OS X (unsurprising for InDesign and Quark, given that they're high-end page layout apps, they'd better get this right). I was aware that Word and InDesign worked correctly in this regard, but I am surprised to learn that Pages gets the baseline right as well, since I assume that Apple is making system calls for text handling. I just checked my trial copy of Keynote v2.0, and sure enough, Apple has fixed the baseline problem that I see in v1.1; to my knowledge, Textedit still has the bug.

- scl

Bob Stern
Posts: 154
Joined: 2006-03-12 12:32:47

Post by Bob Stern » 2006-03-19 22:56:22

Mellel and Apple's Pages both handle subscripts correctly.

Only NWE and TextEdit have this problem.

As "rev" said, the problem is that attempting to lower the baseline of selected characters does not affect the selected characters, but instead raises the baseline of all other characters in the same line.

This makes subscripts useless in NWE, which is disastrous for those of use who need subscripts.

sclf33
Posts: 4
Joined: 2006-03-10 07:29:24

Post by sclf33 » 2006-03-20 12:33:46

Mellel and Apple's Pages both handle subscripts correctly.
My mistake, the current versions of Mellel do work correctly.

The other feature I'd like to see is the ability to adjust the size of the superscripts and subscripts. The default settings are pretty small at standard font sizes (say, 10 pt), and, as far as I can tell, manually adjusting the font size in the competing packages (Mellel, Pages) reintroduces the baseline problems.

- scl

Bob Stern
Posts: 154
Joined: 2006-03-12 12:32:47

Post by Bob Stern » 2006-03-20 12:39:28

sclf33 wrote:The other feature I'd like to see is the ability to adjust the size of the superscripts and subscripts. The default settings are pretty small at standard font sizes (say, 10 pt)
You can create character styles for subscript and superscript and set the font size and baseline shift.

sclf33
Posts: 4
Joined: 2006-03-10 07:29:24

Post by sclf33 » 2006-03-20 12:46:16

Bob Stern wrote:You can create character styles for subscript and superscript and set the font size and baseline shift.
Thanks, my fault for not looking closely enough at the Mellel menus. But can this be applied in NWE to fix irregular line spacing?

- scl

Bob Stern
Posts: 154
Joined: 2006-03-12 12:32:47

Post by Bob Stern » 2006-03-20 14:50:48

Bob Stern wrote:You can create character styles for subscript and superscript and set the font size and baseline shift.
sclf33 wrote:can this be applied in NWE to fix irregular line spacing?
Unfortunately, no. It only solves the problem of the font size being too small with the built-in subscript and superscript character attributes.

Using the "raise baseline" command to create a superscript character style works fine, just as the built-in superscript style has no problem. However, using the "lower baseline" command to create a subscript character style produces the same problem as the built-in subscript style: it raises the baseline of the rest of the line rather than lowering the baseline of the selected characters.

ssampler
Posts: 85
Joined: 2006-06-29 07:56:30
Location: Hudson River Valley, NY

Post by ssampler » 2006-10-16 06:46:16

If a Nisus document with subscripts is opened in Word, then the lines appear with fixed spacing.

While this doesn't solve the problem, it helps those of us who primarily send Nisus documents to Word users.

Mark XM
Posts: 51
Joined: 2003-01-23 18:54:50
Location: Xiamen, China

Post by Mark XM » 2006-10-16 17:49:20

Bob Stern wrote:Mellel and Apple's Pages both handle subscripts correctly.

Only NWE and TextEdit have this problem.
As I understand it, NWE is built on the text engine as used in TextEdit, Mellel is not. Thought I haven't tried it with a recent version of Mellel, this showed up when I tried to open Word documents written in Chinese. TextEdit and Nisus opened them properly, whether by dragging and dropping, or by opening them through the file menu. In Mellel, I had to drag and drop, but they opened up in hex code, not Chinese characters. To edit such a document in Mellel, I had to open it in TextEdit, save it out as RTF and then open that in Mellel. This is one of the reasons I have more or less given up on Mellel, editing texts with Chinese in them is what I do most--though I still keep a copy of the app.

Pages presumably uses the same basic text engine as TextEdit, but, again as I understand it, is fundamentally producing some kind of html-style layout, not a representative word processor document.

If I am right in this, then the root of the problem is in Apple's text engine, not in Nisus. Many of the limitations of NWE seem to come down to the underlying text engine; presumably, like the OMNI group with OmniWeb and Webkit, the Nisus guys are developing ways of getting round those limitations in NWE, and this is clearly one of the matters they need to solve.

Mark

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