Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

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salv0
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Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by salv0 » 2016-02-04 20:39:16

I prefer to work with a set of special characters that collectively come from several fonts. OS X falls short of my preference. As I built my Favorites character set in OS X, it initially rendered my mixed-font choices; however later, when I come back to this set of special characters, some of the characters changed, coming from fonts that I did not choose for my Favorites character set.

I seem to have a similar limitation with NWP. The Edit Special Characters panel, for example, will not accept an AppleGothic Regular character named N-ary Circled Dot Operator (CodePoint U+2A00, Glyph ID 543). Consequently, I have resorted to warehouseing my special character set in its own NWP document, where they are reliably available to me on demand.

Is there a way I can enjoy this from within the Special Characters palette, which would provide a smoother workflow?
Nisus Write Pro v2.1.3
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martin
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by martin » 2016-02-05 15:47:53

Sorry, but Nisus Writer's special characters menu/palette does not allow you to choose the font or glyph variant. You can only edit and control the characters themselves (the Unicode code points). When you insert such a special character, it is always inserted into your document with no formatting, and thus assumes the ambient formatting and font.

I'll file your idea as a possible enhancement request, thank you.

In the meantime you could configure Nisus Writer's glossaries to provide special characters with the fonts/glyphs you'd like to use. Our glossaries allow you to enforce any formatting you wish. The only caveat is that glossary entries are triggered by way of text expansions, eg: you type the abbreviation "imo" and it expands to "in my opinion". But you might come up with a clever abbreviation system that isn't too onerous. For example, maybe you set "c_S" to expand to the letter S with the desired font/glyph variation.

salv0
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by salv0 » 2016-02-07 16:48:19

Thank you for your suggestion. That would work fine with a few characters. Unfortunately, my character set is just beyond a few, and will likely grow some.
Nisus Write Pro v2.1.3
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phspaelti
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by phspaelti » 2016-02-07 19:29:22

Two possible ideas for macro solutions:
  • Create your own 'character palette', using the 'options' command. This would present a dialog box with a list of choices. The macro would enter the choice.
  • Enter the characters from the Nisus palette (without the font/glyph variant). Then run a macro which searches for those character and sets the desired font, etc.
philip

adryan
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by adryan » 2016-02-10 00:12:52

G’day, salv0 et al

To my mind, the problem here is why font variations are not preserved over time in the Favorites set in the OS X Character Viewer. Is this a problem that only salv0 is experiencing?

I can add three right arrows (say) to the Favorites set, each in a different font, and then have the fonts preserved when I double-click to insert them into a Nisus Writer Pro document. This sort of thing seems to have worked for salv0 initially also, but the “font memory” seems to have been lost over time. I haven’t tested this myself. One wonders whether there is something salv0 can do to restore the lost font variations in the Character Viewer. For example (just thinking out loud), one might run a macro that reloads a known faithful Character Viewer preference file on relaunch of the System or of Nisus Writer, in order to restore the desired behavior.

The other thing that occurs to me is that there might be some way to utilize the Private Use Area of the Unicode character set in the Character Viewer. I don’t know how one even inserts characters there, but presumably such characters would be font-naïve and hence not prone to loss of a font attribute.

Cheers,
Adrian
MacBook Pro (mid-2014)
macOS Sierra 10.12.6
Nisus Writer user since 1996

Þorvarður
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by Þorvarður » 2016-02-10 17:06:31

adryan wrote:the problem here is why font variations are not preserved over time in the Favorites set in the OS X Character Viewer. Is this a problem that only salv0 is experiencing?
I can confirm that when I enter font variations of "N-ary Circled Dot Operator" into the Favorites inside the Character Viewer, they retain their distinctive form until the Character Viewer palette is closed. Next time the Favorites are opened, the font variations have disappeared. Perhaps a bug in OS X?

salv0,
Glossaries or a special file created for this purpose in Nisus will give you much more flexibility than the Favorites pane in the Character Viewer. Remember, you can drag your Glossary to the screen border and have it open while you write in NWP. I think glossaries are an often underestimated feature in NWP, even Nisus Software does not include it here:
http://nisus.com/pro/

A thread about hierarchy in glossaries can be found here:
http://shrtm.nu/dK1t


When Martin suggested a Glossary file, you said:
"That would work fine with a few characters. Unfortunately, my character set is just beyond a few, and will likely grow some."

