Feature request: split screen/window

Everything related to our flagship word processor.
Post Reply
Posts: 22
Joined: 2007-07-05 13:21:06

Feature request: split screen/window

Post by harryhoffner » 2009-07-10 07:14:05

I like so much in Nisus Writer Pro! But as a writer of academic books and articles I often need to see what I have written two paragraphs earlier while I am composing. So far as I know -- and please correct me if I am just ignorant of an existing method -- there is no way to do what I always did in MS W--d, namely use a split screen.

If this truly does not yet exist in Nisus Writer Pro, then it is a feature I would urge you to implement!


Posts: 7
Joined: 2009-03-26 13:30:04

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by iota » 2009-07-10 07:41:09

I second. This feature would be most welcome for long documents or any documents where you need to refer to more than one place simultaneously.

Alternatively, this could be implemented as allowing a new window from the same document (as opposed to splitting one window)

You may want to officially register this request through Help->Send Feedback in the NWP menu bar.

Posts: 22
Joined: 2007-07-05 13:21:06

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by harryhoffner » 2009-07-10 10:02:14

Thanks for the suggestion. I sent the request as feedback, as you suggested. Now let's hope it can be implemented soon.


Posts: 333
Joined: 2003-11-21 19:25:28
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by dshan » 2009-07-10 22:35:04

This has been an often requested feature since NWE 1.0 came out. Search the forums and you'll find many, many requests for it and discussions about it. Nisus are well aware of how badly many people want it. Hopefully one day it will come to save us (with the vertical ruler at its right hand of course).

Posts: 274
Joined: 2007-10-21 14:59:09

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by ptram » 2009-07-13 07:03:20

I don't know if it is included as standard in NWP 1.3, but I find the "Open Copy" macro Martin sent me excellent for this task. Here it is:

Code: Select all

$doc = Document.active
If $doc
   $doc = $doc.copy
You can copy the code in an empty NWP document, and then choose Macro > Save as Macro.

Compared to a split window, this has the advantage that you can place the second window wherever you like better, and with the preferred zoom.

Last edited by ptram on 2009-07-15 08:28:48, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
Posts: 889
Joined: 2007-02-07 00:58:12
Location: Japan

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by phspaelti » 2009-07-14 08:05:12

Just note one thing though. The macro creates a copy of the document. As you edit the original the two windows will diverge. So this is quite different from a split screen.

Posts: 22
Joined: 2007-07-05 13:21:06

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by harryhoffner » 2009-07-14 08:55:34

Thank you very much for the macro and for the explanations. I discovered the limitation that was just mentioned. And it is for this reason that I personally hope NIsus implements a split screen/window. I like to be able to switch back and forth in the views and edit both. I can do this, of course, in MS Word.

But it was very kind of you to share this macro, and it really does help.


Posts: 7
Joined: 2009-08-07 14:39:43

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by nev » 2009-08-07 15:23:45

Add my vote to the wishlist for this!

Posts: 1
Joined: 2009-08-27 04:47:23

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by baggot » 2009-08-27 05:05:31

Here is another thought. I am using the clipboard program Copy Paste Pro which comes with and is integrated with the editor Bean. I simply copy whatever text I want to use in a reference window to the clipboard and then open it with one click into Bean. The window aspect in Bean is fully adjustable which makes it easy to juxtapose it with the Nisus Pro editing window.

Posts: 420
Joined: 2006-12-08 00:46:44
Location: London or Exeter, UK

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by xiamenese » 2009-08-27 13:30:58

With apologies to the Nisus guys as I don't like recommending what might seem to be rival software, but if you haven't done so, I'd take a look at Scrivener from LiteratureandLatte.com: split screen, text in sections that can be moved around easily, and excellent for gathering research. I'm not connected, but am a very happy user. I use it for most things, but most importantly for editing translations, where I have the translation I'm editing in one split and the original text in the other. The two splits can show the same text and the non-active split will update as you go. Oh, and it plays extremely well with NWP, and with bibliographic software like Bookends.


Posts: 3
Joined: 2008-11-10 18:09:27

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by TXLogic » 2010-02-10 08:10:57

Lack of a split window is a total deal-breaker for me. Every writer makes revisions to earlier sections of an evolving document in light of what he or she has just written in a later section — and I don't know of any serious writer who doesn't want to be able to look at what he or she has just written while making those revisions. This is only possible via a split screen. (The macro mentioned here will simply not do, as the revision process is "recursive": one also wants to be able to make subsequent changes to the later section in light of the revisions one makes to the earlier section.) Because of this, I use Nisus only for small documents, not for serious writing, for which I use LaTeX (even when I'd rather be using Nisus). What's the hold up here? Split screens are a feature of pretty much every other editor/word processor on the market. I should think this would be a major priority.


Posts: 17
Joined: 2004-10-04 14:31:00

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by zwick_genetics » 2010-02-11 08:55:58

I heartily agree with this feature request. Lack of a split window is a real shortcoming.

Also: text box functionality (such that figures for the grants and scientific articles can be easily handled with associated figure legends) is another feature that is lacking.

Integration with track changes in MSW (although I admit I have not really explored this in much detail - but this is useful when working on projects with collaborators who use MSW).

I am using Nisus more and more, it is such a joy to use as compared to MSW, but a couple of more features and I would make my entire lab change over. I can now edit/draft/maintain most of my standard NIH grant files with Nisus - a few more features and it would be my sole writing application.

Posts: 15
Joined: 2005-10-04 18:14:39

Re: Feature request: split screen/window

Post by rickl » 2010-02-15 22:15:26

Xiamenese's comment on Scrivener was interesting. A few years ago, I think all of the word-processor forums had users asking for features that would embody the recognition that writing something was a process that involved more than formatting already completed text. Over time, I think most of us have come to reluctantly accept that the major players are unwilling or unable to go too far in that direction, and we've seen a split emerging, with things like Ulysses and Selenium being used to write things and word-processors being used to tidy them up prior to sending them off or printing them out. (More recently, Scrivener seems to be cleaning up in that space, though I don't think it's anywhere near as good as many of its fans appear to think, though I do quite like it, and own a license.)

I think that's possibly unfortunate for users (or maybe not; perhaps it's as natural a split as Microsoft Word/Quark XPress or Photoshop/Illustrator) and in the long term a bit dangerous for word-processor makers. If the word-processor eventually becomes something we all spend the shortest amount of time possible in right at the end of the writing process, I suspect that the perceived value of the software will go down. And if more publishing outlets become happy to accept minimally formatted plain text or RTF and do most of the formatting themselves, word-processors could become something that most people don't actually need.

I suspect that the rise of self-publishing, where the writer needs to do more in the way of formatting, will be a countervailing tendency, so I doubt that the developers of word-processors are panicking, but I still think this issue could do with a bit more attention.

Post Reply