If you have a very large number of special characters (hundreds?), then the Special Characters palette in Nisus will eventually become unwieldy, so using the Special Characters palette may not be the best solution, given that it would work, which it doesn't.
salv0 wrote: I have resorted to warehouseing my special character set in its own NWP document, where they are reliably available to me on demand.
I think this is the best solution because you can easily sort and rearrange the characters according to your personal needs, use the Navigator to navigate, and so on.

If you write a mini macro like this

Code: Select all

Copy
Next Window
Paste
and assign a keyboard shortcut to this macro, you just have to select the special character and then use the shortcut. This will insert the special character into your Nisus document where the cursor is located, with minimal effort.
Last edited by Þorvarður on 2016-02-10 20:01:34, edited 1 time in total.

Þorvarður
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by Þorvarður » 2016-02-10 17:21:56

phspaelti wrote:
  • Create your own 'character palette', using the 'options' command. This would present a dialog box with a list of choices. The macro would enter the choice.
Would that approach be similar to the macros "Select By Style" and "Select By Font"?
Sounds good, if the font variations can be retained.

adryan
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by adryan » 2016-02-10 21:19:02

G’day, Þorvarður et al

On my computer, the font association in Character Viewer Favorites survives each of the following operations: closing of the Character Viewer window, shutting down and relaunching Nisus Writer, and restarting the computer. I tested this with right arrows and with N-ary circled dot operators.

While it is welcome that Nisus Writer admits of several workarounds, they really are just workarounds. If one wishes to insert special characters in some other application, one should be able to do so directly from the Character Viewer and not have to open a Nisus Writer repository file each time.

So it would be nice to know the seat of the problem, in order to suggest a deeper solution for affected users or to exhort Apple to fix a bug in an operating system.

Cheers,
Adrian
MacBook Pro (mid-2014)
macOS Sierra 10.12.6
Nisus Writer user since 1996

Þorvarður
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by Þorvarður » 2016-02-11 06:08:27

adryan wrote:If one wishes to insert special characters in some other application, one should be able to do so directly from the Character Viewer and not have to open a Nisus Writer repository file each time.
I was primarily thinking about the original poster working in NWP, but you are absolutely right. If one is working in another application, it would be drudgery having to use Nisus as go-between.
On my computer, the font association in Character Viewer Favorites survives
Are you referring to the Font *Variation*? The screenshots show what happens by me.
1.png
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2.png (92.46 KiB) Viewed 2673 times

xiamenese
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by xiamenese » 2016-02-11 08:29:43

Seems @adryan is on OSX 10.9.5, whereas @Þorvarður is on 10.11.3? Yet another downside to the way OSX is going?

Mark

Edit one time.

adryan
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by adryan » 2016-02-11 13:08:48

G’day, Þorvarður et al

Yes, I am referring to the Font Variation. The characters in my Character Viewer Favorites retain their distinguishing features. When they are inserted into a NWP document, the correct fonts are recognized in the NWP Character Palette.

I have now done my tests on a MacBook Pro (Retina, mid-2014) running OS X Yosemite 10.10.2. Font linkage remains intact each time. I have not upgraded to El Capitan.

Cheers,
Adrian
MacBook Pro (mid-2014)
macOS Sierra 10.12.6
Nisus Writer user since 1996

Þorvarður
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by Þorvarður » 2016-02-12 11:43:56

xiamenese wrote:Seems @adryan is on OSX 10.9.5, whereas @Þorvarður is on 10.11.3?
I'm still on Yosemite (10.10.5). MacBook Pro mid-2010.

adryan
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Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by adryan » 2016-02-14 01:34:35

G’day, Þorvarður et al

After a 10-hour download, I’ve updated to Yosemite 10.10.5 on my mid-2014 MacBook Pro Retina. The Character Viewer works as it should, Font Variation linkage in Favorites having survived the ordeal.

Cheers,
Adrian
MacBook Pro (mid-2014)
macOS Sierra 10.12.6
Nisus Writer user since 1996

Þorvarður
Posts: 248
Joined: 2012-12-19 05:02:52

Re: Special Characters: Mixed Fonts

Post by Þorvarður » 2016-02-15 03:31:17

adryan wrote:After a 10-hour download, I’ve updated to Yosemite 10.10.5 on my mid-2014 MacBook Pro Retina. The Character Viewer works as it should, Font Variation linkage in Favorites having survived the ordeal.
Thank you Adryan for testing this. Seems like something is broken by me (and possibly also by the original poster.)
If I ever upgrade to El Capitan, I'll see whether that fixes the problem, and then I will report here.

Þorvarður

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